“In fairy tales the objects were mostly familiar; it was only the power that was mystical. A peasant had never seen a bean-stalk grow up into the sky; but he had seen a bean-stalk and he had seen the sky. A child had never seen a cat in boots; but he had seen boots and a cat. The trouble with the new world of fancy is that it consists so much of vast things of which plain people can form no picture: financial hoards, scientific machinery, colossal navies, enormous emigration — images so huge that they do not stir the imagination, but crush it.
– G.K. Chesterton The Illustrated London News
January 22, 1910.
“Who is it you think you see? Do you know how much I make a year? I mean, even if I told you, you wouldn’t believe it. Do you know what would happen if I suddenly decided to stop going in to work? A business big enough that it could be listed on the NASDAQ goes belly-up. Disappears! It ceases to exist without me. No, you clearly don’t know who you’re talking to, so let me clue you in: I am not in danger, Skyler. I AM THE DANGER. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No. I AM THE ONE WHO KNOCKS.”
One of my all-time favorite bands, R.E.M. have broken up after 31 years together!
From the band’s official website:
As R.E.M., and as lifelong friends and co-conspirators, we have decided to call it a day as a band. We walk away with a great sense of gratitude, of finality, and of astonishment at all we have accomplished. To anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening.
Even though I haven’t really kept up with them in the past few years, it’s still sad news. They were just one of those bands I always expected to be around forever. It therefore only seems fitting to send them out with their first big hit:
Good luck guys. God bless, and thanks for all the great tunes over the years! Fables of the Reconstruction will always be one of my all-time favorite discs!
Why did anyone ever think that 17 disparate countries, with different economic cultures, different work ethics, different industrial bases and different standards of living could ever adapt to a one-size-fits-all currency?
Why did they ever think a single currency could work in 17 different countries with 17 different finance ministers, 17 different tax systems, and 17 different economic policies? Why did they think it would work when country after country – including significant ones such as France and Italy – repeatedly flouted the rule forbidding them to run deficits of more than 3pc of their GDP, and nobody punished them?