Poverty of the Mind

‘Father Pirrone thought what a mess the world must seem to one who knew neither mathematics or theology. “Oh, Lord, only Thy Omniscience could have devised so many complications.”‘

The Leopard by Giuseppe di Lampedusa


“I think most journalists are pretty lazy, number one. A little lazy and also they’re spoon-fed information, such as the weapons of mass destruction back in 2003. It’s easy. There are all these lobbyist groups, these special interest groups… Whether it’s the gun lobby or the Israeli lobby or the Taiwan lobby, whatever the hell it is, you have these people who create a package of news, develop it as a story line, a scenario, and they find, as Mailer once said about the press, that they’re like a donkey. You have to feed the donkey. The donkey every day has to eat. So these people throw information at this damn animal that eats everything. Tin cans, garbage.”

Gay Talese


“A mentally unstable racist clown with conman skills (mostly just lying) eviscerated the Republican primary field and won the presidency. He keeps doing crazy, impulsive racist stuff. But for some reason, the economy is going well, jobs are looking good, North Korea blinked, ISIS is on the ropes, and the Supreme Court got a qualified judge. It was mostly luck.”

Scott Adams

Why do you want to work for us?

The most common one is when the candidate is asked why they’d like to work for TransferWise… “People usually say it’s because they’re passionate about money transfer,” Peiris says. “And I say, ‘OK, that’s not true. What’s the real reason? Because I’m not passionate about money transfers, and neither are the founders, and neither is anyone else here.”

Eric Barton

Militant Vulgarity

“The whole act had seemed to me a minor manifestation of the great overriding, and indeed only, ideology of modern Britain, namely militant vulgarity, that is to say not vulgarity that is spontaneous, but vulgarity that is deliberate, planned, and evangelical in its fervor.

Is authentic uncouthness better or worse than the assumed variety?”

Theodore Dalrymple

Panama Papers

“The outrage that greeted the Mossack Fonseca revelations (actually, rather few so far) seems to me to partake more of joyous spite and hatred of the rich than of any real desire to improve the world, the latter being a much weaker emotion than the former. If the rich could be deprived of their wealth, even if no one else benefited thereby, I think many people would want it.”

Theodore Dalrymple