Mass Customization Quotes

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It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot. Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth. Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts, as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, to absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to playing on the piano and embroidering bags. It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
Like Jim Crow (and slavery), mass incarceration operates as a tightly networked system of laws, policies, customs, and institutions that operate collectively to ensure the subordinate status of a group defined largely by race.
Michelle Alexander (The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness)
The Nazis were impressed by the American custom of lynching its subordinate caste of African-Americans, having become aware of the ritual torture and mutilations that typically accompanied them. Hitler especially marveled at the American “knack for maintaining an air of robust innocence in the wake of mass death.
Isabel Wilkerson (Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents)
Things nature is good at include - organizing matter in a way that is multi functional, mass customization, network adaptation to circumstance, responsive evolution, growth as a mechanism for construction, decentralization, data management and asset management. Regardless of what kind of business we are talking about, there's something vital to learn from nature.
Hendrith Vanlon Smith Jr. (Principles of a Permaculture Economy)
We compromise ourselves the day we are born. If we are looking for the original sin, there it is- our incapacity to live honestly with ourselves because we are human, because we are shackled by custom, by obligations and we accept compromise only in the light of our conscience, answerable as we are only to ourselves.
F. Sionil José (Mass (Rosales Saga, #5))
It is our custom to consume the person we love. Taboo flesh: swollen genitalia nipples the scrotum the vulva the soles of the feet the palm of the hand heart and liver taste best. Cannibalism is blessed. I'll wear your jawbone round my neck listen to your vertebrae bone tapping bone in my wrists. I'll string your fingers round my waist - what a rigorous embrace. Over my heart I'll wear a brooch with a lock of hair. Nights I'll sleep cradling your skull sharpening my teeth on your toothless grin. Sundays there's Mass and communion and I'll put your relics to rest.
Gloria E. Anzaldúa (Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza)
We revolutionary anarchists are the enemies of all forms of State and State organisations ... we think that all State rule, all governments being by their very nature placed outside the mass of the people, must necessarily seek to subject it to customs and purposes entirely foreign to it. We therefore declare ourselves to be foes ... of all State organisations as such, and believe that the people can only be happy and free, when, organised from below by means of its own autonomous and completely free associations, without the supervision of any guardians, it will create its own life.
Mikhail Bakunin
How one creates customers by suing them en masse is a mystery known only to the copyright industries.
William Patry (Moral Panics and the Copyright Wars)
Romance novels constitute 46 percent of all mass market paperbacks sold in the United States, and according to Harlequin, over half its customers buy an average of 30 novels a month
Eva Illouz (Hard-Core Romance: Fifty Shades of Grey, Best-Sellers, and Society)
How does paying people more money make you more money? It works like this. The more you pay your workers, the more they spend. Remember, they're not just your workers- they're your consumers, too. The more they spend their extra cash on your products, the more your profits go up. Also, when employees have enough money that they don't have to live in constant fear of bankruptcy, they're able to focus more on their work- and be more productive. With fewer personal problems and less stress hanging over them, they'll lose less time at work, meaning more profits for you. Pay them enough to afford a late model car (i.e. one that works), and they'll rarely be late for work. And knowing that they'll be able to provide a better life for their children will not only give them a more positive attitude, it'll give them hope- and an incentive to do well for the company because the better the company does, the better they'll do. Of course, if you're like most corporations these days- announcing mass layoffs right after posting record profits- then you're already hemorrhaging the trust and confidence of your remaining workforce, and your employees are doing their jobs in a state of fear. Productivity will drop. That will hurt sales. You will suffer. Ask the people at Firestone: Ford has alleged that the tire company fired its longtime union employees, then brought in untrained scab workers who ended up making thousands of defective tires- and 203 dead customers later, Firestone is in the toilet.
Michael Moore (Stupid White Men)
The market is a system of mass cooperation. You compete with rival producers, sure, but you cooperate with your customers, your suppliers and your colleagues. Commerce both needs and breeds trust.
Matt Ridley (The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge)
Following the Civil War, it was unclear what institutions, laws, or customs would be necessary to maintain white control now that slavery was gone. Nonetheless, as numerous historians have shown, the development of a new racial order became the consuming passion for most white Southerners. Rumors of a great insurrection terrified whites, and blacks increasingly came to be viewed as menacing and dangerous. In fact, the current stereotypes of black men as aggressive, unruly predators can be traced to this period, when whites feared that an angry mass of black men might rise up and attack them or rape their women.
Michelle Alexander (The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness)
In the market economy the consumers are supreme. Consumers determine, by their buying or abstention from buying, what should be produced, by whom and how, of what quality and in what quantity. The entrepreneurs, capitalists, and landowners who fail to satisfy in the best possible and cheapest way the most urgent of the not yet satisfied wishes of the consumers are forced to go out of business and forfeit their preferred position. In business offices and in laboratories the keenest minds are busy fructifying the most complex achievements of scientific research for the production of ever better implements and gadgets for people who have no inkling of the scientific theories that make the fabrication of such things possible. The bigger an enterprise is, the more it is forced to adjust its production activities to the changing whims and fancies of the masses, its masters. The fundamental principle of capitalism is mass production to supply the masses. It is the patronage of the masses that makes enterprises grow into bigness. The common man is supreme in the market economy. He is the customer “who is always right.
Ludwig von Mises (Economic Freedom and Interventionism: An Anthology of Articles and Essays (Liberty Fund Library of the Works of Ludwig von Mises))
The Bible says, “We are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works.”1 Our English word poem comes from the Greek word translated “workmanship.” You are God’s handcrafted work of art. You are not an assembly-line product, mass produced without thought. You are a custom-designed, one-of-a-kind, original masterpiece.
Rick Warren (The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?)
Sometimes starting over at the bottom can be the best thing you can do for yourself.
Ryan Levesque (Ask: The Counterintuitive Online Formula to Discover Exactly What Your Customers Want to Buy...Create a Mass of Raving Fans...and Take Any Business to the Next Level)
What was the use of being beautiful and attracting attention if one were perpetually doomed to relapse again into the obscure mass of the Uninvited?
Edith Wharton (The Custom of the Country)
Catherine had to treat the church hierarchy carefully. She had always exercised a rational flexibility in matters of religious dogma and policy. Brought up in an atmosphere of strict Lutheranism, she had as a child expressed enough skepticism about religion to worry her deeply conventional father. As a fourteen-year-old in Russia, she had been required to change her religion to Orthodoxy. In public, she scrupulously observed all forms of this faith, attending church services, observing religious holidays, and making pilgrimages. Throughout her reign, she never underestimated the importance of religion. She knew that the name of the autocrat and the power of the throne were embodied in the daily prayers of the faithful, and that the views of the clergy and the piety of the masses were a power to be reckoned with. She understood that the sovereign, whatever his or her private views of religion, must find a way to make this work. When Voltaire was asked how he, who denied God, could take Holy Communion, he replied that he “breakfasted according to the custom of the country.” Having observed the disastrous effect of her husband’s contemptuous public rejection of the Orthodox Church, Catherine chose to emulate Voltaire.
Robert K. Massie (Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman)
When the NSSF fights against legislation designed to prevent mass shootings because it “won’t work and is a violation of rights,” we understand that many people agree with that argument. But that’s not, at all, even a little bit why the organization lobbies so hard. It works hand in hand with the NRA and certain senators, and spends millions of dollars per year for one reason and one reason only: to make more money. And every time a shooting happens, it makes even more money. Yes. For real. When a mass shooting makes national headlines, the gun lobby purposefully stokes up fear and paranoia over proposed new gun laws so that scared citizens get out their checkbooks and buy a new AR-15 (or sporting rifle). So why would the NSSF have any interest in stopping mass shootings? Why would it engage politically and invest in compromise, a reform plan that attempts to make all Americans safer, or any sort of reckoning of the role guns play in gun violence? It won’t. However you feel about guns and their place in America—whether we’re talking about rifles for hunting or assault rifles, or anything in between—it’s undeniable that the gun lobby has refused to acknowledge or entertain any sort of regulation or reform aimed at making us a safer and saner nation. The reason why: because that does not make it more money. A customer base kept terrified at all times that this will be “the last chance before the government bans” whatever gun manufacturers are peddling is much more valuable. A customer base absolutely convinced that the just-about-anyone-can-buy culture we have is politically necessary without seeing that it serves those companies is what they’re after. They have achieved it.
Trae Crowder (The Liberal Redneck Manifesto: Draggin' Dixie Outta the Dark)
Fortunately, new platforms and technology have made homeschooling manageable on many fronts. Parents can do everything from accessing first-rate courses online to finding support from other parents in the same situation. The best part is that they can completely tailor the experience to the learning style and interest of their children and give them the attention that they would never get in the classroom. The results are striking. Twenty-five percent of homeschooled children are at least one grade ahead of their traditionally schooled peers. The homeschooled population, as a whole, scores exceptionally higher on academic achievement tests.5 This shift is perhaps the best glimpse of the future of education—mass customization alongside personalized attention. Like banking, it will return to a human-scale model based on relationships and personal needs, and it will be where much of the disruption in the economy and labor market occurs in the next few decades.
Aaron Hurst (The Purpose Economy, Expanded and Updated: How Your Desire for Impact, Personal Growth and Community Is Changing the World)
It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it.  Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot.  Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth.  Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts, as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to playing on the piano and embroidering bags.  It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
Experience teaches,” said Gletkin, “that the masses must be given for all difficult and complicated processes a simple, easily grasped explanation. According to what I know of history, I see that mankind could never do without scapegoats. I believe it was at all times an indispensable institution; your friend Ivanov taught me that it was of religious origin. As far as I remember, he explained that the word itself came from a custom of the Hebrews, who once a year sacrificed to their god a goat, laden with all their sins.” Gletkin paused and shoved his cuffs into place. “Besides, there are also examples in history of voluntary scapegoats. At the age when you were given a watch, I was being taught by the village priest that Jesus Christ called himself a lamb, which had taken on itself all sin. I have never understood in what way it could help mankind if someone declares he is being sacrificed for its sake. But for two thousand years people have apparently found it quite natural.
Arthur Koestler (Darkness at Noon)
The consumer is constantly screaming "Give me what I want!", while inside they are really thinking "Inspire me", even if they aren't consciously aware of it. To give the customer what they want is everything that is wrong with music today. Popular music just continues to get more and more dumbed down. The consumer doesn't know what they want, plain and simple, and if you ask them, they will likely regurgitate something that has already been recycled, filtered, over produced and watered down for the masses.
Jason Timothy (Music Habits - The Mental Game of Electronic Music Production: Finish Songs Fast, Beat Procrastination and Find Your Creative Flow)
Porcophilia can also be used for oppressive and repressive purposes. In medieval Spain, where Jews and Muslims were compelled on pain of death and torture to convert to Christianity, the religious authorities quite rightly suspected that many of the conversions were not sincere. Indeed, the Inquisition arose partly from the holy dread that secret infidels were attending Mass—where of course, and even more disgustingly, they were pretending to eat human flesh and drink human blood, in the person of Christ himself. Among the customs that arose in consequence was the offering, at most events formal and informal, of a plate of charcuterie. Those who have been fortunate enough to visit Spain, or any good Spanish restaurant, will be familiar with the gesture of hospitality: literally dozens of pieces of differently cured, differently sliced pig. But the grim origin of this lies in a constant effort to sniff out heresy, and to be unsmilingly watchful for giveaway expressions of distaste. In the hands of eager Christian fa-natics, even the toothsome jamón Ibérico could be pressed into service as a form of torture.
Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
But the most extraordinary is this relationship with Jesus. It’s not mass produced - one size fits all. No, it’s one to one, customized to fit the shape of who you have been, what you have done and where you want to be in the future. He’s taken that time to tune into me, into my patterns and my past.
Emily Silver (Fifty Shades of Christ)
Energized by our concern and crankiness, we decided to save the world of education by proposing a vision for learners and learning that rids school systems of the Industrial Age assembly-line structure, and replaces it with an Information Age structure that we chose to label “mass customized learning.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable Too!: The Total Leader Embraces Mass Customized Learning)
May 28, 1877 As I don’t believe in sending letters filled with treacle-like sentiment, I feel as if I should…send you a puppy or something. Alas. I don’t know if puppies keep when sent through the mails—and I doubt they’d pass through customs these days. It’s too bad you aren’t a pirate, as you’d once planned. That would make puppy delivery far more efficient. I’d bring up my own ship next to you and send you an entire broadside of puppies. You’d be buried in very small dogs. You’d be far too busy with puppy care to worry about anything else. This is now sounding more and more invasive, and less and less cheering—and nonetheless I have yet to meet anyone who was not delighted by a wriggling mass of puppies. If I ever did meet such a person, he would deserve misery. Do not doubt the power of the puppy-cannon. Edward P.S. If there is no puppy attached to this message, it is because it was confiscated by customs. Bah. Customs is terrible
Courtney Milan (The Suffragette Scandal (Brothers Sinister, #4))
Using various combinations of the five contextual forces, forward-thinking marketers are shifting focus away from mass messages and more into what Maribel Lopez, founder of Lopez Research, calls “right-time experiences,” where mobile technologies deliver customers the right information “at precisely the moment of need.
Robert Scoble (Age of Context: Mobile, Sensors, Data and the Future of Privacy)
In September 2020, Dawn Wooten, a nurse at Irwin County Detention Center, a private Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility in Georgia, alleged in a whistleblower complaint that an obstetrician-gynaecologist was performing ‘unwarranted’ and often non-consensual mass hysterectomies on detained women. According to Wooten, ‘everybody he sees has a hysterectomy – just about everybody
Elinor Cleghorn (Unwell Women: A Journey Through Medicine and Myth in a Man-Made World)
Much read in history and much practiced in the conduct of political affairs, [Edmund] Burke knew that men are not naturally good, but are beings of mingled good and evil, kept in obedience to a moral law chiefly by the force of custom and habit, which the revolutionaries would discard as so much antiquated rubbish. He knew that all the advantages of society are the product of intricate human experience over many centuries, not to be amended overnight by some coffee-house philosopher. He knew religion to be man's greatest good, and established order to be the fundamental of civilization, and hereditary possessions to be the prop of liberty and justice, and the mass of beliefs we often call "prejudices" to be the moral sense of humanity. He set his face against the revolutionaries like a man who finds himself suddenly beset by robbers.
Russell Kirk (Edmund Burke: A Genius Reconsidered)
Interruption Marketing was easy. Build a few ads, run them everywhere. Interruption Marketing was scalable. If you need more sales, buy more ads. Interruption Marketing was predictable. With experience, a mass marketer could tell how many dollars in revenue one more dollar in ad spending would generate. Interruption Marketing fit the command and control bias of big companies. It was totally controlled by the advertiser, with no weird side effects.
Seth Godin (Permission Marketing: Turning Strangers Into Friends And Friends Into Customers)
The first Christians were eucharistic by nature: they gathered for “the breaking of the bread and the prayers.” They were formed by the Word of God, the “apostles’ teaching.” When they met as a Church, their worship culminated in “fellowship”—the Greek word is koinonia, communion. The Mass was the center of life for the disciples of Jesus, and so it has ever been. Even today, the Mass is where we experience the apostolic teaching and communion, the breaking of the bread and the prayers.
Scott Hahn (Signs of Life: 40 Catholic Customs and Their Biblical Roots)
After his initial homecoming week, after he'd been taken to a bunch of sights by his cousins, after he'd gotten somewhat used to the scorching weather and the surprise of waking up to the roosters and being called Huascar by everybody (that was his Dominican name, something else he'd forgotten), after he refused to succumb to that whisper that all long-term immigrants carry inside themselves, the whisper that says You do not belong, after he'd gone to about fifty clubs and because he couldn't dance salsa, merengue, or bachata had sat and drunk Presidentes while Lola and his cousins burned holes in the floor, after he'd explained to people a hundred times that he'd been separated from his sister at birth, after he spent a couple of quiet mornings on his own, writing, after he'd given out all his taxi money to beggars and had to call his cousin Pedro Pablo to pick him up, after he'd watched shirtless shoeless seven-year-olds fighting each other for the scraps he'd left on his plate at an outdoor cafe, after his mother took them all to dinner in the Zona Colonial and the waiters kept looking at their party askance (Watch out, Mom, Lola said, they probably think you're Haitian - La unica haitiana aqui eres tu, mi amor, she retorted), after a skeletal vieja grabbed both his hands and begged him for a penny, after his sister had said, You think that's bad, you should see the bateys, after he'd spent a day in Bani (the camp where La Inca had been raised) and he'd taken a dump in a latrine and wiped his ass with a corn cob - now that's entertainment, he wrote in his journal - after he'd gotten somewhat used to the surreal whirligig that was life in La Capital - the guaguas, the cops, the mind-boggling poverty, the Dunkin' Donuts, the beggars, the Haitians selling roasted peanuts at the intersections, the mind-boggling poverty, the asshole tourists hogging up all the beaches, the Xica de Silva novelas where homegirl got naked every five seconds that Lola and his female cousins were cracked on, the afternoon walks on the Conde, the mind-boggling poverty, the snarl of streets and rusting zinc shacks that were the barrios populares, the masses of niggers he waded through every day who ran him over if he stood still, the skinny watchmen standing in front of stores with their brokedown shotguns, the music, the raunchy jokes heard on the streets, the mind-boggling poverty, being piledrived into the corner of a concho by the combined weight of four other customers, the music, the new tunnels driving down into the bauxite earth [...]
Junot Díaz (The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao)
Most frequently, groups are formed and assigned the task of setting goals for a specific part of the strategic plan. One group might be working on the mission statement, another on curriculum, another on instruction, another on technology, another on facilities, and so forth. Groups work simultaneously with little communication between them before they present their recommendations to the total group. How can they do this??? Won’t the mission be a strong influence on curriculum, won’t a new vision have a strong influence on facilities, etc.?
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
On July 4, in his sixth “Continentalist” essay, Hamilton, with a nod to Morris, applauded the appointment of federal customs and tax collectors to “create in the interior of each state a mass of influence in favour of the federal government.” This essay makes clear that, in the Revolution’s waning days, Hamilton had to combat the utopian notion that America could dispense with taxes altogether: “It is of importance to unmask this delusion and open the eyes of the people to the truth. It is paying too great a tribute to the idol of popularity to flatter so injurious and so visionary an expectation.
Ron Chernow (Alexander Hamilton)
Specialisation, accompanied by exchange, is the source of economic prosperity. Here, in my own words, is what a modern version of Smithism claims. First, the spontaneous and voluntary exchange of goods and services leads to a division of labour in which people specialise in what they are good at doing. Second, this in turn leads to gains from trade for each party to a transaction, because everybody is doing what he is most productive at and has the chance to learn, practise and even mechanise his chosen task. Individuals can thus use and improve their own tacit and local knowledge in a way that no expert or ruler could. Third, gains from trade encourage more specialisation, which encourages more trade, in a virtuous circle. The greater the specialisation among producers, the greater is the diversification of consumption: in moving away from self-sufficiency people get to produce fewer things, but to consume more. Fourth, specialisation inevitably incentivises innovation, which is also a collaborative process driven by the exchange and combination of ideas. Indeed, most innovation comes about through the recombination of existing ideas for how to make or organise things. The more people trade and the more they divide labour, the more they are working for each other. The more they work for each other, the higher their living standards. The consequence of the division of labour is an immense web of cooperation among strangers: it turns potential enemies into honorary friends. A woollen coat, worn by a day labourer, was (said Smith) ‘the produce of a great multitude of workmen. The shepherd, the sorter of the wool, the wool-comber or carder, the dyer, the scribbler, the spinner, the weaver, the fuller, the dresser . . .’ In parting with money to buy a coat, the labourer was not reducing his wealth. Gains from trade are mutual; if they were not, people would not voluntarily engage in trade. The more open and free the market, the less opportunity there is for exploitation and predation, because the easier it is for consumers to boycott the predators and for competitors to whittle away their excess profits. In its ideal form, therefore, the free market is a device for creating networks of collaboration among people to raise each other’s living standards, a device for coordinating production and a device for communicating information about needs through the price mechanism. Also a device for encouraging innovation. It is the very opposite of the rampant and selfish individualism that so many churchmen and others seem to think it is. The market is a system of mass cooperation. You compete with rival producers, sure, but you cooperate with your customers, your suppliers and your colleagues. Commerce both needs and breeds trust.
Matt Ridley (The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge)
Lavabit was an e-mail service that offered more security privacy than the large corporate e-mail services most of us use. It was a small company, owned and operated by a programmer named Ladar Levison, and it was popular among the tech-savvy. It had half a million users, Edward Snowden amongst them. Soon after Snowden fled to Hong Kong in 2013, Levison received a National Security Letter demanding that the company turn over the master encryption key that protected all of Lavabit’s users—and then not tell any of its customers that they could be monitored. Levison fought this order in court, and when it became clear that he had lost, he shut down his service rather than deceive and compromise his customers. The moral is clear. If you run a business, and the FBI or the NSA wants to turn it into a mass surveillance tool, it believes that it is entitled to do so, solely on its own authority. The agency can force you to modify your system. It can do it all in secret and then force your business to keep that secret. Once it does that, you no longer control that part of your business. If you’re a large company, you can’t shut it down. You can’t realistically terminate part of your service. In a very real sense, it is not your business anymore. It has become an arm of the vast US surveillance apparatus, and if your interest conflicts with the agency’s, the agency wins. Your business has been commandeered.
Bruce Schneier (Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World)
Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth. Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a constraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to playing on the piano and embroidering bags. It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
The language of caste may well seem foreign or unfamiliar to some. Public discussions about racial caste in America are relatively rare. We avoid talking about caste in our society because we are ashamed of our racial history. We also avoid talking about race. We even avoid talking about class. Conversations about class are resisted in part because there is a tendency to imagine that one's class reflects upon one's character. What is key to America's understanding of class is the persistent belief - despite all evidence to the contrary - that anyone, with the proper discipline and drive, can move from a lower class to a higher class. We recognize that mobility may be difficult, but the key to our collective self-image is the assumption that mobility is always possible, so failure to move up reflects on one's character. By extension, the failure of a race or ethnic group to move up reflects very poorly on the group as a whole. What is completely missed in the rare public debates today about the plight of African Americans is that a huge percentage of them are not free to move up at all. It is not just that they lack opportunity, attend poor schools, or are plagued by poverty. They are barred by law from doing so. And the major institutions with which they come into contact are designed to prevent their mobility. To put the matter starkly: The current system of control permanently locks a huge percentage of the African American community out of the mainstream society and economy. The system operates through our criminal justice institutions, but it functions more like a caste system than a system of crime control. Viewed from this perspective, the so-called underclass is better understood as an undercaste - a lower caste of individuals who are permanently barred by law and custom from mainstream society. Although this new system of racialized social control purports to be colorblind, it creates and maintains racial hierarchy much as earlier systems of control did. Like Jim Crow (and slavery), mass incarceration operates as a tightly networked system of laws, policies, customs, and institutions that operate collectively to ensure the subordinate status of a group defined largely by race.
Michelle Alexander (The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness)
Hitler had studied America from afar, both envying and admiring it, and attributed its achievements to its Aryan stock. He praised the country’s near genocide of Native Americans and the exiling to reservations of those who had survived. He was pleased that the United States had “shot down the millions of redskins to a few hundred thousand.” He saw the U.S. Immigration Restriction Act of 1924 as “a model for his program of racial purification,” historian Jonathan Spiro wrote. The Nazis were impressed by the American custom of lynching its subordinate caste of African-Americans, having become aware of the ritual torture and mutilations that typically accompanied them. Hitler especially marveled at the American “knack for maintaining an air of robust innocence in the wake of mass death.
Isabel Wilkerson (Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents)
After his initial homecoming week, after he'd been taken to a bunch of sights by his cousins, after he'd gotten somewhat used to the scorching weather and the surprise of waking up to the roosters and being called Huascar by everybody (that was his Dominican name, something else he'd forgotten), after he refused to succumb to that whisper that all long-term immigrants carry inside themselves, the whisper that says You do not belong, after he'd gone to about fifty clubs and because he couldn't dance salsa, merengue, or bachata had sat and drunk Presidentes while Lola and his cousins burned holes in the floor, after he'd explained to people a hundred times that he'd been separated from his sister at birth, after he spent a couple of quiet mornings on his own, writing, after he'd given out all his taxi money to beggars and had to call his cousin Pedro Pablo to pick him up, after he'd watched shirtless shoeless seven-year-olds fighting each other for the scraps he'd left on his plate at an outdoor cafe, after his mother took them all to dinner in the Zona Colonial and the waiters kept looking at their party askance (Watch out, Mom, Lola said, they probably think you're Haitian - La unica haitiana aqui eres tu, mi amor, she retorted), after a skeletal vieja grabbed both his hands and begged him for a penny, after his sister had said, You think that's bad, you should see the bateys, after he'd spent a day in Bani (the camp where La Inca had been raised) and he'd taken a dump in a latrine and wiped his ass with a corn cob - now that's entertainment, he wrote in his journal - after he'd gotten somewhat used to the surreal whirligig that was life in La Capital - the guaguas, the cops, the mind-boggling poverty, the Dunkin' Donuts, the beggars, the Haitians selling roasted peanuts at the intersections, the mind-boggling poverty, the asshole tourists hogging up all the beaches, the Xica de Silva novelas where homegirl got naked every five seconds that Lola and his female cousins were cracked on, the afternoon walks on the Conde, the mind-boggling poverty, the snarl of streets and rusting zinc shacks that were the barrios populares, the masses of niggers he waded through every day who ran him over if he stood still, the skinny watchmen standing in front of stores with their brokedown shotguns, the music, the raunchy jokes heard on the streets, the mind-boggling poverty, being piledrived into the corner of a concho by the combined weight of four other customers, the music, the new tunnels driving down into the bauxite earth,
Junot Díaz (The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao)
It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot. Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth. Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts, as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to playing on the piano and embroidering bags. It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
As the crowd looked breathlessly on, Karlstadt read the Mass in an abbreviated form, leaving out the passages about sacrifice to which Luther had so objected. At the consecration, Karlstadt—omitting the elevation of the host—passed from Latin into German. For the first time in their lives, those present heard in their own language the words “This is the cup of my blood of the new and eternal testament, spirit and secret of the faith, shed for you to the remission of sins.” Each congregant was then invited to commune in both kinds. A hush descended as Christians high and low proceeded to the altar. Instead of receiving the host on the tongue, as was the custom, each was handed a wafer to place on his or her tongue; each was also given the chalice from which to drink. One communicant, on being handed a wafer, trembled so violently that he dropped it. Karlstadt told him to pick it up, but the man was so terrified at the sight of the Lord’s body lying desecrated on the floor that he refused to touch it.
Michael Massing (Fatal Discord: Erasmus, Luther, and the Fight for the Western Mind)
It may be helpful, in attempting to understand the basic nature of the new caste system, to think of the criminal justice system--the entire collection of institutions and practices that comprise it--not as an independent system but rather as a gateway into a much larger system of racial stigmatization and permanent marginalization. This larger system, referred to here as mass incarceration, is a system that locks people not only behind actual bars in actual prisons, but also behind virtual bars and virtual walls--walls that are invisible to the naked eye but function nearly as effectively as Jim Crow laws once did at locking people of color into a permanent second-class citizenship. The terms mass incarceration refers not only to the criminal justice system but also to the larger web of laws, rules, policies, and customs that control those labeled criminals both in and out of prison. Once released, former prisoners enter a hidden underworld of legalized discrimination and permanent social exclusion. They are members of America's new undercaste.
Michelle Alexander
What is most dystopian about all of the digital houses designed for customized consumption is the implication that the entire landscape could be covered with new houses lacking any social or economic neighborhood context. Designers minimize the need for family or neighborhood interaction if they plan for digital surveillance as a route to ordering mass-produced commodities as well as handling work and civic life. If many external activities, such as paid work, exercise, shopping, seeking entertainment, and voting, are able to be done in-house through the various electronic communications systems, reasons for going outside decrease. The residents become isolated, although the house continues to function as a container for mass-produced goods and electronic media. In a landscape bristling with tens of thousands of digital houses and cell towers, where the ground is laced with hundreds of thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable, neighborhoods may not exist. Car journeys involving traffic problems may disappear, although the roads will be clogged with delivery vans.
Dolores Hayden (Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1820-2000)
What did Strauss mean by philosophy? Not what it was commonly understood to be. Philosophers were not to be found teaching in colleges and universities around the country because instructors in philosophy departments were no more likely to be true philosophers than instructors in art departments were to be true artists. Philosophy wasn’t an academic discipline or the stepping-stone to a career defined by the structures and customs of higher education. It was a personal commitment, a way of life, inspired by a sense of wonder, much like a religion though without the dogma. Philosophers were devoted to wisdom but didn’t propound doctrines or claim to have discovered the Truth. Their wisdom, like that of the prototype Socrates, consisted of an awareness that they knew nothing. Insofar as they could be said to possess knowledge, it was of the questions, not the answers, and philosophers ceased to be philosophers, Strauss said, when certainty replaced Socratic doubt. Monk-like, they pursued a contemplative life of reasoned discussion and disputation about that which they did not know, far from the meaningless bustle of the everyday world. Their advantage over the ignorant masses was their intellectual humility. All
Barry Gewen (The Inevitability of Tragedy: Henry Kissinger and His World)
The story of the Internet's origins departs from the explanations of technical innovation that center on individual inventors or on the pull of markets. Cerf and Kahn were neither captains of industry nor "two guys tinkering in a garage." The Internet was not built in response to popular demand, real or imagined; its subsequent mass appeal had no part in the decisions made in 1973. Rather, the project reflected the command economy of military procurement, where specialized performance is everything and money is no object, and the research ethos of the university, where experimental interest and technical elegance take precedence over commercial application. This was surely an unlikely context for the creation of what would become a popular and profitable service. Perhaps the key to the Internet's later commercial success was that the project internalized the competitive forces of the market by bringing representatives of diverse interest groups together and allowing them to argue through design issues. Ironically, this unconventional approach produced a system that proved to have more appeal for potential "customers"—people building networks—than did the overtly commercial alternatives that appeared soon after.
Janet Abbate (Inventing the Internet (Inside Technology))
As I became older, I was given many masks to wear. I could be a laborer laying railroad tracks across the continent, with long hair in a queue to be pulled by pranksters; a gardener trimming the shrubs while secretly planting a bomb; a saboteur before the day of infamy at Pearl Harbor, signaling the Imperial Fleet; a kamikaze pilot donning his headband somberly, screaming 'Banzai' on my way to my death; a peasant with a broad-brimmed straw hat in a rice paddy on the other side of the world, stooped over to toil in the water; an obedient servant in the parlor, a houseboy too dignified for my own good; a washerman in the basement laundry, removing stains using an ancient secret; a tyrant intent on imposing my despotism on the democratic world, opposed by the free and the brave; a party cadre alongside many others, all of us clad in coordinated Mao jackets; a sniper camouflaged in the trees of the jungle, training my gunsights on G.I. Joe; a child running with a body burning from napalm, captured in an unforgettable photo; an enemy shot in the head or slaughtered by the villageful; one of the grooms in a mass wedding of couples, having met my mate the day before through our cult leader; an orphan in the last airlift out of a collapsed capital, ready to be adopted into the good life; a black belt martial artist breaking cinderblocks with his head, in an advertisement for Ginsu brand knives with the slogan 'but wait--there's more' as the commercial segued to show another free gift; a chef serving up dog stew, a trick on the unsuspecting diner; a bad driver swerving into the next lane, exactly as could be expected; a horny exchange student here for a year, eager to date the blonde cheerleader; a tourist visiting, clicking away with his camera, posing my family in front of the monuments and statues; a ping pong champion, wearing white tube socks pulled up too high and batting the ball with a wicked spin; a violin prodigy impressing the audience at Carnegie Hall, before taking a polite bow; a teen computer scientist, ready to make millions on an initial public offering before the company stock crashes; a gangster in sunglasses and a tight suit, embroiled in a turf war with the Sicilian mob; an urban greengrocer selling lunch by the pound, rudely returning change over the counter to the black patrons; a businessman with a briefcase of cash bribing a congressman, a corrupting influence on the electoral process; a salaryman on my way to work, crammed into the commuter train and loyal to the company; a shady doctor, trained in a foreign tradition with anatomical diagrams of the human body mapping the flow of life energy through a multitude of colored points; a calculus graduate student with thick glasses and a bad haircut, serving as a teaching assistant with an incomprehensible accent, scribbling on the chalkboard; an automobile enthusiast who customizes an imported car with a supercharged engine and Japanese decals in the rear window, cruising the boulevard looking for a drag race; a illegal alien crowded into the cargo hold of a smuggler's ship, defying death only to crowd into a New York City tenement and work as a slave in a sweatshop. My mother and my girl cousins were Madame Butterfly from the mail order bride catalog, dying in their service to the masculinity of the West, and the dragon lady in a kimono, taking vengeance for her sisters. They became the television newscaster, look-alikes with their flawlessly permed hair. Through these indelible images, I grew up. But when I looked in the mirror, I could not believe my own reflection because it was not like what I saw around me. Over the years, the world opened up. It has become a dizzying kaleidoscope of cultural fragments, arranged and rearranged without plan or order.
Frank H. Wu (Yellow)
What nonsense you do talk, to be sure,’ said Stephen. ‘What “balls”, as you sea-officers say: it is a matter of common observation that a man may be sincerely attached to two women at once – to three, to four, to a very surprising number of women. However,’ he said, ‘no doubt you know more of these things than I. No: what I had in mind were those wider loyalties, those more general conflicts – the candid American, for example, before the issue became envenomed; the unimpassioned Jacobite in ‘45; Catholic priests in France today – Frenchmen of many complexions, in and out of France. So much pain; and the more honest the man the worse the pain. But there at least the conflict is direct: it seems to me that the greater mass of confusion and distress must arise from these less evident divergencies – the moral law, the civil, military, common laws, the code of honour, custom, the rules of practical life, of civility, of amorous conversation, gallantry, to say nothing of Christianity for those that practise it. All sometimes, indeed generally, at variance; none ever in an entirely harmonious relation to the rest; and a man is perpetually required to choose one rather than another, perhaps (in his particular case) its contrary. It is as though our strings were each tuned according to a completely separate system – it is as though the poor ass were surrounded by four and twenty mangers.
Patrick O'Brian (Master and Commander (Aubrey/Maturin, #1))
He continues: "Happily the Greek nation, more than any other, abounds in literary masterpieces. Nearly all of the Greek writings contain an abundance of practical wisdom and virtue. Their worth is so great that even the most advanced European nations do not hesitate to introduce them into their schools. The Germans do this, although their habits and customs are so different from ours. They especially admire Homer's works. These books, above all others, afford pleasure to the young, and the reason for it is clearly set forth by the eminent educator Herbart: "'The little boy is grieved when told that he is little. Nor does he enjoy the stories of little children. This is because his imagination reaches out and beyond his environments. I find the stories from Homer to be more suitable reading for young children than the mass of juvenile books, because they contain grand truths.' "Therefore these stories are held in as high esteem by the German children as by the Greek. In no other works do children find the grand and noble traits in human life so faithfully and charmingly depicted as in Homer. Here all the domestic, civic, and religious virtues of the people are marvellously brought to light and the national feeling is exalted. The Homeric poetry, and especially the 'Odyssey,' is adapted to very young children, not only because it satisfies so well the needs which lead to mental development, but also for another reason. As with the people of olden times bravery was considered the greatest virtue, so with boys of this age and all ages. No other ethical idea has such predominance as that of prowess. Strength of body and a firm will characterize those whom boys choose as their leaders. Hence the pleasure they derive from the accounts of celebrated heroes of yore whose bravery, courage, and prudence they admire.
Homer (Odysseus, the Hero of Ithaca Adapted from the Third Book of the Primary Schools of Athens, Greece)
[I]t is now common to describe racial and ethnic diversity as one of America’s greatest strengths. It is therefore easy to forget that this is a change in thinking that dates back only to perhaps the 1970s. For most of their history Americans preferred sameness to diversity. In 1787, in the second of The Federalist Papers, John Jay gave thanks that “Providence has been pleased to give this one connected country to one united people, a people descended from the same ancestors, speaking the same language, professing the same religion, attached to the same principles of government, very similar in their manners and customs . . . .” Thomas Jefferson was suspicious of the diversity that even white immigrants would bring: 'In proportion to their numbers, they will share with us the legislation. They will infuse into it their spirit, warp and bias its directions, and render it a heterogeneous, incoherent, distracted mass. . . . Suppose 20 millions of republican Americans thrown all of a sudden into France, what would be the condition of that kingdom? It would be more turbulent, less happy, less strong. We believe that the addition of half a million foreigners to our present numbers would produce a similar effect here.' Alexander Hamilton shared his suspicions: 'The opinion is . . . correct, that foreigners will generally be apt to bring with them attachments to the persons they have left behind; to the country of their nativity, and to its particular customs and manners . . . . The influx of foreigners must, therefore, tend to produce a heterogeneous compound; to change and corrupt the national spirit; to complicate and confound public opinion; to introduce foreign propensities.' The United States nevertheless did permit immigration, but only of Europeans, and they were to turn their backs on past loyalties. As John Quincy Adams explained to a German nobleman: “They must cast off the European skin, never to resume it.
Jared Taylor (White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century)
Although a youth culture was in evidence by the 1950s, the first obvious and dramatic manifestation of a culture generated by peer-orientation was the hippie counterculture of the 1960s and 1970s. The Canadian media theorist Marshall McLuhan called it “the new tribalism of the Electric Age.” Hair and dress and music played a significant part in shaping this culture, but what defined it more than anything was its glorification of the peer attachment that gave rise to it. Friends took precedence over family. Physical contact and connection with peers were pursued; the brotherhood of the pop tribe was declared, as in the generation-based “Woodstock nation.” The peer group was the true home. “Don't trust anyone over thirty” became the byword of youth who went far beyond a healthy critique of their elders to a militant rejection of tradition. The degeneration of that culture into alienation and drug use, on the one hand, and its co-optation for commercial purposes by the very mainstream institutions it was rebelling against were almost predictable. The wisdom of well-seasoned cultures has accumulated over hundreds and sometimes thousands of years. Healthy cultures also contain rituals and customs and ways of doing things that protect us from ourselves and safeguard values important to human life, even when we are not conscious of what such values are. An evolved culture needs to have some art and music that one can grow into, symbols that convey deeper meanings to existence and models that inspire greatness. Most important of all, a culture must protect its essence and its ability to reproduce itself — the attachment of children to their parents. The culture generated by peer orientation contains no wisdom, does not protect its members from themselves, creates only fleeting fads, and worships idols hollow of value or meaning. It symbolizes only the undeveloped ego of callow youth and destroys child-parent attachments. We may observe the cheapening of cultural values with each new peer-oriented generation. For all its self-delusion and smug isolation from the adult world, the Woodstock “tribe” still embraced universal values of peace, freedom, and brotherhood. Today's mass musical gatherings are about little more than style, ego, tribal exuberance, and dollars.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
The urban isolated individual An individual can be influenced by forces such as propaganda only when he is cut off from membership in local groups because such groups are organic and have a well-structured material, spirltual and emotional life; they are not easily penetrated by propaganda. For example, it is much more difficult today for outside propaganda to influence a soldier integrated into a military group, or a militant member of a monolithic party, than to influence the same man when he is a mere citizen. Nor is the organic group sensitive to psychological contagion, which is so important to the success of Nazi propaganda. One can say generally, that 19th century individualist society came about through the disintegration of such small groups as the family or the church. Once these groups lost their importance, the individual was substantially isolated. He was plunged into a new environment generally urban and thereby "uprooted." He no longer had a traditional place in which to live. He was no longer geographically attached to a fixed place, or historically to his ancestry. An individual thus uprooted can only be part of a mass- He is on his own, and individualist thinking asks of him something he has never been required to do before: that he, the individual, become the measure of all things. Thus he begins to judge everything for himself. In fact he must make his own judgments. He is thrown entirely on his own resources; he can find criteria only in himself. He is clearly responsible for his own decisions, both personal and social. He becomes the beginning and the end of everything. Before him there was nothing; after him there will be nothing. His own life becomes the only criterion of justice and injustice, of Good and Evil. The individual is placed in a minority position and burdened at the same time with a total crushing responsibility. Such conditions make an individualist society fertile ground for modern propaganda. The permanent uncertainty, the social mobility, the absence of sociological protection and of traditional frames of reference — all these inevitably provide propaganda with a malleable environment that can be fed information from the outside and conditioned at will. The individual left to himself is defenseless the more so because he may be caught up in a social current thus becoming easy prey for propaganda. As a member of a small group he was fairly well protected from collective influences, customs, and suggestions. He was relatively unaffected by changes in the society at large.
Jacques Ellul (Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes)
Beyoncé and Rihanna were pop stars. Pop stars were musical performers whose celebrity had exploded to the point where they could be identified by single words. You could say BEYONCÉ or RIHANNA to almost anyone anywhere in the industrialized world and it would conjure a vague neurological image of either Beyoncé or Rihanna. Their songs were about the same six subjects of all songs by all pop stars: love, celebrity, fucking, heartbreak, money and buying ugly shit. It was the Twenty-First Century. It was the Internet. Fame was everything. Traditional money had been debased by mass production. Traditional money had ceased to be about an exchange of humiliation for food and shelter. Traditional money had become the equivalent of a fantasy world in which different hunks of vampiric plastic made emphatic arguments about why they should cross the threshold of your home. There was nothing left to buy. Fame was everything because traditional money had failed. Fame was everything because fame was the world’s last valid currency. Beyoncé and Rihanna were part of a popular entertainment industry which deluged people with images of grotesque success. The unspoken ideology of popular entertainment was that its customers could end up as famous as the performers. They only needed to try hard enough and believe in their dreams. Like all pop stars, Beyoncé and Rihanna existed off the illusion that their fame was a shared experience with their fans. Their fans weren’t consumers. Their fans were fellow travelers on a journey through life. In 2013, this connection between the famous and their fans was fostered on Twitter. Beyoncé and Rihanna were tweeting. Their millions of fans were tweeting back. They too could achieve their dreams. Of course, neither Beyoncé nor Rihanna used Twitter. They had assistants and handlers who packaged their tweets for maximum profit and exposure. Fame could purchase the illusion of being an Internet user without the purchaser ever touching a mobile phone or a computer. That was a difference between the rich and the poor. The poor were doomed to the Internet, which was a wonderful resource for watching shitty television, experiencing angst about other people’s salaries, and casting doubt on key tenets of Mormonism and Scientology. If Beyoncé or Rihanna were asked about how to be like them and gave an honest answer, it would have sounded like this: “You can’t. You won’t. You are nothing like me. I am a powerful mixture of untamed ambition, early childhood trauma and genetic mystery. I am a portal in the vacuum of space. The formula for my creation is impossible to replicate. The One True God made me and will never make the like again. You are nothing like me.
Jarett Kobek (I Hate the Internet)
The attachment voids experienced by immigrant children are profound. The hardworking parents are focused on supporting their families economically and, unfamiliar with the language and customs of their new society, they are not able to orient their children with authority or confidence. Peers are often the only people available for such children to latch on to. Thrust into a peer-oriented culture, immigrant families may quickly disintegrate. The gulf between child and parent can widen to the point that becomes unbridgeable. Parents of these children lose their dignity, their power, and their lead. Peers ultimately replace parents and gangs increasingly replace families. Again, immigration or the necessary relocation of people displaced by war or economic misery is not the problem. Transplanted to peer-driven North American society, traditional cultures succumb. We fail our immigrants because of our own societal failure to preserve the child-parent relationship. In some parts of the country one still sees families, often from Asia, join together in multigenerational groups for outings. Parents, grandparents, and even frail great-grandparents mingle, laugh, and socialize with their children and their children's offspring. Sadly, one sees this only among relatively recent immigrants. As youth become incorporated into North American society, their connections with their elders fade. They distance themselves from their families. Their icons become the artificially created and hypersexualized figures mass-marketed by Hollywood and the U.S. music industry. They rapidly become alienated from the cultures that have sustained their ancestors for generation after generation. As we observe the rapid dissolution of immigrant families under the influence of the peer-oriented society, we witness, as if on fast-forward video, the cultural meltdown we ourselves have suffered in the past half century. It would be encouraging to believe that other parts of the world will successfully resist the trend toward peer orientation. The opposite is likely to be the case as the global economy exerts its corrosive influences on traditional cultures on other continents. Problems of teenage alienation are now widely encountered in countries that have most closely followed upon the American model — Britain, Australia, and Japan. We may predict similar patterns elsewhere to result from economic changes and massive population shifts. For example, stress-related disorders are proliferating among Russian children. According to a report in the New York Times, since the collapse of the Soviet Union a little over a decade ago, nearly a third of Russia's estimated 143 million people — about 45 million — have changed residences. Peer orientation threatens to become one of the least welcome of all American cultural exports.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
There was worse. Philosophers needed to be able to think freely and to follow their ideas wherever they might lead. There was a kind of sociopathic madness to their endeavor. They were the ultimate iconoclasts, subversive by their very nature, because social and political activity was based on popular opinion, public dogma, and unexamined tradition, whereas philosophy existed to scrutinize all opinions, dogmas, and traditions. For those bounded by a belief in common morality, which is to say just about everyone, philosophers were immoralists or, at best, amoralists. These suspicions of the general public were not unfounded. Philosophers really were subversive! (Here, too, Strauss and Arendt shared a common—one might say Nietzschean—perspective. “Thinking,” Arendt wrote, “inevitably has a destructive, undermining effect on all established criteria, values, measurements for good and evil, in short on those customs and rules of conduct we treat of in morals and ethics.”) To survive in a world intrinsically hostile to freethinking, philosophers had to employ “esoteric writing” while presenting a public face of moderation and quiescence, whatever radical ideas they might be harboring. “Thought must be not moderate, but fearless, not to say shameless. But moderation is a virtue controlling the philosopher’s speech.” Or as Strauss also put it: “In political things it is a sound rule to let sleeping dogs lie.” The best hope for the preservation of freedom of thought was to remain inconspicuous. The wise knew not to poke the beast. Inconspicuousness was not always possible. Constantly vulnerable to tyrants and to tyrannical majorities, philosophers were in need of friends, not only other philosophers with whom they could exchange ideas but also more practical people who could mediate between the contemplative elite and the vulgar masses. The philosophers’ best friends in the ordinary world were the people Strauss called “gentlemen.” Philosophers were not equipped to plunge into the political world, which consisted of “very long conversations with very dull people on very dull subjects.” Neither did they have the power to impose their will on the majority even if they had wanted to, which they didn’t. Instead, they needed the help of gentlemen who appreciated the value of freedom of thought yet could function among the ignorant populace. Philosophers, who were disinterested by definition, could instruct these gentlemen to shun private advantage and personal gain for the common good—and it would help if the gentlemen were wealthy so that the prospect of acquiring riches at the public expense would be less enticing—but it was up to the gentlemen to act as the bridge between the pure thinking of the minority and the material self interest of the majority and to win the support of the citizenry at large.
Barry Gewen (The Inevitability of Tragedy: Henry Kissinger and His World)
Television’s greatest appeal is that it is engaging without being at all demanding. One can rest while undergoing stimulation. Receive without giving. It’s the same in all low art that has as goal continued attention and patronage: it’s appealing precisely because it’s at once fun and easy. And the entrenchment of a culture built on Appeal helps explain a dark and curious thing: at a time when there are more decent and good and very good serious fiction writers at work in America than ever before, an American public enjoying unprecedented literacy and disposable income spends the vast bulk of its reading time and book dollar on fiction that is, by any fair standard, trash. Trash fiction is, by design and appeal, most like televised narrative: engaging without being demanding. But trash, in terms of both quality and popularity, is a much more sinister phenomenon. For while television has from its beginnings been openly motivated by — has been about—considerations of mass appeal and L.C.D. and profit, our own history is chock-full of evidence that readers and societies may properly expect important, lasting contributions from a narrative art that understands itself as being about considerations more important than popularity and balance sheets. Entertainers can divert and engage and maybe even console; only artists can transfigure. Today’s trash writers are entertainers working artists’ turf. This in itself is nothing new. But television aesthetics, and television-like economics, have clearly made their unprecedented popularity and reward possible. And there seems to me to be a real danger that not only the forms but the norms of televised art will begin to supplant the standards of all narrative art. This would be a disaster. [...] Even the snottiest young artiste, of course, probably isn’t going to bear personal ill will toward writers of trash; just as, while everybody agrees that prostitution is a bad thing for everyone involved, few are apt to blame prostitutes themselves, or wish them harm. If this seems like a non sequitur, I’m going to claim the analogy is all too apt. A prostitute is someone who, in exchange for money, affords someone else the form and sensation of sexual intimacy without any of the complex emotions or responsibilities that make intimacy between two people a valuable or meaningful human enterprise. The prostitute “gives,” but — demanding nothing of comparable value in return — perverts the giving, helps render what is supposed to be a revelation a transaction. The writer of trash fiction, often with admirable craft, affords his customer a narrative structure and movement, and content that engages the reader — titillates, repulses, excites, transports him — without demanding of him any of the intellectual or spiritual or artistic responses that render verbal intercourse between writer and reader an important or even real activity." - from "Fictional Futures and the Conspicuously Young
David Foster Wallace (Both Flesh and Not: Essays)
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powermta expert
Personalization in education ensures that individual students’ needs are met. This concept is similar to personalization in marketing to consumers. For example, when a company recommends products based upon customers’ previous selections, the company is specifically marketing to individuals. Such personalized industry practices contrast with simply mass marketing one product or service.
Peggy Grant (Personalized Learning: A Guide to Engaging Students with Technology)
Allowing time rather than the quality of learning to be the gatekeeper has the immediate effect of sending some learners out the door who don’t quite understand the concept that was taught, but it also has a more powerful negative impact on tomorrow’s lesson and all lessons thereafter.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Without intrinsic motivation engaging the learner, educators must apply extrinsic motivation, and frequently that motivation takes the form of manipulation, coercion, and grades as punishment and reward. Today’s predominant assembly line organizational structure makes it impossible to simultaneously apply these three basic motivators to 25 students.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Our present assembly line organizational structure doesn’t encourage, nor allow, teachers to act on individual learning needs, respond to individual learning styles, or to teach a concept or a skill using content of interest to the learner. Until we are able to meet learners at their personal need level in these three basic categories, it will be difficult to think of our work as a profession.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Grades are not a valid assessment of learning. Learning, to be validated, must be demonstrated. If you can demonstrate what you have learned, then you have learned. If you can’t, you’re not finished yet.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Perhaps it’s time to retire Santayana’s old canard: ‘Those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it.’ And replace it with: ‘Those who cannot anticipate and prepare for the future will suffer in it.’” William Gibson
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Strategic Design cannot begin with a needs assessment if we want to create an Information Age, learner empowerment vision for our school system. Our present Industrial Age schools are IN-THE-BOX. If we start by studying how we can improve an obsolete structure, we will continue to think of how we can improve the components of an outdated, underperforming system. We can only get OUT-OF-THE-BOX if we ask ourselves the right questions: questions that allow us to think freely, creatively, and logically. Anything we do to try to improve our assembly line schools will be “tinkering” at best, when what is needed is a future-focused transformational vision. We don’t want to catch up with those who are the best at being obsolete; we need to leapfrog them!
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
If a child can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.” Ignacio Estrada
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Technology is transforming nearly every sector of our lives. Music, books, retailing, communication, news, photography, medicine, architecture, etc. etc. etc. have changed drastically, have become more efficient, and we all expect that those changes, improvements, and progress will continue. Education cannot sit in this customized world as an island, embracing the Industrial Age, and expect to survive.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Our Industrial Age delivery system is an assembly line where time for learning is the constant and the quality of the learning is the variable.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
for those who are concerned about learning time, there is much to be said for “less is more,” that in-depth learning of fewer concepts is ultimately more helpful to the learner that “covering” great amounts of content.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
When children and young adults are always/mostly told what to do, when to do it, how to do it, and then watched closely to make sure they have done it, why should we expect a natural increase in maturity and acceptance of responsibility?
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Technology is a critical tool, but the learner and learning is our core purpose … actually, our only purpose.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Bureaucratic, administratively convenient, control-oriented systems will not and cannot meet the needs of our learners, our society, or our nation.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Without consistent and strong leadership from top to bottom, even this inspirational vision will find its way to a dusty shelf. Without forceful expectations for immediate and continuous implementation, expect people, even good people, to quickly fall back into their old routines. It is job #1 for each and every leader throughout the system to help their reports understand the important role they personally play in making this vision a reality.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
You can judge your age by the amount of pain you feel when you come in contact with a new idea.” Pearl S. Buck
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
It’s interesting to know that Daniel Goleman, the recognized expert regarding this topic, states that one’s “emotional quotient” or “be like” is twice as important as one’s “intelligence quotient” when predicting lifelong success and happiness.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Bureaucracies have departments that function as “silos” and are managed. Today’s effective customer-centered organizations require “networks” that function as teams and are led. Moving people from managers of silos to members of a vision-driven team is the task of the effective CEO. Today’s complex problems are seldom solved by one person or one department.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Mass customizing technology is everywhere in our lives, just waiting to be applied to education and to learning. Teachers
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
But there is a caveat or two here, maybe even a bit of a paradox for the school leader. The staff needs to know that if the vision of the school is based on teaching teams, then teachers have to be able to work in teams. Teacher preferences are important, but schools do not exist for adults, they exist for learners and learning. The school vision cannot be seen as an option.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Placing learners in single classrooms by dividing the number of learners by the number of teachers and moving them in batches to the next grade each year regardless of their readiness is not about learning … it is about administrative convenience.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Everyone has had the opportunity to have input into the West vision … but now that that vision is in place, we ALL have the responsibility to get on with it!
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
With one or two clicks we are now able to identify which of our 75 learners are in need of working on any specific learner outcome … and, equally importantly, identify those who also have mastered the prerequisite learnings required to successfully master this new learner outcome.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Educators need to avoid the natural tendency to become defensive about “technology as teacher.” Teachers will never be replaced. When necessary but somewhat mundane knowledge, concepts, and skills can be taught as well or better by a computer, THEY SHOULD BE.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Anytime we can effectively move learning to the computer, we leave the “professional” teacher more time to teach the more important learner outcomes that require interaction, demonstration, and coaching.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Visions, to be powerful, must run well ahead of the organization’s present capacity to do them.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
But in today’s world, success is very transitory, and challenging present practices is valued. The service leader must keep from becoming defensive, and instead give off clear signals that challenges and suggestions are not only accepted … they’re rewarded.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Mass marketers develop a product and try to find customers for that product. But 1:1 marketers develop a customer and try to find products for that customer.
Chad White (Email Marketing Rules: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Best Practices that Power Email Marketing Success)
If MCL is to happen, it will happen because secondary principals want it to happen and, probably even more importantly, believe that they can make it happen without losing control of the school. It’s not that they lack courage or are afraid to take a risk, but because secondary principals must be practical and pragmatic about control.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Form still follows function … only after we have determined what we want our graduates to demonstrate can we determine the organizational structure that best makes that happen.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
Modeling is most influential when others are aware of what you are modeling. And if you want the entire staff and community to embrace those critical values and principles, it’s good to let people know when you are doing it.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
If the world around your organization is changing faster than your organization, your organization is most likely on its way to becoming obsolete.
Charles Schwahn (Inevitable: Mass Customized Learning)
An IT College Graduate To advance the goals and objectives of the IT department by utilizing strong programming skills and to improve organizational efficiencies and productivity through the use of state-of-the-art technologies Perl, MySQL, Linux, Apache, Mason, XML, XSL, HTML, JavaScript, Java, MS C11, ASP, 8086 Assembly, Fortran, COBOL, network firewall and hack-proof server installation and configuration, and automatic mass Web site building Internet-based public relations for online applications Network administration Wireless applications Speech recognition Excellent customer service skills Complex, technical troubleshooting and problem solving abilities Projects on time and within budget
Jay A. Block (101 Best Ways to Land a Job in Troubled Times)
For PayPal to work, we needed to attract a critical mass of at least a million users. Advertising was too ineffective to justify the cost. Prospective deals with big banks kept falling through. So we decided to pay people to sign up. We gave new customers $10 for joining, and we gave them $10 more every time they referred a friend. This got us hundreds of thousands of new customers and an exponential growth rate.
Peter Thiel (Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future)
The Model S also offered a way to fix issues in a manner that people had never before encountered with a mass-produced car. Some of the early owners complained about glitches like the door handles not popping out quite right or their windshield wipers operating at funky speeds. These were inexcusable flaws for such a costly vehicle, but Tesla typically moved with clever efficiency to address them. While the owner slept, Tesla’s engineers tapped into the car via the Internet connection and downloaded software updates. When the customer took the car out for a spin in the morning and found it working right, he was left feeling as if magical elves had done the work. Tesla soon began showing off its software skills for jobs other than making up for mistakes. It put out a smartphone app that let people turn on their air-conditioning or heating from afar and to see where the car was parked on a map. Tesla also began installing software updates that imbued the Model S with new features. Overnight, the Model S sometimes got new traction controls for hilly and highway driving or could suddenly recharge much faster than before or possess a new range of voice controls. Tesla had transformed the car into a gadget—a device that actually got better after you bought it. As Craig Venter, one of the earliest Model S owners and the famed scientist who first decoded man’s DNA, put it, “It changes everything about transportation. It’s a computer on wheels.” The
Ashlee Vance (Elon Musk: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is Shaping our Future)
Not a morning person, is she?” a lazy voice drawled. Maddie dropped her hand to stare into Sam Roberts’s amused face. He sat across from Mitch, long, denim-clad legs stretched out, one hand hugging a coffee cup. Of course. What was breakfast with Mitch if not another new humiliation? This town was custom-made to put her in awkward situations. She glared at Mitch, who grinned like the cat who ate the canary. “Do you ever have breakfast alone?” He shrugged. “They’re big fans of the drop-in.” “From the looks of her, she should be in a much better mood,” Sam said, clearly entertained. Maddie crossed her arms over her breasts. She might as well be naked in her skimpy tank top and cotton shorts. “No need to be shy.” Sam winked at her. “I saw you last night, although you were considerably less rumpled.” She rolled her eyes. “Isn’t it polite to allow a girl some dignity?” “What do you mean, last night?” Mitch asked at the same time, eyes narrowed on Sam. A muscle jumped in his forearm as his fingers tightened around his mug. “Don’t even tell me that’s what you were wearing.” “I was sitting on the front porch when he came home.” She ran her hand through her disheveled hair, getting caught in the wild mass of tangles. Sam gave Mitch a sly, devious smile. “Not my fault you left her alone for just anyone to come take a peek.” Mitch’s attention snapped to Maddie. She refused to fidget under his scrutiny. One golden brow rose. Maddie huffed. “I don’t need to explain myself to you.” “Hmmmm . . .” Mitch gave her a through once-over. Maddie’s chin shot up. “This is your fault, not mine!” Sam scrubbed his blond, stubbled jaw. “She’s got a point.” “I suppose she does,” Mitch said, but his tone spoke of a different story. Those amber eyes told her without words that she’d be paying later with his own delicious brand of torture. She
Jennifer Dawson (Take a Chance on Me (Something New, #1))
The big advantage with price-simplifying is that it is often possible to build a huge mass market and a business system that cannot be imitated and out-scaled easily – at least not after the early days – which effectively shuts out all rivals. The price-simplifier is likely to end up with much higher volume than the proposition-simplifier, for the latter relies on the customer’s willingness to pay a premium for a demonstrably superior product. The rub for proposition-simplifiers is that they need to keep ahead of their rivals through constant innovation and new product development – otherwise, they will lose market share and suffer falling margins. Yet they may be able to build an extremely valuable, loyal following and brand among the middle to top of any given market. The price-simplifier must price down the experience curve, passing on cost savings and keeping margins tightly constrained. In contrast, the proposition-simplifier can – sometimes – hang on to fat net margins: up
Richard Koch (Simplify: How the Best Businesses in the World Succeed)
Mohammed took his tribal customs and traditions and injected them into his new religion. Many of the ideas and traditions he implemented were already contained in the tribes he conquered, so in many cases, no major changes were required of his new followers. For example, most, if not all, of the tribes were polygamous. Women were seen primarily as chattel and under the complete control of their fathers or husbands. The communities of the new Islamic religion in the 600s CE often converted en masse. With minor modifications, they kept practicing their traditions. Mecca was already a major pagan religious shrine; Mohammed conveniently changed it into a place of worship and pilgrimage for Allah. Practically speaking, Mohammed unified a fracture region under a single religion and did it with a superior military. Conquest, war, and male predominance were the hallmarks of Islam. Despite political splits over the centuries, the tribal nature of Islam remains intact.
Darrel Ray (Sex & God: How Religion Distorts Sexuality)
Is it possible for any sound logical mind to hope with any success to guide crowds by the aid of reasonable counsels and arguments, when any objection or contradiction, senseless though it may be, can be made and when such objection may find more favour with the people, whose powers of reasoning are superficial? Men in masses and the men of the masses, being guided solely by petty passions, paltry beliefs, customs, traditions and sentimental theorism, fall a prey to party dissension, which hinders any kind of agreement even on the basis of a perfectly reasonable argument.
The Protocols of the Elders of Zion
The ability to carry into the future thousands of applications from the past placed NT in a class of its own in the brief history of personal computing. But the Windows personality enabled NT to keep one foot in the past. This was the great departure. Computer makers previously had forced customers to adopt an abandon-ship attitude to their past applications software. To achieve a higher level of performance, customers were asked to leave everything behind (they could still use their old software if they were willing to essentially sacrifice the innovations in their new ship). Microsoft itself had essentially made this pitch when it initially introduced OS/2 in 1987. The failure of OS/2 left a deep impression on Gates; it gave him a better sense of the shock of the new, of just how much innovation the mass of PC owners could accept at once. Customers wanted to carry the past into the future, so NT must support old applications. Achieving
G. Pascal Zachary (Showstopper!: The Breakneck Race to Create Windows NT and the Next Generation at Microsoft)
Instead, you can beat your competition by catering to the niches, not to the masses. Maybe
Sarah Petty (Worth Every Penny: Build a Business That Thrills Your Customers and Still Charge What You're Worth)
\“Capital has no home,” George Bernard Shaw observed. It is always a transgressor, a disputer of tradition and champion of equality in the abstract while reproducing material inequality in real life: the yuppie was homeless in just this new way. Many others would join their spiritual ranks, but without their more outsized material accoutrements, as the economy came to rest increasingly on the fabricating and manipulation of mass desire and fantasy. No hidebound prejudices, customs, and authorities from the past could be allowed to stand in its way… unless of course they could be rebranded and packaged nostalgically—Marlboro men, faux rednecks, family and family dog behind white picket fences, peasant coffee gatherers, yeomen-farmer wheat growers, and smithies and handicraftsmen in leather smocks—and sold into their own special niche markets.
Steve Fraser (The Age of Acquiescence: The Life and Death of American Resistance to Organized Wealth and Power)
When the Student is Ready, the Teacher Will Appear…
Ryan Levesque (Ask: The Counterintuitive Online Formula to Discover Exactly What Your Customers Want to Buy...Create a Mass of Raving Fans...and Take Any Business to the Next Level)