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  • mistermuse 12:02 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , John Maynard Keynes, Ku Klux Klan, love of money, madness, , quotations, sanity,   


    I don’t like money, actually, but it quiets my nerves.  –Joe Louis

    Perhaps the most uncynical of the quotations in my last post was the one above, attributed to the late Joe Louis, heavyweight boxing champion 1937-49. I can picture Louis saying those words, first of all because as a boy during the 1940s, I remember him well, and second, because he was born dirt-poor in rural Alabama, a grandson of former slaves, had a childhood speech impediment, and moved to Detroit as a 12 year old after a Ku Klux Klan experience. As an adult, he suffered from financial mismanagement (to put it charitably) by his boxing handlers, which led to years of heavy indebtedness and hounding by the IRS for back taxes. Given this background, one can understand where that quote was coming from.

    What may be less easy to understand is the money-motive that economist John Maynard Keynes called “The love of money as a possession — as distinguished from the love of money as a means to the enjoyments and realities of life” — which is elaborated upon by psychoanalyst Adam Phillips in “Money Mad,” a chapter in his book GOING SANE. The money for-its-own-sake obsession has long struck me as shallow and superficial, but Phillips goes further (as befits a psychoanlyst), calling it an aberration “in which the bad is made to seem good; in which what was once considered to be most distasteful about people — the callous ruthlessness of their greed, say — begins to be described as morally impressive.”

    He continues, ” What one is loving when one loves money begs all the questions: power, prestige, invulnerability, independence, glamour — all these ideals involve asking in turn what each of these represent a desire for. Rather than being a love akin to other loves, a love for money may be a new kind of love [appetite] altogether — a love that destroys the capacity for all the other kinds of love that preceded it.”

    “We should not be tempted into believing that there is something natural and normal about the insatiability of our appetites. Human beings can even get pleasure from ruining their own and other people’s appetites. Since money always promises something other than itself — it is only, as we say, worth what it can buy — it seems to protect us from the fear of there being nothing we want. A world in which there is a scarcity of need, a world in which wanting is a futile passion, is more terrifying than a world in which there is a scarcity of resources.”

    Since I don’t want this little seminar to come off sounding like a sermon, I will stop here and simply recommend GOING SANE as a thought-stimulating and readably profound book on sanity and madness, including money madness.

    Nonetheless, money makes….


    • Don Frankel 7:21 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Money it seems, like a whole lot of things, is whatever you think it is.


    • mistermuse 11:46 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Right you are, Don. I suppose a case could be made that life would be less interesting without the Donald Trumps (for example) of the world….but I, for one, ain’t necessarily buyin’ it. On the other hand, characters like Scrooge make for a Dickens of a story.


    • arekhill1 5:20 pm on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      You never see anyone’s credit rating on their tombstone. That’s what I’ve observed.


    • mistermuse 11:50 pm on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve never heard any deadbeats complain about it, Ricardo. Maybe they find consolation in finally being on a level plane with every body else.


  • mistermuse 10:41 pm on February 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Buzzie Bavasi, coins, , , , , , Kin Hubbard, Lydia, , Massachusetts, , quotations, , ,   


    I rob banks because that’s where the money is.  –Willie Sutton

    The history of money is a fascinating subject, if you can afford the time to check into it. According to my Ye Olde Encyclopedia, early people had no system of money, probably because they had to spend all their waking hours hunting, eating, painting caves and avoiding being stepped on by dinosaurs and woolly mammoths. These pre-historic people, known as the Earlyites, used either the barter system of trading, or the no-holds-bartered system of robbing and killing, to get what they wanted. Some things never change.

    Speaking of change, the first coins were made in the 600’s B.C. in Lydia, the Tatooed Lady — I mean in Lydia, the extinct country, in what is now western Turkey. In America, the Massachusetts Bay Colony was the first to make coins; an English court allowed them to do so in 1652 before permission was withdrawn shortly thereafter. But Massachusetts continued to issue coins for 30 more years by dating all coins 1652 regardless of when made. Apparently England couldn’t make heads or tails out of why Massachusetts never ran short of 1652 coins, so they made the best of it by increasing the Colony’s taxes. Needless to say, this did not suit the Tea Party, so they threw the British into Boston Harbor, declared independence and took control of Congress before you can say New England, which on a clear day you can see from Alaska if the sun doesn’t get in your eyes.

    But enough about what I have to say, money-wise. Let us see what others have had to say about money:

    The only problems money can solve are money problems.  –Kin Hubbard

    Lack of money is the root of all evil.  –Mark Twain or George Bernard Shaw (you pays your money and you takes your choice)

    If a fool and his money are soon parted, why are there so many rich fools?  –Evan Esar

    Cocaine is God’s way of saying you’re making too much money.  –Robin Williams

    If you would know what the Lord God thinks of money, you have only to look at those to whom he gives it.  –Maurice Baring

    There is an easy way to return from a casino with a small fortune: go there with a large one.  –Jack Yelton

    We live by the Golden Rule. Those who have the gold make the rules.  –Buzzie Bavasi

    Someone stole all my credit cards, but I won’t be reporting it. The thief spends less than my wife did.  –Henny Youngman

    Women prefer men who have something tender about them — especially the legal kind.  –Kay Ingram

    I don’t like money, actually, but it quiets my nerves.  –Joe Louis

    I put a dollar in one of those change machines. Nothing changed.  –George Carlin

    That money talks/I’ll not deny/I heard it once/It said, “Goodbye.”  –Richard Armour 


    • Don Frankel 9:15 am on February 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I thought I left a comment it seems to have disappeared or I didn’t hit the right button. Imagine the first guy who showed up at the market with his vegetables expecting to return home with a nice fat chicken but only wound up with a few pieces of metal with some noble’s who he didn’t like face on it.


    • mistermuse 9:54 am on February 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Returning home with pieces of metal instead of a chicken must have been hard to swallow, Don. Even the last residents of Lydia ended up half a Turkey better off than that.


    • mistermuse 6:19 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      To lucindafer: I note that you clicked the “Like” icon on this posting and I thought I’d see if I might reciprocate, but for some reason I can’t “find” you, although you apparently have a new blog (the blurb that goes with your photo indicates you have a blog but no readers). I will be happy to read what you have to say if you’ll let me know how to get there.
      Good luck with your writing.


    • pendantry 5:00 am on March 15, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      On the subject of money: are you aware of Positive Money?

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 9:52 am on March 15, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I’m not, but I’m pretty sure Willie Sutton was (judging by the quote which opened this post).


  • mistermuse 12:04 am on January 29, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , quotations, ,   


    In some lost past post of mine somewhere in the blogosphere, I asserted that what you don’t know can’t hurt you  is one of the dumbest well-known sayings ever said. Don’t get me wrong — I love a good old adage as much as the next good old adage lover, but not all old adages are created equal. I think we’re often inclined to take such supposed wisdom at face value, when a second look might give us pause — second thoughts, so to speak.

    I have over the years acquired over a dozen books of old sayings, truisms, maxims, aphorisms, expressions, etc. Here is a selection from my collection which, upon further inspection, may warrant further reflection:

    Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink.
    That didn’t seem to bother W. C. Fields, Dean Martin or Homer Simpson.

    Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.
    And yet, very few smokers carry fire extinguishers.

    We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.
    Easy now. What did that bridge ever do to you?

    Truth is stranger than fiction.
    In fact, so strange you can only find it in the Rare Books section.

    Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.
    So much for practice makes perfect.

    What goes up must come down.
    Try telling that to all the kites and balloons caught up in trees.

    When the going gets tough, the tough get going.
    But when the meek get tough, they get dis-blessed and disinherit the earth.

    When it rains, it pours.
    One word: drizzle.

    When you lie down with dogs, you get fleas.
    My dog resembles that remark (or at least he would, if he had fleas).

    And that’s just scratching the surface. There’s plenty more where they came from, so I’m thinking there’s a Part II in your future, you lucky dog.

    • Don Frankel 7:29 am on January 29, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      All good things come to he who waits.
      All good things come to an end.
      Go figga.


    • mistermuse 8:49 am on January 29, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Good (two for) one, Don….more than good enough to use in upcoming Part II, but that post will have to wait long enough for readers to forget that you thought of it first.


  • mistermuse 11:33 am on January 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Elysian fields, , Horace Greeley, Knute Rockne, , Newt Gingrich, quotations, , Sam Goldwyn, , , , , West Virginia, Yes Virginia,   

    SAYS WHO? 

    I really didn’t say everything I said.  — Yogi Berra

    Maybe he didn’t….but Yogi did say that he didn’t say everything he said — and it should go without saying that some say he is not the only one who didn’t say everything he said. Sad to say, no way can one say who said what was said in all cases, and always saying who said what one said is way easier said than done. Or so they say.

    That said, the following is a selection of famous quotes not said (or at least not said originally) by those to whom they are attributed, along with some quotes which are correctly attributed (or so they say). Some mis-atributed quotes happened inadvertently, others deliberately; some have persisted despite attempts to set the record straight.  Can you separate the suspect ones from the correct ones?

    1. Go west, young man, go west.  –Horace Greeley
    2. Go West, Virginia, yes, Virginia: there is a  —Santa Claus
    3. Win one for the Gipper.  –Knute Rockne
    4. Win one for the Gingger.  –Newt Gingrich
    5. A woman drove me to drink and I didn’t even have the decency to thank her.  –W. C. Fields
    6. Forget your troubles, come on, get happy.  –Elysian Fields
    7. Our comedies are not to be laughed at.  –Samuel Goldwyn
    8. Our cold meds are not to be sneezed at.  –Dr. Don
    9. Elementary, my dear Watson.  –Sherlock Holmes (Arthur Conan Doyle)
    10. Excelente, my dear Sr. Muse.  –Ricardo Cahill (after bribe payment) 

    Of the above, the following are attributed incorrectly (supposedly):

    1. Greeley did write this in an 1865 editorial, but denied originating it, crediting it to John Soule’s authorship in a Terre Haute (Indiana) newspaper in 1851. Nonetheless, the Greeley attribution persists.
    3. Actually, this was said by Ronald Reagan in the 1940 film “Knute Rockne – All American.”
    6. Forget Ely Fields – this is the opening lyric of “Get Happy” by Harold Arlen & Ted Koehler: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGk3tY4yP7k
    7. Like many “Goldwynisms,” origin is suspect. Reported to be an old Hollywood quip pre-dating its attribution to Goldwyn.
    9. Never said by Holmes in Doyle’s novels and short stories. Made famous by actor Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes in movies.

    How many did you get right?
    You got all of them?
    Says who?

    • Don Frankel 6:41 pm on January 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Just one more Muse. It is said that General Sherman did not say. “War is all hell.” However upon hearing that he had said it, he made sure he kept saying it, until he said it.

      My favorite Yogism is. “Some guys don’t like to swing on an 3 – 0 count because they swing.” I know he said it because I heard him say it.


    • mistermuse 8:48 pm on January 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Don, if Yogi said even half of what he said, it would still be twice as funny as all of the other half….speaking of which, since my Yogi and Goldwyn quotes post was un-posted on SWI, maybe I’ll do another one here sometime if I can come up with a fresh angle or approach. “It ain’t over till it’s over.”


      • Don Frankel 5:55 am on January 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Why not post this one on SWI so a few other people like Minnette, Michael, Richard, Kaye and even itsTV or is it VD? guy can get a laugh?


    • mistermuse 10:19 am on January 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Don, I love ya like my brother (I was tempted to say like my MOTHER, who would keep after me to do something because it was for my own good), but as far as posting again on SWI, you can forgeddaboutit – I can forgive, but I can’t forget Bob Grant’s destruction of 200 of my posts, while not deleting even one of Minnette’s 800+. I know SWI is his site & he can do as he pleases, but if my hard work didn’t warrant more respect (& a more even-handed take) than that, nothing short of an abject apology will change my mind.

      As for the people you mention, Richard reads & comments frequently on my posts here; I don’t think Minnette ever was as much of an “appreciater” of my posts as I am of hers; and I’d love to have Michael and Kaye connect with me here, but they know where to find me if they wish (it’s not as if I haven’t pointed out how easy it is on SWI a number of times).

      Finally, it would be remiss of me not to thank you and Ricardo (or Richard, for you gringos out there) for continuing to follow my “humble” offerings here. Your continued patronage is warmly appreciated.


      • Don Frankel 12:16 pm on January 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Forgive me for being a nudge. My social psychological profile is like an Alpha in a Grey Wolf pack. So my instinct is to keep the Pack together. You are an integral part of SWI. The way I see it Bob may own and run the site but like everything else in life, SWI belongs to its ownself. It is what we make of it.

        I think you give Bob too much credit or say or sway or importance. One time some woman, I forget who but she didn’t write there much, but she said in a comment that I was trying to make her behave. After I stopped laughing and stopped myself from writing back. Do you want me to make you behave? I just chalked it up to everybody has a right to say whatever or “everybody has to love somebody sometime.”

        Sorry about that last one but Dean Martin was singing on my cable TV. I’d close by saying I won’t nag you anymore but I can’t promise that..


    • mistermuse 1:19 pm on January 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      No problem, Don – I don’t have a brother to love you like I said anyway (though I do have a sister, if you don’t mind the gender adjustment). And you can rely on me, if you do “nag” me again, not to say what that woman said in her comment to you; my reply will simply be a youtube clip of Cole Porter’s “Why Can’t You Behave?” from KISS ME KAYE – I mean KATE.


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