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Quotes of the day from previous years:

2004
Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down. ~ Oprah Winfrey
2005
Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to solve. ~ Karl Popper (born 28 July 1902) in Objective Knowledge: An Evolutionary Approach (1972)
2006
We are social creatures to the inmost centre of our being. The notion that one can begin anything at all from scratch, free from the past, or unindebted to others, could not conceivably be more wrong. ~ Karl Popper
2007
We must plan for freedom, and not only for security, if for no other reason than only freedom can make security more secure. ~ Karl Popper
2008
If I could only give three words of advice, they would be, "Tell the Truth." If I got three more words, I'd add, "All the time." ~ Randy Pausch
2009
We do not choose political freedom because it promises us this or that. We choose it because it makes possible the only dignified form of human coexistence, the only form in which we can be fully responsible for ourselves. Whether we realize its possibilities depends on all kinds of things — and above all on ourselves. ~ Karl Popper
2010
Our knowledge can only be finite, while our ignorance must necessarily be infinite. ~ Karl Popper
2011

The World is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with the warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

~ Gerard Manley Hopkins ~

2012
Always remember that it is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood: there will always be some who misunderstand you.
~ Karl Popper ~
2013
One man can make a difference and every man should try.
~ Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis ~
2014
A rationalist is simply someone for whom it is more important to learn than to be proved right; someone who is willing to learn from others — not by simply taking over another's opinions, but by gladly allowing others to criticize his ideas and by gladly criticizing the ideas of others. The emphasis here is on the idea of criticism or, to be more precise, critical discussion. The genuine rationalist does not think that he or anyone else is in possession of the truth; nor does he think that mere criticism as such helps us achieve new ideas. But he does think that, in the sphere of ideas, only critical discussion can help us sort the wheat from the chaff. He is well aware that acceptance or rejection of an idea is never a purely rational matter; but he thinks that only critical discussion can give us the maturity to see an idea from more and more sides and to make a correct judgement of it.
~ Karl Popper ~
2015
I want to say this one thing, it's been almost an obsession with me, all I keep thinking of is this line from a musical comedy... and the song he loved most came at the very end of this record, the last side of Camelot, sad Camelot... "Don't let it be forgot, that once there was a spot, for one brief shining moment that was known as Camelot."
~ Jacqueline Kennedy ~
2016
The deep desire to inspire people, to take an active part in the life of the country … attracts our best people to political life … We should all do something to right the wrongs that we see and not just complain about them. We owe that to our country.
~ Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis ~
2017
O the mind, mind has mountains; cliffs of fall
Frightful, sheer, no-man-fathomed. Hold them cheap
May who ne’er hung there. Nor does long our small
Durance deal with that steep or deep. Here! creep,
Wretch, under a comfort serves in a whirlwind: all
Life death does end and each day dies with sleep.
~ Gerard Manley Hopkins ~
2018
Before we as individuals are even conscious of our existence we have been profoundly influenced for a considerable time (since before birth) by our relationship to other individuals who have complicated histories, and are members of a society which has an infinitely more complicated and longer history than they do (and are members of it at a particular time and place in that history); and by the time we are able to make conscious choices we are already making use of categories in a language which has reached a particular degree of development through the lives of countless generations of human beings before us. . . . We are social creatures to the inmost centre of our being. The notion that one can begin anything at all from scratch, free from the past, or unindebted to others, could not conceivably be more wrong.
~ Karl Popper ~
2019
If we are uncritical we shall always find what we want: we shall look for, and find, confirmations, and we shall look away from, and not see, whatever might be dangerous to our pet theories. In this way it is only too easy to obtain what appears to be overwhelming evidence in favor of a theory which, if approached critically, would have been refuted.
~ Karl Popper ~
2020 
Rank or add further suggestions…

Ranking system:

4 : Excellent - should definitely be used.
3 : Very Good - strong desire to see it used.
2 : Good - some desire to see it used.
1 : Acceptable - but with no particular desire to see it used.
0 : Not acceptable - not appropriate for use as a quote of the day.


SuggestionsEdit

Minimum information given with maximum politeness. ~ Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (date of birth)

  • 2 Kalki 13:07, 27 July 2009 (UTC) * 3 Kalki 00:10, 28 July 2005 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 14:43, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:59, 14 July 2013 (UTC) Need context.

Mine, O thou lord of life, send my roots rain. ~ Gerard Manley Hopkins (born July 28, 1844)

  • 3 InvisibleSun 18:28, 23 July 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 12:26, 27 July 2007 (UTC) This just doesn't strike me as a strong statement of much.
  • 2 Zarbon 14:43, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:59, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

When imperialism feels weak, it resorts to brute force. ~ Hugo Chávez

  • 2 Zarbon 20:02, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 15:12, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
  • 2.5 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:59, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

And the Devil came here yesterday. Yesterday the Devil came here. Right here. And it smells of sulphur still today. ~ Hugo Chávez

  • 4 Zarbon 20:02, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 15:12, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:59, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

There is the view that poetry should improve your life. I think people confuse it with the Salvation Army. ~ John Ashbery

  • 2 Zarbon 20:02, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 15:12, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:59, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

There is no history of mankind, there is only an indefinite number of histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. But this, I hold, is an offence against every decent conception of mankind. It is hardly better than to treat the history of embezzlement or of robbery or of poisoning as the history of mankind. For the history of power politics is nothing but the history of international crime and mass murder (including it is true, some of the attempts to suppress them). This history is taught in schools, and some of the greatest criminals are extolled as heroes.
~ Karl Popper ~

No rational argument will have a rational effect on a man who does not want to adopt a rational attitude.
~ Karl Popper ~

This civilization has not yet fully recovered from the shock of its birth — the transition from the tribal or "enclosed society," with its submission to magical forces, to the 'open society' which sets free the critical powers of man … the shock of this transition is one of the factors that have made possible the rise of those reactionary movements which have tried, and still try, to overthrow civilization and to return to tribalism.
~ Karl Popper ~

What a monument of human smallness is this idea of the philosopher king. What a contrast between it and the simplicity of humaneness of Socrates, who warned the statesmen against the danger of being dazzled by his own power, excellence, and wisdom, and who tried to teach him what matters most — that we are all frail human beings. What a decline from this world of irony and reason and truthfulness down to Plato's kingdom of the sage whose magical powers raise him high above ordinary men; although not quite high enough to forgo the use of lies, or to neglect the sorry trade of every shaman — the selling of spells, of breeding spells, in exchange for power over his fellow-men.
~ Karl Popper ~

You can choose whatever name you like for the two types of government. I personally call the type of government which can be removed without violence "democracy", and the other "tyranny".
~ Karl Popper ~

Piecemeal social engineering resembles physical engineering in regarding the ends as beyond the province of technology. (All that technology may say about ends is whether they are compatible with each other or realizable.)
~ Karl Popper ~

There is an almost universal tendency, perhaps an inborn tendency, to suspect the good faith of a man who holds opinions that differ from our own opinions. … It obviously endangers the freedom and the objectivity of our discussion if we attack a person instead of attacking an opinion or, more precisely, a theory.
~ Karl Popper ~

Those who promise us paradise on earth never produced anything but a hell.
~ Karl Popper ~

True ignorance is not the absence of knowledge, but the refusal to acquire it.
~ Karl Popper ~

Good tests kill flawed theories; we remain alive to guess again.
~ Karl Popper ~

Bold ideas, unjustified anticipations, and speculative thought, are our only means for interpreting nature: our only organon, our only instrument, for grasping her. And we must hazard them to win our prize. Those among us who are unwilling to expose their ideas to the hazard of refutation do not take part in the scientific game.
~ Karl Popper ~

Not only do I hate violence, but I firmly believe that the fight against it is not hopeless. I realize that the task is difficult. I realize that, only too often in the course of history, it has happened that what appeared at first to be a great success in the fight against violence was followed by a defeat. I do not overlook the fact that the new age of violence which was opened by the two World wars is by no means at an end. Nazism and Fascism are thoroughly beaten, but I must admit that their defeat does not mean that barbarism and brutality have been defeated. On the contrary, it is no use closing our eyes to the fact that these hateful ideas achieved something like a victory in defeat. I have to admit that Hitler succeeded in degrading the moral standards of our Western world, and that in the world of today there is more violence and brutal force than would have been tolerated even in the decade after the first World war. And we must face the possibility that our civilization may ultimately be destroyed by those new weapons which Hitlerism wished upon us, perhaps even within the first decade after the second World war; for no doubt the spirit of Hitlerism won its greatest victory over us when, after its defeat, we used the weapons which the threat of Nazism had induced us to develop.
~ Karl Popper ~

It is often asserted that discussion is only possible between people who have a common language and accept common basic assumptions. I think that this is a mistake. All that is needed is a readiness to learn from one's partner in the discussion, which includes a genuine wish to understand what he intends to say. If this readiness is there, the discussion will be the more fruitful the more the partner's backgrounds differ.
~ Karl Popper ~

There are all kinds of sources of our knowledge; but none has authority … The fundamental mistake made by the philosophical theory of the ultimate sources of our knowledge is that it does not distinguish clearly enough between questions of origin and questions of validity.
~ Karl Popper ~

The true Enlightenment thinker, the true rationalist, never wants to talk anyone into anything. No, he does not even want to convince; all the time he is aware that he may be wrong. Above all, he values the intellectual independence of others too highly to want to convince them in important matters. He would much rather invite contradiction, preferably in the form of rational and disciplined criticism. He seeks not to convince but to arouse — to challenge others to form free opinions.
~ Karl Popper ~

A rationalist, as I use the word, is a man who attempts to reach decisions by argument and perhaps, in certain cases, by compromise, rather than by violence. He is a man who would rather be unsuccessful in convincing another man by argument than successful in crushing him by force, by intimidation and threats, or even by persuasive propaganda.
~ Karl Popper ~