Thursday, July 14, 2016

Your Humble MEdiaDragon is not alone

 “In general, pride is at the bottom of all great mistakes.”
~John Ruskin, Modern Painters

It’s Bastille Day.
The holiday commemorates the storming of a French prison in 1789.
At MediaDragon, we’ve always had strong ties to the French people.
My auntie Zofia married Reims Royal identity and all my cousin live either in Reims such as Marie Cecile or others such as Jean-Paul live among the white Champagne fields. To boot, Godfather II Steve was born on the day. July was the month of birthdays for other close souls like Chris Godfather I and former boss Dr Cope ...

On Fridays, John Hempton decamps to the solitude of his Sydney beach house, where the locals know nothing of his quirky stock research and focus on sniffing out fraud.
The tax official turned hedge fund head, who built an online following by scouring numbers that don't add up, has also posed as part of a gay couple trying to buy a home beyond their means to build a case for short-selling Australian banks. You'll find him in Bangkok, talking to prostitutes about the hair dye they use. Or squaring off against billionaire investor Bill Ackman, who says Hempton is nuts. Bronte Capital John Hampton Is also not Lonely Tonight ...

Lyrical: We Are All Going to Sing In the Rain Tonight ... CL and JM

“We have to be persistent even with little resources because there are so many stories to tell and no one else to tell them.” The Guardian (UK) 
My basic point of view…went back to  my  early  teens,  and  has  never changed in any essential during the half  century  since.  Under  the  influence of my father…I emerged into sentience with an almost instinctive distrust of all schemes of revolution and reform. They were, to me, only signs  and  symptoms  of  a fundamental hallucination, to wit, the hallucination  that  human  nature  could  be  changed  by  passing  statutes  and  preaching gospels—that natural law could be repealed by taking thought.
—H.L. Mencken on socialism in 1910, as quoted by Edward Short in “Heavens on Earth, the creation of perfection, American-style” at the Weekly Standard, a review of Paradise Now — The Story of American Utopianism, by Chris Jennings.

Fakespot, launched in 2015, analyzes Cold River reviews intelligently and calculates a grade based on the authenticity of reviews involving the selected product. Fakespot identifies fake reviews, currently supporting,,,”

Digital journalism by Sasha Lekach (Not related to Sarsha Simone) is worth czeching, who just graduated from the University of California-Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and is working on the San Francisco Chronicle's website. The latest edition brings a de facto guns issue with looks at The Tampa Bay Times (owned by Poynter) showing "the demise or fortunate escape of some of the victims of the Orlando nightclub shooting"; a Southern California radio station inspecting officer-involved shootings; a visual analysis by The Washington Post of 965 people fatally shot by police last year; a Vox interactive calendar of all last year's mass shootings; a Guardian tracker of police shootings deaths; and an interactive map from The Trace to help you "find out how many people have been shot near where you live." (Keeping Tabs)
“Only an artist can tell … what it is like for anyone who gets to this planet to survive it,”James Baldwin wrote in his timelessly rewarding essay on how the artist’s struggle illuminates the universal human experience“Making art is extremely difficult, requiring tremendous courage, enormous sacrifice, great risk,” artist Carrie Mae Weems asserted half a century later in her electrifying SVA commencement address. The poet Mark Strand saw the artist as one tasked with helping the rest of us bear witness to the universe. But what makes one an artist, anyway, and is there some sort of spiritual likeness between artists, the invisible thread of some common psychological archetype binding them together into a cabal of kinship?  Artistic Endevours (sic) everything turns to Dust even MediaDragon

MediaDragon Usage in USA Total Audience Report, Q1 Report 

Retiring: For Effective Brain Fitness, Do More Than Play Simple Games. July 8, 2016, New York Times – Health – “The theory of a more holistic approach is that the brain thrives on continuous stimulation, which can include exercising, laughing and socializing.”

"We love what we love. Reason does not enter into it. In many ways, unwise love is the truest love. Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket. But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect. "
~ My Secret Life As A Crownie

Suffering, some declare, is apples and oranges. My kind can't compare to their kind. So, they warn: Don't even try to enter our emotional space with your experience...
Why ugliness matters. Our capacity for appreciating the revolting, disgusting, horrific, and abject is among our deepest shared responses to the world...  MEdiaDragons Ugly as Night

Here’s to you, Czesław. Lifting the spiritual essence of a glass of Szarlotka to you
Happy birthday, Czesław Miłosz! He was no hero, and he knew it

What are the traits of great philosophers? Matthew Hammerton, a PhD student at Australian National University, came across a passage by Cambridge University mathematician Timothy Gowers about how genius is neither necessary nor sufficient for success as a research mathematician, asking whether philosophers thought something similar about those who produce high quality work as academic philosophers.
Traits of the Great MEDiaDragons

My favorite thing in the world is to read something I'd thought couldn't be done. When I find a writer who can do that, everything feels new again...

 The Greeks have The Iliad and The Odysseythe Romans have The Aeneid, the Spanish have El Cidthe French The Song of RolandItaly The Divine Comedyand the British The Faerie QueeneEven the Finns have The Kalevala ...Pulp Nonfiction: The Art and Business of Memoir

What color were Kafka's eyes? Four accounts offer four different answers: dark, gray, blue, and brown. He was a man who preferred to go  unnnoticed...

In the late 1990s, a young writer fresh out of rehab began writing a novel about his escape from a life of addiction. Like his hard-drinking literary heroes Ernest Hemingway and Jack Kerouac, the young novelist wanted to set down the facts of his life with searing honesty, but like his heroes, he juiced the truth to make the story more interesting. Some years earlier, for instance, he had been locked up for a few hours on a drunk-driving charge. In his novel, he threw in a punching match with the arresting officer and a bag of crack cocaine and left his protagonist to rot in jail for three months. In another instance, a girl he had known as a kid had been killed in a tragic train accident, and in his novel, he wrote his protagonist into her story and added a scene in which the whole town blames him for her death.

But when he tried to sell this thinly disguised autobiographical novel, it was turned down by 17 major publishers. In fact, his novel might still be sitting in a drawer had not Nan Talese, a big-name editor at Doubleday, one of the houses that had originally rejected it, offered to publish it instead as a memoir called A Million Little Pieces. By 2006, after Oprah Winfrey put the young authorJames Frey on TV, his novel-turned-memoir had sold 3.5 million copies.


There Is No Handbook for Being a Writer

“If we are not regularly deeply embarrassed by who we are, the journey to self-knowledge hasn’t begun.” Lattitude East of Embarrassments

“You can only lose what you have never had”

President Obama, the ‘Night Guy’ New York Times. Haha, your humble blogger is not alone

"Lawyer in Led Zeppelin-Spirit trial suspended for 'serious misconduct' in earlier case": Randy Lewis of The Los Angeles Times has this report on a ruling that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued earlier this week. And at the "THR, Esq." blog of The Hollywood Reporter, Ashley Cullins has a post titled "Lawyer Who Sued Led Zeppelin Suspended From Practicing Law; Francis Malofiy's suspension might mean he can't appeal the band's 'Stairway to Heaven' win."
Being Different Yet Not Alone ;-)

Music: the sound of freedom and brotherhood, a force for redemption. Or is it the sound of violence, a weapon to debilitate enemies and disperse crowds?...  Hungatrian Zeppelins
Trash by the numbers: Startling statistics about US garbage TreeHugger

“Genius gives birth, talent delivers,” Jack Kerouac asserted in contemplating whether great artists are born or made. “Talent is insignificant. I know a lot of talented ruins,” James Baldwin cautioned aspiring writers as he considered the real building blocks of genius. More than a century earlier, Thoreau made a vital distinction between an artisan, an artist, and a genius.

*Schopenhauer on What Makes a Genius and the Crucial Difference Between Talent and Genius

At Menards, employees learn to become lobbyists for the billionaire owner City Pages

Tech tax’: San Francisco mulls plan for taxing the rich to house the poor Guardian. How about also taxing all those AirBnB rentals that take housing stock and turn it into hotels?

Why Are Voters Ignoring Experts? Project Syndicate (David L) v. “Why Are Voters Ignoring Experts?” Angry Bear
Man who Posted Alton Sterling Shooting Video Arrested 24 Hours Later on Fabricated Charges Photography Is Not a Crime

Dallas Police Killer Took a Sudden, Violent Turn WSJ

 Walking While Black The Literary Hub 

YES: “One of the clichés about politicians is that they are ‘out of touch.’ But listening to these debates, it struck me that academics and journalists are often far more elitist and out-of-touch than most politicians, whose jobs oblige them to speak to ordinary people on a regular basis.”
We are only now coming to terms with what happens to the idea of art when images can be endlessly circulated, reproduced, and manipulated...  Manipulated 

One syllabus text promised “Gödel Without (Too Many) Tears,” while supplementary reading unpacked his work “in Words of One Syllable.”
Waiting for Gödel

The average English film subtitle is a bar of thin sans-serif text of around 40 characters. A model of economy, it's an art form worthy of critical scrutiny... Critical Stories

“Poetry, like all art, has a trinitarian function: creative, redemptive, and sanctifying,” Vassar Miller asserted. “It is creative because it takes the raw materials of fact and feeling and makes them into that which is neither fact nor feeling. Redemptive because it transforms pain, ugliness of life into joy, beauty. Sanctifying because it gives the transitory a relative form of meaning.”  EVOL OF LOVE
The personal letters of luminaries like Philip Guston, Dorothea Lange, and Robert Rauschenberg offer insight into their work as much as their lives.  The Art of Handwriting 

Metaknowledge – Crowds aren’t as smart as we thought, since some people know more than others. A simple trick can find the ones you want by George Musser
Dražen Prelec, a behavioural economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), is working on a way to smarten up the hive mind.

“Every book I read re-stocked my mind with those great friends… They came into my life proud and compassionate, recognizing me by a secret sign, whispering through subterranean channels of sympathy.” Alfred Kazin on Loneliness, the Immigrant Experience, the Economics of Love, and How Reading Liberates Us

Do You Own Your Own Fingerprints? bloomberg

Data Mining Reveals the Six Basic Emotional Arcs of Storytelling MIT Technology Review

When Narratives Go Bad Epsilon Theory (CL). Must read, and keep going. Maybe we need to replace “animal spirits” with “the power of narrative”?

How We Wage the War on Drugs American Conservative