"It is easy to confuse what is with what ought to be, especially when what is has worked out in your favor."
- Tyrion Lannister

"Lannister. Baratheon. Stark. Tyrell. They're all just spokes on a wheel. This one's on top, then that's ones on top and on and on it spins, crushing those on the ground. I'm not going to stop the wheel. I'm going to break the wheel."

- Daenerys Targaryen

"The Lord of Light wants his enemies burned. The Drowned God wants them drowned. Why are all the gods such vicious cunts? Where's the God of Tits and Wine?"

- Tyrion Lannister

"The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends. It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace. They never are."

- Jorah Mormont

"These bad people are what I'm good at. Out talking them. Out thinking them."

- Tyrion Lannister

"What happened? I think fundamentals were trumped by mechanics and, to a lesser extent, by demographics."

- Michael Barone

"If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to."
- Dorothy Parker

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Janet Yellen: yes we are failing.

Maddening Monetary Policy Making by Tim Duy

Charlie Rose had a show on the anniversary of Hitchens's birthday yesterday which included Salman Rushdie, James Fenton, Ian McEwan and Martin Amis.

They captured how generous and democratic he was socially with impeccable manners and had one of the best senses of humor around. He was also very tough and "honorable." Rushdie who is very funny, describes himself crying he was laughing so hard with Hitchens one night and McEwan said he'd get stomach cramps from all the laughter. Amis had some great anecdotes also. And Fenton was right to describe him as the spirit of '68.

Rushdie's memoir will drop Sept. 17. It's called Joseph Anton after the name he took when in hiding from Iran's supreme leader's fatwa. He derived it from the first names of two of his favorite authors, Conrad and Chekov.

HBO picked up Game of Thrones for a third season.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Some people argue that Ned Stark had too much honor or was a fool. But Janos Slynt, (former) commander of the city watch, found out that having no honor doesn't benefit you either. Tyrion doesn't trust him and sent him to the Wall. Being too wised-up or cynical can make you a fool as well.

The Night Lands
(or a Song of Ice and Fire
or on HBO Sunday night is Onion knight)

Religion, theology and the supernatural figured prominently in the second show of the second sesason of Game of Thones. Rakharo could or could not enter the Dothraki afterlife. The Greyjoys uttered their religious callout-saying*: "What's Dead May Never Die" to their Drowned God. The small council pondered how do you kill a dead man. With fire apparently, replied Tyrion. He said he believes Mormont whom he met on his trip to the Wall, while Maester Pycelle said the notherners have always been superstitious. Davos Seaworth told his "True Believer" son Matthos that prayer doesn't work, but no reflection on how Melisandre the Red Priestess survived drinking the poison last episode? Melisandre tells Stannis he must give all of him to the Lord of Light in exchange for victory while Jon Snow stumbled upon the arrangement Craster has with The Others.

One thing mind-blowing about the first season what how the premiere episode had The Others arranging wildling body parts in a gnostic circle for the luckless Nightswatch ranger to find.** And then the season finale had a shot of Khal Drogo's funeral pyre which formed a gnostic circle also. And the dragon eggs hatched.

*I can't find what this is called and it's making me feel stupid (although maybe there isn't a specific word for it). It's a religious phrase automatically said in response to some other religious word or phrase, usually in unison by everyone present. I now it's done in Islam and Catholicism. In this episode, the Greyjoys are saying in response to the naming of a deceased relative.
**And then The Others quickly took the wildling body parts back (to eat?).
Because the stakes are so small by Steve Randy Waldman

Monday, April 09, 2012

Black Sabbath rumored to headline Lollapalooza along with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Black Keys.

The Cash Nexus (or - almost - everyone has a price) 

The Sellsword Bronn tells Tryion he'd kill babies for a price. Tyrion had told Slynt he had no honor something Bronn admits to. I think back to Ned telling Varys that his life wasn't so precious to him that he would dishonor it. And for Littlefinger, it's accumulate, accumulate, accumulate.

Game of Thrones Week 2: Who Watches the Watchers? by Charlie Jane Anders

"The Night Lands" (for experts) Onion recap

Many comments.

"The Night Lands" (for newbies) Onion recap

Good comments too!

Sunday, April 08, 2012