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Posts Tagged ‘Robert Burton

“Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually slaves of some defunct economist”*…

 

The tenth anniversary of the start of the Great Recession was the occasion for an elegant essay by the Nobel laureate economist Paul Krugman, who noted how little the debate about the causes and consequences of the crisis have changed over the last decade. Whereas the Great Depression of the 1930s produced Keynesian economics, and the stagflation of the 1970s produced Milton Friedman’s monetarism, the Great Recession has produced no similar intellectual shift…

Robert Skidelsky explains why at: “How Economics Survived the Economic Crisis.”

* John Maynard Keynes

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As we delve into the dismal, we might spare a thought for Robert Burton; he died on this date in 1640.  An Oxford scholar, he is best known for his classic The Anatomy of Melancholy, an odd mix of wide-ranging scholarship, humor, linguistic skill, and creative (if highly approximate) insights– a favorite of scholars and authors from Samuel Johnson to Anthony Burgess.

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Written by LW

January 25, 2018 at 1:01 am

“Only laughter can blow [a colossal humbug] to rags and atoms at a blast. Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.”*…

 

P.T. Barnum, impresario behind the “Greatest Show on Earth,” could not abide a humbug: a man who tricked and swindled others for naught but his own gain. In Humbugs of the World (1865), he outlined the various types, with none being singled out for such ire as the humbug who believes nothing at all…

The greatest humbug of all is the man who believes—or pretends to believe—that everything and everybody are humbugs. We sometimes meet a person who professes that there is no virtue; that every man has his price, and every woman hers; that any statement from anybody is just as likely to be false as true…

More of the pot commenting on the kettle at “Pronouncing a fool.”

Resonate with today’s headline, David Byrne weighs in: “A Resistance With Laughs Is Irresistible.”

* Mark Twain

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As we melancholize, we might spare a thought for Robert Burton; he died on this date in 1640.  An Oxford scholar, he is best known for his classic The Anatomy of Melancholy, an odd mix of wide-ranging scholarship, humor, linguistic skill, and creative (if highly approximate) insights– a favorite of scholars and authors from Samuel Johnson to Anthony Burgess.

 source

 

Written by LW

January 25, 2017 at 1:01 am

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