The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries from March 2013

Now you see it, now you

March 31st, 2013 · No Comments

“Away, then, with sharp practice and trickery, which desires, of course, to pass for wisdom, but is far from it and totally unlike it. For the function of wisdom is to discriminate between good and evil; whereas, inasmuch as all things morally wrong are evil, trickery prefers the evil to the good.” – Marcus Tullius […]

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

Put down that waterboard!

March 31st, 2013 · No Comments

“Let it be set down as an established principle, then, that what is morally wrong can never be expedient — not even when one secures by means of it that which one thinks expedient; for the mere act of thinking a course expedient, when it is morally wrong, is demoralizing.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De […]

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Tags: Cicero · Politics & Law · The Ancients

You make me dizzy, Miss Lizzy

March 30th, 2013 · No Comments

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Tags: Verandah

We could call it Facebook

March 30th, 2013 · No Comments

“Supposing that we were bound to everything that our friends desired, such relations would have to be accounted not friendships but conspiracies.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Shields up. We’re going in. Ahead slow, helmsman.

March 29th, 2013 · No Comments

“There is something reassuring and even restorative about a voice that is not too encroached upon by the intricacies of the world, anxieties of psychoanalysis, or the implications of a mechanized disenchanted planet. That is to say, the sculpting of the prose itself is not deranged by the catastrophes that surround us, though the catastrophes […]

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Tags: Elvis Bego · Lit & Crit

Literary Levittowns

March 29th, 2013 · No Comments

“Having spent some time lately reading American journals, I would say that much of the writing is of a high caliber, there is plenty of fantastic thinking in fiction out there, but one also notices in too many places something like a common house style. A style learned, pruned from the lectern. Too many writers […]

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Tags: Elvis Bego · Lit & Crit

Infinitely American

March 28th, 2013 · 2 Comments

“Big books, big Novels, as Martin Amis diagnosed long ago, seem inherently an American addiction. America, vast in space and in ambition, seems to goad its writers to impose a brazen intentionality onto the marketplace. The American writer’s appetite must be omnivorous, his palette the trunk of a sequoia, his cast not smaller than a […]

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Tags: Elvis Bego · Lit & Crit

But it’s not a whore

March 28th, 2013 · 2 Comments

“Literature, for everything else that it is, is also in the business of pleasure.” — Elvis Bego, “Dr. Aira: In Defense of Short Books”

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Tags: Elvis Bego · Lit & Crit

Probably

March 27th, 2013 · No Comments

“If nobody were to know or even to suspect the truth, when you do anything to gain riches or power or sovereignty or sensual gratification — if your act should be hidden for ever from the knowledge of gods and men, would you do it?” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

Politics as usual

March 27th, 2013 · No Comments

“It is the error of men who are not strictly upright to seize upon something that seems to be expedient and straightway to dissociate that from the question of moral right. To this error the assassin’s dagger, the poisoned cup, the forged wills owe their origin; this gives rise to theft, embezzlement of public funds, […]

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Tags: Cicero · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Even the little ones are juicy

March 26th, 2013 · No Comments

“Among evils one ought not only to choose the least, but also to extract even from these any element of good that they may contain.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

Now get to it

March 25th, 2013 · 2 Comments

“You have to write the thing you feel is missing from the world, that’s not on the bookshelves, the book that you would want to read if you’d heard about it, the book that you long for. And you have to be really honest about what that is. You can’t necessarily write the book that […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit

For the grant proposal

March 25th, 2013 · No Comments

“We need artists to work outside the establishment and start looking at the world in a different way – to start challenging preconceptions instead of reinforcing them.” — Will Gompertz (quoted by Edward Helmore and Paul Gallagher in The Guardian)

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Tags: Politics & Law

When in Rome…

March 24th, 2013 · No Comments

“As for property, it is a duty to make money, but only by honourable means; it is a duty also to save it and increase it by care and thrift.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · The Ancients

Walking the fine line

March 24th, 2013 · No Comments

“Individual health is preserved by studying one’s own constitution, by observing what is good or bad for one, by constant self-control in supplying physical wants and comforts (but only to the extent necessary to selfpreservation), by forgoing sensual pleasures, and finally, by the professional skill of those to whose science these matters belong.” – Marcus […]

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

A balancing act

March 23rd, 2013 · No Comments

“Those whose office it is to look after the interests of the state will refrain from that form of liberality which robs one man to enrich another. Above all, they will use their best endeavours that everyone shall be protected in the possession of his own property by the fair administration of the law and […]

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Banking on it

March 23rd, 2013 · No Comments

“We must take measures that there shall be no indebtedness of a nature to endanger the public safety. It is a menace that can be averted in many ways; but should a serious debt be incurred, we are not to allow the rich to lose their property, while the debtors profit by what is their […]

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Divided and conquered

March 22nd, 2013 · No Comments

“This is the highest statesmanship and the soundest wisdom on the part of a good citizen, not to divide the interests of the citizens but to unite all on the basis of impartial justice.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Within certain limits

March 22nd, 2013 · No Comments

“It is the peculiar function of the state and the city to guarantee to every man the free and undisturbed control of his own particular property.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · Politics & Law · The Ancients

Getting it sorted out

March 21st, 2013 · No Comments

“I hold that an attempt to control the Senate on the part of the Executive is subversive of the principles of our Constitution. The Executive department is independent of the Senate, and the Senate is independent of the President. In maters of legislation the President has a veto on the action of the Senate, and […]

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Tags: Abraham Lincoln · American Civil War · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law

In the valley of the shadow of youth

March 21st, 2013 · No Comments

“In the Valley of Youth, through which all wayfarers must pass on their journey from the Land of Mystery to the Land of the Infinite, there is a village where the pilgrim rests and indulges in various excursions for which the valley is celebrated.  There also gather many guides in this spot, some of whom […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Mathematics

Flatlanders

March 20th, 2013 · No Comments

“Just as a being may be imagined as having only two dimensions, and living always on a plane surface (in a space of two dimensions), and having no conception of a space of three dimensions, so we may think of ourselves as living in a space of three dimensions but surrounded by a space of […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Mathematics

A point from which to begin

March 20th, 2013 · No Comments

“We have enough objects of charity at home, and it is our duty to take care of our own poor and our own suffering, before we go abroad to intermeddle with other people’s business.” – Stephen A. Douglas, Political Debates Between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas

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Tags: American Civil War · Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law

What money can’t buy

March 19th, 2013 · No Comments

“The moral sense of to-day is demoralized and depraved by our worship of wealth. Of what concern to any one of us is the size of another man’s fortune? It is, perhaps, an advantage to its possessor; but not always even that. But suppose it is; he may, to be sure, have more money to […]

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · The Ancients

More than 47 percent

March 19th, 2013 · No Comments

“If one defends a man who is poor but honest and upright, all the lowly who are not dishonest — and there is a large proportion of that sort among the people — look upon such an advocate as a tower of defence raised up for them. I think, therefore, that kindness to the good […]

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Tags: Cicero · Politics & Law · The Ancients

The business of charity

March 18th, 2013 · No Comments

“Now in rendering helpful service to people, we usually consider either their character or their circumstances. And so it is an easy remark, and one commonly made, to say that in investing kindnesses we look not to people’s outward circumstances, but to their character. The phrase is admirable! But who is there, pray, that does […]

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · The Ancients

Not commerce as we now know it

March 18th, 2013 · No Comments

“It will, moreover, befit a gentleman to be at the same time liberal in giving and not inconsiderate in exacting his dues, but in every business relation — in buying or selling, in hiring or letting, in relations arising out of adjoining houses and lands — to be fair, reasonable, often freely yielding much of […]

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Tags: Cicero · Economics · The Ancients

Assuming we know the bees’ motives

March 17th, 2013 · No Comments

“As swarms of bees do not gather for the sake of making honeycomb but make the honeycomb because they are gregarious by nature, so human beings — and to a much higher degree — exercise their skill together in action and thought because they are naturally gregarious. And so, if that virtue which centres in […]

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

Not a rhetorical question

March 17th, 2013 · No Comments

“Who is so absorbed in the investigation and study of creation, but that, even though he were working and pondering over tasks never so much worth mastering and even though he thought he could number the stars and measure the length and breadth of the universe, he would drop all those problems and cast them […]

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients

Keeping it simple

March 16th, 2013 · No Comments

“It is our duty to respect, defend, and maintain the common bonds of union and fellowship subsisting between all the members of the human race.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Officiis (trans. Miller)

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Tags: Cicero · The Ancients