The agreeable eye

an eudæmonistarchives

More specifically concerning: adam smith

Citation (55)

18 June 2016, around 6.31.

on the best society…

tautologous (2)

24 December 2016, around 4.25.

These are by no means all of the books I read this year that I found enjoyable or good, but they are the ones that, when thinking back over the year, stood out to me as some of the better ones – or at least the ones that were the right books for me at […]

tædium

8 January 2017, around 5.31.

It has been unexpectedly cold, and on that particularly evening we were preparing for a very cold weekend, with frost and potentially snow. The puddles from recent rains had frozen, which is a rare thing – if I had a better memory, I could probably count on one hand the number of times this has […]

lying-before-us

10 January 2020, around 8.57.

William Orpen, ‘Group associated with the New English Art Club’ What is truth? said jesting Pilate, and would not stay for an answer. —Francis Bacon, ‘Of Truth’ There was an odd passage in a woodworking memoir I read because I was taking the long way ’round in trying to think about craftsmanship. The woodworker had […]

human kindness, curdled

25 February 2021, around 5.23.

‘A plan of the cities of London and Westminster’, etc., by Johns Roque, Pine, and Pinney (ca. 1746) We disputed about some poems. Sheridan said that a man should not be a poet except he were excellent; for that to be a mediocris poeta was but a poor thing. I said I differed from him. […]

Adversaria (9)

31 December 2023, around 4.28.

An awareness of over-interpretation needn’t imply a kind of unattainable (and undesirable) objectivity, but rather a thoughtfully subjective approach, which does not involve second-guessing the artist. When content and materials are interpreted and combined in a balanced way, the result can be greater than the sum of its parts. A transformation of the given matter […]

3.i.2024

3 January 2024, around 7.40.

‘…all the passionate confidence of interested falsehood’ —Adam Smith (Wealth of Nations, vol. 2, p. 82)

frost point

15 January 2024, around 11.36.

One cannot say that it is unseasonably cold, because it is winter and it should, after all, be cold, but it is unusually cold, to the point that the streets have been, for the past two days, uncommonly empty, except for dogs and their owners and (on Saturday) postal carriers. Going out without gloves leaves […]

all we like sheep

17 January 2024, around 4.17.

Our woollen manufacturers have been more successful than any other class of workmen, in persuading the legislature that the prosperity of the nation depended upon the success and extension of their particular business. They have not only obtained a monopoly against the consumers, by an absolute prohibition of importing woollen cloths from any foreign country; […]

Adversaria (10)

31 January 2024, around 4.56.

In a certain sense, I think that my writing gets along better with the features of digital presence than physical presence. That’s why I’m sometimes tempted to post texts online, because there they can enjoy a continuous existence and, at least to all appearances, remain oblivious to worldly travails. The joy of forgetting and persisting […]

conveniency

7 February 2024, around 10.19.

Drawing of the Apulian shepherd, Claude Lorrain (ca. 1657) There are no public institutions for the education of women, and there is accordingly nothing useless, absurd, or fantastical, in the common course of their education. They are taught what their parents or guardians judge it necessary or useful for them to learn, and they are […]

tracings

11 February 2024, around 13.33.

In the course of his travels, he generally acquires some knowledge of one or two foreign languages; a knowledge, however, which is seldom sufficient to enable him either to speak or write them with propriety. In other respects, he commonly returns home more conceited, more unprincipled, more dissipated, and more incapable of any serious application, […]

addendum

15 February 2024, around 11.20.

The more they are instructed, the less liable they are to the delusions of enthusiasm and superstition, which, among ignorant nations frequently occasion the most dreadful disorders. An instructed and intelligent people, besides, are always more decent and orderly than an ignorant and stupid one. —Adam Smith (…Wealth of Nations, vol. 2, p. 424) I […]

baggage

19 February 2024, around 8.49.

There is a bit in Adam Smith’s Theory of Moral Sentiments that I misremembered, misunderstood, or made up entirely, but the gist of it was that if one takes on one of a thinker’s ideas, one has to take on their entire system of thinking and being – the faults in their logic and the faults […]

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