The beginning of a blood-curdling recession hardly seems like the time to ruminate about fantasy resources, I’ll grant you that. But, I want you to think about something. Really think about it.
If, tomorrow morning, you had 60% of the time and resources you needed to start making anything you wanted, what would it be? And, what would you do first? . . .
The reason I throw in that “60% of what you need,” is that it’s just enough to make the question interesting and ambitious. Give someone no resources, and they have no imagination. Give them all the resources and they break ground on a Hooters in their garage. But, give someone most of the resources they need, and you have a delightful real-world challenge to the creative imagination.
The society which scorns excellence in plumbing because plumbing is a humble activity, and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because philosophy is an exalted activity, will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy. Neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water.
—John Gardner, in Excellence (1961)
The next time you hear a commentator credit “All politics is local” to Tip O’Neill, impress your friends by mentioning that the line appeared in The Frederick (Md.) News, July 1, 1932, when the future speaker of the House was only a teenage proto-pol.