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Anorak | Happy Thanksgiving and stuff The Moral Statisticians

Happy Thanksgiving and stuff The Moral Statisticians

by | 22nd, November 2012

HAPPY Thanksgiving to our American readers. Eat, drink, smoke and enjoy. An American great wants you to. In 1893 Mark Twain wrote in The Moral Statisticians :

I don’t want any of your statistics; I took your whole batch and lit my pipe with it.

I hate your kind of people. You are always ciphering out how much a man’s health is injured, and how much his intellect is impaired, and how many pitiful dollars and cents he wastes in the course of ninety-two years’ indulgence in the fatal practice of smoking; and in the equally fatal practice of drinking coffee; and in playing billiards occasionally; and in taking a glass of wine at dinner, etc. etc. And you are always figuring out how many women have been burned to death because of the dangerous fashion of wearing expansive hoops, etc. etc. You never see more than one side of the question.

More!

You are blind to the fact that most old men in America smoke and drink coffee, although, according to your theory, they ought to have died young. . . . And you never try to find out how much solid comfort, relaxation, and enjoyment a man derives from smoking in the course of a lifetime (which is worth ten times the money he would save by letting it alone), nor the appalling aggregate of happiness lost in a lifetime by your kind of people from not smoking. Of course you can save money by denying yourself all those little vicious enjoyments for fifty years;

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Posted: 22nd, November 2012 | In: News Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink