Monday, February 06, 2006

Mighty Sorry

What looks like laziness to you--my lack of recent blogging--looks like too much other work to me. I'm still laboring under several deadlines for projects I need to get done before I leave for New York Comic-Con and the debut of Mom's Cancer at the end of the month.

I'm currently writing papers on solar power, fuel cells, and the hydrogen economy, if anyone's interested in my day job. None of them will be available to the public, although one of them will be part of a presentation to Congress in a few weeks if my co-author and I do a good job. I sometimes describe my job as taking 500 pages that no one can understand and turning them into 50 pages that anyone can; right now, we're taking those 50 pages and turning them into 5 pages that a utility executive can understand, then distilling those 5 pages into 5 bullet points that a politician can understand. It's hard to do. One of my favorite quotes is from Blaise Pascal, apologizing to a correspondent:

I have made this letter longer than usual,
because I lack the time to make it short.

Finally, and completely unrelated, I came across a quote by H.L. Mencken today that perfectly captured my thoughts on a particular issue:

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is
that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels.
For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are
first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at
the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.

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