"Michael Jordan, Phil Knight and Spike Lee (who had made the popular commercials glorifying the Air Jordan sneakers) quickly received some of the blame for the killings. Sports and editorial writers alleged that the three, through their advertisements, had made poor children so much want a status symbol that teenagers could not afford that they were willing to kill to obtain that status. Other young people sold illegal drugs to support their sports clothes habit. An owner of sportswear shops in Connecticut finally posted a sign telling customers to spend their drug-dealing profits somewhere else. The owner estimated he lost $2,000 in sales per week after he put up the sign.
Spike Lee refused to take such blame. 'The emphasis should not be on sneakers or the Starter jackets,' the filmmaker argued. 'The emphasis should be on: what are the conditions among young black males that are making them put that much emphasis on material things?' Lee also blamed journalists for criticizing Jordan and him, but not blaming white stars, such as Larry Bird, who endorsed sneakers.
Lee began to take some action. At a Nike All-American basketball camp in 1994, he told the young players they were 'being used' and 'the only reason you are here is because you can make...schools win and they can make a lot of money.'"
-Walter LaFeber, Michael Jordan and The New Global Capitalism
"There is a considerable overlap between the intelligence of the smartest bears and the dumbest tourists"
-Yosemite Park ranger on why it's hard to design a bear-proof garbage can.
"This is the constitutive aporia of aesthetic modernism: in remaining fully discursive it betrays what reason and truth could be, what art and aesthetic discourse remain a promise of; but if it abandons the rigours of full discursivity it necessarily falls silent, an inmate in the refuge and prison of art."
"Big Cereal told us that candy with milk on it is a good way to start the day and we all liked the idea too much to question it."
"Art, like everything else, exists in a vacuum. If someone's art does harm, directly or indirectly, they are not immune to responsibility for that harm."
"We are no longer ready to believe that minimalist design suggests anything about the honest and sincerity of the designed subject."
-Boris Groys, Self-Design and Aesthetic Responsibility essay
"The greatest evil is not now done in the sordid 'dens of crime' that Dickens loved to paint. It was not done even in concentration or in labour camps, in those we see the final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voice. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the officers of a thoroughly nasty business concern."
-C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters