December 2013

  • December 31, 2013

    “As is tradition, this new year the mayor is dropping the ball in NYC, while Congress drops the ball in Washington.”

    -George Takei, American actor and internet personality, Twitter, December 27, 2013

  • December 30, 2013

    “I’ve been doing this professionally since I was 10. If entertainment years were dog years, man, I’d be like Gandhi. I’d be like 250 years old.”

    -Justin Timberlake, discussing his lengthy career. GQ Man of the Year interview, December 2013

  • December 29, 2013

    Politics is noble; it is one of the highest forms of charity, as Paul VI used to say. We sully it when we mix it with business. The relationship between the Church and political power can also be corrupted if common good is not the only converging point.”

    -Pope Francis, 266th (current) Pope of the Catholic Church, Interview with “La Stampa” and “Vatican Insider,” December 10, 2013

  • December 28, 2013

    “The fact is, we’re not collecting everybody’s email, we’re not collecting everybody’s phone things, we’re not listening to that…NSA can only target the communications of a US person with a probable cause finding under specific court order. Today, we have less than 60 authorizations on specific persons to do that.”

    -Keith Alexander, Four-star Army general, Director of the NSA, and Commander of US Cyber Command. CBS’ “Inside the NSA.” December 15, 2013

  • December 27, 2013

    “We will not recognize any results that come out of the Geneva 2 Conference, nor will the children or women of Syria do. Those taking part in the conference do not represent the people who sacrificed and shed blood. Besides, who has authorized them to represent the people? Those are confined to newsrooms. In reality, they have no presence on the ground.”

    -Abu Mohammed al-Joulani, leader of Jabhat al-Nusra – al-Qaeda’s branch in Syria. Al Jazeera Interview, December 19, 2013

  • December 26, 2013

    “I don’t ever want to have to need someone again – where you feel like, without them, you can’t be yourself.”

    -Miley Cyrus, American singer and actress, discussing calling off her engagement. Barbara Walters Presents: The 10 Most Fascinating People of 2013, December 16, 2013

  • December 25, 2013

    “ made so many promises. We thought that he was going to be — I shouldn’t say this at Christmastime — but the next messiah.”

    -Barbara Walters, American news journalist and ABC News Correspondent, Piers Morgan Live, December 17, 2013

  • December 24, 2013

    “The First Amendment, like the constitution generally, only applies to the government. So if the government stops someone from talking, or punishes them, that’s a First Amendment issue. If a private person says ‘I won’t hire you or let you be on TV anymore,’ that’s not. The idea is we don’t let the government decide what’s a good opinion, but we do let individuals decide what they think is offensive and what should be rewarded and what should be discouraged. That’s the way the marketplace of ideas is supposed to work.”

    – Kermit Roosevelt, constitutional law professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, on A&E’s suspension of Phil Robertson from the TV show “Duck Dynasty.” ABC News, December 20, 2013

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    • December 23, 2013

      “I don’t agree with quite a bit of stuff I read in magazine interviews or see on TV. In fact, come to think of it, I find a good bit of it offensive. But I also acknowledge that this is a free country and everyone is entitled to express their views…I remember when TV networks believed in the First Amendment. It is a messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh and Phil Robertson gets suspended.”

      -Bobby Jindal, Governor of Louisiana, on A&E’s suspension of Phil Robertson from the TV show “Duck Dynasty.” Issued Statement, December 19, 2013

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      • December 22, 2013

        “He’ll always be my baby. My wealth-obsessed baby.”

        -Pattie Mallette, mother of Justin Bieber, speaking of Bieber in a Twitter chat, December 8. 2013

      • December 21, 2013

        “The truth of the mater is we all make mistakes. But I am truly a big believer in forgiveness and second chances.”

        -Judy Smith, crisis manager who is the basis for Olivia Pope on ABC’s “Scandal,” The Expresss, December 10, 2013

      • December 20, 2013

        “The English language was carefully, carefully cobbled together by three blind dudes and a German dictionary.”

        -Dave Kellett, American comicbook artist, “Sheldon,” February 1, 2009

      • December 19, 2013

        “All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. Such people have a tendency to become drunk on violence, a condition to which they are quickly addicted.”

        -Frank Herbert, science fiction author, “Chapterhouse: Dune,” 1985.

      • December 18, 2013

        “In the Soviet Union, government controls industry. In the United States, industry controls government. That is the principal structural difference between the two great oligarchies of our time.”

        -Edward Abbey, American author, “A Voice Crying in the Wilderness,” 1991

      • December 17, 2013

        “And in a year that saw the internet invalidating the issues of women of color, excluding them from important conversations about feminism, and frankly, excluding them from feminism period (remember @Karynthia’s #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen and Michelle Cottle’s FLOTUS is a Feminist Nightmare), Beyonce came through with the power of Jesus Christ himself and did quite the opposite on a public stage.”

        -Christina Coleman, news and politics editor at GlobalGrind, GlobalGrind, December 13, 2013.

      • December 16, 2013

        “In the midst of our grief, we have come to realize that we want our loved ones to be remembered for the lives they lived and how they touched our hearts.”

        -Krista Rekos, mother of 6-year-old Jessica who was among the kids murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School, on the anniversary of the mass shooting on December 14, 2012, The Express, December 10, 2013

      • December 15, 2013

        “The Internet is disrupting every media industry…people can complain about that, but complaining is not a strategy. And Amazon is not happening to book selling, the future is happening to book selling.”

        -Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon, CBS’ 60 Minutes, December 1, 2013

      • December 14, 2013

        “Odd how often blood is shed to obtain freedom from those in power. Oppressors must be the most insecure people in the world.”

        -Neil deGrasse Tyson, American astrophysicist, cosmologist, and author. Twitter, December 8, 2013

      • December 13, 2013

        “Republicans have a problem. If they don’t pass immigration reform, they can say ‘adios’ to the White House in 2016.”

        -Jorge Ramos, Mexican-American journalist, anchor for Noticiero Univision, and host of TV shows Al Punto & America with Jorge Ramos. Daily Show with Jon Stewart, December 5, 2013

      • December 12, 2013

        “Financial independence is a great thing, but you can’t take your paycheck to bed with you. And there’s nothing empowering about being beholden to an employer when what you really want is to have a baby. That’s dependency of a different sort.”

        -Suzanne Venker, journalist, Fox News contributor, and founder of Article on, December 06, 2013

      • December 11, 2013

        “I try to get them to be a little more sensitive. You know, you look around the Congress and there are a lot more females in the Democratic caucus than in the Republican caucus. And some of our members just aren’t as sensitive as they ought to be.”

        -John Boehner, Speaker of the House, during his weekly news conference, December 5, 2013

      • December 10, 2013

        “There is no news value to the content of those tapes. The actual audio is of no news value at all, unless you want the thrill of hearing the sound of the actual individual gunshot that might have killed a 7 year-old.”

        -Rachel Maddow, Political commentator, author, and host of The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC. Rachel Maddow Show, December 4, 2013

      • December 9, 2013

        “Even here in America, we felt the cool, refreshing breeze of freedom when Nelson Mandela took the seat of Presidency in his country where formerly he was not even allowed to vote. We were enlarged by tears of pride as we saw Nelson Mandela’s former prison guards invited, courteously, by him to watch from the front rows his inauguration.”

        -Maya Angelou, American author and poet, excerpt from “His Day is Done” – Tribute poem for Nelson Mandela, December 6, 2013

      • December 8, 2013

        “Obviously – and Michelle – have made a lot of sacrifices on behalf of my cockamamie ideas, the running for office and things.”

        –Barack Obama, President of The United States, Interview with Barbara Walters on ABC News, November 29, 2013

      • December 7, 2013

        “Even if many women in Egypt had discovered suddenly during the revolution that they had a voice and they could express what they wanted, they now are back in the family and in the kitchen, and this is where they are told they should be. And this is very grim.”

        -Monique Villa, CEO of the Thompson Reuters Foundation, Interview with Annette Young of France 24 News. November 27, 2013

      • December 6, 2013

        “The ongoing war in Afghanistan is being imposed on us, and Afghans are being sacrificed in it for someone else’s interests. We are not blocking the interests of the United States or other major powers. But we are demanding that if you consider Afghanistan the place from which to advance your interests, then you should also pay attention to Afghanistan’s interests.”

        -Hamid Karzai, President of Afghanistan, on the two demands he has before he will sign a Bilateral Security Agreement with the United States. Interview with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, November 26, 2013

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        • December 5, 2013

          “I found to be someone with very polite and smart language. The problems with the US are very complicated … but, despite the complexities, there has been an opening over the past 100 days which can later widen.”

          -Hassan Rouhani, President of Iran, Interview with the Financial Times, November 29, 2013

        • December 4, 2013

          “I saw how the university life goes, both in Europe and then in the US…and I was just aghast, because everyone was what I call drillers of deeper wells. These academics sit at the bottom of a deep well and they look up and see a sliver of the sky. They know everything about that little sliver of sky, and nothing else. I scan all my horizons.”

          -Vaclav Smil, Canadian professor emeritus of environment and geography at the University of Manitoba, WIRED Interview, November 25, 2013

        • December 3, 2013

          “People liked the fact they could shop at a more humane hour and didn’t have to get up in the middle of the night, and could spend time with family. Overall our whole strategy is to give customers what they want, how they want, and when they want.”

          -Richard Barry, Toys R Us Chief Merchandising Operator, discussing stores opening Thanksgiving Day for Black Friday shoppers. Interview with AP, November 29, 2013

        • December 2, 2013

          “On this day in 1955, Rosa Parks defied the codes of racial segregation, igniting a civil justice movement that continues today.”

          -Debbie Wasserman Schultz, US Congresswoman (D-Fl) and Chair of the Democratic National Committee, Twitter, December 1, 2013

        • December 1, 2013

          “This is the way it has to be. The Senate has changed.”

          -Harry Reid, majority leader of the United States Senate (D-NV), on new limits on the use of the FIlibuster, in a press conference following the vote, November 21, 2013.