In no order, importance or subject

  • Be kind to people, be ruthless to systems. - Micheal Brooks
  • There are only two kinds of [programming] languages: the ones people complain about and the ones nobody uses.” - Bjarne Stroustrup
  • Can’t you [gain cultural understanding and appreciation] by reading history? One may ask. Yes, but history written by whom, for whom? Because, you see, after learning a language, if you care enough, part of you becomes a member of the tribe to which the language belongs. And that cultural schizophrenia can be truly excruciating - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZ_4gzoDDAE
  • You cannot escape structures of power, you can only turn a blind eye to understanding them. - Rules for Rulers, CGP Grey
  • And yet, Miyazaki wrote in 1995, “I am like him” — a man of contradictions: a filmmaker who condemns the proliferation of images even as he contributes to it; an artist who has devoted his career to children but was rarely home to take care of his own; an environmentalist who can’t bear to give up his cigarettes or wheezing car; a professed Luddite who revels in the mechanics of modern vehicles but tries “not to draw them in a fashion that further feeds an infatuation with power,” as he has written; a pacifist who loves warplanes; a brooder with a dark view of how civilization has squandered the gifts of the planet, who nevertheless makes films that affirm the urgency of human life. - Hayao Miyazaki Prepares to Cast One Last Spell, Ligaya Mishan
  • I’ve been living in Tokyo for forty-some years. It’s easy to think that this is an uninteresting city, or that you want to destroy it. The most frustrating thing I feel when I watch movies such as Akira is that they destroy Tokyo so easily. If you depict it as a city which you won’t miss even if it were destroyed, as a fake thing made from only steel and concrete from the beginning, destroying it won’t accomplish anything. It’s far from being a real catharsis. Even in Tokyo, if you look carefully, if you dig up your memories, you can find some scenery which you are very much attracted to. It can be the evening at the train crossing, or it can be scenery of some vacant land with Seitaka-awadachisou in Tokyo Bay area. We have scenery we love inside of us. It’s related to our childhood memories. If you depict (Tokyo) that way, and depict it as something you still have to destroy, I can understand that, but they (those movies) do not. I think they don’t have the right issues in mind. Animation can do that. I still think that there is meaning to be found in making a movie which can do it properly. - Patlabor Movie 2 interview, Mamorou Oshii
  • It’s the age of mass-produced entertainment. Just as you demand food that’s delicious, I hope you’ll choose entertainment that has wisdom and passion… You can choose [animation] for the characters, or for the technique. See as many foreign and experimental films as you can. Some entertainment is very slick, but its empty. Some of it is made without any attention to detail. We don’t need rules about what’s good and what isn’t. That’s something for each of you to decide. But I hope you’ll be discriminating consumers. - Joy in Motion, Yasuo Otsuka
  • From the absolute classic, Legend of the Galactic Heroes:
    • What is the most cowardly and shameful thing in human conduct? It’s when people with power, and those who flatter them, hide in safe places and extol war — who force patriotism and self-sacrifice on others, sending them to the battlefield to die.
    • There has never been ‘permanent peace’ in human history. But, there have been plenty of ages with decades of peace. In short, my hope is, haughtily enough, for a few decades of peace in the future.
    • An army is a tool for violence and there are two kinds of violence: violence as a means to control or oppress and violence as a means of liberation. What we call a national army is fundamentally the former example. It’s a pity but history does not lie. When those in power confront popular opposition there aren’t many examples of the army siding with the people. Far from it, in the past in country after country, the army itself evolved into a power structure and came to control the people through violence.
    • The nation that neglects social inequality, mischievously increase military budget and then uses its power internally to suppress its citizens on the pretext of invasion by an eternal enemy, is on the road to extinction.
    • In reality, it’s dictatorship rather than democracy that drastically advances government reforms. But I think humanity ought to avoid being united by a dictatorship. While it’s true Duke Lohengramm might have that talent, what about his descendants? His heir? Rulers aren’t necessarily wise through generations. He’s like a miracle which could happen only once every few centuries. I don’t think the entire human race should be ruled by a system where everything depends on one person’s character.
    • People make the mistake of thinking that their present situation is eternally fixed.
    • People aren’t strong enough to endure the recognition that they’re evil. So, believing in their own righteousness, they fight, trying to impose it on other people.