My wife is in the hospital. She had a bad fall in the middle of the night and her aide took her to an urgent care center. She was then transported to the hospital. I am hoping they keep her overnight for observation, since head injuries to someone who is 82 can have serious consequences. Blogging is not much on my mind right now. Maybe later.
Saturday, September 30, 2023
Friday, September 29, 2023
Thursday, September 28, 2023
Wednesday, September 27, 2023
Tuesday, September 26, 2023
Monday, September 25, 2023
Sunday, September 24, 2023
Then there was the question of whether the last word hadn’t already been said about it 200 years earlier—the word of Edward Gibbon, the very title of whose imperishable History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (1776) suggested that late antiquity, which saw the rise of Christianity and the fall of Rome, was an altogether downward proposition. For Brown something close to the reverse of this was the case. When he came to write The World of Late Antiquity (1971), casting aside Gibbon’s scornful view of the age, he set out to show that "late antiquity marked not the end of civilization but its transformation into new and adventurous forms, which would directly influence all subsequent centuries."
Saturday, September 23, 2023
Friday, September 22, 2023
Thursday, September 21, 2023
Just ask the J6 protesters who peacefully walked through the Capitol. The feds are still hunting them down and arresting them. And ask the Catholic father who was arrested in a heavily armed FBI raid on his home for the crime of trying to save unborn lives. And ask the father who demanded to know why no action was taken at the school where his daughter was raped why he was treated like a terrorist.
Methinks the FBI may have outlived its usefulness. By the way, guys, I have journalist credentials. Bear that in mind (presuming you have such).
… Radical Wolfe: An Underwhelming Account of the Revolutionary Journalist. (At tip, Dave Lull.)
Wednesday, September 20, 2023
Tuesday, September 19, 2023
I kept asking myself: Pier? Granite? Bell? Face of Steel? A nail or drill? Where might all these things be found? On a 19th century locomotive passing through Concord! That’s where. (And Concord was a railroad town.)
When you ask me the question "How can I bring myself around; I am pregnant two months," you are asking for abortion. Please understand that Birth Control, as I understand it, is never abortion. I do not approve of abortion, nor can I give the address of anyone who will perform this operation... The object of this movement is to help women avoid abortion and the dangers attending it.You can read more here.
Monday, September 18, 2023
… perhaps the most wince-inducing moment was his meeting with “a charming and beautiful young philosopher” in Prague. “I later learned that Roger Scruton . . . was extremely irritated by the fact that on his next visit to Prague, all she could talk about was Dan Dennett! A small ignoble pleasure for me.”
Sunday, September 17, 2023
“Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled … “Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science, consensus is irrelevant. … The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period.”
In 1968, during the Black Power movement, when black Americans were, as one sociologist put it, “seeking ways to alter their relationship to the society and the shared expectations of themselves as a community of people.” As a twenty-three-year-old poet concerned about the world and struggling to find a place in it, I felt it a duty and an honor to participate in that search. With my good friend Rob Penny, I founded the Black Horizons Theater in Pittsburgh with the idea of using the theater to politicize the community or, as we said in those days, to raise the consciousness of the people.
Saturday, September 16, 2023
Friday, September 15, 2023
… perhaps the single most thrilling object in the collection, one of the single most thrilling graven images I’ve encountered, the one book in the collection that most seemed to speak from beyond the grave and the graven realms, was a unique Nabokov book, one he created himself by hand, one never before seen by the world, and one that I believe discloses an important secret about his esoteric passion.
Thursday, September 14, 2023
Wolfe was politically deft. He championed conservative notions of patriotism and morality, but avoided partisan politics, which he considered a boring backwater. (His editor at the Washington Post was amazed that, unlike the other reporters, he had no ambition to cover the White House and Capitol Hill.) In footage from “Firing Line,” when William F. Buckley Jr. asked him to describe his political views, Wolfe quoted Balzac’s description of the politics in his novels: “I belong to the party of the opposition.
I had the privilege of meeting him once — at the White House. Laura Bush had invited him and me to an event D. C. schoolkids. Classy guy.
Wednesday, September 13, 2023
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
Monday, September 11, 2023
… Barton declares his summary position early: "While there can be translations that are simply wrong, there cannot be one that is uniquely right." Rather, The Word is a thorough mapping (to use the author’s cartographic image) of the translators’ terrain. And that complex landscape is, to simplify, defined by two promontories.
Books these days tend to have small type. I am an old man with cataracts that have yet to ripen. So I use my Kindle a lot.
Sunday, September 10, 2023
… The trans kids madness needs to stop. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.
Gotta hand it to these doctors: “gender-affirming care” is genius branding. Usefully, “gender” has become a nonsense word. What could possibly be wrong with “affirming?” Why, the adjective exudes niceness, solace and esteem. And no physician or parent could oppose “care.” Yet the euphemism translates to “sex-denying medical experimentation.”
Saturday, September 09, 2023
“The 'magical creatures' are a mixture of races and genders, and we all applaud that," he added. "But they're sacrificing the careers of short people to achieve diversity. And that does not sit right with me. The studio doesn't seem to be aware that dwarfs are also born in all races and genders."
Friday, September 08, 2023
… Joseph Epstein: Opinion | Pious Agnosticism as a Form of Judaism. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)
After all the worst has been said against religion, one can’t deny the comfort it has brought. I had a neighbor, a woman 10 or so years older than I, unmarried, a former schoolteacher, a serious Catholic, who told me she wasn’t in the least afraid of death. She wished to avoid a painful or sloppy end, but death itself held no fears for her, for she had a good sense of where she was going. As she told me this, I can recall feeling a stab of what I can only call faith envy.
Thursday, September 07, 2023
You might be wondering at this point if I’m disowning my own paper. I’m not. On the contrary, I think it advances our understanding of climate change’s role in day-to-day wildfire behavior. It’s just that the process of customizing the research for an eminent journal caused it to be less useful than it could have been.