In How the Irish Saved Civilization: The Untold Story of Ireland's Heroic Role From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Medieval Europe (The Hinges of History) , Thomas Cahill draws a thumbnail sketch of the end of the world as Roman civilization had known it. When I read it, a few years back, I couldn't help but think of our current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the unrelenting pressure of the jihadist barbarians who are hammering at the gates of Western Civilization. Read more about Barbarians Inside the Gate
An old friend of mine who currently espouses what I will call, in a temporary fit of generosity, libertarianism, posted this recently on Facebook. They are illustrative of what I call "extrapolated argument" - the kind of argument used most often by teenagers, e.g., when told they can't use the car tonight because it's snowing. "So what if you and Mom are sick and you need to be taken to the emergency room, does that mean I can't use the car to drive you there? What then, huh? Huh?" Read more about 10 Questions
This week, a guest appearance from my Facebook friend, Scott Wilson, who also tries to illuminate the realities behind the rhetoric:
Take it away, Scott:
Combined with the austerity approach to the terrible economic mess we still seem to be in and the asinine legislation popping up at state levels, the recent increased vocals from inconvenienced, poor, put upon billionaires trend is really beginning to annoy me.....
A lil story.... Read more about Falling Into the Well
A couple of weeks ago, someone I knew in high school posted a link to this opinion piece to our class reunion mailing list.
In it, he purports to be asking one question: Do you believe that human nature evolves?
He follows that question with the emphatic statement that Our Founders did not. Read more about Failing To Connect
A couple of weeks ago, UP with Steve Kornacki ran a segment on unpopular opinions. As it happens, I agreed with most of those unpopular opinions - I also don't like term limits for legislators or balanced budget amendments and I'm glad President Ford pardoned Nixon. Read more about A Most Unpopular Opinion
I'm still deep in the weeds of the Wars of the Roses, not only reading Alison Weir's excellent history but also Philippa Gregory's series of novels, The Cousins' War. There's something disturbingly familiar about this 15th century story of warring factions that filled fields and rivers with blood. Read more about Red and Blue Roses
Except for, you know, all the consequences, I'm almost happy that John Kerry lost that 2004 election. If he had won, it would be extremely unlikely that he would be Secretary of State today. The way things are going, he should be wearing spandex with the initials SoS emblazoned on his chest. Read more about Shut the Front Door!