We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Sunday, November 26. 2006
4John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, 6and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. 7Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen. 8“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.
Saturday, November 25. 2006
Dartmouth: Self-satire gone psychotic. I can't believe these bozos. Powerline. (The thing is, people are upset that they want to play a team called indians.) Fortunately, you can still get Dartmouth Indian gear here. And if you want to read something intense to the point of lunacy on the subject, which sounds as if it is written by an "educator," try this for paranoia.
"I'm a lumberjack, and I'm OK." A good day for this one.
British Airways backs off from banning God and Christ. Very wise. As we always say, "Who is afraid of a cross - except Satan?"
PMS Survival tips: RW Howler. Wait until the end.
Mere tokenism in Islam: Blair
Meant to link this earlier, but forgot to. Michelle on what American journalists should be thankful for. We would not have the contempt we have for journalists if they only told us, up front, what position they were shilling for - but it's obvious, if you do not trust them.
Islam is the Roach Motel of religions: Wizbang
Dept of Anything Goes: Moonbattery. Do you have to pay the friendly animals?
Women: fastest growing sector of hunters in the US. Yahoo News
Friday, November 24. 2006
I hope our readers had a fine Thanksgiving, with people they care about. My theory about the cooking part - it's the whole deal. Eating isn't special. What is special is having everybody banging around the kitchen together, all day, with no-where to go and nothing else to do. That's a good thing, and very rare. Makes it better than Christmas, I think, as a family time. Christmas shopping? It's for the birds, unless you have little kids or a wife who expects a trinket for putting up with your flaws. Make 'em something simple from the heart, like a Mincemeat Pie or a Dylan bootleg mix.
Turkey Coma. Did you get one? I got a semi-coma. The science is here.
The NYT: Way wrong on guns: Aphecca. Wrong - and lying SOBs, too.
Communitarianism, individualism, etc. Good stuff from First Things. Samizdata
Are you ready for the Moslem bomb? American Thinker
War is part of life. Afraid so. Flares. Soldiers know this. We would not be here without them. They are our shield.
Safe cars, ranked. Not many American cars on the list. Daily Pundit. No wonder the unions want protectionism: they build cars that the market doesn't want.
No men next to little girls. And rightly so. Definitely not. We might steal their candy or their teddy bear. Or their Barbie - ooh ooh. No doubt - We are EVIL.
Who is dying in Iraq, by color. Villainous. Who cares what color? All great American folks, dying for us, and taking bullets for us. No - not for "us" - for me. While we do life as usual.
Almost funny: Miss Belgium is a Muslim beauty, but she has nasty friends. View from the Right. Sheesh. Muslim version of a dumb blond, I guess.
Funny: Lieberman refuses to endorse Gore: Wizbang. Duh. If he gives Gore the time of day, I'd be surprised. I would drop Gore like a globally-warmed potato.
Caveman Chemistry. Cool
DO NOT ENGAGE! Dealing with families with political "differences". Ex-Donk. Dang - why didn't somebody tell me sooner! Bunch of dang Commies who want everything free. Meaning, to me, paid for by their next-door neighbor. Economic part of their brain was damaged at birth, or at Education.
Part 1 of Instapundit's Digital Camera Carnival. Part 2 today, sometime.
Dean Barnett likes Mitt.
Image: Our pals, in Manitoba
I decided to trust Right Wing Nation, a blog cousin, on the turkey recipe this year. It was a great success. Father-in-law: "Best turkey I've ever had." Me: "I am finished with turkey breast that tastes like cardboard and has the texture of wood."
We are sold! No more unmarinated turkeys. And yes, we marinate everything in garbage bags: it's the only way. For Mr. Turkey, you need the big leaf bags or contractor bags. We didn't bother with the ice-water part, though. Marinated..."marine" - now I get it. Salt water.
Now I need to try this on a wild goose. Or pheasant. Or why not roast chicken, too?
I know people use "right wing" ironically, and only mean "conservative," but the moral of the story is that you can trust their recipes for the right wing, the left wing, the thighs and the breast.
A fellow told me he spent twenty years looking for the perfect woman before he finally found her. The only problem was that she was looking for the perfect man.
Attributed to Warren Buffet (thanks, Tom)
Thursday, November 23. 2006
The most interesting book I've read this year - George Marsden's recent biography of Jonathan Edwards. I am about halfway through it, but find it difficult to put down. (It won the Bancroft Prize.)
Marsden weaves late colonial history, theology, Edward's complex life (his struggles with faith, struggles with temptation, struggles with character flaws, his depressions, his never-resting intelligence), and the daily life of the times into a darn good tale. And Marsden does know his theology.
Connecticut's Edwards (1703-1758) is one of the most compelling and important figures in American history - probably more important than the Founding Fathers: he helped lay the cultural foundation on which the national institutions were constructed. I see him as the evolutionary link between the Puritan Pilgrims and the world of the Founders. His view of the world was far better known in the colonies in 1776 than were the works of John Locke - or of anyone else: sermons were best-sellers in those days. Isolated: not really.
Did Edwards read Locke? You bet. Locke was his great inspiration (except for scripture), at Yale (then a divinity school). Newton and Rousseau too: these New Englanders were plugged into the latest European thinking.
His life and preaching remain a part of America's national DNA. As theologian, theological logician, preacher, and the preeminant evangelist of the Great Awakening, he has been and remains the dominant figure in the history of American religious life - and a major international figure, too, because of his role in the worldwide movement that puritan Reform (Calvinism) represented.
So he is well worth reading about.
From the Booklist review:
A quote from Marsden's excellent Introduction:
So-called "nice weather" doesn't mean a thing to real Yankees.
We exult in challenging weather, and love to go out in it to do things. Indeed, we look down on the "soft," who want life to be easy, overly comfortable, over-heated, and overly safe.
We like hard stuff, and we like to teach ourselves discipline. We do not respect the soft, lazy, easy parts ourselves - and rightly so. But we do not disdain good sex or good wine or good company. Even mediocre wine. And neither did the Puritans, as they were disparagingly termed.
Furthermore, we are raised to expect life to bang us up, draw some blood, break our hearts, make us shiver in the wet cold sleet, rust our guns, damage our faith, strain our capacities, get us lost in the financial, spiritual, metaphysical, or literal woods, disappoint our fondest hopes and dreams, make us hurt by friends and injured by enemies, drag us towards sin and pride, face us with risk, hand us loneliness and doubt, confront us with danger, add sorrow to our basket of sorrows, and even to kill some of us.
But we must give thanks for the chance to engage all of it, for better or worse, as best we can, with such gifts and such weaknesses as we are given. Can we take delight in the moments of joy and pleasure? Of course. But those are the exceptions: the dessert, the country pies of life.
No God promised us a rose garden: only politicans do that. God gave us mainly a chance for salvation of our souls - and interesting weather, and an interesting, complex, difficult life, to contend with, without all of the tools we really need....except the ablility to connect with God's love, if we want to. It's about Grace.
Wednesday, November 22. 2006
Good piece about Amis by the author, Zachary Leader, of the new bio. I want more than my share. How good was Lucky Jim? Never politically correct.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 18:51 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
A perpetual motion machine? A carbon-free power scam? Worstall
All lacrosse players are racist, sexist drunks, says a Women's Studies major (Via Lashawn). This gal is definitely not normal, and she surely does not sound like a fun date.
A website that tracks down Dylan's stolen movie lines. Fun.
Dem strategy: Destroy health care, so you can "save" it: Dem. Project. Right. The deal is always this: manufacture a "crisis", and have your prepared government solution in hand. What country has the highest quality medical care in the world? The US. What country produces almost all of the medical research, and new treatments, in the world? The US. What country does the rest of the world rely on for cool new medical stuff? The US. What country takes care of every sick person, regardless of money - including illegal border-crossers? The US. To what country do the prosperous around the world fly for medical treatment? The US. How do you "fix" something like that? If you want perfection, dream on...but if you want freebies, as they say, "It's your funeral."
Protection racket? Yes, that is what protectionism is - a deal for unions, and a bad deal for citizens, as we repeatedly say here. Blue Crab agrees. The unions required two items for their Dem. support this fall: min. wage increase (some union wages are pegged to it), and protectionism.
Look who's raising money for CAIR. Atlas. Are radical Moslems a new voting bloc?
How creepy are the Chinese? Very. Viking. And how come no-one complains about their liberal use of the death penalty? It's either because they are Commies, so all flaws are excused - or it's because they are beneath us, so it's expected.
The Brits need to remove those crosses from the BA tailfins - if they won't permit crosses on their employees. Via Tim Blair, at Telegraph. No crosses, please, we're British. I always was taught that it was the Devil who hated crosses.
Image: Honey, hope ya got them lime slices ready. Me don't wanna see no cold Coronas without my slices. Them dang pumpkin pies can wait. Then bring your body over here, and keep me company...while we watch them inflate those Macy's balloons.
"The Clinton administration launched an attack on people in Texas because those people were religious nuts with guns. Hell, this country was founded by religious nuts with guns. Who does Bill Clinton think stepped ashore on Plymouth Rock? Peace Corps volunteers? Or maybe the people in Texas were attacked because of child abuse. But, if child abuse was the issue, why didn't Janet Reno tear-gas Woody Allen?"
P.J. O'Rourke (h/t to our cousin and brother in sporting arms Mr. Free Market for a nice basket of PJ quotes)
What is so great about Turkey? Besides that it is traditional, and you get the stuffing? Is anything really as bland as a supermarket turkey?
Statistical analysis for activists: Dust my Broom
What is meant by "in Christ"? Middlebrow
Dept. of Lunatics Running the Asylum: "Progressive" NYC school run by students. What is the psychological age of the grown-ups at this school?
Is this what universities are for?
That is from Mary Sue Coleman, via a piece in Powerline. I guess "diversity" and "solving vexing social issues" has replaced truth and character as their guiding light. My opinion: She is full of baloney. Plus she is seeking ways to dodge the law because she appears to believe that her values are more important than either law or the will of the people. The arrogance and foolishness of academia never ceases to amaze, and, if I had a real skin color, I would be deeply offended by such condescension - but my evil side would probably try to milk it for all it's worth.
Photo: From Dr. Bob's Thanksgiving recipe post
One of the annoying things about believing in free will and individual responsibility is the difficulty of finding somebody to blame your problems on. And when you do find somebody, it’s remarkable how often his picture turns up on your driver’s license.
Tuesday, November 21. 2006
Google search volume, and news volume, on several major topics. Funny.
Who in the world is happy? Cramer.
"I wish to become an illegal alien" It's genius. Villainous Company. "Everything free in America!"
Here come the polygamists. Althouse. Fine, says I...as long as each one doesn't get a copy of my American Express card. And they have to support their own kids, etc. "Yo, little wifies! It's Party Time! Hand over your work checks, and let's rock!"
Fine piece on buying your own Sunday school texts, and the coming German-American economic collapse. Assistant Village Idiot
A new victim class: "Asexuals," in Britain. Of all places - big surprise. Eat your wheaties, Brits! RWHowler
When ye olde brain is hungy for a completely new thought or piece of info, ye olde fingertips often click on One Cosmos or, in this case, on View From 1776 in which, in a discussion of social contracts, he quotes from FDR in 1944 asserting something that I did not know had ever been so clearly spoken:
This guy ran for President four times and tried to control the Supreme Court in ways no-one had before or has since, but I will not launch into an anti-FDR rant right now. It is just interesting to see how he invented a "second bill of rights" out of whole cloth and, in the process, undermined the entire independent, family-centered American way of life.
"We have accepted, so to speak..." Huh? What? This is noblesse oblige in its most insidious, malignant form, with the royal "we." I'm the prole, you are the Great Benefactor, right?
Another question: How come they never include free legal care on the lists? That would seem basic for a country with rule by law.
How many people still believe that this sort of stuff is actually in the Constitution?
Observe our national politics. Observe politics around the world. Observe politics through the ages. Does it look like God’s handiwork? When it comes to having a role in politics, that would be the Other Fellow.
P. J. O'Rourke
It's criminal that we have neglected P.J. O'Rourke on Maggie's Farm. He deserves plenty of free advertising.
We have read every book he has written, with great amusement, and we have even publicly indicated a half-serious interest in hunting grouse and woodcock with him in New Brunswick.
The subject of P. J. comes up becomes Wizbang has been thinking about humorous conservatives, and those folks seem to enjoy New Hampshire's P.J. as much as we do.
And, to save us the trouble, Wizbang has an archived quote from All the Trouble in the World, which is good fun:
Worst newspaper contest at Powerline
Chavez and Kennedy: Perfect together. WaPo
750 hp Brabus cop car.
2000 petition to return cross to William and Mary Chapel. Two points: 1. If you want tolerance, then give tolerance. 2. If you want to be a dhimmi, then at least leave the churches alone - or try to mess with the synagogues, mosques and temples, etc equally intolerantly. And, may I add, anyone who is "offended" by a cross is either insane or a lying manipulator.
Video of the Monarch butterfly invasion of Mexico
Latest Consumer Reports car reliability data
Reposted from June, 2005
Capt. Bartholomew Gosnold
His name is well-known in Cape Cod and in coastal Virginia, but not so much elsewhere. He was the first Englishman on Cape Cod, in 1602, named Cape Cod for the abundant fish, named Martha's Vineyard after his daughter, and was later a leader of the Jamestown settlement. He is considered the prime mover in the settlement of Virginia.
Photo via Va. Hist. Society - Gosnold trading with Indians on Cape Cod
Monday, November 20. 2006
Lyndon Johnson said it (h/t, Moonbattery):
The United Church of Canada has gone over the edge, forgotten their mission, and lost their way. RWN. Very sad.
How does this gopher know this? Smart gopher.
It's all about pandering to the Hispanic voters. Everyone knows that by now: the Dems see a new voting bloc for their plantation of grateful dependents. RW News
Captain Ed thinks blogs have power. I disagree. Netroots, nutroots, rightroots, whatever - worthwhile, but minimal meaningful power to persuade. Mostly preaching to the choir. Glad to see that Barnett sees it the same way.
Brown will not have open political discussion. Pathetic.
I thought it was made from dragon meat. Darn those lying capitalist pigs - it's made of pork.
"Take my arm, take my leg, Oh, baby, don't you take my head" There should be a market in organs. Why not? Is there a moral issue? Marginal Rev.
Europeans want "climate curbs." Fine. Let 'em have 'em. They are on a determined path to suicide anyway - why not go all the way?
Gratitude … goes beyond the “mine” and “thine” and claims the truth that all of life is a pure gift. In the past I always thought of gratitude as a spontaneous response to the awareness of gifts received, but now I realize that gratitude can also be lived as a discipline. The discipline of gratitude is the explicit effort to acknowledge that all I am and have is given to me as a gift of love, a gift to be celebrated with joy.
Henry J. M. Nouwen
h/t, And Rightly So
Volokh takes a look at Arthur Brook's book, Who Really Cares?, and notes some of his own accumulated data that "strong redistributionists" tend to be unhappier and angier people:
Read the whole thing. I don't know what it all means, but it's interesting. Sounds like disgruntled people, with an envy problem. Envy is a sin, last I heard. I envy people who have no envy.
A feature of the Orwellian state is the destruction of the language and along with it, common sense and rational thinking. Hence, the use of state force translates into the idea of “support”, and “we, the community” becomes larger than the individual components that make the thing what it is in the first place.
Lisa, at Dust My Broom, in a piece about the Brit nursery rhymes
Posted by The News Junkie in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 05:00 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
Sunday, November 19. 2006
Thanks to Neoneocon for highlighting Richard Thompson.
British folk-rock? Whatever. The guy deserves it. For a taste, you can stream Mingulay Boat Song here.
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 16:15 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)