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
Thursday, August 31. 2017
For examples, when a river overflows its banks it delivers fresh silt and soil to the flood plain, rejuvenating it (eg the Nile, eg the Mississippi Delta). When a strong storm blows through a forest and knocks down miles of trees, it restarts the forest cycle providing fresh habitat for all sorts of species who live in forest openings. For the Indians, that was an excellent thing.
The disaster part is man-defined, not nature-defined. When people build on flood plains (eg Houston) or on sea-level marshes (New Orleans), big trouble is predictable. And when man covers those flood zones with asphalt and buildings, or alters rivers with canals and levees, it makes it all worse.
Excellent essay by Grunwald at Politico: How Washington Made Harvey Worse - A federal insurance program made Harvey far more costly—and Congress could have known it was coming.
Of course governments and benevolent souls have to step in when these "natural disasters" threaten lives, but a good way to think about it would be, in future at least, market pricing for flood and storm insurance. Let the actuaries figure out the real risk and cost of what people do and put a price on that.
“Anyone who isn’t confused really doesn’t understand the situation.”
Edward R. Murrow, via Watt's So What Happened to the Journalism?
The idea that pursuing mental fitness could prevent Alzheimer's is ridiculous. However, it appears to me that many retired people take on difficult mental challenges for an hour or two daily to try to keep their brains geared up. I am not talking about passive learning (ie reading), but active studying. A few examples from people I know:
- A retired guy who decided to refresh his college calculus, and has since taken his math studies three levels beyond where he had gone before, and is still going
- A retired gal who has become fluent in Italian, and can now read Dante and hang out in Italy, considering buying a summer place in Ferrara.
- A retired lawyer who has become fluent in Mandarin
- A friend who decided to become fluent and literate in a new language every two years, and has thus far done that three times using Rosetta Stone.
- A friend who at age 50 has taken up piano in a serious way
- A retired executive neighbor who thought he was too smart to take up mechanics in high school who took up small engine mechanics and is moving on to (pre-computerized) auto mechanics. Now a grease monkey and very happy.
- A retired physician who decided to become an expert in immunology and the genetics of immunology, and has been doing so, while having to learn biomedical statistics on the side.
- A friend who has just gone back to college. Graduated decades ago, but feels she missed a lot.
Mental exertions/disciplines like these are analogous to physical training. I'm sure it's not wasted effort because difficult achievement is its own reward. One thing we know is that strenuous physical exertion (ie not walking or relaxed swimming) is good for brain maintenance but not the opposite.
Painting is a free ad for Woodpile, who has excellent taste in art. That is Montague Dawson's Night at Sea
Living a polyamorous life
Most Americans Want To Have More Sex
Coffee's Health Perks May Be Strongest for People Over 45
Truck- and Plane-Size Pterosaurs Once Flew Over Dinosaurs
5 Reasons It’s So Hard to Sell a Frank Lloyd Wright House
MINI ICE AGE IS COMING - Global Unrest, Famine, Mass Migration, Increased Vulcanism, Flooding (video)
But the social pressures are a challenge
It’s Not Trump Supporters Who Are Beating Journalists.
"Nashville Statement": Can a Progressive’s ‘Inclusive Values’ Include Christianity?
HOW “BEING NICE” CREATES SERIOUS PROBLEMS FOR MEN
JOSS WHEDON PRETENDED TO BE A MALE FEMINIST WHILE CHEATING ON HIS WIFE WITH YOUNG ACTRESSES
Why Houston Flooding Isn’t a Sign of Climate Change
Wrong. Everything is a sign of climate change
Linda Sarsour Exploits Hurricane Harvey to Fund Community Organizing
Big Labor Exploits Harvey - Proceeds from 'Hurricane Relief Fund' will go to labor organizing
Progressives Had A Freak Out Over Melania Trump’s Shoes
Charlottesville false narrative crushed by DHS warning
They were told well in advance that people were looking for a battle
Nancy Pelosi Does What Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney, and Marco Rubio Cannot: Denounce Antifa
World to End Tomorrow: Markets to Close Early.
Paul Krugman Discovers the Problem with Unbridled Presidential Power - New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is having second thoughts about presidential power.
To Succeed In An Era Of Name-Calling And Extremism, Trump Must Become A Great Communicator
Hundreds of Puerto Ricans protest, decry austerity measures
Is it possible to force independence on a nation?
EUROPE'S ASYLUM DISGRACE - Guess who gets the red-carpet treatment -- and who gets turned away?
Wednesday, August 30. 2017
The Low-Fat vs. Low-Carb Diet Debate Has a New Answer
Even more evidence that we’re eating all wrong. Forget fat, it’s carbs that might stick it to your ticker.
By the way, does any normal person in the Western World eat five servings of fruit and vegetables daily anyway? But never mind, it doesn't matter. We all know that broccoli causes cancer, carrots and fruit are basically sugar, and coffee helps you live forever.
It's worth reading Cicero's essay On Growing Old before growing old. Appropriately enough, that edition is in large print. Meanwhile, I endorse efforts to remain physically and mentally as vigorous as possible for as long as possible. It makes life more productive and fulfilling but, with luck and if we want to, we might end up old.
With one exception, all of the movies I've reviewed over the past few months have been fairly recent releases. Today, we step back in time.
Here are five wonderful war flicks from the early days:
— Sink The Bismarck (1960)
— The Enemy Below (1957)
— Destination Tokyo (1943)
— Run Silent Run Deep (1958)
— Operation Petticoat (1959)
And there are certain features that distinguish these films from the modern war flick. There's no gorgeous starlet awaiting our hero when he returns home. There's no trick computer gimmicks or the latest, hot special effects. There's no frantic, hurried-up pace; in fact, some of the events actually take place in (gasp!) real-time. There's no thunderous music score when the bad guy is finally bested. And, just as interesting, there's no long list in the credits of stunt men. If there's any list at all.
In other words, these films are genuine.
Continue reading "Movie Review: Five old-timey war flicks (oceanic version)"
Posted by Dr. Mercury in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 15:00 | Comments (33) | Trackbacks (0)
Everything goes downhill quickly - cardio, endurance, speed, strength. Measurably downhill in 10 days. Unfortunately, things do not ratchet up in a positive direction unless you keep pushing it. In fact, there is no ratchet. There is only uphill or downhill.
That's why Mrs. BD and I try to stick to a fitness regime even on vacation. Too much time and money invested in it to let it slip away. Time off is like blowing your savings.
21st century Americans shouldn’t pick a side in the Civil War - Both Lincoln and the Confederacy were awful
Greenfield: The Left's Values Are Our State Church
How To "Solve" All Known Human Problems: Spend Some Of The Infinite Free Federal Money
Scandal Erupts over the Promotion of ‘Bourgeois’ Behavior
The not-so-latent totalitarian impulses of the Left creep me out
Jim Acosta Attacks POTUS Trump’s Uplifting Speech to Texans – Trump Supporters Respond
"For years, engineers have warned that Houston was a flood disaster in the making. Why didn't somebody do something?"
MONTAGE: MEDIA POLITICIZE HURRICANE HARVEY, BLAME GLOBAL WARMING, MOCK GOP
But even the climate experts disagree
Wealthy Danish (and Swedish) families often escape to the US - but it's difficult for Europeans to obtain US citizenship and Europeans do not want to be illegal
Tuesday, August 29. 2017
August is blueberry season in New England. Local blueberries, that is. Our wild blueberries are the highbush and the lowbush, and both are smaller and zingier than the commercial varieties.
Here's a good Blueberry Cake recipe. Serve it with hard sauce on the side.
Somebody ought to explain to David that, for many of us, the issue is not an obsession with politics or the need to "get a life," but offense taken with the obnoxious intrusion of government into our personal pursuit of happiness. David is fully-insulated from that in his Manhattan bubble. When was the last time he tried to start a business?
I find his comments condescending, preachy, and self-congratulatory. One year in a real job in a real place might teach him something.
There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad equipment.
There is no such thing as "waterproof."
Our Hebrides guide Craig MacDonald. (In Scottish, the "Mac" is de-emphasized and the "Donald" is emphasized, because the Donald is the real family tribal name).
How to Whistle With Your Fingers
These are the names no one’s using for their babies anymore
Why America Still Hasn’t Learned the Lessons of Katrina - As Harvey plows through Texas, officials in Louisiana are still battling with Washington and the Army Corps of Engineers to prevent the next disaster
Are you smart if you look smart?
I don't buy that
Everybody needs to work with his hands
CrossFit Founder Greg Glassman: 'I Don't Mind Being Told What To Do. I Just Won't Do It.'
Z-man on cool combat sports
ACLU Sues Trump Over Rule Restricting Gender Confused From Serving
Cuomo’s ‘clear energy’ con
ENJOY YOUR ANTIFA PROTESTS NOW
UC-Berkeley chancellor doubles down on pro-free speech position
Sad that being for speech is newsworthy
Berkeley Mayor Is So Into Free Speech That He Asks College To Cancel Free Speech Week
Joe Biden makes a fool of himself again
Byron York: Next stop for Trump dossier probe: the FBI
Republicans brace for September chaos as Trump puts himself before party
Wrong. He is putting his voters before party
" Sure, Trump occasionally misspeaks, and sure people can get bored with a speech. But more importantly, the press is so relentlessly and insanely biased towards anything Trump says or does that it’s sometimes impossible to figure out what they’re reporting on, other than whatever is inside their heads, pre-packaged and ready to “report.”"
My prediction: the coming collapse of China’s Ponzi scheme economy
LABOUR DEMOTES MP OVER TRUE BUT POLITICALLY INCORRECT STATEMENTS ABOUT RAPE
Jared Kushner’s Mideast Peace Push Is Going Nowhere. That’s Why Israelis Love It. - ‘Past administrations jumped into the peace process pool,’ says an Israeli official, praising Team Trump’s go-slow approach. ‘There’s no water in this pool, no reason to jump in.’
Monday, August 28. 2017
Article at City Journal
I don't know what "better" means. I like choice.
Schlicter's Conservatism Is Not A Suicide Pact
Toon via Never Yet Melted
Endangering America: The crazy quest to topple history
How to push Grandpa over the edge (viral video)
Gotta love the giggling grandkids
Study Proves 'Fat But Healthy' Isn't a Thing
Mindfulness would be good for you. If it weren’t so selfish.
IS MINDFULNESS MEDITATION A CAPITALIST TOOL OR A PATH TO ENLIGHTENMENT? YES
Full extent of Harvey’s aftermath starts to come into chilling focus
Why Houston did not evacuate
Congress debating federal flood insurance
NYT: "Blacks and Hispanics Are More Underrepresented at Top Colleges Than 35 Years Ago"
Why Is Congress Not Investigating Obama’s Unprecedented Political Espionage?
All governments love to spy on their citizens
Law Professors Condemned as Racist After Praising America’s 1950s ‘Bourgeois Culture’ - UPenn students, alumni slam professors for 'promoting hate and bigotry'
The ludicrously misnamed Southern Poverty Law Center has become a scam operating as a left-wing hate cult.
66% of Americans now fear speaking their minds in a politically correct nation: poll
Who Wins if Free Speech Loses?
Charles Barkley Labeled "White Supremacist" For Telling Black People To Stop Killing Each Other
Brent Bozell: The Slow Death of the Republican Party
He is pissed about their timidity
Conservative Surge Puts GOP Control of States at 95-Year High
Democrats Are Working Hard to Destroy Their Party
The Destructive Power of Progressive Overreach - Good for Trump. Bad for progressives. Bad for the country.
Yuval Levin on Trump's reckless executive failures
Lindsey Graham: President Trump Focusing Against Congress "A Very Thought-Out Strategy, There's Nothing Crazy About It"
THE RACIST ATTACKS ON AMERICA AND TRUMP - Why the Left hates the president and the nation he heads.
Another example of climate alarmism idiocy – Germany’s dieselgate
SOMALI SHOUTING "ALLAHU AKBAR" ATTACKS SOLDIERS IN BRUSSELS
That is not news anymore
With Afghanistan, Third President’s a Charm - Obama declared combat operations ended in 2014—except they didn’t
Sunday, August 27. 2017
Related, from Williamson: A little diversity - but not too much
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