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
Friday, December 31. 2021
(They also seem to be a pretty good proxy for IQ, but of course not always. If raised illiterate in the Guatemala jungle, speaking only Mam, probably not.)
I do not know to what extent various talents of interest correlate with IQ. I'd be interested, because some people have areas of extraordinary talent, and areas with none so an LA higher ed might not be right for them.
Still, in an America in which some are obsessed with racial measures, the SATs, statistically, seem to favor Asians first, Ashkenazi Jews second, non-Jewish Europeans third, and American Blacks and Hispanics last.
Regardless of that, I feel it makes sense to try to discern what kids are prepared for a rigorous plan for advanced education. Admittedly, much of higher ed these days is an industry seeking customers, but that is another topic.
Via Bari Weiss' selections, You Aren't Actually Mad at the SATs - you're mad at what they reveal.
I want to add that many of the best people I have known would have been terrible with SATs, and could never have done college physics or ever aspired to read the Iliad in Greek.
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:24 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
Be careful driving around tonight. Lots of idiots out there
A Neuroscientist Prepares for Death - Lessons my terminal cancer have taught me about the mind
‘What Is a Woman?’ Jeopardy! Contestant Crowned Highest-Earning “Female” In Show’s 57-Year History, Is Actually A Man
Book: Debunking Howard Zinn
Pulitzer Center Helps 1619 Project Teachers Subvert Laws Banning Racism
The American Psychological Association No Longer Represents Good Science or Clinical Practice: An Open Letter on My Resignation from the APA
COVID Deaths Fall as Omicron Wave Fails to Deliver
Washington state looks to reduce sentences for drive-by shootings for "racial equity"
NYPD Kicks Out Mom, Upset Child From Applebee’s Over Vaccine Cards, Arrest Others
COVID testing has become ridiculous and even counterproductive
The mainstream media's top 10 missteps in 2021. Media pundits and publications spun on inflation, critical race theory, and more
Thursday, December 30. 2021
I forgot to mention Caviar Pie in my authoritative American caviar post. This decadent concoction is perfect for a brunch, hors d'oevres, or munchies.
Some caterers make Caviar Pie which looks perfect, round, and daintily-finished, but the ones I've had at fancy New Year's Day cocktail brunches look a little raggedy, as in this photo. They don't have to look good because as soon as they are attacked by people armed with cheese knives or crackers it's messy anyway.
You scoop a piece out and put it on toasts, or bagel chips, or whatever. It goes fast.
As usual, one uses the most expensive caviar one can afford - or not afford.
Chopped red onion is key. Here's one recipe, but you can google for more. It's a real meal too if you want, with a glass of champagne. The height of decadence.
My annual Christmas present for my Dad used to be a tin from Petrossian. Worth every penny for the delight it provides.
Excellent selections - check them out: Our Favorite Essays of 2021, Many of which were published by outlets that didn’t exist a year ago.
Patients with depression show increases in neuroplasticity and fewer clinical symptoms after a physical activity intervention
West Coast Sees Record Snow, Climate Cult Does Their Normal Blame Game
Re Didion: Right At the Beginning. Joan Didion’s obituarists largely ignore her early journalism for National Review under the stewardship of Frank Meyer.
Campus cancel culture: Here are 135 higher education cancelations in 2021
How We Changed Our Minds in 2021 - Enes Kanter Freedom on his name. Ayaan Hirsi Ali on liberalism. Tim Urban on religion. Plus: Nellie Bowles, Ross Douthat, Chloé Valdary, Karol Markowicz, and Balaji Srinivasan.
Never say die: Trump-Russia collusion theorists strike again
U.S. shatters daily record for COVID cases, but...
Traders Start Freaking Out Over Fresh Supply Chain Collapse As Covid Sweeps Across China
Dalrymple: The Unavoidable Necessity to Make Judgments
Axelrod: Can't anyone in this party do math?
Erik Prince calls for upgrade of US hybrid conflict capabilities. Blackwater founder argues for the primacy of low-visibility, localized, deniable forces, backed by private sector efficiencies
Wednesday, December 29. 2021
All the same, my general advice to those over 35 or 40 is to start slowly. If overweight, tiny meals. If underweight, eat food of any sort. Begin with 3 hrs/wk at the gym for a month to get going.
Best way to do it is with a trainer.
I suggest two half-hours of light cardio, 2 half-hours of light weights/machines, and 2 half-hours of calisthenics. After that, a more demanding program.
Most people can use a guide through the journey of physical fitness. It is a lifetime journey to try to avoid eventual decrepitude.
US records 151,915 new COVID infections thanks to Omicron surge - just 39,000 fewer than Christmas Day 2020 - but deaths have dropped by 72%
Why are some people with Omicron testing negative for COVID?
Unspeakable truths about racial inequality in America - GLENN LOURY
The Year of Living Unreasonably- Ben Shapiro
‘Medicaid for All’ is rapidly becoming a reality in New York
The Left (Unwittingly?) Spoofs Itself in Don’t Look Up
Feminism Demolishes a Family
The hunt for a GOP punching bag to succeed Meghan McCain 'The View' isn't going well
Why China Got Away With It. It gave the world a deadly virus and took no responsibility for it — and the world shrugged it off.
Tuesday, December 28. 2021
In The LA Times.
This is the best week of the year to phone the IRS and the DMV to deal with nagging issues. Also, best week of the year to sort out insurance issues.
Why? Nobody else is.
Photo stolen from Ace
E. O. Wilson dead at 92
A great scientist
TikTok Moderators Sue After Being "Traumatized" By Content
So change jobs
New York surrenders to the woke revolution
Fresh evidence the White House put teachers unions ahead of science on school COVID safety
The "Transgender Moment" Jumps the Shark. New York magazine elevates a journalist with a deeply troubled—and troubling—history to trans icon status
This person has issues
I got no invitation this year
Joe Biden's Surrender on COVID Gets More Embarrassing After the Receipts Emerge
NASCAR driver Brandon Brown who inadvertently sparked 'Let's Go Brandon!' anti-Biden chant says he has been CANCELLED: Phrase has made it 'extremely difficult' for him to get sponsorship
Poor guy never said it
AMERICANS ARE VOTING WITH THEIR FEET—AGAINST BLUE STATES
And bringing blue votes with them
Former Boston College Student Pleads Guilty To Manslaughter After Encouraging Boyfriend To Commit Suicide
Atlantic Senior Editor 'Let's Go Brandon' Analysis Is Hilariously Predictable
Kamala: Our Democracy Is Doomed Without Federal Takeover Over Voting System
KAMALA KEEPS DIGGING
Nikole Hannah-Jones beclowns herself on Meet the Press
Sorry, Hannah-Jones: Parents DO deserve a say in what their kids are taught
Blasphemy in Pakistan is a bad idea
How Venezuela pulled its oil production out of a tailspin
How a victorious Bashar al-Assad is changing Syria. Sunnis have been pushed out by the war. The new Syria is smaller, in ruins and more sectarian
Veteran leads Afghan evacuation push. Shawn VanDiver has worked full time to get U.S. allies out of danger
Monday, December 27. 2021
A semi-long read by an expert on disgust: How Disgust Explains Everything
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 17:31 | Comments (3) | Trackbacks (0)
One good thing about The New York Times are their puzzle games
Santa is a communist (video)
New translation of ‘Bambi’ showcases tale as allegory on early Austrian antisemitism
I Joined A Far-Right Group Of Moms. What I Witnessed Was Frightening. "I caught a gleam in the woman’s eye I didn’t like. Was there some flirtation with insurrection being suggested here?"
Harvard and others nixing standardized tests reinforce privilege and harm minorities
America Needs a Rebirth of Science
What the 1619 Project Got Wrong
San Francisco leaders approve mayor's emergency plan to combat crime, drugs in Tenderloin area
COVID COMMON SENSE
Chinese Commie Grinches Warn Christians Not to Celebrate Christmas
Putin’s Ukraine ploy is all about fooling the folks back home
Sunday, December 26. 2021
Are CDs obsolete? Are books obsolete?
I use both. I also have a turntable for old vinyl records.
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:41 | Comments (17) | Trackbacks (0)
2:41 Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover.
2:42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival.
2:43 When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it.
2:44 Assuming that he was in the group of travelers, they went a day's journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends.
2:45 When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him.
2:46 After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.
2:47 And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.
2:48 When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, "Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety."
2:49 He said to them, "Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?"
2:50 But they did not understand what he said to them.
2:51 Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart.
2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and in years, and in divine and human favor.
Saturday, December 25. 2021
I went today with my son to see the remake of West Side Story. I'd read several reviews, positive and critical. The show on which the 1961 movie was based was a BIG hit as was the movie. For a decade, high school students performed it. I grew up in those rough New York City streets in the 1950s, in Flatbush, and poor, and tribalism was the norm, including street fights even when not as violent as in the poorest sections of the city.
The remake is almost completely true to the original. The original being drawn from the stage had less production values than the remake, and the remake's set had authenticity, right down to the type of bedspreads that were common in the 1950's.
The original seemed to have some more energy, perhaps because of the more compact limited sets. And the actors seemed younger in the remake, but maybe that's because I'm much older now.
Some of the critics felt that there is some insertions of wokeism in the remake. But, the original had that basic message too: get over being hostile and fighting over racism born out of grappling for a piece of the American pie. Instead striving to raise out of poverty is the positive side of the message, contrary to the socialist denigrating of opportunity.
It's up to you what you see. My high school son liked it, and he is not a musical movie type but a Marvel action type.
I'll give it an 8 1/2 Vs the 10 of the original. That's a lot better than the drivel Hollywood usually spews today.
His story continues to change it. Over 2 billion Christians in the world today partaking of the Message of truth and grace.
A Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season to all of our readers and to all of our contributors, with thanks for being part of our humble Yankee enterprise
(No innocent trees were murdered for this card to compensate for murdering our Christmas tree)
I've been to a bunch of parties and some fancy parties this season, and heard some great music too, but the best was a neighborhood caroling get-together Friday night - adults and kids. Good food and drinks with around an hour of singing practice around the piano (divvying up the voices of the wise men, the soloist for O Holy Night, etc), then out tramping around and driving around in the dark to our target audiences. Shut-ins, an old friend and WW 2 Navy vet with Alzheimer's, guys on the job, friendly families. Mrs. BD feels that this neighborhood event is the most Christmassy thing we ever do.
I can guarantee that none of the kids who participate will ever forget it. Maybe they will pass it on when they grow up. Hope so. Fine traditions of family, friends, community, and faith do matter because they become embedded in our souls like little candlelights, lighting our dark corners through our entire lives.
O holy Child of Bethlehem
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 05:18 | Comments (115) | Trackback (1)
Friday, December 24. 2021
And what are "natural rights"?
From The fallacies of the common good by Kim R. Holmes:
Millipedes Have Been Living a Lie. No known creature actually had 1,000 legs—until now.
Lady is ashamed she caught COVID
Omicron Accounts for 90 Percent of COVID-19 Cases in Some Parts of US
Everybody will get it
Green energy firms the biggest corporate welfare recipients ever. No other industry in American history has ever received this lucrative a paycheck
Hinderaker on the Kim Potter verdict:
Illinois state senator supports defund the police efforts, then karma struck
I've Worked with People Like Bette Midler... Yes, They Think You're Stupid
The Biden White House’s Energy Incompetence
VP Harris complains that her job is too hard
Sheesh. Not a good thing to say
Israel’s Christian community is growing, 84% satisfied with life here – report
Statement on Improving the Potential for a Diplomatic Resolution to the Iran Nuclear Challenge
Should the US defend Taiwan?
Of course not
Wall Street and Silicon Valley must stop bankrolling communist China. We need a regulatory framework to protect our nation and its people from China’s ambitions
Two more Tiananmen monuments removed from Hong Kong university campuses
Thursday, December 23. 2021
I enjoy a nice party despite my natural shyness. The festivities began this week in my neck of the woods. I was at a fairly good one Friday night, and two last night. Some nights one has to party-hop, which I think is rude to do but also rude not to show up when invited. Not my fault that I am so popular... Yes, they had the traditional soft-boiled quail eggs on toasts with caviar on top. Dynamite.
I got this snapshot last night at a hot party before I was overwhelmed by lonely, hot, nubile females. Saturnalia, Bacchanalia, Holiday Season - whatever you call it. A good female/satyr ratio as you can see.
Christmastime is as secular or religious as one chooses. Seems quite secular to many. For me, both.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 18:54 | Comments (19) | Trackbacks (0)
One mistake can destroy a useful and happy life.
But how does one plan a life which is free of mistakes? The more responsibility one takes on, the more likelihood for mistakes.
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