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, December 14. 2017
He was on my mind today. He died in 2015, cancer. He had 12 kids. Loved most of his singing, except for his biggest hit (which this was not):
Tickets for a performance of Shadowlands at the Acorn Theater.
We saw it last night with friends. The acting is top-notch. Many of us know the story of CS Lewis' late-age romance with a younger brash NYC Jewish woman Joy Davidman, the story of her subsequent death from cancer, and, especially, the story of how Joy led Lewis from the safe, emotionally-cloistered cocoon life of a timid Oxford don, and unleashed his soul and spirit.
BTW, we are fans of the West Bank Cafe down there on the west end of the theater district. Comfortable, decent food.
This is exactly how long women want sex to last
Computers win the chess race
Acclaimed film of boy-man love raises hackles in Hollywood
Some of it was plain antisemitism
GENDER TYRANNY AT SWEDISH UNIVERSITIES
Scared Cops Are Scary
GOP tax bills aim to derail the green-power gravy train
FCC Vote On Net Neutrality Coming Thursday
The Real Challenges for American Intelligence Agencies
Tax Bill Is Christmas Present Americans Have Been Waiting For
It’s Never Fun to Lose a Senate Seat, But the GOP Dodged a Bullet
Does Mueller need blood? How is this revenge movie going to end?
Strzok-Page Text Messages Reveal ‘God Complex’: ‘You’re Meant to Protect the Country From That Menace’
Wednesday, December 13. 2017
Geological Phenomenon: Mass Of Warm Rock Is Rising Beneath Surface Of New England
America’s Malls Are Rotting Away
Sarah Hoyt: The first time I was felt up, I was twelve...
Against the Maternal State - American maternalism extends deeply into social and political life, and its march shows no sign of losing momentum.
Hundreds of professors want NYC monuments to Teddy Roosevelt, Christopher Columbus removed
Not from The Onion: At Purdue, The Clown Quarter Now Has An Engineering Division
Also not from The Onion: Harvard student publicly confesses to discussing attractiveness of women
Why did climate scientists emit 30,000 tonnes of C02 this weekend?
BANGLADESHI MUSLIM BOMBER CHOSE TARGET BECAUSE OF CHRISTMAS
Latest ICE Operation Snaps Up 101 Illegal Immigrants, Mostly Criminals, in New Jersey
Man Saving Bunny From A Wildfire Apparently Shows ‘Everything Wrong With Whiteness’
Pillars of SALT - Residents of high-tax states are petrified by the GOP tax plan, thanks to misleading press coverage.
Pentagon Unleashes 1,200 Auditors for Unprecedented Financial Review
Governmental accountability board? More like Wisconsin's Secret Police
BOOM! Devin Nunes Orders Investigators to Physically Remove Outstanding Documents From DOJ
Drain the swamp
McCabe Cancels Testimony, Something "Far More Sinister" With Fusion GPS
Sarah Huckabee Sanders to April Ryan: Your Mind is in the Gutter
Will Trump's lows ever hit rock bottom?
Donald Trump says something that isn't true 5.5 times a day. Every day.
Says CNN! Who is worse?
Goldberg re Moore: I told you so
Thoughts on the Alabama election and Donald Trump
George Soros-Funded Group Behind Effort to Parade Out Trump’s Accusers
THE WORLD’S MOST POTENT BAD ACTORS - The NGOs that fly under a false flag.
In Berlin, crowds shout "Death to Jews"
The Bright Future of European Health Care: Britons Face Longer Waits Along with Rationing of Treatment
Why the ‘Arab street’ didn’t just explode
CAIR, Georgetown Professor Denounce 'Heretical,' 'Lowlife' Muslims
Tuesday, December 12. 2017
Starving Polar Bear Video Makes Climate Alarmists Even Nuttier
Canadian Eskimos: Polar Bears Are Flourishing
Surge pricing, economic freedom and the sad paradox of free markets….
Treasury Forecasts Tax Reform Will Lead To Longest Period Without Recession In History
Diversity Must Not Be Questioned
Dershowitz comes up against The Night Riders of the Thought Police
The Myth Of Vladimir Putin The Puppet Master
Forget Collusion. Can Mueller Prove Russia Committed Cyberespionage?
No One Ever Drowned in Roy Moore's Car
The new media standard: Too anti-Trump to check
HuffPo: Sadly, Trump is winning
Nixon’s Ouster and the Attempt to Remove Trump
Of course they did
The Media Is Covering Itself With Glory In Its Zeal To Get Trump
Pro-Jerusalem Dems Slam Trump for . . . Being Pro-Jerusalem
Monday, December 11. 2017
At the Metropolitan Museum (NYC), Michelangelo, Divine Draftsman and Designer
Until Feb. 12. Despite seeing so many of his artworks and sculptures, one of my favorite Michelangelo experiences was scrambling around the ruins of the defensive walls of Florence - which he designed.
I had to read The Agony and the Ecstasy in high school. That book made an impression. I had a great education, but my IQ could not appreciate it all. Older now, and likely less smart, everything in life becomes more magical to me.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 15:47 | Comments (2) | Trackbacks (0)
Do humans harm the environment?
Humans certainly improve the human environment. Having a house, food, a car, a Christmas tree, and a road make life pretty good
Eating Out is Probably Devouring Much More of Your Budget Than You Realize - A new study reveals a big gap in what people think they spend on eating out and what they actually spend.
It partly depends on how you value your time and how you choose to spend it
Hampshire College cancels gun-rights speech because sponsor didn’t say it might provoke ‘intense debate’
God forbid they have debate at a college
Powerline: HOW TO HAVE THE BEST FIRST DATE EVER!
WILL MISCONDUCT SCANDALS MAKE MEN WARY OF WOMEN AT WORK?
Many people are semi-boycotting the NFL, but this was cool: Snow is dumping so hard on the Colts-Bills game you can't even see the field
Those Obama Era Methane Regulations? Nevermind
MUSLIMS IN NEW YORK CITY Protest for Slaughter of Jews After Trump Moves US Embassy to Jerusalem
"Look, feminists aren’t happy with human nature, the one that actually exists and is the product of long-term evolutionary pressures. Too bad for them. "
Extreme Corruption Of The Political Process: Wisconsin
That went far beyond hardball politics
Douthat: The Baker and the Empire
Democrats are corrupting English to create mass hysteria
The blundering news media gets worse
It's not blundering. It's Get Trump!
“CAN’T MAKE IT UP”: Sarah Huckabee Sanders Serves Obama The Stone Cold Truth About The TRUMP ECONOMY
McCarthy: On Strzok, Let's wait for the evidence
Steyn quotes, re pants-dropping pols:
Flabbergasted: Frank Luntz Shocked As Alabamians Back Roy Moore in Vice News Focus Group
My Alabama friends say they'll vote for Moore regardless, given the alternative. He was not their choice in the primaries, but the primaries were screwed up. They also hated Trump personally, but voted for him anyway. Lots of voting is voting against, not voting for.
Byron York: Firing Mueller would be disastrous; discrediting him is impeachment politics
Congressman: DREAM Act Allowing ‘Chain Migration’ Would be ‘Nightmare Scenario’
Intel Chairman Devin Nunes Outlines Abuse in FISA Warrants and Government Surveillance…
After Trump scraps Obama’s military ‘rules’, troops decimate ISIS at a pace that even surprises commanders
Sunday, December 10. 2017
Chefs are extremely particular about their knives. They even travel with them if they might have to spend a little time in a kitchen.
My chef friend loves her Gunter-Wilhelms. They are not the most expensive professional knives (the best Japanese sets go for $2000+), but she says the Gunters have the heft and authority that she likes.
Mrs. BD and I have explored most of the parts of Italy (and pretty much all of Sicily too). Still need to get to Bologna, tho. Anyway, Mrs. BD's favorite area is Umbria. It has the mountains and the villages, the Sibillini national park, the black truffle, norceria, and of course Norcia itself which is all about food, St. Benedict, and our friends the Monks of Norcia. Also, Assisi - but one visit to that tourist trap is enough.
Hiking ideas for Umbria:
TUSCANY & UMBRIA WALKING & HIKING TOUR - Tuscany & Umbria's Ancient Footpaths
Umbria & Assisi - A Self-Guided Walking Adventure
And an Umbrian treat:
40:1 Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God.
40:2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord's hand double for all her sins.
40:3 A voice cries out: "In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
40:4 Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain.
40:5 Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken."
40:6 A voice says, "Cry out!" And I said, "What shall I cry?" All people are grass, their constancy is like the flower of the field.
40:7 The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the LORD blows upon it; surely the people are grass.
40:8 The grass withers, the flower fades; but the word of our God will stand forever.
40:9 Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, "Here is your God!"
40:10 See, the Lord GOD comes with might, and his arm rules for him; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him.
40:11 He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.
Saturday, December 9. 2017
Need that axe to cut down your Christmas tree
Vocab word du jour (via Althouse): Aulisism:
"There are only 2 genders. Change my mind." Crowder video
Appreciating complexity: The simplicity assumption is often wrong
No doubt someone, sometime, scrawled racist graffiti somewhere. But in the modern era, don’t just about all of these incidents turn out to be hoaxes?
Is Flirting Sexual Harassment?
Did A Corrupt FBI Give Hillary Clinton A Free Pass? Sure Looks Like It
Donald Trump Jr. Crushes #FakeNews CNN After They Peddle Bogus “Exclusive” Wikileaks Story
WaPo: Yeah, About CNN’s Big Trump Scoop … CBS: Hold Our Beer; Update: CNN Finally Corrects
Mueller's 'Right-Hand Man' on Russia Probe Represented Clinton IT Aide Who Set Up Unsecure Server
Roy Moore Accuser Admits She Tampered With The Yearbook Inscription
For the 413th time
CNN BOTCHES ANOTHER 'BOMBSHELL'
They were not "botches." It's a war of lies
Friday, December 8. 2017
Is a prostitute a public accommodation?
Coyote on his final marathon
Road running is a body-destroyer. Glad I gave it up before it damaged me
Damn the evidence and regulations: VA goes full speed ahead with medical pseudoscience
Mount Holyoke Students Create 'Alternative Space' For Those Triggered By Gun Rights Speech
Climate Change Alarmists Caught FAKING Sea Level Rise
Breaking the Silence on the Toxic Masculinity at Intellectual Takeout
War Criminals of the “Harassocaust”
Liberal America’s unhealthy fixation on Russia - Putin gets a boost from US paranoia that its Cold War enemy fixed the election
The Swamp has a sickness
Related, IS THE DEEP STATE ATTEMPTING A COUP?
Yes, a remarkable year:
Trump is Hitler. It's obvious.
Humiliation – the only path to peace for the Middle East.
Thursday, December 7. 2017
Pure reason is amoral, godless, material, resists poetry, music, magic, the soul, and the transcendent. On the other hand, reason has the tools to critique reason itself. That is cool. The dark gifts of reason.
Mendelssohn (my main man this past year) drank deep in the Lutheran A Mighty Fortress in his 5th:
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 16:07 | Comments (3) | Trackbacks (0)
Yesterday we had some agreement and some disagreement on the topic of the value or the role of "Long, slow, " aka aerobic, cardio workouts in a fitness or conditioning program.
My Conditioning program, which I hope to continue until something knocks me out of the ring, includes some pure cardio but it is a balanced and varied program designed to address all of the aspects of physical fitness.
What's the rationale, and what's that program? (Somewhat lengthy post below) -
Continue reading "Aerobic exercise, and balanced fitness programs in general for ordinary people"
Duck-like dinosaur fossil, plucked from black market, makes debut
17-foot python that could 'pretty much kill any full-grown man' caught in Everglades
Re dinosaur debut, The Curious Plight of the Modern Debutante - Why are some of the world's smartest women still lining up to dance?
The Most Distant Supermassive Black Hole Ever Discovered - The light from the hot gas surrounding the celestial object took more than 13 billion years to reach Earth.
Young Liberals Object to ‘Snowflake’ Label For Hilarious Reason
Leftist Professors: Reporting on the Ideological Excesses of Leftist Professors Is “Violence”
The profs are snowflakes too
Teachers sue California because too many students can't read
Pam Anderson Slams 'Victimhood Feminism,' Says Weinstein Victims Knew What They're 'Getting Into'
Rose McGowan: 'They Really F--ed With the Wrong Person'
Juanita Broderick is always left out
Study: Gay men get paid more than straight men
Kling: Restoring Political Health, Left and Right - When they are healthy, both the left and the right contribute positively to a flourishing society.
DACA Is Not What the Democrats Say It Is. Here Are the Facts.
How Trump turned tide of illegal immigration in first year: Border crossing hits 45-year low
Fantasy Train - California Democrats cling to their favorite boondoggle, even as problems mount up.
Utah 'Monument' Was a Reward to a Clinton Donor
Just one more tax dollar scam
Newest Thing That Contributes To ‘Climate Change’: Bitcoin
Bitcoin mines spew tons of pollution
BUSTED: Elizabeth Warren’s CFPB Used Secret “Slush Fund” To Funnel Billions Into Left-Wing Causes
WHAT SHOULD BE DONE ABOUT MUELLER’S BIASED STAFF?
Latest revelations make the entire ‘collusion’ probe look like a partisan hit
The crime was never about Russia
WaPo worries about a strong economy: Beware an economic boom.
Democrats are now the party of the rich — so why not tax the rich?
Trump’s truth-telling on Jerusalem marks an all-new Middle East
Six Facts The MSM Isn’t Reporting About The Jerusalem Issue
Turkish academics on trial for issuing declaration for peace
US Navy Completing Only Half of Missions -- And May Have to Turn Down More
Wednesday, December 6. 2017
Photo: Lamborghini tractor for sale. Nice Christmas present idea?
Elephant economics: To save elephants, we should promote commercial use and encourage ivory markets and trophy hunting
Either that, or surround each elephant with an army
Trump Gives Back Millions Of Acres of Public Lands To Utah: What This May Mean For The Future Of Government
The Puritan War on Christmas
At the time, Christmas had a history of drunken revelry and debauchery. See The Lord of Misrule
The 1970s Global Cooling Scare (and how the warming scare could not have happened without it)
Cruelty and Sexual Harassment
Both Men and Women Can Be Sexual Predators
Public university to rename building because its namesake was a political ‘opportunist’
Harvard Student Whose Father Escaped Communism Has a Message for Her Fellow Students
Nancy Pelosi: Republican Tax Reform is the “End of the World” and “Armageddon”
It's also returning taxes to Bush/Clinton levels
7 Reasons Trump Would Be Right To Recognize Jerusalem As Israel's Eternal Capital
But will it piss off Palestinians? They're always pissed off anyway
Islamist suicide plot to assassinate Prime Minister Theresa May foiled
More appeasement might help a lot
TNR: The Democrats’ Dangerous Obsession With Impeachment. The party needs to focus on winning elections, not removing Trump.
‘MORNING JOE’: TRUMP TEAM ‘GOING TO JAIL ... FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES’
OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE WAS COMING FROM INSIDE THE FBI - When lying to the FBI wasn’t a crime.
Tuesday, December 5. 2017
When we drove up to Breakneck on NY Route 9D, Mrs. BD said "We aren't going up that, are we? No, we cant be." I said "I think so, and that's just the beginning. There are three further higher peaks." The photo does not capture the drama of this only 1300' foot rockpile that begins at sea level on the shores of the majestic Hudson River.
The site was heavily quarried for granite in the 1800s, so not all of the cliffs etc are nature's but they might as well be.
The boulder fields are nature's gradual erosion of the stumps of the ancient snow-capped Appalachian mountain range which was formed when Africa bumped into northeast America. The ancient Appalachians were the foothills of the Atlas Mountains of north Africa. Strange to consider.
Photo via Theo
Tyler Cowen (the readiest person I know - about 2 books/week) offers his Best Non-fiction Books of 2017
Civilization (Bongo, Bongo, Bongo) - Steyn's Song of the Week
Ethereum miners are renting Boeing 747s to ship graphics cards and AMD shares are soaring
This is over my head
Is Hollywood getting into pedophile movies?
At Huffpo, Problems Of The Super Rich
Eat the rich! Gimme some of their money!
Health spending negatively correlated with health outcomes
Cape Wind offshore power project is dead in the water
It's true that violence can be fun, and it's better if you have an emotional justification. Smash the glass of the ruling class - cuz you want to rule
Delingpole: Donald Trump Trolls Londonistan Like a Boss…
The Tax Reform Bill is Killing and Raping Americans
The Quality Of Political Debate Reaches A New Low With The Tax Bill
Simplifying the Tax Code Has Big Payoffs
If it's about obstruction, perhaps the FBI ought to investigate itself
Would anybody in the FBI change my felony to "carelessness"?
A case (not rare) in which an investigation creates a process crime
FLYNN’S CASE PROVES IT’S TIME TO FIRE MUELLER - When an investigation generates crimes, it’s a crime.
Dershowitz: Come On, You Can’t Charge Trump With Obstruction
McCarthy: It Is Now an Obstruction Investigation
If Michael Flynn's 'crime' is all Robert Mueller has, it is time to move on - Transitions include the president-elect talking to foreign officials. That's not treason; that's the job description.
Puerto Rico's governor hands out almost $100 million in bonuses while asking American taxpayers for $94 billion
How can the US unload this 3rd world island? Does Spain want it back? Likely not.
On the Ground in Salzgitter, Germany
Monday, December 4. 2017
"O Come, O Come Emmanuel carol was originally written in Latin text in the 12th Century. The author of the words and composer to the music of O Come, O Come Emmanuel is unknown. It is, however believed that the melody was of French origin and added to the text a hundred years later. The Latin was translated into English by John Mason Neale in 1851."
Mark Helprin is our favorite living novelist. Jay Nordlinger loves him too. The book is Paris in the Present Tense.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 15:52 | Comment (1) | Trackbacks (0)
A book: The Pioneers of Promotion
How The Loss Of U.S. Psychiatric Hospitals Led To A Mental Health Crisis
1 in 5 Americans Can’t Name an Author, New Survey Finds
Ain't government education great?
Bioethicist: Sex with the Dead OK
Maybe only with consent?
Chocolate Milk Is Back
How volcanoes in the Antarctic could possibly be linked to any human activity is hard to imagine
Sexual Harassment: Eh, No Thanks, We Have Other Things To Do, Like Work.
Politico: Hey, Wouldn’t Chelsea Clinton Make A Great U. S. Senator?
I’m A Liberal, And I Agree With Sean Hannity That American Journalism Is Dead
Republicans Prepare For War With FBI, DOJ: To File Contempt Action Over Anti-Trump Bias
Trump's Right — the FBI Is in Tatters
" So Jeff Sessions is just now aware that the Robert Mueller Special Counsel is filled with liberal hacks? Where the hell has be been? We have been reporting on Mueller’s liberal dream team for months."
Trump’s campaign: Big Macs, screaming fits and constant rivalries
Sounds about right
US WITHDRAWS FROM OBAMA NEGOTIATED UN AGREEMENT ON MASS MIGRATION
also, US Tells The UN It Will Forge Its Own Path On Immigration
View of Storm King Mountain (which we climbed a few weeks ago - an easy ascent) from the first peak of Breakneck Ridge. These Hudson Highland mountains have wonderful names.
George Washington went up into the Highlands and selected West Point as the site for a military academy (and for the location for a cross-river chain to protect the Hudson from the Brits).
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