Monthly Archives: August 2008

Déjà Blue

For the second year in a row, catastrophe has struck in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines have once again lost their season opener to an unranked team — in this case, Utah. Well, we knew it was going to be a tough year; the old guard — Henne, Hart, Long, Manningham and others, even including Coach […]

Liberals Classical And Modern

“Baron Bodissey”, at Gates of Vienna, mans the ramparts against creeping socialism in a clear and forceful post. An excerpt: A basic rule for the classical liberal is that government should perform as few functions as possible, and that taxes should be kept as low as possible, in order to eliminate the corruption and non-productive […]

“There Is A God In Heaven”

Here, courtesy of the Drudge Report, is a link to a blog post and video clip in which we see the pinguid pinko propagandist Michael Moore gloating at the approach of Hurricane Gustav. Caring not a fig for the human and economic impact of the impending storm — which is sure to be considerable, and […]

Wasilla: All I Saw

I watched earlier today as John McCain introduced his clever choice for running mate: the former Miss Wasilla (and current governor of Alaska), Sarah Palin.

Cui Bono?

Here’s Peggy Noonan once again (do forgive me for generating so little original content during this vacation), commenting on the speeches made so far at the democratic convention. She offers a simple but accurate insight: Related content from Sphere

Casey At The Bench

Surrounded as I am by family and friends while on holiday, I continue to find time alone for writing to be in short supply. But here’s a gem for the “Shameless Filler” category: the “Old Perfesser” himself, the great Casey Stengel, testifying on July 8th, 1958 at the Senate Anti-Trust and Monopoly Subcommittee Hearings. This […]

Not Exactly A Plowshare

Here’s the latest in lethal technology: the wasp knife.

Nothing To See Here

It’s late in the day, and it’s been a long, full day: up early this morning to drive our son back to college, then an evening memorial service here in Wellfleet for a truly remarkable woman — Ellen Rafel, our next-door neighbor here on Hiram Hill, who lost her fight with cancer this spring. So […]

The Lizard King

We’ve had a demanding schedule today: lolling and body-surfing at White Crest Beach, then the daily swim at Great Pond — and still to come this evening, our friend Larry Horowitz’s latest opening at the Cove Gallery, followed by dinner at Winslow’s Tavern. But a free moment having presented itself, I’ll take this opportunity to […]

Just Stopping By

A quiet, lazy midday having presented me with an opportunity to switch on my laptop, I thought I might, at the very least, offer those readers who’ve made the effort to stop by (and I think them for doing so) a tidbit or two. Related content from Sphere

Hard Pressed

We are on holiday at our little seaside retreat, and the schedule is simply so demanding — sleeping, loafing on the beach, swimming in Wellfleet’s cool and limpid kettle ponds and the backshore’s bracing surf, sampling the area’s toothsome viands, strolling through town, visiting with friends, brushing up my Iron Wire out on the deck, […]

In Hot Water

There seems to be little doubt that the world’s oceans are in trouble. Here in Cape Cod, which was named for shoals of fish once so numerous that you could “walk across the water on their backs”, the fishing industry is all but gone, the result of near-total depletion of a fishery that once seemed […]

Pat Answers

Pat Buchanan is a paleoconservative and an isolationist, albeit a thoughtful and articulate one. Here, presented without further comment (I’m too preoccupied at the moment with packing up and getting on the road), is an essay in which he describes recent events in Georgia from a perspective that is far more sympathetic to Russia than […]

This Just In

A reader calls our attention to an item that is making the rounds today: in a startling breakthrough, researchers have found that when we drink alcohol, it can make others appear more attractive! This astonishing result may even just be the tip of the iceberg: apparently booze can even make things just generally seem more […]

Rats In Vats

According to today’s newsletter, fascinating things are afoot at the University of Reading. Researchers are growing little biological brains made of rat neurons, and training them to control robots by way of a Bluetooth connection. The scientists have in fact created several of these wee brains, which even seem to have their own personalities. […]

We Are Borg

I watched a little of the opening ceremonies of the Olympics the other day. It was an elaborate spectacle, and quite beautiful: an enormous troupe of drummers, identically clad, playing and dancing in perfect unison. There may well have been thousands of them; there were at least many hundreds. Related content from Sphere

The Gauntlet Thrown

It’s quite clear now that Russia is intent on reconquering Georgia, and that their decision to do so is a brazen and flamboyant test of Western power and resolve. What is less clear is how we can respond. We have many good reasons to support Georgia, a staunchly pro-Western nation and participant in NATO’s Partnership […]

Dar al-Harb

Our reader Justin K., who, when he puts his ear to the ground, hears more than most, calls our attention to this item about the fighting in and about Ossetia, a conflict that is surely being savored with strategic appreciation by other interested parties in the caves and mountains to the east. Related content from […]

Do Not Go Gentle

I do hope to resume normal operations before too much longer, and to get back to the fascinating and important topics we’ve been looking at recently. A lingering ennui and lack of mental focus have hampered my attempts to get properly back in harness just yet; I look forward to the salutary effects of sea […]

Georgia On My Mind

Things are getting hot in the former SSR. Our sources have suggested we follow along here, where readers will find further links as well.

No Accounting For Taste

An article in the New York Times a few weeks ago described the results of a Pew survey that inquired as to how the denizens of various nations felt about their governments and economies. Two authoritarian nations — China and Russia — did very well, while the Western democracies fared quite poorly. Related content from […]


I am eager to pick up our discussion of meaning and morality where it left off a week or so ago. It paused on what I thought was a promising note: a comment by Peter Lupu that aptly summarized the tasks a naturalist account must accomplish. Related content from Sphere

Face Value

The subset of our behavior, dispositions, reactions, and so forth that happens with our conscious awareness and endorsement is trivially small, and one of the areas where we respond most automatically and unconsciously is our interaction with others. We react subliminally to an enormous variety of cues: posture, gesture, tone of voice, choice of words, […]

Ring Of Fire

This is a giddy week for particle physicists: very soon now the Large Hadron Collider, the most potent instrument ever built for the investigation of nature’s most private parts, will be brought on line. (How soon? Have a look here.) [Note: the LHC countdown site now (August 18th 2008) seems to be down. -MP] There […]

“We Have A Planet To Save”

It has been alleged in some partisan quarters that the current Speaker of the House of Representatives is a fatuous ninny, a feckless, mealy-mouthed, obstructionist birdbrain. Here is a video clip that may help settle the matter. (Hat tip: BV.) Related content from Sphere

This And That

Reader J. Kapok, knowing that I have been out of touch the past few days, and concerned that I not overdo it so soon after my recent misadventures, has kindly sent some blog fodder my way: items that he knows would have attracted my attention had I not been distracted by larger and more clamant […]

Stayin’ Alive

Well, it’s Friday afternoon, I’m back home, and it appears that I might not be “falling off the branch” just yet after all.