Monthly Archives: April 2012


Here’s an item from NightWatch‘s Robert McCreary: Iran: For the record. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei provided the following guidance in response to a question about whether it was sinful to use social media. “In general, the use of social networking websites (such as Facebook, FriendFeed, Orkut, etc) is impermissible if their use entails a corrupt […]

Too Much Information

Here’s a hilarious newspaper clipping, sent to Lawrence Auster by a reader: Read the caption carefully.

First World Problem

Here we are in 2012, and the most advanced technological civilization that has ever existed is stymied by three tons of meat in a log cabin. What was it that Emerson said about hobgoblins? Related content from Sphere

The Call Of The Wild

First thing tomorrow I’m driving down to Milburn Landing State Park, near Pocomoke City, MD, for a weekend of camping with some boyhood chums: a long-overdue reunion inspired by a weekend we spent there 40 years ago this summer. One of us lives in San Diego, one in Minnesota, one in Cincinnati, and one in […]

News You Can Use

Sitting for a portrait? Keep this in mind. Going on a date? Head for Peter Luger’s. Last, but not least: there’s no need to be glum just because Earth Day’s over. Not until you’ve read Iowahawk’s annual homage to Gaia, anyway. Related content from Sphere

Noose And Weather

Here’s some murderous rage from Forbes contributor Steve Zwick, who is scouting out lamp-posts for those who refuse to fall in line with his views on anthropogenic global warming: We know who the active denialists are – not the people who buy the lies, mind you, but the people who create the lies. Let’s start […]

Get Rich Quick

Nothing to it.

Mightier Than The S-word

Well, it appears that Marine le Pen will be the kingmaker in France this time around, having attracted fully a fifth of French voters to her National Front party in today’s election. This was nearly double the turnout for her opposite number on the Socialist far left, Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Assuming that National Front supporters will […]

Spring Break

Sorry, haven’t had much to say since getting back, and it might be quiet here for a few more days. I need a little recess while I think about things. Related content from Sphere

Levon Helm, 1940-2012

Anyone of a “certain age” will be saddened by the death of Levon Helm, who has succumbed to cancer at age 71. His rustic voice was a big part of the soundtrack of our youth, and it hurts to see it silenced. Related content from Sphere

Plenty of Room

Longtime readers will know that I’m a big admirer of Richard Feynman. In the nanotech discussions last week at SU, there was frequent mention of his visionary 1959 lecture There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom, which is widely regarded as the genesis of the field. If you aren’t familiar with it, you can read […]

That Was Fun

I’m back from my trip to Singularity University, and I’ll just say it was one of the more remarkable experiences I’ve ever had — something like a futurist’s boot-camp, in the company of a hundred or so very smart people. The days’ events began at about 8 a.m., typically didn’t let up until midnight or […]

Service Notice

I’ll be away for a few days: my friend Salim Ismail has invited me to participate in a program this week out at Singularity University, so I’ll be flying to San Francisco early Wednesday morning. I’ll be posting when I can — this looks like it’s going to be a fascinating experience — but the […]

Fool On The Hill

Life is a risky business. To reach a comfortable dotage, one must thread one’s way past such omnipresent mortal hazards as cancer, auto wrecks, random assault, falling objects, air disasters, bullets stray or otherwise, atherosclerosis, capsizings, snakebite, cyclones, suicidal depression, carbon-monoxide leaks, cerebral haemorrhage, defenestration, shark attack, overdose, industrial accidents, poisoning, autoerotic asphyxiation, crib death, […]

NATO’s Chickens: Home To Roost

Armed with weapons purloined from Muammar Qaddafi’s arsenal, Tuareg fighters and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb give us what I think is referred to around Washington these days as a “teachable moment”. Today’s lesson? The law of unintended consequences. Related content from Sphere

Whither The Buck?

Sam Harris, the neuroscientist who made his bones as an anti-religious gadfly and member of the atheist “Four Horsemen” (now down, sadly, to three), has been writing and speaking lately about “free will”. The expression is rendered in scare-quotes because in Dr. Harris’s view “free will”, as generally imagined, is an illusion, and less: it […]

Google Glasses

So: here’s the latest inevitable step toward having our brains permanently jacked into the Internet. Are you going to want a pair of these? In this demo the user talks to his glasses. But what’s the endpoint here? Once the interface is fast and intuitive enough, so that we can send and receive data as […]

Man Is the Only Real Enemy We Have

Here’s Eric Hoffer, writing in 1975: After all that we have seen with our own eyes there ought not to be a grownup person who is not contemptuous of the gibberish about an ideal society and does not look for the lineaments of a commissar in the features of an idealist loudmouth. The trouble is […]

Gloves Coming Off

In case you’ve been shackled to a drainpipe for the past couple of weeks, there’s been an escalating tension in the air over the fate of Obamacare, now that the Supreme Court has heard the case. President Obama, warning the other day that he would view a negative ruling by the Court as “judicial activism”, […]

Sign Me Up

For one of these.

Too Much Information

Our friend David Duff posted an item today in which he quoted an article from James Bamford at Wired about a new U.S. data-storage facility: Given the facility’s scale and the fact that a terabyte of data can now be stored on a flash drive the size of a man’s pinky, the potential amount of […]

Service Notice

No posting today: I’m heading off to Ephrata, PA, for the annual banquet and awards ceremony of the national quilter’s association I’ve been sewing with since my early twenties. (I’ve been quilting since I was a boy; I should post some photos of some of my work sometime.) My latest piece, which expresses the deepening […]