Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Two all-day flights in two days await me, starting soon after this auto-posts. I'll have a tight schedule in between. Fortunately, I've been experimenting in the kitchen lately with some good results and can slap up a recipe if I'm really pressed for time tomorrow. In the meantime, here are some items that merit your attention...
Mark Your Calendars! Flip Those Switches!
Last year, I said, "I ran across Kindredist, by a Michigander named Amy as I was catching up on 'Edison Hour' festivities. I wish only that I'd thought of the name first!" I then quietly entered the time of Edison Hour into my calendar with the intent of getting the word out and celebrating the occasion if nobody else did.
This Saturday, March 28, 8:30-930 p.m., please be a responsible and grateful Industrial Revolutionist and TURN ON YOUR LIGHTS -- join Edison Hour on Facebook.It's good to see that Amy has already gotten the word out.
I really like this poem by LB, which was inspired by John Keats’ The Human Seasons.
Pinched for the Right Reason
I meant to link to Joseph Kellard's piece on St. Patrick's Day last week. Here's an excerpt from "Celebrate Individualism, Not Ethnicity:"
It's high time for Americans to shed their false racial "pride" -- and should stop championing essentially race-based pseudo-ideals such as multiculturalism -- to pursue universal values beneficial to all men, no matter their biology or background. Identifying primarily with one's physical genetics or racial heritage, and the eventual irrational divisions, wars and mass killings this tribalism has ultimately caused throughout history, is nothing to be proud of.And be sure to read what a commenter there went through at work when he spoke up against multiculturalism.
Out of the Woodwork
With all the publicity Ayn Rand's works have been getting lately, it was only a matter of time before the usual confederacy of dunces would rise up to be heard.
Leading the charge is -- who else? -- National Review, which explicitly stands by Whittaker Chambers' glaringly inaccurate review of half a century ago. After that lead-in, we have a "symposium" consisting mainly of lame, willfully ignorant put-downs that make the talking stain sound erudite. (They can only envy its relative effectiveness.)
In that context, I found the following quote from the tail end of probably the "friendliest" words spoken about Rand particularly ironic:
Still relevant in the Age of Obama? With all due respect to Whittaker Chambers, if we didn't already have her, we'd have to invent her, double-quick. [bold added]Ah, but they did invent her -- or at least whoever it is that they are attacking. Starting with Whittaker Chambers, National Review has invented a grotesque caricature of Rand, which they have pilloried, and attacked what they imagine her ideas to be. Fittingly, the author of that quote, Leo Grin, "was twice nominated for a World Fantasy Award."
As I put it before the last time I encountered commentary on Rand of a similar quality, "Let Ayn Rand speak for herself. She does a much better job than anyone who tries to do it for her." Oddly enough, nobody at National Review advised readers to read the books, be it to see for themselves what is wrong with the ideas or even in the snarky vein of sampling the horrible prose just for kicks.
Huh! I wonder why.
Why not gold?
First Russia, and now China, have called for something else to replace the American Dollar as the primary international reserve currency. That's understandable, but notice that it isn't gold. I explained this desire to have one's cake and eat it too in a different, but relevant, context:
Recalling some recent congressional testimony, and quoting himself, Greenspan said that "monetary policy should make even a fiat money economy behave 'as though anchored by gold.'" If that is the case, why bother with fiat money at all? Because without fiat money, the government would be unable to confiscate property and redistribute wealth via inflation...Amusingly, the president of Kazakhstan also pushed for such a currency, to be called the "acmetal". The name was a portmanteau of "acme" and "capital," and yet it could just as easily been one of "acme" and "metal" -- which would have described gold!
This post was composed in advance and scheduled for publication at 5:00 A.M. on March 24, 2009.