Thursday, November 26, 2009
In years past, I have usually been on the road to visit relatives on Thanksgiving, but my wife, a medical resident, is on call. So this year, we're in town visiting with another couple we know instead. But I did write today's post yesterday afternoon so I can do some cooking and pick up a car for the day.
In any event, let me take the occasion to thank you for making my blog a part of your rounds on the web.
An Invented People? An Irrelevant Premise.
The NewYork Times notes that quite a few people are up in arms about a new book's contention that there really is no such thing as the Jewish people.
Professor Sand, a scholar of modern France, not Jewish history, candidly states his aim is to undercut the Jews' claims to the land of Israel by demonstrating that they do not constitute "a people," with a shared racial or biological past. The book has been extravagantly denounced and praised, often on the basis of whether or not the reader agrees with his politics.It's too bad that many Israelis rely on the notion of an ancestral homeland to justify their nation's existence. Professor Sand's charge would be easier for everyone to see as the farce that it is were more Israelis on the same page as Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute:
Only Israel has a moral right to establish a government in that area - on the grounds, not of some ethnic or religious heritage, but of a secular, rational principle. Only a state based on political and economic freedom has moral legitimacy. Contrary to what the Palestinians are seeking, there can be no "right" to establish a dictatorship.Sand's insult is a peculiar one: It can sting only insofar as one accepts its underlying collectivism as legitimate.
If I recall correctly, Rational Jenn is hosting this week's Objectivist Roundup and Martin Lindeskog is hosting his first "Good Thing in Life" carnival today.
My brother, who restores old Volkswagens as a hobby, forwarded me the link to the below YouTube video.
I thought this remark quite apt: "Yikes... tell ya what, I'll take the two minutes and do it with the motor OFF."
As I always say, "Real scientists don't have pet theories." This sounds like it needs investigating. There's more at the Wall Street Journal, too.
This post was composed in advance and scheduled for publication at 5:00 A.M. on November 26, 2009.
Today: Fixed an incorrect link (HT: Paul Hsieh).