nathanjw: (armor)
Given the discussion of Benazir Bhutto's assassination as "cowardly" by our president, it seems like a good time to dust off the remarkably prescient and disturbing old post, "Them Against Fire". From the conclusion:

To suggest that an organized attack, brought off skillfully by members of what must be an extraordinarily cohesive organization, represents nothing more than some simpering spasm of pathetic hatred is to carefully miss the very large, very unpleasant point: People who destroy human life in this precise manner are not alone, and not disorganized, and very much not finished.
nathanjw: (Default)
Justin E.H. Smith

That's right. It's time for all of us who consider ourselves even mildly progressive to get at least a little bit Maoist on the occultists' asses, confident in the singular correctness of the scientific world-view, and intolerant of 'difference' when all this manages to give us is muddle-headed obscurantism.
But the problem is precisely that horoscopes are written by people, to wit, uninspired hacks, who then submit their humble work to publishers in media with vested ideological interests and advertisers to please. Why is this so easy to grasp when reading the editorial page, and so easy to forget when reading the 'fun' stuff? Or is it not so easy for most to grasp in the former case? Could it be that the most docile readership, the public best conditioned to allow the rise to power of fraudulent and cynical leaders, is the one that inadvertently permits its uncritical, just-for-fun reading of horoscopes to spill out of that frivolous section and into the ostensibly serious pages of those ever so un-fun features, like national and international news, the education supplement, or the business section? Could it be that the horoscope is not meant as a break from the seriousness of the 'real' sections of the newspaper, but indeed at its most effective serves as a sort of legend for how to read these other sections? Don't question. Swallow. We're here to amuse and comfort you (and, when useful, to worry you), not, dear reader, to promote some sort of awakening.
nathanjw: (Default)
So says this Washington Post article, bylined Holyoke and making references to Springfield and bits of Vermont directly north.

(As colorful geographic phrases go, I think I like WRSI's "the Tofu Curtain" for the Holyoke Range better).
nathanjw: (Default)
I just finished reading The Two-Income Trap. It's an interesting book, crammed full of interesting statistics that I am only marginally qualified to evaluate. The basic points it makes seem simple enough, but there are a lot of questions and assumptions left unanswered, as well as some frightening habits, like comparing averages against medians for what I can only assume is rhetorical benefit.
Long discussion behind the cut )
nathanjw: (Default)

  • Nickel and Dimed
  • Fast Food Nation
  • Reefer Madness
  • Bowling Alone
  • The Two-Income Trap

What am I missing? I note that only Reefer Madness addresses sex or drugs, nothing addresses rock&roll, and health would appear to be missing entirely.


nathanjw: (Default)
Nathan Williams

May 2017

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