Sunday, July 20, 2014

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Book Review, Popeye Edition

"Popeye edition" as in "I've had all I can stand, and I can stands no more!"

I've been plowing, no slogging, through Demanding the Impossible: A History of Anarchism , by Peter Marshall.

The problems with my finishing this book are manifold, among them
  1. It was written by a True Believer
  2. Who assumes that the reader is one too
  3. And has a knowledge of the philosophy of anarchism. 

Being at base a working class guy from Detroit I have little interest in or patience with philosophy, and I regard anyone who believes that all we need to do is get rid of government and private property and everyone will suddenly be nice to each other as an idiot.

Oh, and telling me that in your Cloud Cuckoo Land that I will be required to work--and by whom, pray tell?--but that I will not be allowed the fruits of my labor does less than nothing to endear your pipe dreams to me. In fact, I suspect that the source of these fantasies did, indeed, have it's origin in a opium pipe.

I also found it annoying that  the author uses "anarchism" and "libertarianism" and "socialism" as synonyms.

So, my actual review of the book can be summarized as "TL;DR."  Seriously, just over 700 pages of text, most of which was sound and fury signifying... well, it might have signified something to someone, but, as for me, it was words, words, words.  Maybe it gets better after page 320, which was about where I gave up.

If you finish it, let me know how it ends.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

That moment when...

...you see that a new comment was posted on your low-traffic blog, and you think "Oh, boy, someone visited!" and it turns out to be a spammer who leaked past the blocker...

Monday, July 14, 2014

Birds of Prey Know They're Cool (Edited)

What a nifty idea for a niche business, combining a passion/hobby, and a service.

There's an accompanying photo essay,Falcon Force: a natural patrol against crop pests, here's a thousand words-worth:
BETTINA HANSEN / THE SEATTLE TIMES
Cooler than rent-a-goat, too.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Thursday, July 3, 2014

A Germanium by any other name...

...would probably smell a lot like a hydrangeum. Or a roseisaroseisarose.






Independence Day

I sometimes contemplate writing a post in which I would advocate referring to the fourth day of the seventh month as Independence Day, not simply by the date.  Barron has a post on Facespace in which he quotes a friend who sums it up pretty well:
"The holiday is Independence Day, not "4th of July". We aren't Mexicans celebrating a minor battle victory in a long string of defeats. We're celebrating the day we told the King of England to fuck off and then backed it up. I can see why some people might want to downplay that epic middle finger to authority."
Barron actually wrote the blog post I would write, last year: Independence Day… The Minuteman.  (Here's another he wrote on observing Independence Day several years ago: On Independence Day The Minuteman)
Photo by Mrs. Drang, all rights reserved

For all her faults, I cannot imagine growing up and living in another nation.I sincerely believe that America has brought more benefits to mankind in the short time she has existed than any other nation has -- ever.

Long may she continue to do so.
Sometimes it can be hard, when we look at what our alleged leaders, elected, appointed, or self-appointed, say and do, to remember that all hope is not lost, and we can turn the tide. Sometimes we get to bickering over side issues.  Sometimes the side issues seemingly are deliberately promoted to distract us from truly important matters. But the People are still sovereign here, and we might need to go out of our way to remind some of that.

And maybe some fireworks will do the job.

(I'd prefer to post the Bill Daniels version from the movie, but Sony exercises it's copyright claims on such things...)