Too much for just links, too little for one of my blogosauri. Randomish thoughts …
Archive for the ‘Mind and Spirit’ Category
- Arrested for resisting arrest. When you weren’t being arrested in the first place. Even NPR is starting to notice the absurdities of the police state. (H/T PT)
- Speaking of which, Wendy McElroy posted this and it certainly bears repeating: 22 reasons not to trust police.
- Nine car models without fatalities. (When you fill up that 15-mpg SUV, you shake your head. Then you read something like this.)
- Gun banner lies are getting worse. But some libeled parties are fighting back. And some victims that the antis crave to exploit say, “Go stuff it!”
- Bovard on Holder’s lawless legacy.
- Yet more good news about Obamacare. It’s likely to make the Dems miserable in 2016. (Pity the wussy biggov Rs are the only likely beneficiary.)
- Mike will be there on Saturday.
- Happy birthday, Thomas Merton. And here are seven reasons even evangelical Christians should read him.
A month ago, some “interesting” discussion developed around my mini-review of Vin Suprynowicz’s (highly recommended) new book The Testament of James. Religious sensibilities were offended by the thought of finding God via chemical assistance. (Never mind that trying out those unfamiliar mushrooms or leaves probably informed all the world’s religions at some point.)
Now, with support from some very important biochemists, Vin answers one commenter’s most vehement objections.
Feel free to comment here or at Vin’s place. But this time (unlike last) trolls, if any, will be spotted and ejected more quickly.
Walked to the grocery store this morning, arriving just before opening. The lot was nearly full and the street outside lined with parked pickup trucks and SUVs. Unheard of on a Sunday morning. Clerk opened the doors — and out of those vehicles poured guys. I’m guessing there were six men for every one woman.
It’s SuperBowl Sunday in the NorthWest and the local team is playing for the second year in a row.
We’re having another of those moments where the sky is blue, the sun blinding, and the air so mild that fleece sweatpants and a turtleneck under the tee-shirt are almost too much.
So the guy who helps with my yardwork turned up to do some long-discussed brush clearing, trash hauling, and felling of small trees. (Totally blowing my January “minimalist” budget, but that’s another story.) Twice this week he and a couple of grubby kids (one of whom is his daughter-in-law, a tough bundle of charm) have crawled down the slope across the road and dug in. They’ve attacked noxious giant weeds (which my beekeeping neighbors won’t let me poison if I want to keep peace in the valley). They’ve taken down and heaped up small, malformed trees. They’ve hauled out every sort of trash, from microwaves and broken toilets to dozens of bags of cat poop.
- Are mass shootings due to “entitlement culture”? Don’t say it; we all know they’re due to the individual murderers. And yes, the article is anti-gun in a so-soish sort of way. Nevertheless, interesting article that makes good points.
- Beware, beware of the “commonsense” cry to prevent the mentally ill from owning firearms. ‘Cause since 2013, crazy has been the new normal.
- Twenty photos that put the Holocaust in a different light. (H/T Y.B.b.A.)
- That DEA surveillance program I linked in the last post? It is/was aimed in part at gun buyers. Even the usually anti-gun ACLU is alarmed.
- The anti-
Second AmendmentFirst Amendment crowd wants Emily Miller to be fired. Sign the petition to say no to this crass attempt to silence a journalist. (H/T 12)
- “Je suis Charlie” — except when it suits Mr. Zuckerberg to be otherwise.
- At what age do creative minds peak? Subjective, of course. But still fascinating.
My apologies, all you people there on the upper east coast. I hear that the ghastly weather you’re having is our fault. Something to do with this monstrous ridge of high pressure plunging down on us; creates a monster low for you.
Believe me, I was thinking of you this afternoon while I contemplated whether or not I should wear the tee-shirt with a turtleneck or skip the turtleneck for a dog walk. I felt soooooo guilty.
- I agree with Brian Keith’s fine analysis of the “carrots” and the “sticks” in the gun-rights movement. Except, of course, when one of the “carrots” actually goes over to the other side, pretends he can prevent what the enemy really wants, and collaborates by helping write tyrannical legislation.
- “The Oyster Shell Game.” The fedgov uses pseudoscience, lies, etc. to destroy a small business.
- From Ellendra in comments: have a “go to zero” month. (Kinda what I’ve been doing this month, except this family went much farther than I would. Maybe another month this summer …)
- “My Old Dead Drunk Self.” Breaking dependency not only on substances but on the conventions of “recovery.”
- The “sticks” will be converging in Olympia again on February 7.
- George Will on the harm inflicted by the growing welfare state.
Over at TZP, I ponder the mind of Alan Gottlieb as he further strives to divide Washington state gun owners so that that his ally Bloomberg can march on to victory in the next state. (Watch out, Nevada!)
In the 90s and into the early 2000s, I sometimes wrote about ways to avoid using social security numbers. Going without an ssn (as many of you know from having tried it, as I did for many years) was always challenging. It also put the un-numbered in the position of being an outsider in society. Still, back in the day, you could do quite a few common things without using a universal government ID number.
Since 9-11 that challenge has become much harder, well-nigh impossible for anyone desiring to live a semi-normal 21st century life. Some succeed. Joel’s a perfect example. But he’s also an example of the extreme sacrifice and creativity it requires. Joel’s existence is as precarious as it is gratifying, and can’t in any way be called even “semi-normal.”
Me? As I got older, I eventually found being numberless more than I wanted to live with.
Several times a year I get messages from people who are trying to live numberless or, even more laudable, trying to keep their children unnumbered. They want my advice on how to overcome this problem or that. I got one of those messages the other day. This is my reply and will be the only reply I ever again make to such requests.
Vin Suprynowicz interview will continue as scheduled sometime tomorrow. Meantime, some tab clearing …
- The dangers of tasers. Better late than never, I guess, and the info about the post-tase brain fog is something to think about.
- Very impressive, resourceful, and brave little girl. Her father taught her well. It’s too bad her hell is just beginning.
- Speaking of a child’s (and a family’s) hell, the Washington Post has an unusually even-handed story about how that Idaho toddler shot his mother to death. It being a story about Idaho and guns, I note that the D.C.-ites (without apparent irony) assigned it to a foreign affairs correspondent. (H/T. LA)
- My first response to that widely reported claim that 2/3 of all cancers just come out of nowhere, sorry, complete coincidence, no way to prevent them, was okay, so the initial mutation might come out of nowhere, but what is your body equipped to do about it? I’m not the only one asking such questions.
- The liberation of aging.
- Cops try to bust man for smoking pot. Crowd forms a human shield to prevent them. (Via Wendy)
- Kevin Wilmeth resolves to continue to remain in “outrage fatigue recovery mode” in 2015. Good resolution, Kevin. 2014 was a rough one for too many people hereabouts.
Just a quick note to thank you all for hanging in there and keeping things going while I’ve been hermitting more and blogging less. The Commentariat is alive and well!
Thanks also for making up (big time) for lost time on Amazon. Seems everybody was just doing their Christmas shopping at the last minute this year. I was worried when November flopped, but you’ve made December very good, indeed.
I also owe somebody a thank you for a gift that arrived this morning, an Opinel No. 8 carbon-steel folding knife (Amazon link for it). Has an impressively sharp blade and a little collar that twists to lock it open or closed. Very clever, very smooth to the hand (unlike many folders), very French. The ID of the “Santa” remains a mystery; the only note in the package thanked “me” for my order. But the universe of people who have my address and know I like knives is a small one.
I might guess “Santa” more easily than I could ever guess last Fall’s “Rockefeller.” (In fact, since Rockefeller went to such remarkable lengths not to be known, I’ve been trying to respect his or her wishes by not trying to find out. But I remain astounded and grateful for R., the two Big Anons, Family A, D, PSM, and all the magnificent benefactors who’ve kept that nice, dry roof over my head during the wild pineapple express storms we’ve been having this season.)
But … onward.
Have a few happy links to start working up some good holiday cheer.
Dog swims 1.5 miles through a storm then figures out where to meet up with her lost person. Her human thought she had drowned.
You know how the Oxford Dictionary people always announce the new “words of the year” long about December? Well, the Canadians at The Syrup Trap are waaaay ahead of them. They’ve already announced the words of the year for 2015-2035. :-) (Tip o’ hat to Canadian MJR)
While this next item may not exactly be in the good cheer category, it’s something that might give you comfort while you listen to that drearily bombastic uncle hold forth at Christmas dinner: boredom can be good for you.
And over at The Zelman Partisans Y.B. ben Avraham and Sheila Stokes-Begley have been telling the Hannukah story in terms you don’t usually hear it. Check out their passionate, eloquent, and unfortunately cautionary tales. I would not call their stories happy, but they might be inspiring and are absolutely informative.