October 2009

Who Will Watch the Watchers?

October 30, 2009

Who said, “To err is human, to be defensive about it divinely oblivious”? Oh, that was me. Not exactly the arresting pith of its model, but it begins my point. It is always bracing to observe the response to criticism of those who devote themselves professionally to the analysis and criticism of others. News organizations, [...]

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Israel: A Turning Point

October 28, 2009

When the infamous 1975 United Nations resolution 3379 declared that “Zionism is a form of racism,” 25 nations sponsored the resolution and an additional 47 voted for it. Thirty-two nations abstained from the voted. Only 36 countries voted against it. It was not until 1991 that the resolution was revoked. Certainly, many nations had experienced [...]

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from the Cadillac Hotel: Venice Beach, California

October 27, 2009

Three blocks from The Julia Dean Photo Workshops Photography by Julia Dean

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Sight and Seeing in Washington D.C.

October 26, 2009

Photography by Julia Dean

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How We Lived On It (4)

October 24, 2009

Music: “Waltzing Matilda,”* sung by Tom Waits, 1977 *Australian slang for travelling by foot with one’s goods in a “Matilda” (bag) slung over one’s back. A swagman carrying his matilda, circa 1901

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The Open Mind II: Wrap Up

October 23, 2009

My apologies to the amiable, the adversarial, and the amiably adversarial, all alike, for my delay in acknowledging ShrinkWrapped’s healthcare reform Wrap Up and in offering some sought after replies. Unfortunately, this generic academic was off engaging the real world of which he is otherwise so woefully ignorant. Generic academic, doubling as generic liberal, chooses [...]

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The Open Mind II: Riposte

October 21, 2009

Ensuring Healthcare or Insuring against the Loss of Health? I’m not a pundit, but I play one on my blog, and, it must be said, for a good deal less money than the television variety, though I could pretend to the same priceless knowledge in all fields. Let me teach Peter Orszag a thing or [...]

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The Open Mind II: The Dangers of Obamacare

October 19, 2009

For round two of our stirring exercise in blogocracy, ShrinkWrapped begins by arguing in the negative-affirmative, so to speak. Resolved: Obamacare is a danger to American healthcare delivery. As before, for SW’s round, comments here at the sad red earth are closed. Liberals and progressives of all becoming stripes, healthcare wonks, and every kind of [...]

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October 18, 2009

Penelope came with a house. We were renting from a friend and part of the deal was that if the friend rented to us, we had to take her dog. We already had Homer, a big lug of a part-Shepherd mutt, smart because obediently eager to please, but otherwise a very dopey beta. I didn’t [...]

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Eating Poetry* (III)

October 17, 2009

Shoot it Jimmy Our orchestra is the cat’s nuts – Banjo jazz with a nickelplated amplifier to soothe the savage beast – Get the rhythm That sheet stuff ‘s a lot of cheese Man gimme the key and lemme loose – I make ‘em crazy with my harmonies – Shoot it Jimmy Nobody Nobody else [...]

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Opening Mouths, Closing Minds

October 15, 2009

In response to The Open Mind I: Wrap Up, which was my assessment of the debate with ShrinkWrapped and his commenters regarding Native America, a new commenter wrote, in part Your last few paragraphs are civil but, unless I’m misreading you, they imply a thorough rejection of your opponents’ positions as being no better than [...]

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Picturing the Pamunkey

October 13, 2009

The Pamunkey Indians were the leading tribe of the Powhatan Confederacy, led by Chief Powhattan, father of Pocahontas, at the time of first contact with English colonists at Jamestown, in 1607. Estimates are that the confederacy then numbered between 14,000-21,000, with the Pamunkey numbering about 1000. Powhatan died in 1618, after which his brother and [...]

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How We Lived On It (3)

October 11, 2009

Music: “Videotape,” by Radiohead Video: yeoshuha

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The Open Mind I: Wrap Up

October 10, 2009

So I have posted, on the subject of Native America, “Call Me Irresponsible,” and ShrinkWrapped has riposted. His commenters have contributed in full measure. We’ve had a couple of other voices. Where do we stand? One ShrinkWrapped commenter had some sage advice at the start: let’s practice listening carefully to each other and asking clarifying [...]

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The Open Mind I: Riposte

October 8, 2009

ShrinkWrapped has replied to The Open Mind I: Call Me Irresponsible.  While there has not been much liberal contribution in the commenting (I am a master of understatement) what comment has been made has been highly civil. It is a matter of importance to me, and SW has requested it of his own commenters. I [...]

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The Open Mind I: Call Me Irresponsible.

October 6, 2009

Dear Shrink, By this point I’ve enjoyed my long draft of Alka Seltzer (extra strength – and lemon-lime, to obscure that particular bitter taste), and brought up the deep grepts that expells the heavy load of indigestion. I confess, I had hoped for a different beginning. But then I, according to some, am a liberal [...]

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Announcing “The Open Mind”: Shrink vs. Scribe

October 1, 2009

The doctor will see you now. One always needs to be grateful for serendipitous segues. (There are so many poor ones in life. Like losing your job, a common occurrence across the land the past year? Not a good segue.) Not knowing that I planned to announce our little joint venture specifically today, Shrinkwrapped commented [...]

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