Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Done & Back! (With links)

I shipped off the remaining part of the book project last week-- illos, captions, credits-- and have my life back, though my brain doesn't believe it yet. I have a HUGE backlog of links plus some photo posts and essays planned, but I don't intend to do them all today, so bear with me. This boy needs to get out more.

Links first.

Patrick makes a fierce liberal case for the Second Amendment.

Alex Massie imagines a Distressed Writers' Agency:

"What's needed, then, is a new kind of literary agency. Rather than the established model of matching authors with publishers, we need an agency that specialises in pairing the people plagued by a surfeit of ideas and deficit of willpower with those afflicted with precisely the opposite condition.

"Take Client A, for instance. He swims in ideas every morning. The poor fellow can scarcely read the newspaper without an idea for a short story or play or film or, in exceptionally hideous moments, a poem popping into his head. Why, he says to himself, that's capital material for a writer. Time, surely, that someone made something of it. Alas, Client A has so many notions that no sooner does he sit down to crack on with his latest wheeze than he is socked by another, shinier, better (or at least newer) idea that is, he is sure, this time, the one that will make his bloody name once and for all. Client A, it may not surprise you to learn, is an expert at writing acceptance speeches for prizes given to films and books that remain, alas, unwritten."

RTWT of course.

A lawyer and a judge steal somebody else's property, and want to be paid for it. Isn't this cause for disbarment??

"A leading children's author was told to drop a fire-breathing dragon shown in a new book - because the publishers feared they could be sued under health and safety regulations."

I posted below on a New York Times piece on urbanites who fear the country. Sippican Cottage had more to say on the subject.

"Some armed local? Oh brother. In Sharon, Connecticut? People -- in Sharon Connecticut you lock your doors so your friends will know you're not home if they come over unexpectedly and you're out. They know where your key is anyway. William F. Buckley was born in Sharon Connecticut. Do you really think he's coming in the window at night with a dagger in his teeth and darkness in his heart for you because you're so Vegan you only eat things that don't cast a shadow? Get a grip."

A while back Mary referred to some of us as disciples of Rousseau becuause we argued for fewer rules. I at least was taken aback because my view of human nature is rather dark-- more Hobbes than Rousseau. Recently I found this quote from C S Lewis That rather sums up my view, if more religiously than I would state it:

"I am a democrat because I believe in the Fall of Man. I think most people are democrats for the opposite reason. A great deal of democratic enthusiasm descends from the ideas of people like Rousseau, who believed in democracy because they thought mankind so wise and good that every one deserved a share in the government. The danger of defending democracy on those grounds is that they’re not true. . . . I find that they’re not true without looking further than myself. I don’t deserve a share in governing a hen-roost. Much less a nation. . . . The real reason for democracy is just the reverse. Mankind is so fallen that no man can be trusted with unchecked power over his fellows. Aristotle said that some people were only fit to be slaves. I do not contradict him. But I reject slavery because I see no men fit to be masters."

Related: in a very funny post, Dr Hypercube quotes Kung Fu Monkey re "Robot overlords".

Tyrone: They bring world peace, universal health care –
John: At the cost of our freedoms!
Tyrone: MY POINT EXACTLY. We’re already giving up our freedoms — our right to privacy, gone.

It so happens that Lewis had something to day to that, too:

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."

Natural (?) history: a strange stuffed "cryptocanid" that was killed in Montana many years ago has been rediscovered in Idaho. Some of the suggestions (it is a dire wolf-- ONE??) are ridiculous but it would be interesting to do DNA studies. Darren?


Henry Chappell said...

I know exactly what you mean when you say, "...my brain doesn't believe it yet." It's really strange, getting up in the morning and realizing that you don't have to work on THE BOOK.


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