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Monthly Archives: December 2008

Christmas Commiserations.


      I know that many people go to Church on days like this, so I figured I’d scribble a tad on the Mass.       The homily in the mass serves an important function for Catholics (especially Catholic men who are masters at this): it trains you to completely shut down as someone else is speaking.  […]

Stephen Boykewich on Russia.


       The last we heard of Stephen Boykewich, he was working as a journalist in Russia, and had made an important contact with an official in the Russian government who handed over to him computer documents containing extremely interesting information concerning Russia’s role in Afghanistan; but then while discussing this with an American friend (who also […]

More winter images.


Against Funding Sports Stadiums.


            Every now and again, you hear a politician or sports announcer who objects to the “corporate welfare” which is found throughout the United States, in the form of municipalities paying hundreds of millions of dollars to build sports arenas for the specific use of certain private, professional sports teams.  Their opposition usually amounts to […]



What a waste of manhood.


I know I shouldn’t say anything, because it speaks for itself, really.  But more hateful to me than the gates of Hades is the man without the courage to live his own life.

Augustus Hare.


            Travel literature, like portraiture, is one of the peculiar glories of Western culture, and the tendency towards it is so strong that there is hardly a western writer who does not incorporate an appreciation for landscape and travel into his works.  And much like portraiture, travel-writing constituted a tradition which lent some of its […]

Crystal Days.


“The pleasure and pain endured to purify our mystic ways and magnify our crystal days.” The past few days have convinced me that I can withstand the difficulties of winter here, in part because of the extraordinary beauties I witness every day.  Not a day goes by without my saying “Wow.”  The Catskills have provided […]

Reforming the NEA


           The National Endowment for the Arts (founded in 1965) has existed for many decades now, and has spent several billion dollars (its budget is consistently over $100 million annually), but if you walked through most American streets and neighborhoods, you would think that America produces no art at all.  What you would see are […]

The endlessness of our society.


The following article is an articulation of an experience I commonly have, encountering the vast outpouring of intellect in our society: I often try to conceive of the fullness of the life experience of the billion or so people who live wealthy, American-style lives: people who see a great portion of the globe, read (and write) books, keep websites, […]