Friday, June 7, 2019

Who are the brain police?

Dear M,

We talk a lot about public censorship, but even if you live without the public you'll end up with the private.  Simply put, there is no time and place where a man is free to violate the terms of the society he lives in.  Each of us are thoroughly and subtly policed by our family, friends, neighbors, customers, lovers and coworkers; and the invisible pressure they apply can be braved momentarily, but not entirely, and certainly not for eternity.  You buck too many of their norms and you pay for it.  They retract their goodwill from you and as a social animal you're finished.  A free-thinker has thus got to be a charmer, or wealthy, or useful.  If he bites more than he licks he'll be left out like a stray dog. 

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Scout's Honor

Dear H,

Not today, thank you
I like to sidestep Christ's commandment let your yes be yes and your no be no by being a Man of Maybe.  M.O.M. is the acronym and it fits because it's unmanly.  I freely admit this; but I don't have the ego or the willpower to go around making promises and keeping them, and I won't just break them, so instead I don't make them.

When a man says yes or no to something, or even worse -- gives a promise, what he says in effect is that he guarantees something will happen against the scheming of the whole universe.  A bold move for a tiny man.  So I like to throw in a caveat: weather permitting; if I don't have anything else planned already; barring flood, or sickness, or famine, etc.  A whole slew of things I don't and can't see coming and know I don't see coming; a realization of my finite nature -- a non-Muslim's en-shallah.  James the Apostle's Lord willing*.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Arguing on the internet

Dear T,

I read somewhere in Orwell that Sir Walter Raleigh tried to write a history of the world -- while he was locked up in the Tower of London.  As he was penning away in a fury, two workers outside his cell window got into an argument, the argument turned into a scuffle, and the scuffle ended in a killing.  Raleigh began asking why they were fighting but couldn't get a solid answer; and when he realized he couldn't find out what happened right outside his own window he took his manuscript and threw it into the fire.

Friday, May 17, 2019

On finding out you're Irish =(

Dear T,

I once met a black lady who went to an ancestry website, got a DNA test, and found out she was 4% Irish.  Black as night and still Irish.  This came as a surprise to both of us.  Her immediate response was that she was probably related to some slave-owning rapist, and my immediate response to this was that we're all related to lots of rapists, and if we didn't think we were related to rapists we've got another thing coming -- probably a grandchild who's a rapist in the making.  A rosy picture of humanity, this one.  Imagine being in the most crime-ridden race in America and finding out you're 4% Irish and deciding then you're related to a rapist.  It's like finding out you're 4% Chinese and deciding that someone in your millions-of-years-in-the-making-family was good at math, or jailing Christians.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

In defense of prejudice

Dear M,

Once a man reaches a certain age he begins to forget how he got there.  He forgets because he has to.  He has no time to remember the little, successive steps that built him into who he is.  Unless he's dull, a man is always on the move, always thinking, churning, taking steps in a new direction that will change him, imperceptibly at first, into someone else.  Even if his mind won't change his body will; and the body will begin to change the mind itself.  He either takes the initiative or God does it for him.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

On an ancient custom of the Babylonians

Dear M,

Montaigne once said he could find something attractive on nearly any woman, but this is far too upbeat for me.  Amy Schumer had great legs, but who wants to think too much about them?  They're attached to Amy Schumer; and the package deal is too painful to really be called a deal -- it has all the qualities of the bargain bin.  You buy the legs and you've bought the mouth.

Friday, March 22, 2019

The last refuge of the moron


Dear H,

Brittney Cooper
Brittney Cooper, author of the smash hit Eloquent Rage: a Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower, wanted to be a professor and she got it.  This is the basis of her complaint on NBC.

Somebody told her, years ago, that the only person she could control was herself, and beyond this that if she didn't smoke crack, or get knocked up, or shoot her neighbors, or steal sneakers, or blow her money on gold chains and spinning rims, and made good choices in general, she would "make it."  And she did make the right choices -- to become a professor.  Now she has tenure and can say stupid things and nobody can fire her.  What she deeply regrets is not having children.  Who's to blame for all this?  Her wild success implies that it's her.  Who does she blame?  White neoliberals and their "perverse form of a social gospel."

Monday, March 18, 2019

The dream and the gift

Dear M,

I had a dream about a man, sharply dressed in a suit and tie, hair slicked back and sitting at a long table.  He was thin and middle-aged, maybe 50, with graying hair and a weathered but handsome face.  He looked like Jordan B. Peterson.  The room was dark, and lit only by a single lamp hanging from the ceiling; and at the other end of the table sat three men -- also sharply dressed, papers on the table, hair parted to perfection, and evidently holding a trial.  The thin man waited until they spoke.

Friday, March 8, 2019

In defense of Rep. Ilhan Omar

Dear M,

The great question facing every American Muslim is which foot do I shoot myself in?  You have to pick a political party at some point, and on the one hand you have the party that invades all your brothers and sisters, comes up with things like waterboarding and the PATRIOT Act, hates to see hijabs, blew up the Middle East, and is now refusing your refugees.  On the other hand you have open arms and a rotten soul.  Hollywood and the music industry in all their filth.  The gay lobby.  Feminism.  Fans of Lady Gaga and enablers of junkies.  They'll draft laws against hate speech and blasphemy but they'll tell your boys they can change genders.  On the one hand you have someone you respect who doesn't love you.  On the other someone who loves you but you just can't bring yourself to respect.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Muslim Women's Day

Dear T-

I don't know exactly what we're supposed to do for Muslim Women's Day, but my guess is that we give them what Mohammed did. This means their testimony is worth only half a man's; that we may beat them if they speak out too loudly; that their husbands get off lightly for cheating; that the women get far worse for it; that we force all the ladies into hijabs, and that if any woman is happily married, we allow three other women to share her husband with her. Is this for or against them? It's difficult to say; but it's what they want, and we don't want to be accused of hating Muslims, so we do it -- gladly.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Two Romans

Dear H,

Augustine tells the story of a general named Regulus.  This Roman went to war against Carthage and ended up fighting valiantly; but when he lost a battle he was surrounded by the enemy and captured.  As a prisoner he was given an option.  He was let go on the pretense that he'd go to Rome, use his weight in the Senate to negotiate a prisoner exchange, and when he'd negotiated the prisoner exchange he could go back to his old life with his family.  If he failed, Carthage made him promise he'd return to them as a prisoner.

Friday, February 22, 2019

The biggest little whorehouse in Germany

Dear T,

Once one country does something stupid the question on everyone's mind is who's next?  Thus when France went libtard in 1789 everyone attacked them, and when the Russians went Soviet we adopted a policy of containment.  The thing about ideas is they tend to move from place to place.  One person says something stupid and the other stupid people hear him and the next thing you know you're getting tortured in a gulag.  This is why Christ said a man who accepts the words of a prophet has a prophet's reward.  The prophet speaks first, but it takes the heart of a prophet to hear one.  The question, whenever you hear a prophet or a moron, is whether your country is full of prophets or morons.  This is why the liberals have taken over the school system and the media, and nearly everyone, until the Enlightenment, was heavily in favor of censorship*.  Simply put we took one look at our neighbors and knew they'd fall for anything.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Saying sorry

Dear Hannah,

The original Christians were huge fans of penance.  This meant, in effect, that if you did something wrong and you were sorry you had to prove it.  But saying sorry wasn't enough, for obvious reasons, so they added works to it.  Fixing things you broke and such -- which worked well until somebody realized paying hurt too.  So you'd give alms to the person you hurt, or something like that, until somebody realized that sins were against God, at which point they said you could just give money to the church. 

This was a revelation of great convenience. The Crusades and St. Peters' needed funding.  Some genius realized guilting was more lucrative than tithing.  So the Church re-branded these works of penance "indulgences," and people's sins became the church's gain.  The worse things got spiritually, the better they got financially.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

In defense of James Watson

Dear H-,

James Watson, the man responsible for discovering the structure of DNA and thus paving the way for entirely new branches of science, for whole fields of medicine, for new problems in ethics and a fresh perspective on mankind, has been stripped of his awards -- for not being Martin Luther King Jr.  The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the lab Watson ran for decades and which he personally made famous, has publicly repudiated the ninety-year-old man for having the opinions of ninety-year-old men.

Friday, January 18, 2019

A letter to what's left of my readers

To my dear readers,

The internet has given and the internet has taken away. At this point I'm supposed to give a blessing, but God isn't running the internet and I can't find it in myself to do it.  Used to having around 300 views per essay, Facebook and Twitter are now giving me around 30.  This means I've been effectively shut out, and my late foray into Gab.com, which is supposed to be the internet's Argentina to everyone accused of being a Nazi, got me more hookers as followers than actual fans.  And I am not a fan of hookers.  Neither am I a fan of Nazis. I'm not interested in or rich enough for the first and not white or stupid enough for the second.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Gossip and nonsense: a partial review of Yuval Noah Harari's "Sapiens"

Dear T-,

Once you've been buying books on Amazon for years, you start to realize that a best-seller gets a few thousand five-star ratings because it's written by a genius or it's written for idiots.  Yuval Noah Harari's monster-hit Sapiens thus far appears to have the qualities of both.  Like the best teachers, he says deep things in simple ways and is thus capable of getting morons to think.  Thus far there's no frilly writing, or convoluted phrasing, or wonkish lingo, or affectation of any sort.  He gets right at what he's going to say and he does it with the straight-forwardness of a C.S. Lewis, or a George Orwell -- not the finer prose of either, but the grandfather-like simplicity.  He preaches, but gently.  The only people who hate his book, from what I can tell from the one-star reviews, are religious folks who realize the rug is being pulled from under them.  He says God is imaginary, like nations, money, and corporations, they realized they couldn't believe Sapiens and the book of Genesis, and they artfully picked the latter.