A collation of links and reading that might interest you. Enjoy, and see you tomorrow….
Hate Thy Neighbor
No, I don’t hate the people; I detest the philosophy into which most of them have bought. The idea I lampooned above, in which those who disagree are accorded a moral status somewhere between child rapists and parasitic insects. In which people are not people, but widgets. It’s pernicious, that notion. And it’s infected the far right, as well. Just read the comments. Not here, as we have far higher standards of taste. Or at least, of grammar. No, the comments on more mainstream conservative publications. They attitudes are often the same as you’ll find on any from the Daily Kos, Slate or the Huffington Post. Lots of ad hominem attacks, lots of unreasoning anger, lots of advocacy of violence.
It’s not helpful, and playing by the Left’s book is akin to getting into a battle of wits with a fool. I, for one, don’t want to be dragged down to their level and beaten with experience. Or even with a board with a nail in.
Slap Your Brand on That Maverick
So: what am I waffling on about? Obviously not bread machines. I’m talking about the value of brands. An author’s greatest single enemy is obscurity, not a lack of ability – we’ve all read drivel that makes you wonder just who the author slept with to get published, and some occasions, just how perverted that had to have been. Humans do explore, try new things… but especially if money is a factor, we tend to very wary about big spends on things we don’t know. Ergo: the value of brands and an author’s need for them.
An Act of Convenience
Travis Lee Clark
So I keep thinking of this brouhaha over Richard Dawkins’ argument that it would be better if Down’s syndrome children had never been born. Those in favor of this view consistently use the term “kindness” to describe their position. But kindness for whom? Let’s take Dawkins’ view that there is no afterlife, no soul, whatsoever. An aborted child is therefore, gone, ended, no more. It can experience neither pain or pleasure, joy or suffering. Not even in limited amounts. So is their position that these children would feel NO joy in life, and that it would be kinder if they never existed? That’s manifestly false, as many parents of Down syndrome children can attest. Is the argument that a life with significant suffering is not worthy to live, even if there is arguably some joy in it? If so, then there are billions on the planet we ought to euthanize now. So in no meaningful way can this act, the abortion of Down’s syndrome children, be called kind, at least from the child’s perspective. The child, from Dawkins’ view is gone, ending any possibility of the child ever experiencing anything at all, let alone anything remotely like kindness. The only one left to experience any kindness is the parent, who only has the kind of kindness that is more often called convenience, being kind to yourself, at the expense of others. The only way one can describe that kind of kindness is selfishness.
What’s amazing to me is that you don’t need to involve God, the afterlife or anything else to see how easily this falls apart.
In some ways, I miss barbarians. They wanted what they wanted and they didn’t expect me to understand or accept their reasons. They took what they wanted and left you to puzzle it out. This new tyranny of sophists is worse. They not only want what they want, but they also insist that you genuflect at their moral superiority, their rationalizations, their astute sensibilities. They want to pillage you and then to be praised by you for it.
I wanted to share this, as Travis put it on facebook originally, but it states quietly and clearly that which I spoke about obliquely and at length in the article on Autism last week. If is is convenient, then they will commit infanticide, so as not to be burdened with a child who has special needs. It is not for kindness, except to their own desires and schedules.
A number of authors, including yours truly, have gotten together to offer some of their work for $2.99 or less over the Labor Day Weekend. You’ll find everything from science fiction to fantasy, mystery to romantic suspense, historical fiction to Musketeers Mysteries to even some non-fiction. Please take a few minutes to check out the titles and, if you see something of interest, support the author by buying a copy. Thanks!
And if that’s still too much for you, Peter Grant has a recommendation for free books: If you’ve never read Thorne Smith, I highly recommend his books. They’re somewhat dated to modern readers, but still a tonic for the insanity of the world today and a dose of laughter amid the frustrations of life. Read them online for free, or buy them in e-book format (and some in print). I plan to buy them in e-book format to replace my old, tattered, pre-World War II hardcovers.
Sometimes I read food blogs (I know, you’re shocked and surprised) and this is one of my favorites, she makes me laugh. Frankly, I’m in awe that she even tries some of these recipes, and I consider myself an adventurous eater! I’d actually try the recipe I link to, it might be an interesting alternative to granola bar.