Random Link o’ the Day:
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I didn’t want to muck up the main site with some book reviews that weren’t going to be very in depth or interesting. So I put them here. The only reason why I’m publishing the fact that I read these books anywhere is because I have a rule about finishing every book I start and reviewing in some fashion every book I read. The following falls liberally under “some fashion.”
Quotes from the Prophet Bob
John J. Kerecz
This book is available from Cafepress here. The book is a short compilation of quotes from a homeless guy the author knew. The book is low quality with little care given to grammar. At 50-some pages it makes for a very quick read. I wouldn’t recommend buying the volume, but I have to give some credit, “Bob” seemed like a very interesting a likeable guy. Most of his quotes revolved around pretending to be asleep when other people are about to bother you.
Who’s Deceiving the Liberals?
I recieved this book through the mail, and considering its length I figured it would be worth it to read. The premise is simple, the author links Gnostic beliefs to modern liberalism. Most liberals probably don’t have much knowledge as to the origins of their beliefs. In my mind the fact that most modern liberal ideas are variations of ideas found in Marx’s Communist Manifesto is much more damning than links to Gnostics. The book has a strong Protestant Christian bent and it’s relatively brief considering the subject. I didn’t find the document very useful but it might be worth downloading and reading while waiting around at an airport or something. The book is available to download for free here.
This year has now passed us by. Unfortunately for 2006, this year was a bore. It will go down in history as another 1978 or 1414. It should be completely uninteresting to historical perspective as a whole. Maybe this is wishful thinking on my part. I’d like posterity to not remember the 2006 midterm elections. Not because of my obvious partisan leanings but because to remember the 2006 midterm elections is to reminisce about the 4 years of Republican government previous to 2006. To remember Nancy Pelosi as speaker is to recollect the lost and blown chances at meaningful reforms and policies for which the GOP had the opportunities to implement. The year 2006 was merely the year past mistakes finally hit critical mass.
This goes not only for the Republican Congress but for the Bush Administration as well. Mistakes made in 2003 and 2004 turned into the latest round of “re-evaluations” of the war in Iraq. Donald Rumsfeld, a man for whom I have the highest regards, made one mistake in planning out the invasion of Iraq. Rumsfeld didn’t allow for enough troops to patrol and occupy the country since he believed the Iraqi people would welcome the end of Saddam. This mistake led to his resignation this year, despite his otherwise brilliant performance against the Saddam government and the Taliban. We are now left with a frying pan or fire decision in Iraq.
We said goodbye to Jean Kirkpatrick, the Reaganite and we are saying goodbye to Gerald Ford. Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter, was killed in a freak accident by a stingray. This was, to me, the saddest passing of the year. Casper Weinberger, another Reaganite, died this year as did economist Milton Friedman. Willie Pep, the champion boxer died this year as did the Godfather of Soul, James Brown. Baseball player Johnny Sain (as in “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain”). Buck O’Neil and Joe Niekro were other baseball stars to pass away this year. Actress Phyllis Kirk, actor/comedians Red Buttons and Don Knotts left the screen for good. The list goes on: Patty Berg, golfer; Byron Nelson, golfer; bassist Aladar Pege (the best bass soloist in the business, ever); Ann Richards, Texas politician; Esther Snyder, co-founder of In-N-Out Burger in 1948 which popularized the drive-through window; the last Titanic survivor Lillian Gertrud Asplund; Nellie Connally, the last survivor from JFK’s limo when he was assassinated; aviator Scott Crossfield; Coretta Scott King and Kirby Puckett.
The Gospel of Judas, after 1700 years in the underground, was released this year. The Gnostic text added some nuance to our understanding of the Biblical figure. The real tragedy is the text of the document was relatively intact when scholars first looked at it 30 years ago but through the negligence of the owner about 80% of the surviving text was destroyed. In Minnesota we saw the GOP lose big. The GOP barely retained a popular sitting governor while handing over every other constitutional statewide office to Democrats and the GOP lost the state House. Governor Pawlenty now must look at a state legislature so firmly in the hands of his opposition party that even his vetoes may become meaningless. The Twins got their stadium. In response they performed miraculously down the stretch but rolled over and played dead in the playoffs.
All in all it was a year for forgetting.
I spoke a little too soon. Let 2006 not be forgotten to history. It was the year that saw the end of another brutal dictator, Saddam Hussien.