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Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning
Photo of third suicide bomber behind Stade de France blasts - photo released by French police, 22 Nov 2015 - AFP; Getty Images

. . . though that cause was, I believe, one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse. I do not question, however, the sincerity of the great mass of those who were opposed to us. — U.S. Grant, writing, years later, about the Confederate […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | Add a Comment

          These are preliminary notes on a tension between philosophy and friendship. They are prompted by two texts I encountered nearly in conjunction, within the passage of just a few days. The first is a remarkable passage from  Moby Dick where Ishmael, the narrator whose name echoes the Biblical figure cast […]

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  A comparison with a shaggy dog tale—with “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”—may help us appreciate and begin to think about an “elusive passage” in Plato’s Symposium. In Twain’s text, the narrator goes seeking news of the Reverend Leonidas W. Smiley and ends up hearing stories about an inveterate gambler named Jim Smiley. […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | 4 Comments

 As Alexander Hamilton watched the French Revolution unfold, he feared in America what he saw play out in France — that the unleashing of popular passions would lead not to greater democracy but to the arrival of a tyrant, riding to power on the shoulders of the people. His public discourse consists of attacking or […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

Writing for the New Republic earlier this year, Eric Segall revealed his thoughts on why replacing Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court would prove so difficult. Despite common references to the nation’s highest-ranking jurists as dispassionate analysts or mere “umpires,” Segall makes clear that in his opinion, Justices and those seeking the position are partisan […]

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Five mysteries hold the keys to the unseen: the act of love, and the birth of a baby, and the contemplation of great art, and being in the presence of death or disaster, and hearing the human voice lifted in song.                                                                              […]

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Michelangelo, Sistine Chapel, Ceiling, Lunette - Aminadab

The Treatment of Jews in Renaissance Rome and on the Sistine Chapel Ceiling By Chantal Sulkow   Introduction After the earliest stage of the cleaning of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling frescoes in the early 1980s, the lunettes depicting Christ’s ancestors were the first to emerge from beneath centuries’ worth of darkened layers of dirt. (Fig. […]

Article

I’m not the only person who finds 50 Cent a fascinating figure. His landmark album, Get Rich or Die Tryin’, is one of the top ten best selling albums in rap history, and is perhaps the only rap album ever to have a feature film made of it. While living in Belize during the summer of 2005, I stumbled […]

ZiLL

I have been following a rather amusing story recently: one involving an eccentric attorney and some potentially salacious information. Today, the Supreme Court weighed in, and Steven Nelson of U.S. News and World Report took note: The Supreme Court announced Monday it would not intervene to allow release of phone records from the late ‘D.C. […]

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NBC News’ Pete Williams reported today on oral arguments in front of the Supreme Court. The arguments stem from former Virginia Governor Robert McDonnell’s criminal appeal. McDonnell was convicted in federal court two years ago for accepting bribes while in office. From Williams’s report: A jury convicted McDonnell in 2014 on a host of federal bribery charges […]

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  I s creation, in the arts, or elsewhere, a matter of chutzpah or daring — perhaps of overweening pride? It often is.  And sometime it’s a matter of humility, stepping aside, letting another speak through one. Thus the Odyssey begins, Sing in me muse, Sing of the man of twists and turns driven time […]

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A Syrian man holds lifeless body of his son, killed by Syrian Army, Aleppo, Syria, October 3, 2013, photo by Manu Brabo - AP

  I s creation, in the arts, or elsewhere, a matter of chutzpah or daring — perhaps of overweening pride? It often is.  And sometime it’s a matter of humility, stepping aside, letting another speak through one. Thus the Odyssey begins, Sing in me muse, Sing of the man of twists and turns driven time […]

ZiR

February 8, 2017

How does the slogan “man is a wolf to man” fit in with your later, somewhat hopeful image of camaraderie in the class struggle? I mean, if your starting assessment of human nature is correct, then doesn’t the class struggle actually come down to one group of savage beasts fighting another, the exploited class merely comprising those wolves with less opportunity to express their lupine ferocity? And don’t the exploiters no less than the exploited regularly turn against one another, so that besides the strife of classes, there is also the strife of each wolf against every other wolf? Wha...

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Beyoncé

  I s creation, in the arts, or elsewhere, a matter of chutzpah or daring — perhaps of overweening pride? It often is.  And sometime it’s a matter of humility, stepping aside, letting another speak through one. Thus the Odyssey begins, Sing in me muse, Sing of the man of twists and turns driven time […]

Article

December 13, 2016

Any doubts I may have had have been thoroughly quashed.

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  I s creation, in the arts, or elsewhere, a matter of chutzpah or daring — perhaps of overweening pride? It often is.  And sometime it’s a matter of humility, stepping aside, letting another speak through one. Thus the Odyssey begins, Sing in me muse, Sing of the man of twists and turns driven time […]

Review

November 29, 2016

What a nice review ! I've read Bakewell and admire her courage and skill in mixing biography and philosophy in such an attractive way -- and I admire your skill in presenting the figures and themes of existentialism in an equally attractive way ! Mazel tov !

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