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Monthly Archives: November 2011

Dying of consumption

Smike on his deathbed, dying of consumption — Nicholas Nickleby It’s a dark pun, but the people of the 19th century, and we in our own time, are stalked by the same wasting disease that leads inevitably to ruination if not death — consumption. Today is “black Friday.” The media (feeding the frenzy while pretending […]

The power of ridicule

Now is a good time to try again to make my point about using ridicule to shut down right-wing craziness. I think that some people think that I’m only just being mean-spirited when I argue that liars must be told that they are liars, that people who talk crazy must be told that they are […]

Disk encryption

I’ve written number of articles in the past about ways to protect your privacy on the Internet. I’d like to add a another layer that should be found on the well-defended computer: disk encryption. Disk encryption is easy. Whether you’re running Windows or a Macintosh, you probably want to do it with TrueCrypt, which is […]

What's next, politically: an answer to Ken

Ken, whom I regard as among the brightest and best-informed of his generation, has a concise and thoughtful post this morning in which he ponders the next steps in the evolution of his political views. I think I can guess what he was thinking about as he took the train back to Boston from Concord […]

Protest music

Makana As the protest movement takes root, one of the things I’ve been wondering is: Where is the protest music? The 1930s had its Woody Guthrie. The 1960s had its Bob Dylan. Well, here it comes. I understand that he ambushed President Obama with this song at a summit meeting in Hawaii on Nov. 12.

Poets for president!

Michael D. Higgins, the new president of Ireland Today Ireland inaugurated a new president — Michael D. Higgins. Higgins is 71 years old. He is a supporter of the Labour party. He is an intellectual, and he is a poet. Few countries other than Ireland are capable of electing a poet for president. Ireland seems […]

Dry summer = colorless fall

It has not been a particularly pretty or colorful fall. The changing leaves are fairly drab. The grass should be lush and green in the fall, but there was not enough rain to produce the lushness. This was not the case everywhere. On a recent trip to Asheville via the Blue Ridge Parkway, there were […]

Ken's OWS article at Salon

Ken has an article at Salon on Occupy Wall Street… My Soggy, frustrating, inspiring week Occupying Wall Street