This blog is a direct result of too much rain in Vancouver. I suspect it will be a place where I will post thoughts about my current readings or about the events of the day. Also, I have a book into which I have been writing "worthy thoughts" over the years as I read books so this may be a perfect excuse to go through all of those and remember the mental resonance that they caused.
RIP William F. Buckley
A great one has died and given that we are talking about William F. Buckley the list of favorite quotes could run pages and pages but I decided to chose one:
"The attempted assassination of Sukarno last week had all the earmarks of a CIA operation. Everyone in the room was killed except Sukarno"
OK, one more:
"I am lapidary but not eristic when I use big words."
First, I mostly ignored a lot of the "climategate" debates because at the end of the day they do not reveal anything new about the issue at hand - the fundamental drivers of climate change. However, when I came across an article quoting Al Gore, even I was stunned by the sheer audacity or blindness of religious zeal which can cause a relatively normal person to just so blatantly lie to us or to himself. In an interview he said: I haven’t read all the e-mails, but the most recent one is more than 10 years old. These private exchanges between these scientists do not in any way cause any question about the scientific consensus. and then repeated the same point 2 more times. These statements are simply completely wrong. In fact, as Watts Up With That shows, one Climategate email was from just two months ago. The most recent was sent on November 12 - just a month ago. The emails which have Tom Wigley seeming (to me) to choke on the deceit are all from this year. Phil Jones’ infamous…
Here is a PSA for anyone confused by Bitcoin this, Bitcoin that, "cryptocurrencies", "blockchain" and all that.
First of all, you do not need to understand what "blockchain" is any more than you need to understand how your iPhone identifies you by your fingerprint. It is underlying technology serving a purpose.
Second, you do not need to understand anything about currencies. Later, you may but to understand the fundamental concepts involved which you can explain to a 12 year old, you don't.
So in order to avoid that let's start with something that is not money at all. Imagine that there was a ledger (a book with records) in which ownership of every piece of land was recorded. Each parcel of land is uniquely identified and it says next to it who owns it. There is such a ledger - it is called "land registry" or "cadastral system" and just about every country has them. Many of you have bought and sold property and are familiar wit…
The US Presidential election was not about whether America is great today so much as it was about the suggestion that we could all go back to some better, simpler time.
While few have actual memories of the 50s, most have an idea in their heads of what it was like when things were much simpler. A simple candidate, one so simple to border on a simpleton, came along after a long line of lifelong politicians. Whether slick political operators like Bill Clinton and Obama or the political dynasty of the Bush family.
Trump is simply not difficult to understand for most people. Almost everybody knows somebody who has some of his characteristics, both the good and the bad. He is bigoted while genuinely thinking that he isn't. He is believable in his denials because he is Archie Bunker with a private plane. He may be disagreeable but he is understandable.
There is nothing we don't understand about him - eating KFC on your plane is something everyone can understand. The KFC part of it, …