Social Observations

We’re in Paris now, after a smooth Eurostar “flight” from London. France is gorgeous, of course, and the people wonderfully friendly and accommodating. The $10.00 per gallon gas is interesting as is the $500 per night hotel (yes, it’s modest) and the $8.00 bottled water (small size). Also curious:  how a 20% tip to the cab […]

_____________________________________ (Photo courtesy www.zazzle.com) Here it is, from the 1949 movie The Fountainhead, based on the book by Ayn Rand. Gary Cooper is Howard Roark. A masterpiece! Roark talks about the single individual’s passionate urge to invent and create, the urge that relentlessly drives humankind forward. He contrasts this almost ardent desire with an embedded human trait that just as ferventy strives to kill innovation and individual glory. Relevant […]

“It would be a good thing if you would stand naked in front of my people.” – John Pistole, TSA Administrator, paraphrased, on last Friday’s nightly news. ______________________________ An individual’s tolerance level can be shifted quickly and dramatically if a compelling enough stimulus is provided. The same holds for huge swaths of a culture’s population.

I’m writing this in a farmhouse B&B near the tiny town of Port Leyden, NY, the place of my birth, childhood and youth. Five hours by car north of New York City, in the Adirondack Mountain foothills, I’ve come back to escort my 93 year old mother to an assisted living facility in my hometown of […]

If you like what follows, I shamelessly ask you to pass it on. I’m optimistic the U.S. Government machine can be fixed. Term limits. No earmarks. Flat tax. Privatize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and return General Motors, Chrysler and AIG to the private sector. Less bureaucratic regulation and mandating. Proper federalism, giving more responsibility to […]

_________________________________________ It’s early Monday morning. Linda, Jenny and I are at the Liberty Hotel in Boston. It’s a revamped city jail and if you visit this city try to come here and see it. We arrived at 11PM Saturday night and the central lobby was filled with at least 1,000 revelers, dressed to the nines and standing with […]

Theodore Dalrymple The post I put up on September 9th was a quick review of an article discussing the media’s current enrapture with sentimentality. The piece was gripping, written by Theodore Dalrymple. (That’s his pen name. His real name is Anthony Daniels). Since then I’ve spent some time finding out more about this British psychiatrist […]

Unlike my previous life – the life I led before the age of 50 – I now observe the world as a collection of separate systems, both mechanical and mental. It’s what I call my “systems mindset.” As I contemplate the inner workings of mechanical reality in this detached way, once in a while I stumble […]

The subject of minority affairs is a social/political concept that classifies people into virtual groups based on gender, sexual orientation, race, religion and so on. (Emphasis on the word “groups.”) Minority affairs thinking holds that the primary group is taking advantage of certain sub-groups who are therefore entitled to additional consideration (and as it turns out this additional consideration is […]

In examining a primary system via the simple logic of the systems mindset, there is no room for ideological menus or self-serving rationalizations as these influences lie outside the system itself. Unemotional, non-partisan fact: In the United States, thirty million businesses are hoarding cash, dramatically slowing overall economic activity. The same business contraction can be seen elsewhere around the world.