this week i

hiked yangmingshan for the views.  on to the national palace for snuff boxes, jade, dragon clouds, both scrimshaw matryoshka and original


asked dall-e for nature photo with truffle in place of shell, nutty chocolate trail of slime behind.  ferrescargocher.  matthew: that's only funny to you

stared at shadows in edward hopper's most famous, going with nightturkeys for mine.  rosemarie thought coffee urns in the back.  hooray for taipei

read masters of mankind by noam chomsky.  he and kissinger both still live in new england

of using conscripts to fight a colonial war..we hear proposals for a volunteer army at "market prices" so that resistance will be cooled when vietnam is reenacted elsewhere

the fighting working class, basing itself upon marxism, will find lenin's philosophical work a stumbling-block in its way

the surviving myths of private enterprise insulate the industrial gains from social control, distorting the national reading of realities at home and abroad, concealing the galloping pace of corporate mergers and economic concentration, protecting the quasi-public status of narrow private interest

it is all too easy to mistake obscurantism for profundity

under communism man ceases to suffer as an animal and suffers as human.  he therewith moves from the plane of the pitiful to the plane of the tragic

the thoughts of thomas jefferson, who warned of the rise of a "single and splendid government of an aristocracy, founded on banking institutions, and moneyed incorporations," which would enable the few to be "riding and ruling over the plundered ploughman and beggared yeomanry," destroying democracy and restoring a form of absolutism if given free rein, as they later were, beyond his worst nightmares.  or alexis de tocqueville, who, like jefferson and adam smith, regarded equality of condition as an important feature of a free and just society.  he saw the dangers of a "permanent inequality of conditions" and an end to democracy if "the manufacturing aristocracy which is growing up under our eyes," "one of the harshest that has ever existed in the world," should escape its confines

debs had been declared "an enemy of the human race" by the new york times

the decade of the 1970s opened with the indian invasion of east pakistan, saving probably millions of lives.  it closed with vietnam's invasion of cambodia, ousting the khmer rouge just as their atrocities were peaking

sports teams use victims of genocide as mascots, usually with caricatures.  weapons of destruction are casually given similar names: apache, blackhawk, comanche helicopters; tomahawk missles; and so on.  how would we react if the luftwaffe named its lethal weapons "jew" and gypsy"?

"anticipatory self-defense," another euphemism for aggression at will.  the tacit assumption is that norms are established by the powerful, and that they alone have the right of anticipatory self-defense.  no one, for example, would argue that japan exercised this right when it bombed military bases in the us colonies of hawaii and the philippines, even though the japanese knew very well that b-17 flying fortresses were coming off the boeing production lines, and were surely familiar with the very public discussions in the us explaining how they could be used to incinerate japan's wooden cities in a war of extermination, flying from hawaiian and philippine bases

los angeles, which is now a total horror story - i don't know if any of you have been there - had an efficient electric public transportation system.  it was dismantled.  it was bought up in the 1940s by general motors, firestone rubber, and standard oil in california.  the purpose of their buying it up was to dismantle it so as to shift everything to trucks and cars and buses.  and it was done.  it was technically a conspiracy.  actually, they were brought to court on a charge of conspiracy and sentenced.  i think the sentence was around $5,000, enough to pay for the victory dinner

capitalism and the sharply attenuated democracy that goes along with it