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Showing posts from December 21, 2003
When LI was on hiatus this summer in Portland, we spent a day hiking with L., our friend and an associate of ex – Microsoft exec, billionaire telecommunications wizard Paul Allen. L., like many of the people who are close to “Paulie,” as she teasingly calls him, is on a program to read the great novels. She was just coming off of Anna Karenina. I told her that the greatest female character in 19th century European lit, as far as I was concerned, was Anna Ozores, the Judge’s wife at the center of La Regenta. L. had not heard of La Regenta. This didn’t surprise us. LI would never have read La Regenta either, or heard of it, if we didn’t have a habit of trolling the aisles of libraries, our shoulders hunched up like that of an old crow, dreamily pulling tomes off the shelf and looking at first paragraphs, blurbs, pictures of authors, etc. etc. Years ago, when we came upon La Regenta, we were in the mood for a long 19th century novel. At that time, believe it or not, we were living in u
Bollettino LI recommends the new weblog, The Loom, by a science writer, Carl Zimmer. We especially recommend this piece on William Hamilton, who is one of LI’s favorite intellectuals of the last fifty years. Zimmer reports that Hamilton, who died (as Zimmer does not distract himself to explain, died -- beginning of excursus -- while trying to find support for the thesis about AIDs propounded by Ed Hooper in The River – a thesis that has been ‘disproven’ only to the extent that Hooper’s extended point, which is that AIDS was actually activated by a polio serum, is probably wrong – but that it was spread by that serum remains, to our mind, a startlingly good thesis – end of excursus) in 2000, had been working on a theory about why leaves turn red and yellow in the fall. The larger details of the theory are here .
Bollettino "The IMAGINATION, then, I consider as primary, or secondary. The primary imagination I hold to be the living power and prime agent of all human PERCEPTION, and as a repetition in the finite mind of the eternal act of CREATION in the infinite I AM. The secondary I consider as an echo of the former, coexisting with the conscious will, yet still identical with the primary in the kind of its cogency, and differing only in degree, and in the mode of its operation. It dissolves, diffuses, dissipates,in order to recreate; or where this process is rendered impossible, yet still, at all event, it struggles to idealize and to unify." -- Coleridge A week ago, my best bud and alter ego, D., sent me a news item from the NYT. The item was about Sharon’s speech. The speech didn’t surprise me. Sharon proposed that the Wall would be the basis for a line between Israel and Palestine. There was nothing unexpected in this, if you know Sharon’s history. D. was indignant, to the
Bollettino It’s rare to find every ideological position LI is allergic to on display in one article, but the NYT Magazine’s John Tierney comes close . The utopian conservative dream of an Iraq that is democratic (but without elections), that is prosperous (without a social net, and with a seventy percent unemployment rate), and that is, above all, privatized to the gills – this is what the Douglas Feiths and Paul Wolfowitzes of the world have been working towards. The heroic unit in the piece is a business family led by Nader and Wathiq Hindo who have come back from exile in the States to make potloads in Iraq. That you can make potloads always seems to astonish American journalists, but it would be a familiar situation to anyone who lived through the liberalization of the economy in any Latin American country. While most of the country, which wipes the baby’s ass, mends the roads, serves the chickpeas, and so on, struggles under the twin burdens of unemployment and inflation,