“Yet when it comes to Zinn’s demand for history to be judged for its political utility, Duberman [his biographer] is finally too indulgent. He can never bring himself to say that the fatal flaw of Zinn’s historical work is the shallowness, indeed the fallaciousness, of his critique of scholarly detachment. Zinn rests satisfied with what strikes him as the scandalous revelation that claims of objectivity often mask ideological predilections. Imagine! And on the basis of this sophomoric insight, he renounces the ideals of objectivity and empirical responsibility, and makes the dubious leap to the notion that a historian need only lay his ideological cards on the table and tell whatever history he chooses. He aligns himself with the famous line from the British historian James Anthony Froude, who asked rhetorically if history “was like a child’s box of letters, with which we can spell any word we please. We have only to pick out such letters as we want, arrange them as we like, and say nothing about those which do not suit our purpose.” Froude made this observation in the middle of the nineteenth century.”—
I didn’t really know any of this (beyond the general idea that Zinn’s work was “very liberal”). Damn, I need to read more books.
The problem described above seems to relate strongly to different ‘problems’ on the internet that take the form: “Yes, I know the thing I’m saying is wrong, but if I acknowledge that it’s wrong then I may continue and any conclusions thereafter will have had the wrongness washed away.” This is, of course, sheer ridiculousness.
What’s the first concert you ever attended?
Prince at Key Arena in Seattle (2004)
What’s the best concert you ever attended?
Jay-Z/Kanye West at Madison Square Garden (2011)
What album would you not be able to live without?
Notorious B.I.G. “Life…
Disasters have been pummeling the world over the past couple of months. Maybe it’s the X-class solar flare that knocked out all of China’s communication back in February (“X” is NASA’s highest solar flare classification).
Or the reality that our fragile food supply chain could be knocked by just the threat of a disaster (even if it was just a false alarm)…
Whatever the reason, it’s about time the Government woke up and started paying attention! As your fellow American, I’m hoping you won’t put your faith in a system that is bound to fail, but that’s your choice.
Really there are 37 critical items that you can buy from the grocery store that can be the difference between life and death:
P.S. Not trying to sound like a fear monger, but do you have enough food to get through a crisis? Ask yourself if you’d be eating in a week if your food ran out today. Check out these cheap 37 critical items now…
I feel like I go on this rant every six months or so, but until people start understanding the difference between protected speech under the First Amendment and getting to say whatever you want in any situation with no consequences whatsoever, I guess I’ll have to keep repeating it. We all have our crosses to bear.
After noted legal scholar and historian Hank Williams, Jr. made his rumhamfisted analogy about President Obama and Adolf Hitler, and ESPN subsequently pulled his “All My Rowdy Friends” song from its October 3rd Monday Night Football broadcast, he had this to say:
After reading hundreds of e-mails, I have made MY decision. By pulling my opening Oct 3rd, You (ESPN) stepped on the Toes of The First Amendment Freedom of Speech, so therefore Me, My Song, and All My Rowdy Friends are OUT OF HERE. It’s been a great run.
In the interest of being incredibly lazy and shameless, I’m going to block quote a few relevant paragraphs from a post I wrote a while back for Uproxx about the Bill of Rights. The references are a little dated, but I think it holds up:
One important note on free speech: the freedom of speech does not mean you can say whatever you want in any situation without facing consequences. Example: f-ck, assh-le, c-cknose. Had I not censored those words, I’d have been in deep sh-t with the Uproxx bosses, and might have lost my sweet sweet stream of blogging income. Rather, the freedom of speech only means that the government can’t punish you for speech (except in extreme circumstances, like yelling “Fire!” in a crowded theater, or speaking ill of The Sandlot once I’m in charge).
So when Dr. Laura Schlessinger threw the N-word around on her radio show like butter in a Paula Deen recipe, and the resulting uproar led to her leaving the show, that wasn’t her First Amendment rights being infringed. Technically, that was her precious free market distancing itself from unpopular ideas. Likewise, people protesting the construction of a Muslim gathering center near Ground Zero are perfectly within their rights. Just as the people are to build it. No one’s freedom of religion or assembly is being violated unless the government steps in and take action.
I guess what I’m really saying is this: you have the RIGHT to say what you want, but maybe you SHOULD shut up a little more.
So, sorry Bocephus. No one stepped on the toes of your Constitutional freedoms. (I must have missed class the day we talked about our rights having feet.) We are incredibly lucky to live in a country where you can go on a widely watched news program and compare our nation’s leader one of the most horrific monsters in the history of mankind and have the most serious consequence be that your tired song about your buddies gets pulled from a football pregame show. The are places in the world — now, in 2011 — where doing that would get your shit thrown in jail. In the middle of the night, with no questions asked. So it’s insulting as hell when you don’t even understand what that right entails.
In conclusion, knock it off and you are welcome. Sing it, Ray.
@Fredorrarci has an old post on what the effusive praise for Messi (in many cases at Ronaldo’s expense) says about the players and the fans choosing sides. Read the whole thing, but here is an excerpt:
He is clean and germ-free; to borrow Richard Whittall’s description, “he leaves no lingering aura”. There is nothing remotely unsettling about him. So he retains a kind of purity. He reflects what we want football to be, and when we flatter Messi for his angelic play, we are also flattering ourselves for having the good taste to flatter him.
Replace “Messi” with “Adele” and replace “Ronaldo” with “Gaga/the rest of popular music” and you get a good picture of how I am looking at some of the overwhelming reactions to the VMAs.
It has been a month since I had to worry that absentmindedly swigging from one of the Poland Spring bottles in my central cupholders while driving might leave me with a mouthful of tobacco juice. I feel like that’s a good start.
Most of the time, I did it in my car. A few times in college, I brought it to class. I spit into the mulch of the playground at the park of the MiLB team I was an intern for one summer. And once at the beach I left my friends and took a long walk down toward the rocks where it was less crowded, so I could sit and dip where no one I knew could see me. But most of the time, I did it in my car.
I don’t have any friends that dip tobacco. I have only one acquaintance, the co worker who introduced me to it, that regularly dips. But I left that job years ago. Lots of people smoke, and everyone knows that is a bad habit. But in my circles, dipping has been a particularly alienating experience. Everyone is repulsed by it. And when you pick this kind of habit up during your formative late teens and early 20s, that does something to you beyond the nicotine cravings. I accepted early that putting this stuff in my mouth was gross and would give me bad breath and yellow teeth and maybe my gums would turn colors and if I kept doing it, they might have to cut off half my face. And I thought about that a lot. Not every time I dipped, but every time I bought a tin. Which by the end was every day.
When I realized I was addicted, I made it a point not to broadcast the fact that I dipped. A few close friends knew. My sister is my dental hygienist, so I didn’t have to tell her. I reluctantly dipped in front of my little brothers once. That was the worst. But it was a long car ride.
I tried to stop when I met a girl I liked. I didn’t want to do it because I didn’t think she would kiss me if she knew. But a few months into the relationship, I started again, and didn’t tell her. By that time, the nicotine addiction had been broken. But something kept bringing me back. The phrase “nostalgie de la boue" is making a comeback in Odd Future thinkpieces, and it is still the closest cultural description to what I felt when packing a lip. To me it meant acknowledging a series of beliefs about myself and what I was doing.
1) I am repulsive. Eventually my mouth, face and wherever the cancer might spread will make that clear.
2) I am the only one who is this gross.
3) I deserve whatever happens to me because of it.
Last year I was riding in a car with a new girl, and I decided that I had nothing to lose by pulling out a tin and stuffing my lip. She didn’t know what to say. For me, this was the perfect test. Would she be disgusted, and find reasons not to take any more car rides with me? A psychologist might tell me that was some kind of self sabotage, but I am just a guy who did some bad things to his body for a while, and I thought I would just give her a realistic picture of what I was. She thought the tobacco was disgusting. It clearly bothered her. But she didn’t treat me like I expected. She still thought I was cool. My habit didn’t define how she saw me.
The past year has been one of tremendous personal growth for me. Professionally, I have grown with the help of a few terrific mentors. I am playing music more. That girl keeps following me around. And I have started to realize how much was wrong with my thoughts about the habit. There are a lot of people that care about me, and want me around. And most of those people don’t look at me any differently now. So I am telling more people. This puts some pressure on me to keep away from the stuff, and helps lift the stigma. Most people have habits, and a lot of them are harmful. This is how I am trying to lose one of mine.
“All subsequent popes were then supposedly subjected to an examination whereby, having sat on a dung chair containing a hole called sedia stercoraria, a cardinal had to reach up and establish that the new pope had testicles, before solemnly announcing ‘Duos habet et bene pendentes’ — ‘He has two, and they dangle nicely’”— - a wikipedia article I stumbled across while attempting to google “pope twitter”