Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Vonnegut, Evil, Baseball, Memory, and Hulk Hogan

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A rather random assortment of links, even for me:

* How’s life? Well, it’s practically over, thank God. Cynical-C has another nice Vonnegut link: one of his last recorded television interviews, October 7, 2005. As you might expect, it’s great. Here’s an excerpt, and here’s the rest.

* “The ‘Problem of Evil’ in Postwar Europe, Tony Judt’s acceptance speech for the 2007 Hannah Arendt Prize. Via MeFi.

Today, the Shoah is a universal reference. The history of the Final Solution, or Nazism, or World War II is a required course in high school curriculums everywhere. Indeed, there are schools in the US and even Britain where such a course may be the only topic in modern European history that a child ever studies. There are now countless records and retellings and studies of the wartime extermination of the Jews of Europe: local monographs, philosophical essays, sociological and psychological investigations, memoirs, fictions, feature films, archives of interviews, and much else. Hannah Arendt’s prophecy would seem to have come true: the history of the problem of evil has become a fundamental theme of European intellectual life.

So now everything is all right? Now that we have looked into the dark past, called it by its name, and sworn that it must never again be repeated? I am not so sure. Let me suggest five difficulties that arise from our contemporary preoccupation with the Shoah, with what every schoolchild now calls “the Holocaust”…

* Rules and quirks of baseball. As I’ve said in the past, rules and quirks are pretty much the only aspect of professional sports that can keep my interest, so this is the perfect link for me.

* Scientists have accidentally discovered a promising new technique for treating memory loss.

* Hillary Only Up By 12 Over Obama In New York? This would be amazing, but I find it a little hard to believe it’s really that close.

* Also in political news: Obama wins the coveted Hulk Hogan endorsement.

Written by gerrycanavan

January 30, 2008 at 11:14 pm

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