Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Paul Auster

Saturday Links

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* Pope Calls for Church Austerity, Wants to Focus on Poor.

Meeting with journalists this morning, Pope Francis laid out his vision for the Catholic church, which includes cutting spending on ornate ceremony and instead spending that money on the poor. He urged excited fellow-Argentines to skip the costly trip to Rome to visit the first non-European Pope in almost 1,300 years, and instead give that money to the poor.

“Oh, how I would like a poor Church, and for the poor,” he told the gathered journalists. He explained the reason he took the name, Francis, after St. Francis of Assissi, was because of St. Francis’s devotion to the poor and love of animal life. On climate change, the Pope remarked, “Right now, we don’t have a very good relation with creation.”

* The rich are different from you and me.

The report, authored by David Callahan and J. Mijin Cha, found that “wealthy interests are keenly focused on concerns not shared by the rest of the American public, like keeping taxes low on capital gains, and often oppose policies that would foster upward mobility among low-income citizens, such as raising the minimum wage.”

* Chicago tried to ban Persepolis? Why? Why?

* The letters of Paul Auster and J.M. Coetzee.

Your Own Private Google: The Quest for an Open Source Search Engine.

Ricky Gervais: The Office Revisited.

* Idiocracy watch: When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a Big Gulp.

Last Survivor of Plot to Kill Hitler Dies at 90.

Years later von Kleist remembered explaining the suicide plot to his father, who paused only briefly before telling his 22-year-old son: “Yes, you have to do this.”

“He got up from his chair,” von Kleist remembered, according to an account by The New York Times, “went to the window, looked out of the window for a moment, and then he turned and said: ‘Yes, you have to do that. A man who doesn’t take such a chance will never be happy again in his life.’”

* The dissertation is a nightmare from which we are trying to awake.

Why are working conditions for restaurant employees so bad?

V-Day Links!

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V-Day links.

* I feel stimulated, and I bet you do too. Here’s Arlen Specter with your partisan post-mortem.

“When I came back to the cloak room after coming to the agreement a week ago today,” said Specter, “one of my colleagues said, ‘Arlen, I’m proud of you.’ My Republican colleague said, ‘Arlen, I’m proud of you.’ I said, ‘Are you going to vote with me?’ And he said, ‘No, I might have a primary.’ And I said, ‘Well, you know very well I’m going to have a primary.'” […]

“I think there are a lot of people in the Republican caucus who are glad to see this action taken without their fingerprints, without their participation,” he said.

Your modern Republican party.

* The headline reads, “Large Banks Are on the Brink of Insolvency.” You heard it from Brad Miller first.

* Heath Ledger fans want the Joker retired in honor of Ledger’s turn in the makeup.

“When Michael Jordan retired, they withdrew the number 23 jersey as an honor. It’s the same thing with Heath.”

Yes, it’s exactly the same.

* Space debris. Via Cynical-C.

* Images from Watchmen. Clock’s at 11:59…

* Paul Auster, science fiction writer.

* Joss Whedon, cultural humanist.

* And Henry David Thoreau, vegetarian.

Vegetarian ideas figured prominently in 19th-century intellectual circles. Though practicing vegetarians remained outside the mainstream, as they do today, vegetarianism itself was intriguing, its arguments compelling. Thoreau, for instance, was not a strict vegetarian, but he did believe that the vegetarian diet was “the destiny of the human race.” Not because animals were cute and fuzzy and therefore ought to be saved from brutality, but because they were dirty and difficult and expensive. “The practical objection to animal food in my case was its uncleanness,” he wrote in Walden, “and besides, when I had caught and cleaned and cooked and eaten my fish, they seemed not to have fed me essentially. It was insignificant and unnecessary, and cost more than it came to. A little bread or a few potatoes would have done as well, with less trouble and filth.” You can stand around in the forest, waiting to spear, skin, and roast a bunny for your next meal, but…why?

Monday Monday

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I’m actually still catching up from the weekend, so that “return to full strength” I mentioned will probably have to wait until later this afternoon or Tuesday morning. Still, I have been saving up some links:

* Be warned: delicious Coca-Cola will destroy your kidneys.

* Via Pandagon, Pittsburgh man Tasered in his own home while sleeping on his own couch.

Police Chief Henry Wiehagen said the officers would not comment, but he disputed Hicks’ version of events.

Hicks wasn’t asleep, Wiehagen said, he was on the couch prone. The officers could not be certain he was unarmed and Hicks “didn’t respond to their reasonable commands,” he said.

“These policemen are very cautious and I don’t blame them for being cautious,” Wiehagen said, noting officers in his department have been shot at.

* Via blucarbnpinwheel, Jonathan Lethem interviews Paul Auster. Two of my favorite writers in one place is very nice.

* Mini-Obama Endorsement Watch: Toni Morrison, who famously proclaimed in 1998 that Bill Clinton was “our first black president. Blacker than any actual person who could ever be elected in our children’s lifetime,” endorses Barack Obama.

* And at Paleo-Future, how experts think we’ll live in 2000 A.D. Other experts have a different opinion.

Written by gerrycanavan

January 28, 2008 at 2:11 pm