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Freedom and Fatalism

Freedom begins with the faith that our lives do not have to be the way they are now. Perhaps that is even the entirety of freedom — a state of mind, rather than a state of being.

Personal Genome Project Update

I just received an e-mail from the Personal Genome Project. They are finally ready to expand to a larger number of volunteers. I hope I’ll be among the next set of volunteers accepted into the program. Anyone interested in volunteering themselves should go to the Personal Genome Project website and register.

Understanding and Forgiveness

We are much better off if the proverb, “to understand all is to forgive all,” is not true for us. Insofar as it is true, we are likely to try to insure that we do not understand — because we know full well that we do not want to forgive. Once again, the perfect is […]

Very Like Leaves Upon This Earth

Very Like Leaves Upon This Earth

Men come and go as leaves year by year upon the trees. Those of autumn the wind sheds upon the ground, but when spring returns the forest buds forth with fresh vines. Even so is it with the generations of mankind, the new spring up as the old are passing away.1 Homer : The Iliad […]

Unfamiliar Vices

People often act as if disgust and surprise were intrinsically linked, but there is no reason why familiar vices should trouble us less than unfamiliar ones. At least the unfamiliar have the charm of novelty in their favor.

Human / Chimpanzee Parallels

Since I posted a little while ago about the recent PLoS One article on chimpanzee prostitution, I thought that I should show that I am no speciesist by reminding us all that human prostitution is alive in just those forms we see among the chimpanzees. These two articles I read today should serve as case […]

Underage Drinking and Pointless Laws

Underage Drinking and Pointless Laws

Riding the PATH this morning on my early morning commute back to Princeton, I saw this sign from a new Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey campaign to maintain our current drinking age. While I am as drug-free as they come and no fan of alcohol, the sign struck me as classic, meaningless political rhetoric. […]

Simplificar y Complicar

Every time I open Gómez Dávila’s books, I fall in love with them just like I did the first time: El católico debe simplificar su vida y complicar su pensamiento.1 I’d apply this to everyone, not just Catholics. Siempre es más fácil tener opiniones atrevidas que ser inteligente.2 Nicolás Gómez Dávila : Escolios sobre un […]

Ambition and Ruthlessness

Ambition and ruthlessness are so often found in the same persons that they are frequently confused, but, in truth, ruthlessness is generally a sign of personal weaknesses that impose natural limits on the fruition of one’s ambitions. The man willing to do anything to get ahead generally can do nothing very well — and thus […]

A Note on Susan Boyle’s Triumph

I finally watched the video of Susan Boyle’s success on “Britain’s Got Talent” this morning. It is, indeed, an amazing performance. Plainly, this is as close as we get in real life to the fairy tale story of an overlooked woman with amazing skills finally being given the honors she deserves. I am quite excited […]