Subject: The Crack-Up
Re: "Chatterbox: The Audio-Book Menace"
Date: Aug 2 2001 6:31 AM
Well, all I know is that my wife and I were happily tooling along Ontario Highway 402 last month, en route to Ann Arbor from Niagara Falls, listening to Patricia Highsmith's Strangers on A Train, and a truck was trying to merge to my right, and the book had me so enraptured that I didn't react in time and swerved into the lane behind me, and sure enough, there was a minivan in my blind spot.
No one was injured, but our car is still in the shop.
I blame the book on tape.
Subject: Sandy Koufax/Ed Walsh
Re: "Sports Nut: Deck the Hall"
From: Steve Wolfram
Date: Aug 3 2001 1:35 PM
Sports Nut should reread his comments regarding Ed Walsh and then explain why Sandy Koufax should be in the Hall of Fame. At least Ed Walsh is the career ERA leader. Sandy Koufax had four (a measly FOUR!!) great seasons out of 12. Why is Sandy Koufax in the Hall? Koufax could be the most overrated player of all time.
Subject: We Don't Deserve Stem-Cell Research
Re: "Politics: The Mormon Stem-Cell Choir"
From: Cato the Censor
Date: Aug 2 2001 6:24 PM
It is amazing and ironic that we are having debates on the morality of 21st-century science based upon a book (the Bible) written in the 7th century BCE, whose purpose was to consolidate the power of the Judahite king, Josiah. We are a very odd society where our most powerful officials in this most secular and technologically advanced nation make decisions informed by religions that preach virgin birth, angels, and missing tribes of Israel. I am not suggesting that morality should be missing from this debate. Indeed, ethics and morality are essential to a functioning society. However, it is depressing that we have not advanced to a moral code based upon our current understanding of nature and our place in the universe. Instead, we still look backward to ancient and conflicting tracts based upon a supernatural God. Our society is therefore no more spiritually evolved than ancient Greece or Rome. We have just replaced a pantheon of gods with a more streamlined version.
[Find this post here. This article generated thousands and thousands of passionate posts.]
Subject: Whiny Electorate
Re: "Readme: Democracy Hypochondria"
From: The Outlaw Texas Red
Date: Aug 3 2001 8:23 AM
Kinsley makes excellent points. The public opinion aspect of the polls, how everybody hates them but everybody listens to them, reminds me of another formerly big issue: term limits! It was like everybody was saying Congress needs to have a limit imposed, while, at the same time, the people saying it were voting to re-elect their own congressman. And it wasn't even a self-aware "Stop me before I re-elect him again!" like an alcoholic calling his AA sponsor. No, it was "Ole Pete's done wonders for this district, we need to keep him" but identifying the problem as congressmen in other districts, especially urban minorities and suburban liberals, a form of total cognitive dissonance.
Frayed Condit: Early results from this "Should Condit Resign?" poll in the "Ballot Box" Fray—six-and-a-half yes and one no. Condit is also a leading topic in "The Breakfast Table," but the issue in this post and this one is why Condit and Levy were involved in an affair in the first place. Two weeks ago, Dahlia Lithwick tried to answer the same question in this article.
The Apocalypse is nigh: In the "Readme" Fray, star poster Joseph Britt admits that the impossible happened—"Michael Kinsley has finally written a column every word of which I agree with. The odds against this are so enormous that were I a superstitious person I might see it as a sign to start buying lottery tickets."