Saturday, March 17, 2018

Saturday Night Radio Drama - Don Haworth - A Summertime

A warm and gently humorous tale about unforeseen happiness and its passing, set on the Lancashire moors in 1939. 

Hetty: Rachel Ibbotson
Jane: Julia Rounthwalte
Frank: Glenn Cunningham
Pickup: Stephen Thorne
Clarissa: Christine Brennan
Director Polly Thomas

Second Feature - Georgina Scull - The Secrets I Keep 

Three actors recreate the verbatim confessions of three ordinary New Zealanders who have held life-long secrets.

Dame Kate Harcourt 
Grant Tilly 
Aaron Alexander

St. Patrick Day

Some passages from Thomas Cahill's book How the Irish Saved Civilization

Patrick's gift to the Irish was his Christianity - the first de-Romanized Christianity in human history, a Christianity without the sociopolitical baggage of the Greco-Roman world, a Christianity that completely inculturated itself into the Irish scene.  Through the Edict of Milan, which had legalized the new religion in 313 and made it the new emperor's pet,  Christianity had been received into Rome, not Rome into Christianity!  Roman culture was little altered by the exchange, and it is arguable that Christianity lost much of its distinctiveness.  But in the Patrician exchange, Ireland, lacking the power and implacable tradition of Rome, had been received into Chirstianity, which transformed Ireland into Something New, something never seen before - a Christian culture, where slavery and human sacrifice became unthinkable, and warfare, tough impossible for humans to eradicate, diminished markedly.  The Irish, in any case, loved physical combat too much for intertribal warfare to disappear entirely.  But new laws, influenced by Gospel norms, inhibited such conflicts severely by requiring that arms be taken up only for a weighty cause.  Ireland would not again see a battle on the scale of the Tain till Brian Boru would rout the Vikings in the eleventh century.

The ending of human sacrifice was common wherever Christianity was introduced, which must have been a blessed relief to those who were at greatest risk of being selected for incredibly brutal, pagan, ritual murder.  I can only imagine it was through the force of personality and authenticity that Patrick was able to overturn that practice.  He seems to have had an enormous amount of courage in facing the brutality of the pagans in Ireland which, I would imagine, impressed them.

The ending of slavery in Ireland, the first place in Europe which I'm aware of it having ended, was, till the time of Patrick, unique.  There had been Chritians who called for the end of slavery,  St. Macrina the Younger and her brother St. Gregory of Nyssa had almost a century before Patrick but he got the powers in Christian Ireland to give it up until it was reintroduced by the English after they invaded and colonized Ireland.  You have to remember that Patrick was an escaped slave, himself, he knew what slavery was in only the way that a slave can know it.

Ireland is unique in religious history for being the only land into which Christianity was introduced without bloodshed.  There were no Irih martyrs (at least not till Elizabeth began to create them eleven centuries after Patrick).  And this lack of martyrdom troubled the Irish, to whom a glorious death by violence presented such an exciting finale.  If all Ireland had received Christianity without a fight, the Irish would have to think up some new form of martyrdom - something even more intereting than the wonderfully grisly store they had begun to learn in the simple continental collections, called "martyrologies," from which Patrick and his successors taught them to read.

Thomas Cahill gets to the subject of his book after that, first the establishment of monaisticism in Ireland and then the rapid transformation of a nearly totally illiterate nation into the scribal publishing powerhouse on the outer edge of Western Europe that, literally, preserved huge parts of classical and even pagan culture, as illiteracy ruled in the rest of Western Europe.  He notes how it was from Ireland that not only Christianity but literacy and the texts of classical and other texts were introduced into Scotland, England, Wales, France and elsewhere in Europe as the medieval period proceeded.  I might go into the ironies, given the popularity of the English "enlightenment" myth, pretty much invented by Edward Gibbon,  that Christians burned the Great Library at Alexandria  among atheists and online Pagans, that it was those poor, put upon pagans who ended the great period of Irish scholarship and intellectual missionary efforts when the Vikings pillaged and destroyed the Irish monasteries in Ireland and elsewhere.

As to how paganism in Ireland fared under Christianity,  Cahill says:

As these transformed warrior children of Patrick's heart lay down the swords of battle, flung away the knives of sacrifice and cast aside the chains of slavery,  they very much remained Irishmen and Irishwomen.  Indeed, the survival of an Irish psychological identity is one of the marvels of the Irish story.  Unlike the continental church fathers, the Irish never troubled themselves overmuch about eradicating pagan influences, which the tended to wink at and enjoy. The pagan festivals continued to be celebrated, which is why we today can still celebrate the Irish feasts of May Day and Hallowe'en.  To this day there is a town in Kerry that holds a fertility festival each August, where a magnificent he-goat presides like Cernunnos for three days and nights, and bacchanalian drinking, wild dancing and varieties of sexual indiscretion are the principal entertainments.  It is this characteristically Irish melange of pagan and Christian that forms the theme of Brian Friel's magnificent play "Dancing at Lughnasa" - Lughnasa being the harvest feast of the god Lug, still celebrated on August 1 in parts of Ulster.   Irish marriage customs remained most un-Roman.  As late as the twelfth century - seven centuries after the conversion of the Irish to the Gospel - a husband or wife could call it quits and walk out for good on February 1, the feast of Imbolc, which meant that Irish marriages were renewable yearly, like magazine subscriptions or insurance policies.  As lat as the last century naked men (and, for all we know, women) races horses bareback along Clare's beaches thorough the surf at high tide, looking for all the world like their prehistoric warrior ancestors.  But after Patrick the eviler gods shrank in stature and became much less troublesome, became in fact the comical gargoyles of medieval imagination, peering fearfully from undignified nooks, and the belief grew strong that the one thing the devil cannot bear is laughter.

I'd like to make a distinction between that and how the commercial, brewing industry inspired American style desecration of St. Patrick Day, though the distinction would be subtle.  I'm not exactly sure I agree with him about Hallowe'en, but I will agree with him, completely, about Brian Friel who was a wonderful playwright.

Edmund Campion, the Elizabethan Jesuit who was martyred at Tyburn in 1581 left us a description of the Irish that rings true to this day:

"The people are thus inclined:  religious, franke amorous, irefull, sufferable of paines infinte, very glorious, many sorcerers, excellent horsemen, delighted with warres, great almes-givers, [sur]passing in hospitalitie...  They are sharpe-witted, lovers of learning, capable of any studie whereunto they bend themselves, constant in travaile, adventurous, intractable, kinde-hearted, secret in displeasure."

We can make out in this Elizabethan group portrait not only the Irish of our own day but the lively ghosts of Irishmen long past - Ailil, Medb, Cuchulainn. Derdriu. and, after a fashion, Patrick himself.  Whether or not Freud was right when he muttered in exasperation that the Irish were the only people who could not be helped by psychoanalysis, there can be no doubt of one thing:  the Irish will never change. 

I have often wished my grandparents had lived long enough so I could ask them what they thought about Freudian theories when they first heard of them, their lives included the period when those were translated into English and popularized.   I strongly suspect they'd have thought they were as ridiculous as, in fact, they are and that the many people who fell for that nonsense were ridiculous.  If that's a national trait of the Irish, I don't know.  I am at a loss for how anyone, anywhere, could have been so credulous as to believe in them, but, then, I'm at a loss to understand how much so much of the total nonsense that constitutes the equipment of an allegedly educated English speaker, much of it junk invented in the 18th century, is required to pass as respectable.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Especially Stupid Hate Mail

Why would that dope think I'd be upset that he claims someone gave him some CDs that I wouldn't want?    Especially since I figue he's probably lying about it as he lies about so much.   

I wouldn't even care if someone really did give him CDs I might want.  NOT that I'd expect him to want anything good. 

Andrew Hill - Refuge

Kenny Dorham – trumpet
Eric Dolphy – alto saxophone
Joe Henderson – tenor saxophone
Andrew Hill – piano
Richard Davis – double bass
Tony Williams – drums

The late afternoon sunlight coming in my window made me think of this. 

Lorraine Hunt Lieberson - Peter Serkin - Calling You

She did a great job with the song.   Another singer who died far too young.  One of the best examples I've heard of a classical singer crossing over to a popular song.  She gets right up to the edge of going too far and pulls back just in time.  Peter Serkin's accompaniment is perfect.

Hate Mail

The word "interpret" doesn't mean "impose your choices over the composers'" it doesn't mean "thrilling the ignorant and vulgar by vulgar display".   It means consulting and taking seriously the instructions of the composer and trying to discern the composers' intentions and communicating those, not displaying yourself.  That's called "show biz".   That is when it's not a symptom.  But I don't want to get back to Glenn Gould just now.  

I'm a few years apart from the fine musician, Peter Serkin and have followed his career most of my life.  If you want to see how stupid what Stupy said was, go look up the reviews of his performances, especially the ones where the reviewer didn't agree with Serkin's interpretive decisions.  I suspect he read one review, once, or one jacket cover and is regurgitating what an ignorant critic said about him.  Criticism as a career has something just a little bit pathetic about it, especially when it's just an imposition of opinion without any real basis.   

Mozart -  Sonata in B-Flat Major, K. 570

Update:  Here's what Ned Rorem said and, unusually, I agree with him on this.   "His [Peter Serkin's] uniqueness lies, as I hear it, in a friendly rather than over-awed approach to the classics, which nonetheless he plays with the care and brio that is in the family blood. (And) he's not afraid to be ugly. He approaches contemporary music with the same depth as he does the classics, and he is unique among the superstars in that he approaches it at all."

Ideology Is Just A Con Man's Patter With A College Education

But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and hurtful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction.  For the love of money is the root of all evils . . .

1 Timothy

One of the more inconvenient passages of the Scriptures, one of those many involving money that are never mentioned as people concentrate on several about S. E. X. 

Yesterday the estimable Charles Pierce in writing about Robert Mueller's subpoena of Trump's business records said

It looks as though he’s [Mueller] decided that everything with which this president is involved is so irredeemably corrupt and lousy with dirty money that trying to split the difference between which corruption was involved with the campaign, and what dirty money financed it, is an impossible rat’s nest to untangle. So the easiest thing is to light a match and see what burns in what color flame.

Which reminds me that, witnessing the floridly complete corruption of the successor regimes of the great Marxist experiments,  I've concluded we were all suckers for ever believing any of that was a product of ideological conviction or principle, that was always a part of a huge, old-fashioned con job conducted by gangsters who, like all successful con men rope in suckers when necessary and, once in power, rule by ruthless terror, intimidation, and normalizing cynicism and discouragement.  I am convinced that is a more fruitful means of understanding most of the corruption of the 20th century,  the non-royal, pseudo-democratic, pseudo-republics than trying to fit their actions to their claimed beliefs.   Something which works, as well, to explain the evil of the whole series of "most Christian highnesses"  and, really, just about anyone who has held power and managed to work it like a con.

Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Mao, etc. are all more relevantly seen as massively successful gangsters,  others like Trotsky, the pathetic American communists in all of their myriad of penny-ante syndicates, unsuccessful gangsters, often agents for the successful one.   Donald Trump being installed with the help of American and, especially Australian American gangster punks is simply a Russian gangster oligarch succeeding in doing what his predecessors tried all during the 20th century tried to do and failed because American oligarchs found they could do business with him.   The role that the unregulated media played in creating Putin's puppet and installing him in office is an epic in the idiocy of  an ideology that values freedom to lie over the truth, something which, I'll give him credit for,  Putin understood how to corrupt in the most effective way. 

The United States has a long history of florid corruption under a Constitution that is alleged to prevent it, arguably, at times, it has managed to reign in some of the worst of it, though the conquest through genocide of the native population and slavery, both pre and post-civil war, flourished by that document.   And several times there have been great advancements, always on the basis of the distribution of wealth and opportunities, the G. I. Bill, Social Security, Medicaid, in the 19th century The Land Grant Act and Homestead Act,  The Morrill Act - which created the great land-grant universities* . . .  So we know that the easily cynical dodge that all of government is inevitably corrupt is a lie and that when government is not corrupt it can be the means of relief of poverty and destitution and the creation of material well being and far more. 

The abstract models of such things that are so popular with pseudo-sciences, such as political "science,"  even the simple geometric figure of a line from right to left has suckered us for a long time.   So have the ideological systems that turned out in real life to be no more than a con man's patter with a college education.   I do think it's telling that with all their many degrees, with all of their academic esteem - Stephen Cohen, I'm thinking of you - don't seem to know what the author of 1 Timothy knew about the origin of that kind of evil.  And yet they wonder why people don't trust them. 

I don't think anything much new is required to change this, at least in the United States.  One thing that is necessary is to stop the media from lying someone like Trump into existence then putting him in office.   I do think that the career of Rupert Murdoch and his gang makes allowing someone like him into the country where they can propagandize us into, first the toilet, then the sewer, the river American was sold down by "free speech - free press" can serve as what needs to be changed.  Merely making it unprofitable for the media to lie through allowing them to be sued out of it would probably go a long way to protecting us.  And by the media I don't mean as imagined by Herbert Hoover in the early days of radio, I mean any media which has a political or likely political effect, cable is largely what got us Trump though "social media" was certainly a big help to Putin. 

I do think one of the things we have to change is that ideological position which has left us so vulnerable to the corruption of a foreign enemy, but which was always a source of vulnerability to our domestic oligarchs.   The press has to serve the interests of The People in our, individually and collectively, knowing enough of the truth to avoid electing our enemies.   To create a mature enough electorate that will not have a large enough population of suckers led mostly by emotion and, worse, an attraction to spectacle and entertainly outrageous display.   Our media has created the supporters of Trump as surely as they created Trump, the ideology that says they must be allowed to because Madison and Hamilton and John Jay couldn't imagine the modern media and so said what they did about that is unworkable in the 21st century.  It has to be junked for a position that protects the media when it tells the truth but prevents it from lying us into disaster for its own profit. 

But in the end, it was and always has been about the love of money and the power that allows its accumulation.

* I do think it is a tragedy that the great advance in educational opportunity happened in a period when the religious motivations of those such as Jonathan Baldwin Turner were supplanted by the scientistic hegemony and materialist ideology of the late 19th century, which planted the things that would destroy the very basis of such democratic advancements.   The total corruption of scientism and materialism on display in the 20th century dictatorships and, especially, in the Americans, enjoying, often employed by institutions created by beliefs which they were taught to disdain, who supported those anti-democratic ideologies and dictators is a real life example of why those are not sustainable.  The collapse of that into the dictatorships of Putin and, as it may or may not develop, Xi Jinping, following on the other, various "scientific" regime, from extreme right to alleged-left, the ideological support they have had from American intellectuals should discredit that ruse for any thinking person.   Marxism leading to fascism seems to be something of a pattern, all they had to do was dump the socialist ruse that, as used by the Nazis, was as much of a ruse when used by Communists. 

I'm tempted to go again into the various corruptions introduced by such as Oliver Wendell Holmes jr. and the source of them again, but that will have to wait.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Something To Look Out For

Watching the footage of Donald Trump not nailing the election for his guy in Pennsylvania last weekend, I noticed how often when there are people in back of him while he's speaking, there is a minority person behind his left shoulder.
Image result for trump speaking for rick saccone

Image result for trump pennsylvania rally 18th

Image result for trump pennsylvania rally

Related image

Related image

Couldn't find a still of the footage of him talking with a black woman with a big hat from last weekend but I saw the footage.

I first noticed that  from other footage of him talking to crowds during the campaign.   What's up with that?   Do they rent them from somewhere?

These Students Give Me A Rare Reason For Hope

I am so proud of America's public school students who held the mass walkouts yesterday, from what I understand they will continue today here in the North East where many schools had a snow day and there are plans for future walkouts as well as the planned massive demonstration in Washington DC.  This is a demonstration of something Howard Zinn said, that any good change in the United States comes from the direct action of The People, you can't depend on the Constitution or the media or the government to do the right thing and sometimes you have to apply this kind of pressure, you have to build a movement.   Unlike the gun nuts, this is directly motivated by the experience of the reign of terror that the billionaires and the gun industry have inflicted on us, especially in students who have to gather in large numbers, in schools.  This is The People against the corporate "persons" created by the Supreme Court and the powers they have given corporations and billionaires, foreign and domestic to corrupt out government and turn it into their servant, not ours. 

I pray for the safety of those student demonstrators and for their success and hope that this empowers them to be active in politics, including to vote the servants of the billionaires and gun industry out of office and off the courts. 

Artificial Stupidity

Have I said recently how much I hate the spelling "self-correcting" feature in software.   Especially when I can't figure how to turn it off.   

Hate Mail

I wonder how many of them, without googling, could tell you anything about Paul Dirac* who regularly appears in the top 10 of physicists on polls of people in physics.  I wonder how many of them could tell you anything about Enrico Fermi who has been called "the last physicist" meaning the last person who made major contributions in both theoretical and experimental physics.  

You know, you don't have to be in the top 10 to do important stuff or to be an admirable person.  Well, I suppose there wouldn't be any way to suspect someone who isn't admirable and does nothing important would know anything about that, so cancel that part of the last sentence. 


Stupy is getting more unhinged about me not posting his comments, his lies as to what I said are getting ever more extreme.   I've never said there was no reason to believe in the Big Bang, that's just him lying.  So, planes landed safely, the sun rose on schedule, water is wet.   

* Dirac, a extreme specimen of  Brit-atheism has been called the quintessential reductionist whose ignorance of philosophical issues led him to make some rather stupid statements, which has become typical of such scientists.   Even a great genius can be totally stupid in a field outside of their area of competence.  And so many of them are.  Those who are universally stupid at least have that to help them feel arrogant. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Misled By Laziness, Stupidity, Bigotry and The Mouldy Fashion of Atheism - Hate Mail

She's not the stupidest of the dumb bunnies at Duncan's blog but she's in the running, or doddering, rather.  Teamed up with Dopey, they're what you might call a gormidible team.  

As it happens, if either of them were not so stupid and lazy they might look up to find out that Conor Lamb is a Catholic who attended a Catholic high school.   I can't imagine he or any Democrat who cares to win an election would be stupid enough to take their position on religion. 

Dopey gets upset when I periodically refuse to post his comments here.  He tries to annoy me into paying attention to him by lying about me at Duncans geriatric daycare.   She calls herself Misinformed, or something like that, which is only the truth.   At least she's not so stupid as to take the name of a goddess who eats shit or another that has an inevitable association with crap, they're those so stupid over there. 

Found Poem In The Information Age: On A Google Search

or, Sic Transit 

Stephen Hawking (Trending)

Albert Einstein (Trending)

Neil deGrasse Tyson (Trending)

Carl Sagan (Trending)

Galileo Galilei (Trending)

Felicity Jones (Trending)

Richard Dawkins  (Trending)

Stephen Hawking

I suppose I should say something about the death of Stephen Hawking, world renowned theoretical physicist, icon of science, in his late years celebrity atheist.  And, I would guess the reason most people have even heard of him, a very long surviving victim of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis whose intellectual achievements are a testimony to why even the most severely disabled peoples lives have meaning and, in the totally inadequate and, in this context, repulsive word for it "value". 

When he's come up in the news in recent years I've noted that Hawking's career as a public figure, a celebrity reminded me of Olympic figure skating, something which people ignore for four years only to figure they're expert enough to have a meaningful opinion of when they watch that ballroom dancing on skates, strongly held opinions that they have an emotional investment in on the basis of ignorance.   Hawking himself was among those who noted his most famous book, A Short History of Time, was probably one of the least read of books.   I remember a local Hawking fan, a man much older than Hawking who bought it and found within four pages that he didn't have the math and physics chops to read the book.  And he was probably in the top 5% of people in the country in math, though probably lower in physics.   I have never cracked the book because I figured it would be beyond me and I don't generally buy books just to buy them.

But I'm not going to make this about that because it's supposed to be about Hawking who I have to say I don't have very strong feelings about.  His very long and very well supported life and work in extreme disability I only have the highest praise for, along with that all important support, financial as well as personal support, especially by his dedicated nurses and wives and aids must have also required a good amount of courage which is entirely admirable.  It does make me wish that some of the stuff about atheism, aliens, colonizing space, etc. had been spent on getting more support for non-celebrity people with disability.   But he was free to make that decision, a person's life being theirs to do with what they think best is among the most important aspects of any struggle for civil rights and adequate material support.    It was his right to spend his life as he chose. 

I do think that even with his achievements in science he might figure as a pivotal figure at the end of what can be known through physics, as one of the key agents of bringing physics and, especially, cosmology into the period of decadence that Bertrand Russell predicted when he read Arthur Stanley Eddington's The Nature of the Physical World in the 1920s and realized that physics in the first two decades of the 20th century had demolished the materialism that Russell and many others in science believed in with all of the faith of a young earth creationist.   I'm still shocked when he along with  Leonard Mlodinow called for physics and cosmologists to do "science" without having it attached to verification in the physical universe, that writing equations should be considered as a sufficient means of arriving at truth without any verification that the various terms and relationships that they could balance on paper had any relation to actual objects in the physical universe, turning the "unreasonable effectiveness that Eugene Wigner marveled at in a famous article, into a moot point.  Taking the "nature" out of science.   That effectiveness, as demonstrated by experimental science is the only reason that science has any demonstrated effectiveness and is the sole reason that anyone has to believe in it at all.   Russell predicted something like the reversion into astrology which was, actually, something which came in the Renaissance which had been far less popular in the medieval period, would be the result of the "twilight of science"  which would seem to be a hall mark of the insertion of materialist ideology into science, one of the most successful extra-scientific pollutions of science in the 19th and 20th centuries.   What Russell thought was a guarantor of scientific validity has, actually, turned into a demand by such ideologues that the profession of science abandon verification in the natural world at all.   How a cosmologist creating universes out of numbers which will be exempt from rigorous observational verification in the natural universe differs from an astrologer doing the same thing on a much smaller scale is something I'd love to have someone explain.  If only I had smarter trolls.

Those polls they do of physicists as to who were and are the greatest physicists of all time usually contain Hawkings name, though I've never seen him ranked as high as the publicity surrounding him would lead the lay public to believe.   My guess is if it hadn't been for his disability and his working despite that he would be as obscure as other physicists and cosmologists who rank much higher on such lists.  I think it must have sometimes been annoying to him for being famous for things almost none of his fans understood - to a large extent he was famous for being famous, not for what he'd written.  I think that's what his descent into celebrity atheism was largely about.  Which is tragic but unavoidable in modern science.  Many of the most important discoveries in modern science are so complex that you can't begin to understand them even if you've specialized in a closely related field.  Try following the brawls among geneticists and you'll find yourself on a totally alien battlefield.   The same in the physical sciences.  I wonder if that ever frustrated him.

I hope Stephen Hawking was pleasantly surprised to find he was wrong about an afterlife, God and similar things.   That's something I hope awaits all of us.  I wish his soul well.   Maybe now he has access to those areas of time and the universe that physics can't reach.  It's probably the only real hope that a scientist can ever really know that because science only goes so far.  I hope he is happy about that.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Monday Night Radio Drama Classic - Dylan Thomas - Under Milk Wood

Part 1 

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Dylan Thomas and a cast of actors gave this classic performance of one of the greatest of radio dramas.


Update:  Sorry, forgot the last part.

Update 2:  Ah, no, it's called, by Thomas, "A Play for Voices" and it was commissioned by the BBC as a radio play.  This production was done live in New York, the poet reading the "First Voice" part which he, having died, was first performed on radio by Richard Burton.  Other parts were played by other actors, including Sada Thompson, Nancy Wickwire, Allen Collins, Dion Allen, Roy Poole, playing multiple roles.    I don't think the later recording that was read by just Richard Burton is nearly as effective.

It was a radio script which BBC producer Douglas Cleverdon had been coaxing for years from Thomas and which was finally delivered in October 1953, a month before the writer's death.

More Hate - The Illiteracy of The "Brights"

One of the things I cited in that post on the relationship of Tacitus to Nazi ideology said this:

“He [Tacitus] depicted the tribes as descending from an ‘earth-born god,’ and thus deeply rooted to the Germania territory,” said Krebs. “The Nazis employed that rhetoric to advance their theory that the culture of the German volk was inherently tied to the soil on which they were born.”

For Nazi ideology, the text proved an excellent propaganda tool.

In 1936, for example, the Nazi party convention in Nuremberg featured a historic “Germanic” room with walls covered in quotes by Tacitus.

And the leader of the Nazi party? Though Hitler doesn’t mention the Germania specifically in any of his writings, Krebs is “certain that he must have known about it.”

“Hitler was not extremely literate,” said Krebs, “but two books that he is known to have read made ample use of Tacitus.”

Moreover, Krebs said, Hitler’s preferred “authority” on questions of race — adviser Hans F.K. Günther — was “intimately familiar” with the text.

Another of the few books we know Hitler read and incorporated into his Nazi theory was "Menschliche Erblichkeitslehre und Rassenhygiene" by the distinguished scientists,  Erwin Baur, Eugen Fischer (who was already guilty of crimes against humanity)  and Fritz Lenz (who should have been prosecuted for crimes against humanity), which was vital to his Mein Kampf.  That book is based solidly on the theory of natural selection.    We know that because he was given the two volumes of that work by the publisher Julius Lehmann while he was in prison, specifically to help him formulate his Nazi theory.   It went on to be one of the main references in the further development of Nazism.  Lehmann was also Günther's publisher, and also gave Hitler some of his writings.   Lehmann has been said to have given Hitler more of what he read than anyone else, so he's sort of the, um, "intellectual" padrone of Nazi theory.

Hitler's intellectual basis wasn't very wide but it is now largely known and documented.  He got a lot of his ideas second hand but the origin of the ideas is clear and it's not my fault if you're too ignorant to do anything but spout the common received propaganda of the 1950s-60s that didn't get that right.  You can no more separate Hitler from that than you can the overt citations of William Luther Pierce, the author of The Turner Diaries and probably the most dangerous figure in the renewal of Nazism in the United States.  I've written about these things over and over again, with quotes and citations and even links that I'd rather not have stunk up this blog with.

One thing we know he didn't rely on,  The Jews recorded in The Bible.

Update:   Just as a point of information, I've not posted 62 comments from those who troll me since the beginning of Lent.  I've got a spam file with hundreds and hundreds of such comments, most of them from one jackass.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Hate Mail

Melinda Henneberger:  Many people see faith as anti-intellectual. 

Madeleine L'Engle:  Then they're not very bright. It takes a lot of intellect to have faith, which is why so many people only have religiosity.  

From an interview published in 2004

I can say that before going online and reading the thoughts of many more atheists than I was likely to meet in person,  I was surprised to find how often it wasn't associated with intellectual sophistication but was far more likely to be associated with anti-intellectual or pseudo-intellectualism.   You guys at Duncan's blog played a big role in changing my thinking on that.  You only have yourselves to thank on that count. 

It's not my opinion that the Nazis were enormously influenced by Tacitus, it is a fact that they were, by their own words and something they claimed, themselves.  I went over that before, with citations and with lengthy quotes from Tacitus.  I called one of the posts I did on that "Stupidity Answered At Noontime."  You don't have to take my word for it, you can read Tacitus and you can find both Nazi and neo-Nazi citations being made today.  Citations of his antisemitic hatred of the Jews and the Hebrew tradition and his laudatory praise of the Germanic tribes, both of which were like mothers' milk to the Nazis.   If you're too stupid to learn, well, that's not my fault.   It's my experience that that's a common trait of atheists.   I find that they can't absorb information unless it supports their preexisting preference.  They're like other fundamentalists in that.  

Address Unknown Text

I found out that the text of the original text of Address Unknown is available online.  I also found out that the authors real name was Kathrine Kressmann Taylor who published it under Kressmann because they didn't think it would get as positive a reception if it was thought a woman wrote it.  So you can read it as well as listen to it. 
I've been ordered to spend a couple of days in bed at risk of pneumonia.  Having had it twice before, I'm not eager to risk another go round.  I'll post something tomorrow, maybe even later today.