Tuesday, 16 January 2007

“From the Inside,” by Alice Cooper, from From the Inside (1978)

I got lost on the road somewhere
Was it Texas or was it Canada
Drinkin’ whiskey in the mornin’ light
I’d work the stage all night long
At first we laughed about it
My long hair drunken friends
Proposed a toast to jimi‘s ghost
I never dreamed that I would wind up
On the losin’ end

I’m stuck here on the inside
Lookin’ out
I’m just another case
Where’s my make-up
Where’s my face
(On the inside)

You all got your kicks
From what you saw up there
Eight bucks even buys a folding chair
I was downin’ Seagram’s on another flight
And I worked that stage all night long
You were screamin’
For the feelin’ up there
And I was much obliged
The old road
Sure screwed me good this time
It’s hard to see
Where the vicious circle ends

I’m stuck here on the inside
I’m lookin’ out
That’s no big disgrace
Where’s my make-up
Where’s my face
(On the inside)
(On the inside)


Here is John Tierney’s new blog. Until recently, Tierney was an op-ed columnist for The New York Times. Now—mirabile dictu—he’s a blogger for the Times.

Richard John Neuhaus on Progressivism

Recognizing that Hofstadter-like liberalism is beyond recall, some who cannot bring themselves to be associated with conservatism in any form are today trying to promote an approximation of that older liberalism under the name of progressivism. The effort is not likely to make much progress, mainly because anything that today is not conservatism has abandoned the respect for civility, culture, and tradition that marked that older liberalism. But of the making and remaking of political brands there is no end.

(Richard John Neuhaus, “The Public Square,” First Things [December 2006]: 59-80, at 66)

Robinson Crusoe

I probably should have waited until Friday arrived before posting this, but I thought you’d want to read it right away. Don’t say I never did anything for you.

Thirty Years

May I whine? A few minutes ago, I pulled a compact disc out of my vast collection: Cheap Trick’s In Color. As I sat here at the computer listening, marveling at the freshness of the music and how it still moves me, I got to wondering when the album was released. To my horror, it was released 30 years ago, in 1977.

I’m sorry, but this cannot be. I’m not even 30 yet—hell, I’m not even 20—so how can I be listening to music that I bought 30 years ago? Ten years, I might understand. Twenty is barely conceivable. But 30? 30?

The first 10 years of my life lasted 10 years. The second 10 lasted 50. The third 10 lasted 30. The fourth 10 lasted 10. The fifth 10 lasted five minutes. I hate to think how long the sixth 10 will last. It ain’t right. It ain’t fair. It ain’t possible.


Some people are puzzled by the fact that many marriages fail. I’m puzzled by the fact that some of them succeed. See here.


Here is a sobering column (by Charles Murray) about intelligence and education.

Best of the Web Today



Glenn Reynolds (a.k.a. InstaPundit) has an interesting op-ed column in today’s New York Times. Progressives like to call opponents of gun control “gun nuts,” with the implication that they’re irrational. Ha! It’s progressives who have an emotional problem with guns. Perhaps we should call them “gunphobes,” along the lines of “homophobes.” I sincerely wish that every adult in my neighborhood were armed. It would make the neighborhood safer, especially if we installed signs along the perimeter reading “Warning! The citizens of this community are armed, righteous, and dangerous.”

Addendum: I can’t wait to see the letters to the editor responding to Reynolds’s column. I’ll post the loopiest ones.

From Today’s New York Times

To the Editor:

I take this timely opportunity to tell how much I, and many thousands of others deeply concerned with the continuing world problems of the last 10 years, are grateful for the tenure of Kofi Annan at the United Nations.

In terms of dedication to democratic justice, objective analysis, wise forethought and necessary action without fear of the inevitable criticism, his occupation of the secretary general’s hot seat restored the belief that great intelligence and calm insight into the political, economic and social human condition can still exist in an office of virtually universal responsibility.

Thank you, Kofi Annan, for all that you have done for the citizens of the world; for your sanity in its madness, for your rejection of any personal aggrandizement.

I trust that Mr. Annan is not going to become a private citizen now, although he has every right to grant himself this. We need him to take up some continuing position high in public life that will give the international order—or rather, disorder—of the world’s resources, material and human, the benefit of his invaluable knowledge and courageous response to the challenges of practical action to achieve peace as the base of international development, fulfillment for nations, peoples and the individual.

Nadine Gordimer
Johannesburg, Jan. 8, 2007

A Year Ago


From the Mailbag

After another friend had his divorce finalized last week, I have sworn off jibing friends with, “If it wasn’t for sex, why would men get married?” Women get married for many different reasons, with sex seldom being in her top 10 (if on the list at all). Men get married for one reason . . . with wifey hoping and praying she can (eventually) get his mind “out of the gutter.” Once she succeeds he begins to enjoy sportsbars more and her company less. Yes, it is risky civilizing the brutes. It all makes one wonder if monogamy is realistic?


Note from KBJ: Years ago, Dear Abby (or was it Ann Landers—and do we really know that there were two of them?) wrote that women use sex to get love, while men use love to get sex. True? If so, isn’t that mutually disrespectful in the Kantian sense of using another as a mere means? Or does the fact that it’s consensual mean that each is treating the other as an end as well as a means? If the latter, then marriage is akin to a commercial transaction. (By the way, Kant defined “marriage” as “the union of two persons of different sex for life-long reciprocal possession of their sexual faculties.” What a romantic! Do you wonder why he never married?)