Friday, October 30, 2009

Seven quick takes

  • The kids are down with a bronchial infection caused by a mycoplasma.  It's going around, and it's often misdiagnosed as flu.
  • Orestes A. Brownson is online!
  • Over the Rhine!  It takes me about two days to make my way through their discography, which I've done nearly every day for the last couple of months.  Some of their songs are shockingly beautiful from the first note; others are good pop songs until the moment when they uncork some unexpected harmonic something and perfection is achieved.
  • The yard is carpeted with gold.
  • Judging by the volume of her voice, a certain 4-year-old should have gone to bed a couple of hours ago.
  • Migne's complete Patrologia Latina is now online and freely accessible, according to Rod Letchford's formidable google sleuthing.
  • If you're interested the American constitution and our founding, Brownson's The American Republic is indispensible reading.

The works of Orestes A. Brownson

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I'm, like, happy and everything

"Happy shall he be who takes your little ones and dashes them against the rock!"  That's Psalm 137, talking about the happiness of those who dash their enemies' children against the rock.  In Patristic exegesis, happy are those who take even the beginnings of temptation and dash them against the Rock, Christ.  In homeschooling, happy is the Dad who can dash against the rock his son's misuse of "like" the first moment it ever happens.  He was talking about looking for a paper airplane that had landed on a ceiling fan.  He reported, "I was like, 'Where is that plane?'"  We don't allow such offensive barbarisms in their speech and he was instantly, gently and firmly corrected.

Why, yes, I am uptight about some things.  Why do you ask?

Urban farming in Detroit

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The lingering effect of the Civil War

I've finally made my way to Orestes Brownson's The American Republic in my tour through the bibliography of American history.  Here's a notable quote that may explain the US government's centralizing collectivist tendencies of the last many decades, and along the way he hints at the unexpected and sometimes long-hidden effects of the slaughter of wholesale war:

The great problem of our statesmen has been from the first, How to assert union without consolidation, and State rights without disintegration? Have they, as yet, solved that problem? The war has silenced the State sovereignty doctrine, indeed, but has it done so without lesion to State rights? Has it done it without asserting the General government as the supreme, central, or national government? Has it done it without striking a dangerous blow at the federal element of the constitution? In suppressing by armed force the doctrine that the States are severally sovereign, what barrier is left against consolidation? Has not one danger been removed only to give place to another?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


For the first time since the American invasion of Iraq I turned to CNN to see what's new.  The big news was some movie about Michael Jackson called "This Is It."  Wrong answer, CNN.  I'll check back in another decade or so, if you're still around then.

Monday, October 26, 2009

My favorite book is online!

Bulwark of the Republic: A Biography of the Constitution, Burton Hendrick, 1937.

Here's a review from Time magazine the summer the book was published.  I don't recall the author being the enthusiast about the usurpations of Roosevelt II that Time presents, but then I haven't read it in a decade - my last reading of it was in '98 or '99 when our second child was a baby.   The reading before that was in '89 or '90; I recall reading the sections on Webster and Lincoln at the laundromat in Shelbyville back when I was working at Butch's Amoco in Findlay.

I'll give it another read now that one of our two copies has been discovered on a bookshelf in the foyer.

(Come to think of it, The Founders' Constitution is now my favorite book, with Bulwark probably coming in second.  All this is after the absolute frontrunners, Psalms and the Gospel of Mark.)