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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Mon. 09/26/05 07:29:43 PM

Readworthies XIII

A handful of interesting, informative, and insightful articles.

News, editorials, columns, essays, et al.

Yes, Readworthies is back! I don't know if it will be as frequent as before, though.

Freakonomics - Or - You Have to Find the Facts Before You Can Face Them by Orson Scott Card @ WorldWatch (ht):

When the crime rate started dropping in the 1990s, it took everyone by surprise. All the experts had predicted that crime would continue to rise in the radical way it had during the 1970s and 1980s.
Experts were talking about how we'd have to adapt to a society dominated by fear, living in gated communities, paying for far more prisons and police forces.
And then ...
It didn't happen. Instead, crime rates started to fall. All kinds of crime, across the board. And not just in one place, in many places....

Noah Riner '06 Welcomes Class of '09 by Noah Riner @ The Dartmouth Review (ht):

.... You've been told that you are a special class. A quick look at the statistics confirms that claim: quite simply, you are the smartest and most diverse group of freshmen to set foot on the Dartmouth campus. You have more potential than all of the other classes. You really are special.
But it isn't enough to be special. It isn't enough to be talented, to be beautiful, to be smart. Generations of amazing students have come before you, and have sat in your seats. Some have been good, some have been bad. All have been special.
In fact, there's quite a long list of very special, very corrupt people who have graduated from Dartmouth. William Walter Remington, Class of 1939, started out as a Boy Scout and a choirboy and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He ended up as a Soviet spy, was convicted of perjury and beaten to death in prison....

Intelligent Design or Mindless Evolution by Bishop Donald Wuerl @ Diocese of Pittsburgh (ht):

The ongoing debate concerning the origin of the cosmos and the beginning of human life focuses on a number of explanations. For some the answer is in what is called “creationism.” Here the assertion is made that in the beginning God created all that is, basically, as we know and experience reality today. Others find satisfaction in what is described as “evolution by natural selection.” In this camp are some who use this hypothesis to assert that there is no such thing as creation or divine initiation of reality....

Farewell, Church of England? by Peter Mullen @ The New Criterion (ht):

As we prepare for our Harvest Festival Services, we see that what’s left of the English Church is indistinguishable from a lunatic asylum. Everywhere you peer inside this once refined and educated, lovely and lovable national institution, there is only a mania for self-destruction. How else can you account for church services that compete with pantomime for dramatized idiocy? For example, I recently attended a conference for clergy at a beautiful medieval church in Oxford. It was supposed to be a choral Eucharist but there was no organ music — only some plinky-plonky stuff on an out-of-tune piano and mindless choruses in the Jesus Goes to Toytown fashion: interminable glum repetition of what was not worth singing once....

Fools for Communism: Still apologists after all these years by Glenn Garvin @ Reason (ht):

In 1983 the Indiana University historian Robert F. Byrnes collected essays from 35 experts on the Soviet Union — the cream of American academia — in a book titled After Brezhnev. Their conclusion: Any U.S. thought of winning the Cold War was a pipe dream. "The Soviet Union is going to remain a stable state, with a very stable, conservative, immobile government," Byrnes said in an interview, summing up the book. "We don’t see any collapse or weakening of the Soviet system."
Barely six years later, the Soviet empire began falling apart. By 1991 it had vanished from the face of the earth. Did Professor Byrnes call a press conference to offer an apology for the collective stupidity of his colleagues, or for his part in recording it? Did he edit a new work titled Gosh, We Didn’t Know Our Ass From Our Elbow? Hardly. Being part of the American chattering class means never having to say you’re sorry....

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Mon. 09/26/05 07:29:43 PM
Categorized as Readworthies.


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