Endless Curiosity

May 31, 2010

Obama is Pathetic

Filed under: Economics, Politics — Alec @ 6:00 am

Obama is Pathetic. I say this with a lot of love because I’m a Democrat through and through. But he’s handed crisis after crisis and what does he do?  Stands aside, studies, intellectualizes, thinks. What he doesn’t do is take advantage of the crisis. But, as Maureen Dowd said, “Presidencies are always about crisis management.”

Economist Paul Romer said in 2004, “a crisis is a terrible thing to waste,” a sentiment echoed by Rahm Emanuel when he said, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.” But Obama wastes crisis after crisis.

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May 23, 2010

Religion and Morality

Filed under: God, Life, Psychology — Alec @ 5:34 am

I was reading an article called The New War Between Science and Religion, which starts with:

There is a new war between science and religion, rising from the ashes of the old one, which ended with the defeat of the anti-evolution forces in the 2005 “intelligent design” trial. …. The new war pits those who argue that science and “moderate” forms of religion are compatible worldviews against those who think they are not.

The former group, known as accommodationists…. suggest that there are deeply mysterious, spiritual domains of human experience, such as morality, mind, and consciousness, for which only religion can provide deep insights.

I don’t want to address the domains of mind and consciousness because I think that science will eventually give us answers. Morality is much more interesting because there’s no agreement on what is moral and immoral, and certainly religion (at least the Bible) doesn’t seem to provide good answers.

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May 17, 2010

Why do I bother?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Alec @ 7:50 am

There are two interesting articles in the NY Times today. Well, there are probably quite a few, but I’m just going to talk about two of them.

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May 9, 2010

More about Writing

Filed under: Life, Psychology — Alec @ 7:05 am

Following on from yesterday’s post, Out of Sheer Rage, the second thing I remember from the panel, Writing-The Process, was Michael Stoff talking about how he liked to have two books or articles to work on because then he could procrastinate on the “most important” one by working on the other one. A lovely trick to help him avoid total procrastination. Writing is hard, and it helps to have tricks.

That reminds me, there was a third thing that I remember from the panel. One of the panelists quoted Gene Fowler: “Writing is easy. All you do is stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” Ha!

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May 8, 2010

Out of Sheer Rage

Filed under: Uncategorized — Alec @ 4:34 pm

During the recent Conference on World Affairs here at C.U. Boulder, I helped with a panel called Writing-The Process. I remember only two things that the panelists said, one of them being that Stuart Schoffman highly recommended the book Out of Sheer Rage, by Geoff Dyer. Schoffman spoke so highly of it that I bought it and read it on my recent trip to Costa Rica.

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May 3, 2010

The world’s first third world first world country

Filed under: Economics, Life, Politics, Psychology — Alec @ 8:52 pm

These days it seems that we are slowly on the way to becoming the world’s first third world first world country. As I drive I notice more and more potholes in the roads, signs of a slow slide into the third world.

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May 2, 2010

Hiking Chirripó

Filed under: Hiking — Alec @ 12:30 pm

I’ve just returned from Costa Rica, where one of the things we did was go down to San Gerardo de Rivas where I hiked up Cerro Chirripó, the highest peak in Costa Rica (3820 meters, 12,533 feet). I don’t expect the general reader to be interested in this post, but I’m writing so that future hikers might find it via a Web search.

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