What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Crumple » Mon Aug 21, 2017 5:30 am

The Haunted Realm by Simon Marsden
“Such sweet compulsion doth in music lie." -John Milton

"You never know what is enough unless you know what is more than enough." -William Blake

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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Śiva » Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:10 am

Hot off the presses - what looks to be a very promising book. Timely and topical not just for its insight into current American politics (particularly the left or 'liberals') but as a study of the failures of Identity Politics as well.
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The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics by Mark Lilla
The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Hermit » Sat Aug 26, 2017 3:55 am

Śiva wrote:...the left or 'liberals'...
What does "the left or 'liberals'" mean to you?
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Śiva » Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:42 pm

In this case, it's the American left. They're sometimes called 'liberals'. They generally can be counted on to vote Democrat, though some have voted Trump when faced with Hillary. They favour things like abortions being available, gay marriage, and climate change activism. They're often egalitarians and believe in social programs that redistribute wealth and government health care programs. Stuff like that.
The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Svartalf » Sat Aug 26, 2017 3:29 pm

JimC wrote:"The Delirium Brief" by Charles Stross, currently one of my favourite SF authors...
Lol, I know Charles Stross for his landmark contributions to Dungeons and Dragons, maybe I ought to try his later works too.
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby JimC » Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:40 pm

Svartalf wrote:
JimC wrote:"The Delirium Brief" by Charles Stross, currently one of my favourite SF authors...
Lol, I know Charles Stross for his landmark contributions to Dungeons and Dragons, maybe I ought to try his later works too.


It's the latest of a long series called The Laundry Files. The first in the series is "The Atrocity Archives" Clever and well written, IMO...
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Brian Peacock » Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:26 pm

JimC wrote:"The Delirium Brief" by Charles Stross, currently one of my favourite SF authors...

Nice :tup:
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Clinton Huxley » 21 Jun 2012 » 14:10:36 GMT


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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Hermit » Sun Aug 27, 2017 3:55 pm

Śiva wrote:In this case, it's the American left. They're sometimes called 'liberals'. They generally can be counted on to vote Democrat, though some have voted Trump when faced with Hillary.
Ah, thanks. I forgot where you are posting from - a US subsidiary in Canada.
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Śiva » Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:03 pm

Yes, Canada is very Americanized. Also the book is about American politics. However, it contains insight into the left generally as a lot of politics around the world, especially in English-speaking countries, have been Americanized thanks to the constant coverage of their politics.

I wonder what the left means in to you, coming from Australia? Maybe you'd care to share - if that wouldn't upset your mysterious and superior position too much. ;)
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Hermit » Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:54 pm

Śiva wrote:I wonder what the left means in to you, coming from Australia? Maybe you'd care to share - if that wouldn't upset your mysterious and superior position too much. ;)
In short, my conception of the left begins on the other side of liberalism, with reformist communists and ends with revolutionary communists and syndicalist anarchists. I lump social democrats in with liberals. They give capitalism a humane mask.

Don't jump to conclusions. I don't like communism. It has never worked out well, and I don't think it can. Capitalism, on the other hand, is bound to eventually rip itself apart.
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby JimC » Sun Aug 27, 2017 9:07 pm

So, no hope for us, eh Hermit... :sigh:

"We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan in accents most forlorn,
Outside the church, ere Mass began one frosty Sunday morn.
The congregation stood about coat-collars to the ears,
And talked of stock, and crops, and drought as it had done for years.
"It's looking crook," said Daniel Croke; "Bedad, it's cruke, me lad,
For never since the banks went broke has seasons been so bad."

"It's dry, all right," said young O'Neil, with which astute remark
He squatted down upon his heel and chewed a piece of bark.
And so around the chorus ran, "It's keepin' dry, no doubt."
"We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "Before the year is out."
"The crops are done; ye'll have your work to save one bag of grain;
From here way out to Back-o'-Bourke they're singin' out for rain.

"They're singin' out for rain," he said, "And all the tanks are dry."
The congregation scratched its head, and gazed around the sky.
"There won't be grass, in any case, enough to feed an ass;
There's not a blade on Casey's place as I came down to Mass."
"If rain don't come this month," said Dan, and cleared his throat to speak -
"We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "If rain don't come this week."

A heavy silence seemed to steal on all at this remark;
And each man squatted on his heel, and chewed a piece of bark.
"We want an inch of rain, we do, "O'Neil observed at last;
But Croke "maintained" we wanted two, to put the danger past.
"If we don't get three inches, man, or four to break this drought,
We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "Before the year is out."

In God's good time down came the rain; and all the afternoon
On iron roof and window-pane it drummed a homely tune.
And through the night it pattered still, and lightsome, gladsome elves
On dripping spout and window-sill kept talking to themselves.
It pelted, pelted all day long, a-singing at its work,
Till every heart took up the song way out to Back-o'-Bourke.

And every creek a banker ran, and dams filled overtop;
"We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "If this rain doesn't stop."
And stop it did, in God's good time; and spring came in to fold
A mantle o'er the hills sublime of green and pink and gold.
And days went by on dancing feet, with harvest-hopes immense,
And laughing eyes beheld the wheat nid-nodding o'er the fence.

And, oh, the smiles on every face, as happy lad and lass
Through grass knee-deep on Casey's place went riding down to Mass.
While round the church in clothes genteel discoursed the men of mark,
And each man squatted on his heel, and chewed his piece of bark.
"There'll be bush-fires for sure, me man, there will, without a doubt;
We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "Before the year is out."
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Hermit » Mon Aug 28, 2017 3:10 am

JimC wrote:So, no hope for us, eh Hermit... :sigh:
That conclusion would be the result of a false dichotomy. There is plenty of space in the spectrum bordered between hard right and hard left ideologies. :whisper: It's an area you keep saying you're in. I'm not denying that is indeed where you are. You just lean a bit further to the right than you think you do.
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby JimC » Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:26 am

Or just maybe you lean further to the left than you think you do!
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby Hermit » Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:43 am

JimC wrote:Or just maybe you lean further to the left than you think you do!
I could not be further to the left without finding myself in reformist communist territory. :mrgreen:
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Re: What are you reading now? (Chapter 2)

Postby JimC » Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:47 am

Toto, I don't think you're in Kansas any more!
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