Credit where due

I had to go to Walmart Thursday evening (the only alternative would have been to do without something I wanted), and the shopping trip went pretty well — in about 7:00, out in ten or fifteen minutes with a bottle of 7 Crown (okay over ice, or with soda.)

Walmart was a (not un)pleasant surprise. The place was very crowded, but everything was moving along in good order. There were lots of employees walking around. One saw me and lead me through some special route (he’d probably been warned in the pre-shift briefing about sketchy-looking old men with bottles) to a staging point where three or four people were waiting for the next register. A lady with a full cart invited me to go ahead of her. Everyone was at least polite, and most were friendly. People were smiling and saying “Happy Thanksgiving.” Maybe by this morning people are tired and tempers frayed. There will probably be appalling reports in the news later. But at least last night things were okay here.

Happy Thanksgiving!

An apparent dilemma

If some things trump freedom of religion, then whatever the state wants to suppress will be cast as one of those things.

If nothing trumps freedom of religion, then anything any depraved freak wants to do will be cast as a sacrament of his religion.

So it looks like we get either a depraved freak show, or repressive state-enforced orthodoxy.

But this is America; it turns out we can have both.

Happy Columbus Day!

Five hundred twenty-six years ago today, on October 12, 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered America. Here’s some celebratory music:


Big tech problems, and Big Tech problems, are limiting what I can do online, but I have a paper copy of Deschooling Society, by Ivan Illich. It’s a mix of acute observation and nonsense, but worth reading.

The views of Anthony Esolen’s father, in Faith, Family, Government, & the Company Store, are almost exactly those of my father.

Don’t know much about history

Particularly California history:

“Originally, [Mision San Francisco de Assis / Mission Dolores in San Francisco] comprised a fairly vast area, with 10,000 head of cattle, 10,000 sheep, many horses, etc., as well as workshops, farms and gardens. In a very real sense, it was San Francisco. Several thousand native Americans lived and worked there. Following Mexican independence, in 1834 the missions were ‘secularized’ meaning, in effect, that all their lands except that upon which stood the church buildings and cemeteries were seized by the Mexican government and given to private citizens. This impoverished the mission and lead to a decades long decline. By 1842, only a few Indians lived at the mission, and what remained of the building fell into serious disrepair.”

There’s an article in Wikipedia, I don’t know how accurate, about the Mexican secularization act of 1833.

The 1986 movie The Mission, with Robert DeNiro and Jeremy Irons, takes place a hundred years earlier on another continent. King Henry’s dissolution of monasteries was a couple of hundred years before that.

Toy guns

“This isn’t even about guns. For a child that age, guns have nothing to do with danger, or violence — much of the fascination has to do with remote control. I can stand over here, and change the state of that object, clear over there. This might be a curious thing for someone to bring up about it, but we should be discussing that aspect of it more often because far from being merely harmless, that’s an important part of a child’s development. Children have a need to become accustomed to achieving direct effect on the world around them; getting comfortable with the idea of engaging action, as a leader, on an individual level, and seeing that action translated into a consequence. Later on they can become acquainted with the concept of irreversible investments, and point-of-commitment. What you do today, you cannot undo tomorrow. From that, comes the understanding of responsibility.” — The Next Thing to Destory: Toy Guns