Pandemia

How Coronavirus Hysteria Took Over Our Government, Rights, and Lives (by Alex Berenson) (2021) This splendid book is both a comprehensive review of how the world got everything wrong about Covid-19 (or, if you have a conspiratorial bent, how the plague was weaponized by authoritarian forces to cow and terrify us into submission), and a story of how one man kept yelling from the back of the truck that this emperor had a spiked crown but no clothes. Or in his words, “how media hysteria, political partisanship, overreliance on unproven technology, and scientific illiteracy brought the United States and the…

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Suddenly it’s Christmas (Reprise)

December 21, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | LIFE, Ulalume |

(Apologies to Loudon Wainwright III) Suddenly it’s Christmas, depending on your view, A time for winding-up and thereby going on the brew; In the north, they’re dressing warm and feeling rather nippy, Celebrating an illegitimate Jewish povo chippy. It is a time for contemplating meats of every kind, Chewing on God’s creatures, drinking oneself blind; ‘Tis the season, wear a mask and get that shot into your arm, Else men might come and haul you off to some dread animal farm.

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Don’t Juice Jussie!

December 12, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | American Politics, LIFE, PETER'S WRITING, POLITICS |

The tribulations of Jussie Smollett (Dec. 21) or Faux Victimhood as Heroism (With apologies to Robert Southwell) As he in hoary winter’s night stood shivering in the snow, Surprised he was with sudden heat which which made his heart to glow, And lifting up a fearful eye to view what men came near, Two white supremacists in MAGA hats did then appear; Who, armed with bleach and bearing noose, caused floods of tears to shed As though his floods should quench the flames which with his tears were fed. “Alas,” quoth he, “my Subway sandwich now in snowdrift lies, Though…

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The Coddling of the American Mind

By Greg Lukianoff & Jonathan Haidt (2018) The Guardian hated this book, so it must be good, right?  Not necessarily. it is a bit like Mr. Haidt’s The Righteous Mind – an excellent book – transferred onto campus, where, the authors argue, i-Gen or Gen Z students are being programmed by social media and their professors into fragile, hysterical, blind little snowflakes. This resolves into the ludicrous examples seen in recent years of safe spaces (current example: Arizona State socialist students seeking to bar Kyle Rittenhouse from attending an online course!), cancel-culture and witch-hunts, all vivified by helicopter parents, university bureaucrats,…

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Queensland Museum

November 29, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, LIFE, TRAVEL |

November 2021 TVC loves V & A style museums, the ones that pile-up objects, so that stuffed animals lie cheek by jowl with ancient graves, next to planes, trains and automobiles, and so on. (For example, Edinburgh). Housed in a repulsive building after the New Brutalism style of architecture (main image), near to the Queensland Art Gallery’s quaint homage to the Louvre pyramid, the Queensland Museum was opened by then Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen (it’s a wonder the current Premier’s myrmidons haven’t covered-up the plaque).  It was a welcome respite from the heat after a brief stop at the Gallery of Modern…

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