Category: Blog

These are random thoughts about topics that interest me — including books, rock and roll, philosophy, culture and daily life. I update it whenever the mood strikes me, shooting for at least once a week but often more frequently than that. I welcome your comments on anything I may discuss here and, when appropriate, will reply as promptly as possible.

Review of ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ by J.D. Vance

As usual, I’m a couple of years behind in getting to this book, which some people seem to view as some sort of cultural touchstone.  To the degree that it portrays a family living in a kind of cultural backwater – both geographically and symbolically – Hillbilly Elegy is interesting enough. Vance’s description of his Read More …

Good news is not limited to the holidays

As the holiday season arrives, it’s common to see the newspaper filled, in print and online, with reports of the generosity and kindness of people throughout the suburbs. Yet, it’s also important to recognize that — contrary to popular opinion — good works, positive accomplishments and just plain good news are common in daily newspapers Read More …

Kneeling, patriotism, talking and the need to listen

“We need to talk.” It’s one of the most dreaded phrases in the English language. But when said, it’s usually true. Just as true and just as dreaded, though perhaps not as familiar, is its natural corollary: “We need to listen.” A newspaper or social media forum can easily — perhaps too easily — facilitate Read More …

Eclipse, Hurricane Harvey show our better nature

Last week started with the a solar eclipse. It ended with a devastating hurricane that was historic even by hurricane standards. It’s easy to see why primitive societies looked for messages from the divine in disruptions of nature. Today, we will leave it to sources more in touch with metaphysics to determine whether any such Read More …