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Old 07-12-2014, 07:13 AM
 
Location: Floyd Co, VA
3,513 posts, read 6,374,594 times
Reputation: 7627

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I'm making good progress with Why Nations Fail except for the fact that some !@#$%! thought it was OK to take a library book and underline large passages, write notes and questions in the margins, etc. It's more than distracting, it really makes me angry.
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Old 07-12-2014, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Canada
7,309 posts, read 9,316,797 times
Reputation: 9858
Quote:
Originally Posted by LookinForMayberry View Post
i_love_autumn & southwest88: I don't know whether to thank you or just roll belly up and piddle myself like a dog. Running out the door screaming also crossed my mind. You know, I think the thing is that I always have had some sense of this terrible truth but didn't really know on this visceral level. I've been prideful and self-congratulating on my ability to look at the truth of things and it's all been a sham. Worse, now I want to put my head in the sand and stay there 'til the end of time!

No hope of that, really. I'm still only less than half into "America's Deadliest Export" and unlike Chomsky, Blum not only cites his assertions, but provides endnotes.



Ironic that you should mention that, netwit, because there have been a couple of places in the book where she states numbers of people killed by foreign tyrants, and yet she never ONCE mentions OUR sins. We're worse because not only do we perpetrate our offenses directly, but we also support other tyrants to do our dirty work for US.

PS: plain and simple: I loved "The Cat Who...." series and even collected them for a few years, until I realized I am just NOT a collector.

There's nothing like a nice cozy to snuggle up to.
I only read Dillard's first book, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and that was so life-affirming that it seemed like the perfect author to follow up Chomsky. But I guess her other books aren't in the same vein? Pilgrim at Tinker Creek reminded me of childhood, when there was something waiting to be discovered everywhere I looked. I hadn't then entirely given up all hope of finding fairies of the two-winged kind, if I promised I wouldn't reveal their whereabouts.

I have such a list of to-read books. I broke my self-imposed ban on buying new books until I had caught up when I bought the part 3 book of The Long Earth by Terry Prachett and Steven Baxter. I think the book/series had received mixed reviews and I didn't enjoy the second book as much as the first but I still thought it had enough possibilities that I was very much wanting Book 3 which recently
came out.

But I am not feeling very well today at all so not sure if I'll get either reading done or anything beyond the basic care of my critters. I have the feeling I will shortly be headed back to bed in the hopes I will get up on the right side of it with my next try.
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Old 07-12-2014, 08:51 AM
 
9,229 posts, read 8,544,205 times
Reputation: 14770
Quote:
Originally Posted by zugor View Post
... some !@#$%! thought it was OK to take a library book and underline large passages, write notes and questions in the margins, etc. It's more than distracting, it really makes me angry.
I know what you mean. It irritates me just thinking about it. Maybe it was a donated book and the person did it when he thought it was his to deface? That's easier for me than the alternative.

Quote:
Originally Posted by netwit View Post
I only read Dillard's first book, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and that was so life-affirming that it seemed like the perfect author to follow up Chomsky. But I guess her other books aren't in the same vein? Pilgrim at Tinker Creek reminded me of childhood, when there was something waiting to be discovered everywhere I looked. I hadn't then entirely given up all hope of finding fairies of the two-winged kind, if I promised I wouldn't reveal their whereabouts.
I think she mixes it up in her writing, netwit. (And I hope you are feeling better by the time you get back to here.) I listened to part of Pilgrim at Tinker Creek quite awhile ago, but at the time I just wasn't ready for that style. It might indeed be just the thing, right now.

I also liked her work "The Living," which is completely different from either work.

As for Pratchett, you probably know I am a huge fan of his Discworld series, but I have not read any of his later works. I will see if I can get The Long Earth series. Thanks!

We're having above average temps this whole month, and today starts the run of days in the high 80s to low 90s -- rare indeed, but apparently what we have to look forward to for the remainder of the month. We have no A/C here, and the heat causes all sorts of discomforts for me that I won't trouble you with -- not least of all crankiness. I may be gone for awhile to protect you all from ME. (No worries, I will most likely be reading!)
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Old 07-12-2014, 08:56 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
4,794 posts, read 2,797,961 times
Reputation: 4925
Default Sometimes the media is the message

Quote:
Originally Posted by LookinForMayberry View Post
i_love_autumn & southwest88: I don't know whether to thank you or just roll belly up and piddle myself like a dog. Running out the door screaming also crossed my mind. You know, I think the thing is that I always have had some sense of this terrible truth but didn't really know on this visceral level. I've been prideful and self-congratulating on my ability to look at the truth of things and it's all been a sham. Worse, now I want to put my head in the sand and stay there 'til the end of time!

No hope of that, really. I'm still only less than half into "America's Deadliest Export" and unlike Chomsky, Blum not only cites his assertions, but provides endnotes.

...

Please don't despair. It's v. hard to read/see a full picture of US history/diplomatic maneuvering in the World when we've been spoon-fed pablum in elementary, grade and high school. (The approval cycle for civics, US history, geography textbooks, workbooks, media produces mostly fairy tales - understandable for K-3, perhaps. Extremely dangerous if we're interested in producing citizens of a mighty republic, & not mere consuming drones, susceptible to the latest marketing ploy from Hollywood & the other media centers.)

It is discouraging - to have to methodically discard a lot of what you've been taught, & question the material that most people take for granted. Nonetheless, it's worth the effort. You can learn to read between the lines of foreign news coverage, but it's rarely the message that they're overtly trying to project. A broader base of information gives you a better sense of the ebbs & flows of peoples, nations, movements, political parties. It means you're not automatically blinded to inconvenient facts - just because your metaphorical bull may be gored in the arena.

But it does take time, a lot of reading, and a lot of patience to wade through the swamp, fight off the alligators, and drain the waters.

BTW, in my reading, Chomsky usually provides sources - a bibliography, at least. The man must have almost no private life, or spend incredible amounts of time reading background material. Or maybe both.
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Old 07-12-2014, 11:54 AM
 
2,271 posts, read 2,649,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i_love_autumn View Post
No, I haven't heard any of the Cat Who books on audio book.I don't really have the patience to sit still for audio books. I wish I had thought of them back when I was still able to do needle crafts.

Pies and Prejudice will be my first book of that type so not sure how I will like it,but I totally loved "A Skeleton In The Family" and want to read the other two in the series.
I can't sit still either. I live in a big city without a vehicle because city transportation is very good. And it's much cheaper than owning a car. But, when I have errands to run, it takes planning ahead and a lot more time than just hopping in a car and driving. That's where audio books come in for me. I start playing them while I'm walking out of my apartment and, by the time my errands are done and I walk back into my apartment, several hours have passed. Also, if I have an audio book to listen to, I can walk for hours at a time. There are a lot of lakes in Minnesota and that means a lot of great places to walk.

I think you'll enjoy Pies and Prejudice. The characters are likable and that's important to me. The elements I didn't care for were purely a matter of preference.

I'm hoping the series I've started writing will last beyond three books. I like the idea of having a very long running series.
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Old 07-12-2014, 03:49 PM
 
9,229 posts, read 8,544,205 times
Reputation: 14770
Quote:
Originally Posted by southwest88 View Post
Please don't despair. ... But it does take time, a lot of reading, and a lot of patience to wade through the swamp, fight off the alligators, and drain the waters.

BTW, in my reading, Chomsky usually provides sources - a bibliography, at least. The man must have almost no private life, or spend incredible amounts of time reading background material. Or maybe both.
Thanks, SW88. I know you are right. I think that thing I find so disturbing is that it isn't the actions of a small group of evil people, but the collective actions of millions of people that are either A.) going with the flow, or B.) actually think they are doing the right thing.

BTW, "Power Systems" and the book previously read, "On Western Terrorism" are both documented interviews between Chomsky and another, so that may be why there are no citations and more generalizations.

Meanwhile, I finished listening to Annie Dillard's "For the Time Being." I'm not sure what it was about, but it was an interesting collection of disparate topics, starting with birth defects and ranging to sand, archaeology, and clouds. And God -- lots and lots about God.

Now listening to Willa Cather's "Song of the Lark." Not much to concern me there, so far.
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Old 07-12-2014, 06:11 PM
 
3,943 posts, read 6,372,071 times
Reputation: 4233
I'm reading When the Men are Gone by Siobhan Fallon. Short stories (I know, I don't usually read short stories either) about life on a military base. Fiction

American Desperado by Jon Roberts & Evan Wright. From Mafia Soldier to Cocaine Cowboy to Secret Government Asset. Non Fiction
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Old 07-12-2014, 06:37 PM
 
Location: Floyd Co, VA
3,513 posts, read 6,374,594 times
Reputation: 7627
Went to the library today and came home with 6 books. Three were purchased at a cost of 2.25 total:

The Way of the World by Ron Suskind
The Target by David Baldacci
Identical by Scott Turow


Three are borrowed: all non-fiction.

Hegemony or Survival by Noam Chomsky
Confidence Men by Ron Suskind
What Went Wrong by George Tyler - I've already started this and it's very good. It looks at the American economy over the last 50 years and what changed that led us to the financial meltdown of 2008. Reading this at the same time that I'm reading Why Nations Fail is making me think that our country is likely to soon be considered a third world nation. In fact Tyler writes that in some northern European countries with better economies some large manufacturing firms are outsourcing to us because wages and benefits are not much more than if they sent the work to China.

Ps: It feels really good to be back in reading mode again. I was beginning to think that the slump might continue for a long time.
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Old 07-12-2014, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Xtreme SW Tennessee
1,092 posts, read 832,281 times
Reputation: 3017
Started re-reading Grisham. Am now on "The Partner."
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Old 07-12-2014, 07:19 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
15,143 posts, read 27,769,264 times
Reputation: 27265
I'm between 1/2 and 3/4 through Stephen King's Mr. Mercedes.
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