Friday, March 30, 2007

Invasion of the Demon Spiders, in 3-D!

So, I wake up in the middle of the night, as sometimes happens. I look up at the low, slanty ceiling above my bed, and see, or think I see, a huge damn spider, body bigger than a man's fist, legs spanning more than a foot, on the ceiling above me. I run hollering out of the room. ("Hollering" sound tougher than "squealing," right?)
It then occurs to me that the suburbs of Chicago are not generally known for harboring spiders large enough to eat small rodents in one sitting, and I cautiously venture back into my bedroom. There was nothing there.
So, I've started to hallucinate giant spiders. No more scotch before bed, I promise.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I was kind of a stupid kid

Here's a neat thread at Marginal Revolution: what weird or silly things did you believe as a child? I've got a couple:

My birthday falls exactly six months from my father's (November 7 and May 7, respectively.) I thought this was normal, and that all boys' birthdays synched up with their fathers' in this way.

Due to my tendency to literal-mindedness, I spent over a year thinking my father (an attorney) worked for the U.S. Mint. I had asked him why he had to leave me and mom to go to his job downtown every day, and he replied, "To make money." I thought this meant he actually physically constructed U.S. currency. I didn't have have any concept of printing presses, either; I envisioned him cutting out green pieces of paper with scissors and drawing the portraits on the bills freehand. (I don't think he made coins. Some underling probably did that for him.)

Well, those are mine. Anyone else got any good ones?

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Monday, March 19, 2007

Learning nothing

This post by Jim Henley at Unqualified Offerings got me thinking: how likely is it that the present Democratic/mainstream liberal hostility to unchecked executive power, police statism, and warmongering currently on display will "take" and continue to be an influence if a Democratic administration takes power in the next election?

I raise the question because my memory of what liberals were generally like during the Clinton years makes me question the sincerity of many of the people currently railing against the evils of Bush; I suspect a lot of them would be fine with it if President Gore or President Kerry were incinerating foreigners and destroying civil liberties. As anyone who followed politics in the 90's no doubt remembers, only right-wing nuts distrust the government when Democrats are in power!

I'm extremely pessimistic. I acknowledge that people can learn from experience; I used to be a conservative. But most people generally don't seem to learn where politics is concerned; most of the conservatives who deeply distrusted the government during the Clinton years changed their tune quite quickly once Clinton was gone, despite the sharp lessons in the evils of statism provided by things like Waco. And if most conservatives didn't learn any consistency in their distrust of statism, despite being loudly antigovernment (with other elements mixed in, of course, but with antistatism being a part of the stew) throughout the 90's, it seems even less likely that liberals, members of a movement unabashedly based on faith in government, are going to remember any of their current fear and distrust of state power beyond the current administration. I firmly expect Bush's incursions on civil liberties and expansions of executive power to be at least kept and probably furthered once Democrats are in power.

I miss the old anti-government conservatives a great deal, even after more than half a decade. I will miss the state-fearing liberals, too, when they are gone.

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Thursday, March 08, 2007

Paradox Interactive has stolen my very soul

I apologize for my lack of activity lately. I bought the game Europa Universalis III last week, and it's been sucking up my free computer time. Being a peace-loving libertarian is all well and good in real life, but being a warmongering tyrant on the computer is much more entertaining.

I'll finally have some new stuff here this weekend.

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