Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Stuff below the fold

what was that quote? "invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity."

well, it did work for King Alfred the Great.

Wessex enjoyed a measure of peace for a few years, but about 875 the Danes renewed their attacks. They were repulsed then, and again in 876 and 877, on each occasion making solemn pledges of peace. In 878 came the great invasion under Guthrum. For a few months the Danes met with success, but about Easter Alfred established himself at Athelney and later marched to Brixton, gathering new forces on the way. In the battle of EthandĂșn (probably the present Edington, in Wiltshire) he defeated the Danes. Guthrum agreed to a peace and consented to be baptized.
But of course, Alfred is "the Great" because he encouraged learning and translated the classics into the local language. It's interesting to read Alfred's version of Boethius, which posits Boethius, a Roman aristocrat, as if he were an Anglo Saxon Warrior and rewrites  the book as Anglo Saxon poetry.

A high-born chieftain,     cherishing his lord,
While that the high-seat     was held by the Greeks;
A man most righteous.     He was 'mid the Romans
A giver of treasure     glorious ever,
Wise toward this world,     wishful of honour,
Learned in booklore;     Boethius the name was
That this hero had,     that so highly was famed.
Time after time     he turned in his mind
The evil and insult     by alien princes
Grievously given.     To the Greeks he was true,
Rememb'ring the honours     and ancient rights
By his fathers aforetime     fully enjoyed,

Headsup by Tea at Trianon.


Corruption in America starting to look like it was in the good  old days? (Obama as USGrant?) and lots of other depressing year end observations on the news in the latest StrategyPage podcast.

mp3 link

Belmont Club reviews the Hobbit.

More people are mentally ill? Nah... the powers that be have broadened the definition of mentally ill so far that ordinary people are now officially nuts.

and that will lead to lots of profits for Big Pharma...


TPM Barnett sees Obama as the great healer of the military, by appointing "winter soldier" Kerry to be Sect of state and withdrawing America from the world stage.

Obama selecting Chuck Hagel as SECDEF and John Kerry as SECSTATE could not send a stronger signal: two Viet war vets with intimate knowledge of the hollowed-out force phenomenon of the later 1970s.
Look for both to do their best, now that Iraq is done for the US and Afghanistan is slated for closure next year, to avoid sending US forces anywhere if possible.

So hollowing out the American military is something they have experience in, so they plan to do it again? 
I guess he means we Pinoys should welcome our Chinese masters, and that Israel should just sit back and quietly be nuked without protest.


Remembering the tyrannies of communism in Eastern Europe.
They used targeted violence, arrested leaders, nonconformists and people of stature. It made others afraid. There wasn’t mass murder, as there had been in earlier times. But the paranoia came from not knowing what you could say in public, whether you might be arrested at any time. To destroy civil society was the aim, and to make sure there was no way of organizing outside the system. Youth groups, the church, charities, all were institutions that could provide people with an alternative view of the world. So they had to be brought under control.


Dustbury's Factoid of the day:
between 1 July 2011 and 30 June 2012 there were 1,231,710 vehicle/deer collisions. One point two million of them in these 57 states. On second thought, this might be scarier: more than a third of them took place in just five states. The worst of the lot was West Virginia, 

And 200 people a year die from these collisions.

he also links to a medley of Yankovic in weird Al, not Frankie...

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