Thursday, October 22, 2009

Late October 2009 Links and Quotes.

In his essay defending Rush Limbaugh against charges of racism, David Warren mentioned the above essay.
This article from the City Journal says small changes do much more to improve public spaces that all-out master plans. In Wuxi, one can't help but notice a lot of master plans in the works. Wuxi has many spaces being torn down and lots of rubble piles. What is replacing it is slick but lacking in Chinese soul.
One of my favorite entries ever from one of my favorite bloggers.

Victor David Hanson, has made a widely linked blog entry about how he has dropped out of popular culture. Like me, he prefers to watch the old classic movies, he has no idea who rides top the pop music world, and he is not watching much sports these days. I can claim to be a drop-out because I have moved away. Hanson is because because he is old school, and to be honest the pop culture faire on offer these days is just awful.

I can't help it but David Warren is so damn wise, I can't help but link his quotes every time I do an AKIC links feature. These two quotes having me saying Amen!:

There was a time when teachers did not necessarily require a high school certificate. Most were taught, even self-taught, on the job, which is an extremely effective way to weed out those not suited to it. The number of teachers tended to swell and shrink with the number of pupils to be "educated," and of course there were no unions.
And hardly any administration, either. Our ancestors couldn't afford such things, and the unavoidable administrative tasks tended to be pieced out among the teachers. A principal was in effect the senior-most teacher, captain of the team hired by a very local school board.
This is what I like about teaching in China. I wouldn't be able to do what I am doing in Canada, I don't have the time and money to get the qualifications. And the good teachers always work out for themselves here.

Warren became a Journalist without the benefit of a Journalism degree. He couldn't do that now. For as he says:

It strikes me, after two-score years in and out of the "profession" (as it is now called), that my entry into it would be inconceivable today. My critics might perhaps celebrate this indubitable indication of "progress," but in my own view it is a great pity.

And here is one more. I wish I had a boss like David Warren had when he was young:

My task, as Mr. Davey quickly explained, was to "try very hard not to fit in."

I am of an obedient nature, and have been trying to follow Mr. Davey's instruction ever since.

GK Chesterton Quote
"Liberty is traditional and conservative; it remembers its legends and its heroes. But tyranny is always young and seemingly innocent, and asks us to forget the past." — G. K. Chesterton. (e.g. Obama and Canada's Pierre Eliot Trudeau).

Andrew Klavan reviews John Derbyshire's book We are Doomed. If you are reading this Mom and Dad, I would love to have that book in my next care package. While I can't always agree with Derb. I agree with enough to want to imitate him in some way. He has the correct conservative temperment that makes a mockery of attempts by some to say Obama is somehow Burkean. No true conservative would use Hope and Change in his campaign slogans.

A Buddhist goes to a hotdog vendor and asks for a dog with everything.

The vendor prepares the hotdog, takes a $50 bill from the Buddhist, hands over the food, and then turns to the next customer.

The Buddhist says "Hey! What about my change?"

The vendor says "True change comes from within."

Obama's strange name makes for a long fun nicknames. I have called Oblam Oh!, O Blah Blah, and Oprah. Read about his new Chinese nickname above

The One-Child Policy
"Early in 1979, I and several other young nurses from my ward were summoned to a mass meeting. All sixty-odd of us were young married women who had not yet been sterilized. Secretary Wang arrived and took up a position in front of the assembly. His round little face, normally the picture of conviviality, was set in an expression of the utmost gravity. 'Today we have a matter of extreme urgency,' he began, 'a toudeng dashi, to discuss. It concerns the population of the motherland. The People's Republic of China has within its borders nearly a billion people, or one-fifth of the world's population. This is a big burden for the people's government. ... Having children is not a question that we can afford to let each family, each household, decide for itself. ... It is a question that should be decided at the national level. China is a socialist country. This means that the interests of the individual must be subordinated to the interests of the state. Where there is conflict between the interests of the state in reducing population and the interests of the individual in having children, it must be resolved in favor of the state.'"
-- Chi An
Source: quoted in A Mother's Ordeal: One Woman's fight Against China's One-child Policy, Steven W. Mosher ( New York: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1993), p. 212-213.

(*I have had students tell me that Mao's dumbest idea was to encourage women to have as many children as possible.*)

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