Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Andis Kaulins in China Weekly: October 14 to October 20, 2013

Gratitude:  I have many things to be thankful for. Unfortunately for the sake of originality, they are the always the same things every week. But that is a reason to be thankful. The things that I can be thankful for are the permanent things, not the things that fly by for a night or so.

Acknowledgement: When I do these little headlines in the AKIC Weekly, I am often baffled as to what to put in them that might be original. So I acknowledge that I rarely have anything original to say. [ Gómez Dávila warns against making a purpose of it to think originally. More important, he says, just to think.] I also admit that I can be a despicable shit.

Requests: Email at if you are a fan, or not a fan of my reactionary views. I only had one response to my request last week.

The AKIC Week in Brief: I was in a defiant, giddy, and depressed moods the whole week. Other than that, it was just another week of taking the bus to work and then taking the bus home. I had one original thought which I may publish one day in my anti-blog – something about Leftists and middle-of-the-roaders being more concerned with preserving the means than with ends. I also had an idea for the AKIC Weekly – Look below!

About AKIC: If you want to learn what Andis & AKIC are all about, you can visit here.

If there are things about AKIC you don't know about, like places and people I mention in the entries below, you can go here to find out what they are all about.

AKIC Weekly Features:

I in in China!  这个星期,我读了三本书。我和我的同事没谈。你问为什么?他们是不好人。

I am Canadian! One thing that I like about China is the fact that they don't have government liquor stores. Canada in theory is not Communist so why is it that in Communist China, you can buy beer at the corner store, but not in Canada?

I am Latvian (sort of)! I got a Latvian name. I gave my son Tony a Latvian middle name.

Wuxi Peach Maoists Update: Visit here to find out how if your Peach Maoists have finally won a match-up.

Politically I am Conservative/Reactionary! A victory for Obama is not a loss for Conservatives. It is a loss for civilized values. Although, I am optimistic that Obama's seeming victory in the latest debt ceiling showdown will turn out to a Pyrrhic. Obamacare is turning out to be an epic failure much faster than I expected.

I teach English! In my last class of the week, I had a student say “I have ever.” Why do they do that?
I am not a freak! Sure, I knowingly put myself in a situation that is freakish, but I am just living with the consequences of it.
I like to Read! Here is what I had been working my way through the past week:
Don Colacho's Aphorisms.  There are 2,988 of them in this book that I compiled for myself.  I try to read at least one aphorism a day.  I cut and paste the better ones -- they are all profound actually -- and I put them in my weekly blog entry. (See below)
Ulysses by James Joyce.  I am following along with Frank Delaney as he slowly guides podcast listeners through Joyce's hard-to-read novel.  Delaney figures he will have the whole novel covered in about 22 years.  Delaney completed episode #175 this week and is working his way through the chapter that introduces Leopold Bloom. I am getting ahead of Delaney as far as reading the book.  I will be finished my reading of it, I figure, in a year. I read the novel despite its many blasphemies. It is best to be aware of this stuff because the world is full of it, and the world will always find a way of slapping you in the face with it

The Holy Bible King James Version.   I have finished The General Epistle of Jude and am now reading the Book of Revelations.

Columns by Father Schall. I have been able to take all his archived writings and place them on the Dotdotdot app.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church. Finished reading it on Oct. 16th. Like Father Schall's writings, I had been able to place its contents on the Dotdotdot app. It is a great read. Very informative. Well written. Inspiring.

Mao Zedong: Man, Not God by Quan Yanchi. A Hagiography given to me by a local.

Quo Vadis by Henrik Sienkiewicz. One of the first Catholic novels if my source on the Internet is to be believed. I put the book on my Ipod, thinking I would read it when I didn't have access to my Ipad, but now I am reading it on my Ipad.

Memoirs of Life and Literature by WH Mallock. Finished reading it on October 15th. Another great book. I can't believe I hadn't heard of this writer till this year. He ends the book with some great advice about writing. I see that I will have to completely renounce any writing ambitions I have. I am not in this author's league when it comes to writing or thinking.

Royal Beatings by Alice Munro. I read this story just to see what the Nobel winning writer was all about. This story was rather grim.

The Columbia Anthology of Modern Chinese Literature edited by Joseph S.M. Lau & Howard Goldblatt. I am reading stories at random from this book. There is a story called Hands that I am quite taken with. I don't know why I didn't “pick up” this book sooner. Reading the few stories I have has told me more about China than reading a history ever could.

The Niomachean Ethics of Aristotle. Now that I have finished the Catechism, I will read this and then begin to read the Summa.

Why Paul Krugman should never be taken seriously again by Niall Ferguson. It is not a book but it is such a long piece that it might as well be one. A Nobel Prize winner was giving himself a super hero name. Krugnatron or something. For me, proof positive that Krugman was nothing but a Democrat Party hack occurred when he blood-libelled Sarah Palin after the Arizona shooting incident. In this piece, Ferguson gives many additional reasons why Krugman is a menace.

I like to take photos

I like to make videos

I like to cut, paste, and sometimes give my take on quotations:

Anthony Esolen: Racism: The contemptible belief that we should judge a man by the content of his character, rather than by the color of his skin. [LECTOR: Isn't this backwards? ANDIS: Yes but this is the updated modern definition.]

The wisest thing  Pat Buchanan ever said is, “Compromise is the surrender of fundamentals.” [I really enjoyed Pat's column about the conflict between Goldwater and Rockefeller Republicans. The Goldwater Republicans who stuck to their guns and principles won out in the end said Pat who sees the Tea Partiers as the people who will benefit when Obamacare goes to pot.]

W. H. Mallock
, I have always felt that no man is fit to encounter an adversary's case successfully unless he can make it for the moment his own, unless he can put it more forcibly than the adversary could put it for himself, and takes account, not only of what the adversary says, but also of the best that he might say, if only he had chanced to think of it. [Sound advice.]

Mr. Kidd had a semi-Socialist audience ready for him, who lived mainly by sentiment, whose sentimentalities had anticipated his own, and who were only waiting for some one from whom they might learn to sing them to some definite intellectual tune. [This is true of many political writers today.]

Goodness is simple, ill takes any shape.”

Nicolás Gómez Dávila:
345 The modern sensibility, instead of demanding the repression of envy, demands that we suppress the object which arouses it.
346 The prejudice of not having prejudices is the most common one of all. [To my way of thinking, this ties in very well with my hatred of the term middle-of-the-road. People who use this term are trying to say their are unbiased and reasonable. In reality, the usage of this term betrays a lack of thought. For one thing, the middle of the road is not the place to be – you will get in the way of people travelling in either direction and impede them to no good end. For another, middle-of-the-road is used by left-wingers since their left-wing stance was thoroughly put into disrepute by the presidency of Ronald Reagan and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Furthermore, middle-of-the -roaders are declaring that they define themselves by what others think. They should really call themselves fence-sitters, and given their predisposition to justifying any kind of sexual depravity, they should be fence-post sitters with the fence-post being stuck in their you-know-whats.]
348 The soul that climbs to perfection often abandons the lands conquered down below, where subordinate demons install themselves, ridiculing and dirtying that soul. [My soul is far from perfect. To say this seems a truism, I know, but I need to say this lest any rare reader may think that I somehow think that I think that I have somehow ascended to perfection. I am in the process of ditching things, not because I have conquered them. Lord knows, I haven't conquered them and been repelled by them in my feeble and meek efforts to conquer them. I am the state of ditching the desire for them. It is a surgical operation involving complete amputations of demons.]
351 Resignation to error is the beginning of wisdom. [So true. I have been wrong on so many things. And plus, the age of prophets has passed.]
352 Questions only fall silent when faced with love. “Why love?” is the only impossible question. [This depicts my current existential crisis in a nutshell. I am stuck in a loveless age, a loveless culture, a loveless milieu. And I am fighting it with passive aggression.]
355 Modern individualism is nothing but claiming as one’s own the opinions everyone shares. [I notice this tendency a lot among Leftists. How often do they say that their opponents are unable to think for themselves. It is a common refrain among them.]

New Feature! The AKIC List of the Week: AKIC's Ten Most Frequently Visited Websites
  1. Essays in Idleness David Warren is a Catholic Reactionary of the worst kind. He is my favourite anti-blogger
  2. Duff and Nonsense My favourite blogger is English and no fan of the Barabbas Obama.
  3. Taki's Magazine Its writers are very un-p.c.
  4. The Catholic Thing A column a day of wisdom from the most inspirational site on the Internet.
  5. The Drudge Report I am never one to visit news site but I can't help but visiting this site when I am bored.
  6. Sullivan's Travellers My favourite blogger Alan Sullivan died a few years ago. He was an interesting fellow: an admitted homosexual who converted to Roman Catholicism late in his life after reading a column by David Warren. He mentioned my blog a few times and offered me best wished on my spiritual journey. Sullivan's Travellers is blog run by his rare readers. Sullivan did have as few rare readers as he pretended. I can rightly say I have rare readers.
  7. Crisis Magazine Another great Catholic site that I visit daily.
  8. The Peter Hitchens Blog The less-famous brother of the late Christopher Hitchens seems to me to be the most interesting writer of the pair.
  9. Arts and Letters Daily This is probably site that I have been visited for the longest time.
  10. The one site I visit about China. I have spent hours using its character flashcards.

To be honest, I don't spend much time visiting China sites. There are just too many know-it-alls who have a superficial knowledge of China.

Earlier my Chinese blogging career, I realized that there was no way that I was going to be able to compete with these other China bloggers and sites. For one thing, there was no way that I was going to be able to garner the resources and the contacts to become a China expert or Sinologist. For another, I came to China on a whim in my middle-age. I never had romantic notions about China. So, I decided that it was best if I talked about just Andis Kaulins in China. I say the blog is a Wuxi blog but I should drop that label as well. I have negligently and sometimes deliberately not made that many contacts in Wuxi. My concerns in my blog, are my family, my reactionary political interests, my recreational interests and my spiritual journey. If it wasn't for the Internet, China would play a greater part in my thinking.

I prefer to read about China in books – especially the old books at Project Gutenberg.

I fashion myself to be a 21st Century Pepys

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