January 25th, 2009


[links] Link salad has stacks of green paper in its red right hand

A reader reacts, unenthusiastically, to Escapement Powell's | Amazon ]

How many rejections have you had? [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ] — Comments thread of people talking about their fiction submission histories, and the relationship between rejections and sales.

How Old Are You — An age rating guessing game. (Thanks to Bryant.)

9 Ways NASA Can Tackle Climate Change — Cool stuff. Nice to see our government willing to do something besides obstruct, destroy and stand athwart calling, "Halt!" (Thanks to lt260.)

Aeolus Airship — Ooooohhh... (Thanks to ericjamesstone.)

The Scunthrope Problem — An oldie but a goodie.

APOD with an awesome photo of an annular eclipse

The New York Times on liberalismA plausible minimum list of ingredients for 21st century liberalism would include liberty under law, limited and accountable government, markets, tolerance, some version of individualism and universalism, and some notion of human equality, reason and progress. My very original definition of liberalism and conservatism, arrived at by observation when I was about 11, was that conservatives are people who know the other guy is wrong, and liberals are people who think the other guy might have a point, too. That definition has never fully broken down for me. (Note that by this definition, many Democrats are not liberals. Duh.)

Illinois moment of silence ruled unconstitutional — Good. Speaking as someone who was coerced with religion as a child, back in the days when that was not only allowed but encouraged, I favor very strong limits on religion in the public square and especially in the public schools. That's one of those little Constitutional details the strict constructionists on the Right dislike as much as the Left dislikes gun rights.

Pope readmits Holocaust-denying priest to the churchVatican lifts excommunication on renegade British bishop who declared: 'There were no gas chambers' Classy, very classy. Tell me again why American voters should be listening to this guy?

Obama swiftly lays Bush era to rest — At a crossroads, at midnight, with a stake through its heart, I should hope. This nation is already coming to look back on Bush the way it looks back on Nixon and McCarthy — a source of pride to some crazed dead-enders, but national shame to the rest of us. Ironic that being the only American president appointed to the office by judicial fiat may turn out as his greatest claim to historical significance. The sad part is that I don't see how Bush in his profound incuriosity and impermeable disinformation bubble will ever come to any understanding of the damage he has done.

?otD: Which way to the aggress?

Body movement: 40 minute ride on the stationary bike
This morning's weigh-in: n/a (got distracted again and forgot to weigh)
Currently reading: The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade by Herman Melville

Originally published at jlake.com.


[personal] The making of a writer, part 1

I'm going to start writing about my biography, informally and occasionally. I had a fairly unusual childhood, and questions about it come up often enough in interviews and conversations that I'd like to discuss it. I'm not going to focus on the objective details, so much as my own sense of my experiences, and how they might have led to where I am today.

I'll add to this series on an irregular basis as the spirit moves me. Feel free to ask questions, or treat this as a meme and discuss your own recollections.

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Originally published at jlake.com.