[UPDATE: The Friday, January 27, 8pm Vaclav Havel play reading mentioned below, Memorandum, is first come first served, tickets by donation, directed by Robert Anthony Peters, at 45th Street Theatre, 354 W. 45th. Even if I don’t make it, you should.]
In one week, on Groundhog Day, I’ll resume roughly-daily blogging, albeit in a different vein, as you will see.
One year ago this week, I blogged a near-final word on my C-SPAN2 appearance from late 2010, but it appears my ex-girlfriend from that broadcast is leaving the Big City and reassessing her life, so we’ve non-violently buried the hatchet, and I get a few of the old books from her vast and obscure library in the process.
To mark the occasion – and to compensate for me officially ending my Book Selections of the Month entries last month – some notes on recent books and articles of import:
•If it wasn’t David Brooks himself who titled his column “Free-Market Socialism” this week, bless the subversive copy editor who called a (mushy, Clintonian) philosophy what it is. At the same time, kudos to Brooks for calling the economic component of his (evolving) thinking “libertarian.” Nice to see him using the term in a positive way once in a while.
In a way, though, he ends up being the secular-statist (to use progressive Newt Gingrich’s favorite formulation) version of a social conservative: Instead of markets for economics + religion for basic morals, Brooks wants markets for economics + state for basic morals. It won’t work – morals are an even subtler thing than economics, and the state can’t be trusted to engineer either. But we can all feel him feeling society’s pain, in a meta-Clintonian fashion.
I’ll try to stop bashing him all the time. But he and several prominent neoconservatives should retire now, along with the rest of the failed establishment, and everyone should vote for Ron Paul.
(C’mon, conservatives – how much pain do liberal Romney and TR-like blowhard turned Catholic pseudo-moralist Gingrich have to cause you before you remember there’s a real anti-big-government candidate in the race? There’s an escape route here, people, not just from phony candidates but from socialism itself, markety or otherwise.)
•In addition to seeing a documentary about Ayn Rand tonight – and tomorrow night dropping in on free-market Democrat Dan O’Connor’s bar event at Tammany Hall Tavern and seeing a Vaclav Havel play called Memorandum about socialist bureaucracy – I need to return a borrowed copy of Against Intellectual Property by N. Stephan Kinsella to its rightful owner.
Much as I might wish, as a libertarian, that this book – or any other – settled the complicated issue of I.P. to my satisfaction, I think it remains a muddle. True,