The reading list
“When a celebrated French philosopher from the centre left assails the 'despotic' politics of environmental fear he should expect a dressing down from his climate change-conscious comrades.
“But Pascal Bruckner has incited such fury with a diatribe against green prophesiers of imminent planetary ruin, the reaction has surprised even this veteran of the trans-Atlantic culture wars.
“ 'The planet is sick. Man is guilty of having destroyed it. He must pay,' is how Bruckner caustically portrays the received wisdom on environmental 'sin' and damnation in his latest book 'Le fanatisme de l'Apocalypse' ('The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse').
“ 'Consider ... the famous carbon footprint that we all leave behind us,' he writes in his introduction. 'What is it, after all, if not the gaseous equivalent of original sin, of the stain that we inflict on our Mother Gaia by the simple fact of being present and breathing?'
“Subtitled 'Sauver la Terre, punir l'Homme' ('Save the Earth, Punish Human Beings') the book rails against a peculiar Western malady. Yes, concerns about the environment are legitimate, but catastrophisme is transforming us all into children 'put in a panic in order to be better controlled.'
“… As the Jesuit-educated philosopher sees it, extreme climate change alarmism, with its warning bells chiming 'The end of the world is nigh, repent ye,' represents a worrying new doctrine of ideological purity that even has totalitarian overtones.”
From “Scorning the propaganda of fear” at afr.com
Where does the expression “Your name is mud” come from?
Wisdom of the ages
“It is as impossible to withhold education from the receptive mind as it is impossible to force it upon the unreasoning.” – Agnes Repplier
“I saw the coward in court today and Alex could have wiped the floor with him without breaking a sweat.” – Tom Teves, whose son, Alex, was killed in the shooting at a multiplex in Aurora, Colo.
Dr. Samuel Mudd, the doctor who was convicted for treating the broken ankle of Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth. He was pardoned by President Ulysses S. Grant in 1869.
precipitancy (pri-SIP-i-tuhn-see). n. – headlong or rash haste, as in: “Given the council's precipitancy in passing the ordinance, the editorial writer knew it would not turn out well.” From the Latin praecipitare, “to cast down headlong.”
Today in history
On this date in 1868, the 14th Amendment was ratified; so long to the Ninth and 10th.
Now you know
President Thomas Jefferson was convinced that if he soaked his feet in a bucket of cold water every day, he’d never get a cold.