Month: March 2016

The Wheel Turns

At the end of the Civil War, the United States assumed ownership of Robert E. Lee’s family plantation, high on a hill in Arlington, just across the river from the Nation’s – the unified nation’s – capitol. The family home remains, but the grounds of that plantation, a place where hundreds of slaves worked and died, became the final resting place for more than 15,000 dead Union soldiers.1This ranks among the finest and most appropriate nose-rubbings in American history, and dog knows we have a history nose-rubbings both noble and ig. One hundred fifty years later, the body count approaches half a million.2It is a bitter pill that, as the cemetery expanded to fit all the fallen, a large community or freedmen was evicted to make room for more corpses. read more

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It’s Darker Than You Think

You’ve got to be taught
From year to year,
It’s got to be drummed
In your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught.
– Rogers/Hammerstein

It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there. – Bob Dylan

I recently ordered the book pictured above, a in-depth investigation of how the radical right has gained power over the past 30 years. Alongside the essential trilogy by Rick Perlstein (reviewed favorably by an obscure blogger here), Jane Mayer’s Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right fill in the blanks on one of the pressing questions of our time: read more

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