Friday, October 30, 2009
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
From the NYT. In an era where we seem to stumble over our own shadows, the Cuban Missile Crisis still generates a lot of attention, as we really did stand on the brink of nuclear war. Kennedy's defining moment.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A top U.S. Senate Republican invoked the memory of the scandal-marred Nixon administration on Wednesday to urge U.S. President Barack Obama: "Don't start an enemies list."
Senator Lamar Alexander told Reuters he sees the Obama White House adopting an attitude similar to that of the Richard Nixon White House four decades ago, that "everybody is against us and we are going to get them."
Comparing Obama's stance in regard to Fox News and the insurance industry to Nixon's "enemies list" is hyperbolic to say the least, but good ol' Lamar has that nice soft Tennessee accent, which makes him sound as if he might actually be non-partisan on the issue, when we all know which side of the his bread is buttered by inurance companies.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Arthur Schlesinger Jr. devotes a substantial part of the first book of his projected four volume "Age of Roosevelt" to dispelling these myths. This involves an inquiry into the origins of the New Deal practices and principles, an investigation of conditions - chiefly economic - in the Twenties and a thorough re-evaluation of the Hoover Administration.
One of the valuable features of this book is the emphasis the contributions of political theory by intellectuals, philosophers and scholars. It does not purport to be a history of ideas, but it is very much a history that addresses itself to ideas.
I found Henry Steele Commager's 1957 review at NYTimes. Interesting to see what historians thought of the book at the time of its publication.
Friday, October 16, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Monday, October 12, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Saturday, October 10, 2009
I liked Worster's book on John Wesley Powell and he certainly seems like the writer to update our biographical understanding of John Muir, although the reviewer, John Wilson, said the book could be a bit dry at times.
Friday, October 9, 2009
The US president, Barack Obama, was today awarded the 2009 Nobel peace prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples" in a decision which stunned international affairs experts.
To gasps from those assembled, the Nobel committee chairman, Thorbjoern Jagland, said "only rarely has a person such as Obama captured the world's attention and given his people hope for a better future".
"His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population," the citation said.