Wednesday, April 05, 2006


My ongoing preoccupations with some of the older texts hadn’t left time for reading any recent commentaries by the authors I usually keep track of. And I have been trying to catch up again. So today I have selected a few of the more entertaining ones for your viewing pleasure.

One of my favorites, Mr. Hanson, has been at it again with his usual spirited assault on the detractors of the Bush Administration albeit in a manner so curiously conventional.

In his When Cynicism Meets Fanaticism, he chooses to frame the question confronting us in the following terms:

Can Western enlightenment and power, embedded in deep cynicism, still prevail over ignorance and self-inflicted pathology energized by fanaticism?

This, of course, is the continuation of the gentleman’s more recent dalliance with what he so inappropriately—or fittingly, take your pick—calls Hard Pounding in an earlier piece:

Whose vision of the future wins depends on who keeps his nerve — or to paraphrase the Duke of Wellington at Waterloo, “Hard pounding, gentlemen; but we will see who can pound the longest.”

And once the riddle confronting us is framed as such, the contours of the answer too become easier to discern. We seem to have the much sought after smoking gun in this young man.

Let’s do the math now. 28 multiplied by however many poundings per session. That’s a hell of a whole lot of pounding, wouldn’t you say? And plenty more where that came from, I suspect.

Life forces obscenely redirected via the fabric of sexual abuse, as in the case above, along with other forms of physical wounds, afflictions, murder, pain, torment, torture, dismemberment and incineration all re-presented to us in that Romance of War.

The crux, of course, quite similar to Mr. Ledeen’s usual freedom as virility spiel! What is it with some of us middle aged men? Now really, aren’t we getting a bit too old for this sort of braggadocio without also appearing hell-bent on causing some minor uproar or eliciting smirks?

I remain hopeful, though, with Mr. Hanson still. Although I am beginning to totally give up on Mr. Ledeen. Unless we mange, of course, to persuade Ms. Cheney to divert some of the funds earmarked for the ongoing campaign in Iran towards purchasing a new Ouija board for our man Ledeen.

Mr. Ledeen’s favorite toy has a way of braking into sparks and static just at the very precise moment questions about his sources might be getting interesting.

All that subsequently remains is some ghost and the usual bunk.

Anyhow, Edward Luttwak asks why anyone needs to bomb Iran and its nuclear plants. Richard Ehrman traces the route to the current stand off (repeat) in what’s being billed by the editors, as “a new daily online magazine, targeted at a discerning well-educated audience and offering a spirited response to every aspect of current affairs from politics and foreign affairs to sport and the art,” The First Post.

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