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Missive #183 Published 22 December 2023


One night Nasruddin found the judge lying drunk in a ditch. Chuckling, he took the judge’s brand-new shoes. They were just the right size!
The next day the judge complained that robbers had ambushed him. “They stole my brand-new shoes!” he yelled. Nasruddin then strolled into court wearing the judge’s shoes.
“Where did you get those?” the judge demanded.

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Missive #182 Published 21 December 2023

The readers that give this book a high rating must enjoy the author's philosophizing. It may be called a novel but take out all of Huxley's philosophy and it would be a short story. I think this was another of his attempts to 'arrive, technically, at a perfect fusion of the novel and the essay'.

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Missive #181 Published 20 December 2023

In the mid-1990s, news headlines featured political gridlock, antigovernment fanaticism, political assaults on environmental regulations, local demands to turn over federal land to the states, 'patriotic' armed militia groups, courtroom brawls between activists and rural residents over endangered species, finger-pointing and trash-talking generally. Sound familiar?It's said that history doesn't repeat itself, but rhymes instead. Fortunately, if problems are cyclical so are solutions. I'd like to share one that we came up with back then. It's called the radical center. This is the story of its rise.

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Missive #180 Published 19 December 2023

Since 1960, Wendell Berry (b. 1934) has produced one of the most substantial and consistently thematic bodies of work of any modern American writer. In more than fifty books in various genres-novels, short stories, poems, and essays-he has celebrated a life lived in close communion with neighbors and the earth and has addressed many of our most urgent cultural maladies. His collections of essays urge us to think and act responsibly as members of a community-both human and natural. Volumes of his poems seek to wed us to nature and realign our vision with its mysteries. If you have any interest in reading what Wendell Berry has written I think this book would be a great place to start. In it you will find what his focus is and decide if that is something you wish to read about more.

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Missive #179 Published 18 December 2023

The Pyrates is George MacDonald Fraser's tongue-in-cheek homage to the swashbucklers of yore. In these rollicking pages you'll find tall ships and desert islands; impossibly gallant adventurers and glamorous heroines; devilishly sinister cads and ghastly dungeons; improbably acrobatic duels and hair's-breadth escapes; and more plot twists than you can shake a rapier at. A deliriously entertaining combination of high-seas action-adventure and comic hi-jinx.

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Missive #178 Published 17 December 2023

Continuing The Federalist Papers.

Federalist No. 10
The Same Subject Continued: The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection
Author: James Madison
To the People of the State of New York:

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Missive #177 Published 15 December 2023


No other national park unit in the nation can tell the story of human history in North America as Pecos can; and no other park can do so with the aid of such an attractive landscape... Everywhere I went in the park, I ran into beauty and intrigue.

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Missive #176 Published 14 December 2023

There is more to this latest volume in the""Mainstream of America"" Series (Lewis Gannett, Editor) than is indicated by the subtitle: The Settling of the Eastern Shores, 1607-1735. As is proper, the author, a professor of English at the University of Connecticut and author of four similar studies, writes of time and place, problems and personalities, in the early American settlements on the Atlantic seaboard, but gives as well a sense of the first stirrings of nationality, of future independence, of which the settlers were barely aware.

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Missive #175 Published 12 December 2023

This is what I would call a coffee table book that was originally published as an online book in 2012. There is very little text however the 140 photographs do have captions. Some of them are interesting others not so much.

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Missive #174 Published 10 December 2023

Continuing The Anti-Federalist Papers

Agrippa IX
by James Winthrop
To the People

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