The Great American Internet Fiction Thing

In high school I had an English teacher (American Literature) who liked to talk about The Great American Novel.  Something about its scope and, like, defining a thing.  Or something. 

I assume he had never really read Huckleberry Finn.

Anyway, whatever else a novel is, it is something like a sandwich. 

A sandwich is something between pieces of bread.  (Regional and cultural definition of "bread" may vary.) 

A novel is something between a front cover and a back cover.  At least.  Well that's a place to start. 

So the Great American Novel would be text between covers that says something about America and is all defining and reconstructs the paradigms and all radiant and glorious and stuff.  Depending on whether you're an English (AmLit) major. 

But --

What if there's no back cover?

Well then, if it's a traditional book you call it an unfinished novel, I guess.  Author deceased. 

Thought experiment:  Think of a trilogy of books.  I'm thinking of C. S. Lewis' space trilogy, but you can pick your own.  Say the first book stands on its own as a story.  Say books one and two likewise.  Is the story complete?  Along comes book three.  Now what?  What if there was a book that was a series of books but that was complete in every book? No real "back cover"? Complete in every chapter?  But what if it kept on going, kept on growing, kept on attaining something -- complete and not-complete at every unit.  Is book two of Lewis' space trilogy an unfinished novel?  In what sense is it unfinished? 

And what if the book has no covers?  No paper at all?  What if it is electronic / digital / internet based? 

I think the English majors might not want to aim so low as to write a Great American Novel.  Maybe it would be greater to aspire to being part of a kind of cohesive Homestuck that just keeps going and going and going.  You may say I'm a dreamer.  Together some day we may be writing the Great American Celebrate the Ongoing Life Thing.  Maybe we already are. 


Not THAT kind of federalism

I am not one of those people who believe the United States Constitution's Bill of Rights limits ONLY the central (Federal) government. 

A Washington Examiner article on 20 July 2014 by Blake Seitz contains the phrase, "the constitutionally-enshrined authority of the 50 states to do wrongheaded things."

Oh geez please, Mr. Orthodox Libertarian!

California, for example, has already gone plenty overboard on the Wrongheaded Things, and the process of judicial Right-heading of these things seems injuriously slow.  What should be unconstitutional restrictions on the first amendment right to free speech are tolerated in California and elsewhere because of some people's unscientific but strongly held belief that the murder of unborn children has overriding benefits.  What should be unconstitutional restrictions on the second amendment right to keep and bear arms are tolerated (method-of-carry bans, ammo bans, handgun roster bans, rifle and shotgun bans by type...) because of some people's unscientific but strongly held belief that, well, guns are scary.  Or something.  I am sure that California would try to figure out a way around the third amendment to quarter troops (or surplus prison population?) in the homes of citizens if Sacramento politicians could find a way to make a buck out of it.  Same with all of the Bill of Rights.  

There are limits to the "constitutionally-enshrined authority of the 50 states to do wrongheaded things."  Limits that are and of right ought to be imposed by the United States upon the several states.  Yes I am in favor of strong central government within the limits of Madisonian (Constitutional) Federalism.  

What kind of conservative are you, anyway!  (I can hear straw Libertarians jeering like a line of stoats and weasels behind the fence.)  

I guess I'm just much closer to being a Theodore Roosevelt conservative than I am to being a Murray Rothbard pro-abort eugenist holocaust-denier anarcho-libertarian. 


Wiki Wander 17 July 2014

It was work related! Honest! 

Started with the label of a purple gasket replacement gel containing the descriptor THIXOTROPIC.

By the time I gave up, I had visited






Special guest appearances by science and math

"Oh, the places you'll go! There is fun to be done!
There are points to be scored. There are games to be won.
And the magical things you can do with that ball
will make you the winning-est winner of all."
  -- Dr. Seuss


Harry Reid, Senator and Super-Intellect

from The Hill:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Tuesday asserted the southern border is secure despite the massive surge of illegal minors from Central America that has overwhelmed federal agencies.

“The border is secure,” he told reporters after the Senate Democrats’ weekly policy lunch. “[Sen.] Martin Heinrich [(D-N.M.)] talked to the caucus today. He’s a border state senator. He said he can say without any equivocation the border is secure.”



Amazon sends me email...

The email subject line said, "Magazines now 30% off!"

Wow, I thought, you can never have too many magazines.  Maybe more of the CZ 40S&Ws, or some M1911 spares? 

Turns out they meant, like, print  magazines -- legacy media -- such as Time and Popular Mechanics.

Eew.  So last millennium. 

I suppose there are readers who have a subscription sent to an e-reader or pad... but WHY?!  There are too many good things to read, to clutter up your time with media conglomerate agitprop


Because America

And to the Republic for which it stands....

And forever in peace may it wave...