Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Philosophical authenticity

The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any.
— Hannah Arendt, born  in 1906

The act of poetry is a rebel act.

VIDEO: ICAC plays footage of private interview with Gladys Berejiklian

Fast Company: “Mmhmm, a startup that launched during the coronavirus pandemicto make presenting in Zoom and other videoconferencing services less boring, is now launching its own platform for video discussions. Called OOO—pronounced like “ooh!” but also a reference to being out of the office—the new tool accessible in a web browser and on mobile devices is designed to replace Zoom and its rivals with a more engaging environment. In a recent demo, Steven Melendez met with Mmhmm cofounder and CEO Phil Libin in OOO, with videos of our upper bodies interposed on changeable backgrounds. Those backdrops included an 8-bit video game-style side-scrolling world, a crackling bonfire, a tranquil coffee shop with soothing music, the classic DVD bouncing logo screen saver with our faces replacing the DVD logo, and even my own living room…”

If John B Keane was the playwright of the people, Brendan Kennelly was the poet of the people’.

Brendan Kennelly was Ireland’s most popular poet’ 

Great sadness as poet and Professor Emeritus at Trinity College Dublin Brendan Kennelly (85) passes away

The late Brendan Kennelly1
The late Brendan Kennelly


ONE of the nation’s best-loved poets, Brendan Kennelly, has passed away aged 85 in his native Kerry.

The former Professor of Modern Literature at Trinity College Dublin died this afternoon surrounded by family at the Áras Mhuire nursing home in Listowel, to the deep sadness of so many who revered him for his literary talent, wisdom, humour and warm character.

Professor Emeritus at Trinity College Dublin since he retired in 2005, he had moved backto his native north Kerry in recent years, living in a retirement home not far from the historic village of his birth, Ballylongford.

Indeed, like Bryan MacMahon and John B Keane before him, North Kerry shaped his literary sensibilities to a great degree, the character of its people and their rich dialect infusing Kennelly’s many and much-lauded collections.

He was, in the words of friend and fellow North Kerry native poet Gabriel Fitzmaurice, ‘Ireland’s most popular poet’.

 My soul left me last night 

           Gone to God 
My wife's body
           Wrapped in a linen shroud. 

From this weak stalk, a white
           Blossom has been plucked. 
My life's fruitful branch, my own 
            Heart's darling has been ripped 

From me. I am alone to-night, O God, 
            In this crooked world of your making. 
Light was the weight of the body 
           That was here last night, O King. 

It breaks my heart 
          To look at that bed. 
The woman who stretched there 
           Is dead. 

A gentle rhythm in her face, 
          She lay at my side a long while. 
Her voice was the shadow 
          Of the hazel. 

She was there, in that bed, alive, 
         Beside me. 
My heart is the woman 
         Who has left me.  

My body has passed out of my control. 
         It is hers alone. 
I am a body in two pieces 
        Since the gentle one is gone. 

She was one of my feet, one of my sides, 
       I belonged in her body, 
She was one of my hands, 
      One of my eyes, 

She was half of my body, 
      The very half of my soul. 
How I have been cut in two 
      Is not easy to tell

My first love was for her eyes, 
       Her breasts, hands, feet. 
Her body belonged to no man before me. 
       I know that. 

Twenty years we spent together 
      Our days sweeter by the year. 
She had eleven children. 
       I loved her thin fingers. 

Though I am alive I am dead 
       Since my hazelnut fell 
And twisting heaven turned this world 
        Into clear hell. 

Let no man check me now. 
       Weeping is not forbidden. 
Ruin is the only guest in my house 
       O my glowing woman. 

The King of Hosts, the King of Roads 
       Swept her in His displeasure. 
No blame to her that she 
       Left me here. 

O King of bells and churchyards 
       I see her hand, I am tortured 
Because her hand that never swore false oath 
       Is not under my head.”

Philosophical authenticity

 Edward Feser: From Socrates to Stock

Prof. Kathleen Stock has for some time now been under siege from the spiritual heirs of Socrates’ persecutors.  She is a feminist and no conservative, but she has dared through rational analysis and argumentation to defend the proposition that the difference between the sexes is objectively real rather than a mere social construct, most recently in her book Material Girls.  Until about twenty minutes ago no one would have thought this controversial, but for the cultural revolutionaries seeking to take over our institutions, it merits hemlock.  The fanatics are now trying to get her fired, though so far her university is standing by her.

COLUMBUS:  The myth of the ‘stolen country’ What should the Europeans have done with the New World?

These Butterflies Full of Wasps Full of Microwasps Are a Science Nightmare Atlas Obscura 

A meteorite barely missed hitting a Canadian woman who was asleep NPR 

The problem with America’s semi-rich Vox (Matthew C). Important.

Economists to Cattle Ranchers: Stop Being So Emotional About the Monopolies Devouring Your Family Businesses Matt Stoller 

Elite Capture and Epistemic Deference The Philosopher  Important.

La Nina Arrives, Threatening to Stoke Droughts and Roil Markets Bloomberg

WRIST, SLAPPED:  Marine Who Was Imprisoned for Speaking Against Afghanistan Incompetence Receives Surprise Sentence. “After violating a gag order to speak against the rank incompetence that led to Joe Biden’s deadly withdrawal from Afghanistan, Scheller was thrown into the brig pending a hearing. Later, he was hit with multiple charges stemming from his conduct. Now, the court-martial is over, and the results are somewhat surprising. Most thought the judge, Col. Glen Hines, would throw the book at him, as covering for the failures of military leadership has become a common occurrence. Yet, Scheller was given a fairly light sentence, which included a letter of reprimand and a forfeiture of $5,000 pay over the course of a single month. Further, the judge blasted command for the pre-trial detention and for leaking records to try to make the defendant look bad.”

Plus: “This was an attempted rail-roading that was headed off by a clear-minded judge who saw what was happening. That speaks to a deep rot still existent within the military.”

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Also check out these Micro Apartments we have featured