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Category Archive for 'History'

Today I reprint a slightly edited piece I put together several years ago. I’d change a lot of it, from the content to the tone, if I were to do it over – but one must live with one’s younger self. Happy Thanksgiving to all. Four centuries after the celebration of the first Thanksgiving, there […]

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King Philip’s War

It would be wrong to call King Philip’s war “long forgotten” as you’d have to have once known a little about it in order to forget it. Never in my grade school, high school or college history experiences did I hear mention of it, never in much of my leisurely reading on the American founding […]

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Another Offhand Remark

One conditions to not get angry or depressed by the myriad vapid, unsubstantiated and ad hominem-type remarks in nearly every book you pick up. This is especially the case in my two areas of “expertise” – environmental economics and the economics of higher education. Here is an example from the latest, The Big Ratchet, by Ruth DeFries: Aberrant […]

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Americans in Shining Armor

From an old NY Review of Books review by Freeman Dyson (What Price Glory?): … several historic battles in which foot soldiers defeated cavalry. In spite of these repeated calamities, the knight on his horse remained the emblem of military virtue throughout the long centuries of the Middle Ages. Kings and emperors spent their fortunes […]

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Of course, I will not share my thoughts at Thanksgiving … but here goes (start at 1:14 if you don’t like stories. One reason I love folk music is the stories): Please do NOT interpret this to suggest that I think this is an open and shut issue, or that there are not legitimate questions […]

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Some more fuel to be added to the mythical fires: Unlike Harding, some of whose highest officials actively abetted the bootlegging industry, and unlike Coolidge, whose lack if interest in enforcement was commensurate with his lack of interest in government activity of any kind, Hoover tried to do something about it. Because he was an […]

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Arnold Kling finishes a preamble to a review of a popular book in Political Science: Instead, I think this reflects the ease with which someone on the left can obtain high status in academia, and the corresponding difficulty for those on the right. If you’re on the right, you have to demonstrate awareness of important […]

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Happy Pol Pot Remembrance Day

I like to read, when I have time, things like Counterpunch Magazine, you know, to share the vibe with my comrades. Today I came across this: The Khmer Rouge experiment lasted only three years, from 1975 to 1978. Surprisingly, Cambodians have no bad memories of that period. This is quite an amazing discovery for an […]

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Readers who are following the adulation of Thomas Picketty’s Capital in the 21st Century do not need much information about the book.  One major theme of the book is that if the rate of return on “capital” exceeds the overall rate of return in the entire economy, then it follows that the rich and elderly gain in […]

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Lots to chew on in Mark Goldman’s excellent history of Buffalo in City on the Edge. my favorite parts thus far include learning about the many ethnic neighborhoods that attracted Poles, Italians, and Jewish immigrants to work in the mills, factories, etc. There was even a famous Rizzo from Palermo (my dad’s family is from […]

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