Sunday Morning Book Thread 07-12-2015: War On The Private Mind [OregonMuse]


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(Cartoon stolen from here.)


Good morning to all of you morons and moronettes and bartenders everywhere and all the ships at sea. Welcome to AoSHQ's stately, prestigious, internationally acclaimed and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread. The only AoSHQ thread that is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Or kilts. Serious you guys. Kilts are OK, too. But not tutus. Unless you're a girl.


Book thread TRIGGER SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE WARNINGS because you may hear that an armed society is a polite society, immigration laws ought to be enforced, and that democracy will last only until people discover they can vote themselves rich from the public treasury.


That is a good book which is opened with expectation and closed with profit.
-Amos Bronson Alcott

I dunno, that sounds awfully retrograde to me.


This Is How You Will Be Made To Care

"I don't care about all of this crap" my #2 son said to me a few months back when we were discussing Gamergate. "If they want to have their politically correct games, fine. I don't want to play them." But of course it doesn't work that way. I told him, "You may not be interested in Gamergate, but Gamergate is interested in you." We went back and forth a few times, but I'm not sure he really understood what I was trying to say. I'm afraid he will, soon enough.

This piece in the Federalist, linked in the sidebar, that comes close to capturing the way I've been feeling the last two years:

A lot of people are scratching their heads today, wondering how life got to be so surreal, so fast in the United States of America...The Great Unraveling continues at a rapid clip when slipping on a pronoun in these days of transgender rule could cost you your career or earn you massive social media rallies chanting “hater” at you.

Even benign reminders of the First Amendment—embodied in Religious Freedom Restoration Acts—are quickly dispatched by mob hysteria. One day a supposedly principled leader like Indiana Gov. Mike Pence promotes the RFRA, and the next day he folds and essentially signs on with the mob.

Of course, this is yet another illustration of how now is the time when we desperately need heroes, and all we get are cowards.

The author's main point is that conservatives know nothing about social psychology while progressives are expert at exploiting it, which is why we keep losing. Along the way, she references some classic books on manipulating public opinion and mass movements. The first is Public Opinion by Walter Lippmann, first published in 1922. Lippman was a writer, journalist and political commentator, probably the most influential pundit of his day. His wiki entry says:

Lippmann was an early and influential commentator on mass culture, notable for not criticizing or rejecting mass culture entirely, but discussing how it could be worked with to keep democracy functioning. In his first book on the subject, Public Opinion (1922), Lippmann said mass man functioned as a "bewildered herd" who must be governed by "a specialized class whose interests reach beyond the locality." The elite class of intellectuals and experts were to be a machinery of knowledge to circumvent the primary defect of democracy, the impossible ideal of the "omnicompetent citizen". This attitude was in line with contemporary socialist thinking.

So, how is all of this leading-of-the-unwashed-masses-to-a-glorious-future-by-an-enlightened-few going to be accomplished? Propaganda by Edward Bernays, nephew of Sigmund Freud, and who has been dubbed "the father of public relations", has the answer:

Bernays applied...some of the ideas of Walter Lippmann, [and] became an outspoken proponent of propaganda as a tool for democratic and corporate manipulation of the population. His 1928 bombshell Propaganda lays out his eerily prescient vision for using propaganda to regiment the collective mind in a variety of areas, including government, politics, art, science and education. To read this book today is to frightfully comprehend what our contemporary institutions of government and business have become in regards to organized manipulation of the masses.

Another classic book, one that offers a more in-depth view of the subject, is Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes by French sociologist/theologian Jacques Ellul, which, unfortunately, has not yet been converted to e-text. One Amazon reviewer notes:

You will find many less than intuitive but fascinating notions in the book. For instance: Education increases the ingestion of propaganda. In fact it is a prerequisite. It is no wonder Saddam Hussein worked to increase literacy in Iraq -- all the better to try to propagandize the people with words and mold them into a cohesive whole. Another idea: Democracies like the U.S. are very vulnerable to propaganda. In fact, this form of government makes propaganda all the more necessary, since you must work on people's minds more than their bodies (it is not a dictatorship.) People in democracies should expect to be heavily and relentlessly propagandized.

Whereas Bernays thought propaganda was wonderful and participated in a number of PR campaigns, Ellul not so much:

[Ellul] views propaganda as ultimately dehumanizing, necessary and inevitable at the same time. Propaganda, ANY propaganda, regardless of motives or veracity, serves to reduce the individual to function as a meaningless syphon.

('syphon' is an actual word, by the way. I had to look it up)

And finally:

Perhaps Ellul's most important insight was that the educated believed themselves immune to propaganda when, due to their proclivity for reading and watching news and other governmental outflow, such "intellectuals" were actually far more vulnerable than masses who did not receive propaganda as often.

So, getting back to Lippman, he didn't stop with that one book:

Later, in The Phantom Public (1925), Lippmann recognized that the class of experts were also, in most respects, outsiders to any particular problem, and hence, not capable of effective action.

That's an interesting admission: the masses are fools but the experts are incompetent. That's not a political philosophy, that's a formula for despair.

But hold on, there's more:

From the 1930s to the 1950s, Lippman became even more skeptical of the "guiding" class. In The Public Philosophy (1955), which took almost twenty years to complete, he presented a sophisticated argument that intellectual elites were undermining the framework of democracy.

As a leading public intellectual, Lippmann was able to hobnob with the movers and shakers. So what all of his elite friends think of his evolution of thought?

This book was very poorly received in liberal society.

Which is not surprising. "You're all worthless and weak" is always a hard sell.

So how do we fight this?

The Rape of the Mind: The Psychology of Thought Control, Menticide, and Brainwashing by Dutch psychiatrist Joost A. M. Meerloo, written

...after years immersed in the study of social psychology and countless interviews with victims of mental coercion, including Nazi officers and American prisoners of war in Korea. This treasure of insights was written for the layman. It is an absolute must-read for anyone who hopes to uphold the dignity of the individual. The book offers the psychic defenses so lacking among those who submit to logicide.

Here's one particularly effective tool:

Along these lines, Meerloo offers a prescription: “We must learn to treat the demagogue and aspirant dictator in our midst just as we should treat our external enemies in a cold war – with the weapon of ridicule. The demagogue himself is almost incapable of humor of any sort, and if we treat him with humor, he will begin to collapse...”

This. A lot more of this. That SJWs all seem to be humorless bastards is a huge, gaping weakness for them, ripe for exploitation. It is unfortunate that few on our side want to take advantage of this, or even see that it exists.

The Kindle edition of Merloo's book is available for only $3.99.

Q: When Is A Bestseller Not A NY Times Bestseller?

A: When Ted Cruz writes it:

The New York Times informed HarperCollins this week that it will not include Ted Cruz's new biography on its forthcoming bestsellers list, despite the fact that the book has sold more copies in its first week than all but two of the Times' bestselling titles, the On Media blog has learned.

How big a seller is it?

Cruz's "A Time For Truth," published on June 30, sold 11,854 copies in its first week, according to Nielsen Bookscan's hardcover sale numbers. That's more than 18 of the 20 titles that will appear on the bestseller list for the week ending July 4. Aziz Ansari's "Modern Romance," which is #2 on the list, sold fewer than 10,000 copies. Ann Coulter's "Adios America," at #11, sold just over half as many copies.

Sales of Cruz' book did not meet the NY Times "standards" for inclusion. When asked what those standards are, the reply from the Times' spokesperson was basically a non-answer:

Asked to specify those standards, Murphy replied: "Our goal is that the list reflect authentic best sellers, so we look at and analyze not just numbers, but patterns of sales for every book."

Later on, she said in an e-mail that "the overwhelming preponderance of evidence was that sales were limited to strategic bulk purchases".

A Time For Truth by Ted Cruz is currently a #1 bestseller on Amazon, and I think I know what "strategic bulk sales" means, but even so, the Times' explanation is annoyingly incomplete.

Rush used to talk about this sort of thing. Back in the Jurassic period prior to the internet, when his first book The Way Things Ought to Be was climbing the chart, Rush complained that they would not print the entire bestseller list, wherever his book was, they'd print only those above it. If TWTOTB was at number 8, they'd only print the top 7, and then when he moved to number 6, the next week's list would only show the top 5. I think Rush might have been exaggerating a bit, as I've seen them print the full list, even with conservative books occupying as many as 3 or 4 slots on the list.

By the way, the unhinged 1-star Amazon reviews of Cruz' book are hilarious.


Boys & Reading

Here's an article bemoaning the fact that it's tough to get boys to read nowadays. Various theories are proposed as to why this is:

According to one theory, girls' brains are more verbally oriented, often making reading skills easier for them, while boys' brains are visually oriented. Another theory is that boys are more physically restless than girls.

And so on. Undoubtedly, all of these play a role. But my theory is simpler: if you want boys to read, then give them books they will want to read, i.e. action, adventure, narrow escapes, hair-raising chases, featuring men who are strong and tough. But of course, this would be like anathema to the feminists who dominate the publishing industry. So instead, you get revisionist fairy tales where instead of being rescued from a dragon by a manly knight in shining armor, the damsel constructs a firearm and shoots the dragon herself, this rendering the (male) knight pretty much superfluous.

So, yeah. Boys don't want to read. I hope nobody is surprised by this.


Books by Morons

A long time reader and lurker e-mailed me earlier this week and let me know he has just released a new book on worship, Meditations on Reformed Worship: Motivations, Principles and Practices. The author, Matthew Powell, is a pastor in the RCUS (Reformed Church in the United States). He is also the author of an earlier book, The Essentials of the Christian Religion. Also The Lord is There: Studies in the Book of Ezekiel.


AoSHQ Book Club

Later on today (sometime around 6:30-7:00pm EDT), ace will be putting up the AoSHQ Book Club Thread. This week's book is Edgar Allan Poe's Fall of the House of Usher. This is the Kindle version, but no doubt it's available for free on Gutenberg or other e-book sites.


___________

So that's all for this week. As always, book thread tips, suggestions, bribes, rumors, threats, and insults may be sent to OregonMuse, Proprietor, AoSHQ Book Thread, at the book thread e-mail address: aoshqbookthread, followed by the 'at' sign, and then 'G' mail, and then dot cee oh emm.

What have you all been reading this week? Hopefully something good, because, as you all know, life is too short to be reading lousy books.

Posted by: Open Blogger at 08:56 AM




Comments

(Jump to bottom of page)

1 good morning

Posted by: phoenixgirl, i was born a rebel at July 12, 2015 08:57 AM (0O7c5)

2 nothing about turning atticus into a racist? i'm trying to figure out why harper went down that road.......

Posted by: phoenixgirl, i was born a rebel at July 12, 2015 08:59 AM (0O7c5)

3 Finished the biography of Stonewall Jackson. It was great. I was almost in tears as he lay dying.

Started reading The Yiddish Policemen's Union:

http://tinyurl.com/oc4act6

It's a quick read so far, but an entertaining mystery. I've always liked Michael Chabon, and it was a book my sister had given me a couple of years ago. It was an easy choice after the behemoth that was Robertson's Jackson biography.

I also picked up Stuart's Cavalry in the Gettysburg Campaign:

http://tinyurl.com/nm34fyt

I've decided that I just don't know enough about the Civil War, so I'm gonna dive in at some point.

Posted by: David at July 12, 2015 09:04 AM (GkcHG)

4 Let's make NO mistake about this.


Walter Lippmann was a communist.

Posted by: Nip Sip at July 12, 2015 09:04 AM (0FSuD)

5 a boo-ook?

don't wanna read no boo-ook +sneer+

Posted by: Bigby's Knuckle Sandwich at July 12, 2015 09:06 AM (cQkK4)

6 My sister just spent a week in Italy on a tour organized by a local bookstore. She got to meet authors over there, plus all sorts of sight seeing. One very cool thing is that her group got an after hours tour of the Sistine Chapel. She figured there would be other private tour groups with them, but it turned out just to be her group of 20 people.

I'm soooo jealous...

Posted by: HH at July 12, 2015 09:07 AM (Qia1Z)

7 NY Slime is basically saying bulk sales don't count. A pretty defensible argument, IF it was applied to all.



Never seen it applied to liberal authors. Someone correct me if I am wrong.



Posted by: Nip Sip at July 12, 2015 09:07 AM (0FSuD)

8 Ship of Ghosts

USS Houston, Battle of Sunda Strait,, building of Burma-Thailand Death Railroad.

Posted by: WW II at July 12, 2015 09:09 AM (Gcu5R)

9 "So instead, you get revisionist fairy tales where instead of being rescued from a dragon by a manly knight in shining armor, the damsel constructs a firearm and shoots the dragon herself, this rendering the (male) knight pretty much superfluous."

Almost. The manly knight twists his ankle, and the Strong, Independent Woman Leans In and takes his armor, constructs a firearm and shoots the dragon herself, then gets boned by the alpha were-seal, becoming queen of the... uh... whatever you call a bunch of were-seals.

Posted by: Agent J at July 12, 2015 09:10 AM (ueOgE)

10 I never understood why when a Hitler or Sharpton or Obongo says the Jews or the Whites are "in charge" or "run things" or are part of a world wide mastermind conspiracy to rule the world and are able to hoodwink the good German or dark skinned minority no one asks "Well, I guess we as a good German or a dark sinned minority are just stupid and can't keep up with those superior Jews or Whites is that what your saying?". Which is in essence what the demagogues are saying.

Posted by: Hairyback Guy at July 12, 2015 09:10 AM (JG47A)

11 Road to Serfdom

F.A. Hayek

Posted by: Slave at July 12, 2015 09:10 AM (Gcu5R)

12 Camp of the Saints

Now I'm really scared.

Posted by: Slave at July 12, 2015 09:12 AM (Gcu5R)

13 Amazingly spot on, the deconstruct of propaganda.

Posted by: Ruth at July 12, 2015 09:12 AM (oo88B)

14 Glen Reynolds suggested the essential Hayek last week, it's free.



http://tinyurl.com/nrsrc48

Posted by: Nip Sip at July 12, 2015 09:14 AM (0FSuD)

15 But my theory is simpler: if you want boys to read, then give them books they will want to read, i.e. action, adventure, narrow escapes, hair-raising chases, featuring men who are strong and tough.

^^^^^

This exactly!

My son is eight and it is very difficult to find many modern books for him to read. And he loooooooves to read, so this is a problem. It's very frustrating to get to the book store and the entire wall of books for his age group are some variant of Magic Puppies, Magic Kitties, or Junie B. Jones. As my son says, that's girl stuff, and he has zero desire to read it.

We've basically turned to older children's classics and older scifi/fantasy. We are also lucky that a friend if my step-father's gave us two huge boxes of his old books from when he was a kid, so now my boy has a whole bookshelf full of Star Trek (OS) novellas, the entire set of Heinlein's Youth novels, and fantasy stuff like the Belgariad. It's all obviously above his comprehension level, but he grabs his dictionary and struggles through them, and I think he will be better off for it.

Posted by: Mandy P., lurking lurker who lurks at July 12, 2015 09:15 AM (KkVB6)

16 Currently reading the Dahak series by David Weber on the kindle. Much better than the paperbacks I had. But I messed up when I ordered it. I already had it from a previous order direct from the publisher so Amazon did not stop me.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 09:16 AM (GpgJl)

17 Ship of Ghosts



USS Houston, Battle of Sunda Strait,, building of Burma-Thailand Death Railroad.

Posted by: WW II at July 12, 2015 09:09 AM (Gcu5R)



My bridge was magnificent.

Posted by: Colonel Bogey at July 12, 2015 09:16 AM (JO9+V)

18 I don't think books with girls as protagonists are squeezing boys out of the market any more than the preponderance of boy-centric books in my youth oppressed me.

And I wanted to slay the dragon! I never identified with the princess waiting passively in her tower.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:17 AM (jR7Wy)

19 Reading old Star Trek novels right now, the Rihannsu series out in omnibus for Kindle. Diane Duane and... Peter Moorwood, I think... wrote an actually good series of ST novels centered on Romulans (Rihannsu, they call themselves) and set in the missing years between TOS and TMP. I read the first two when they came out 20+ years ago, never knew there were more, so got the omnibus. Mind candy.

Thinking next maybe some Raymond Chandler Marlowe fiction, or perhaps the book by Harding called "The Last Battle," about when US troops and surrendered Nazis teamed up in one of the last battles of WW2.

Posted by: Agent J at July 12, 2015 09:18 AM (ueOgE)

20 The Federalist article was good on analysis but weak and cliched on solutions. It's fine to say we need to do this or that thing, but this implies that people understand the problem or requires that they learn more about it, which they don't and don't seem inclined to. That's why we're in the fix were in. And humor and mockery is useless in the end.

Actually Trump is showing one good way to fight -- with confrontational ballsiness and emotive narratives.

Posted by: rrpjr at July 12, 2015 09:18 AM (s/yC1)

21 said mass man functioned as a "bewildered herd"

****


Ironic, just this morning Missus Muldoon and I were talking about what was once dubbed the "Silent Majority" but which I now call "The Muddled Middle". Much along the same lines as the bewildered herd.

I envision the Muddled Middle as people who are living their lives and really don't put much thought or energy into controversial social issues (LIV's, young people, football fans, etc.) The political struggle is a struggle for the favorable sentiments (or votes) of this mass in the middle. I estimate it at somewhere between 60 and 80% of the population. When push comes to shove they are mostly motivated by expediency.

The progressive viewpoint offers them an illusory freedom from want. The conservative viewpoint offers them freedom to strive. This is a tough sell for conservatives.

Posted by: Muldoon, a solid man at July 12, 2015 09:19 AM (NeFrd)

22 18 I don't think books with girls as protagonists are squeezing boys out of the market any more than the preponderance of boy-centric books in my youth oppressed me.

And I wanted to slay the dragon! I never identified with the princess waiting passively in her tower.
Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:17 AM (jR7Wy)


Eh, I think this is a matter of boys thinking differently than girls. My daughter, for example, is happy to play with swords and shields, or toy guns, or army and whatnot. My son, on the other hand, is mortified by the idea he should play ponies with his sister. Girls have cooties right now, and therefore anything he perceives as girly is out of bounds, in his opinion.

That may not be so with all boys, but it would suspect a lot of them go through that at some point. And if the only things they're being pushed to read are about girls at a time when all things girl are gross to them, I can see how that would be a turn off.

Posted by: Mandy P., lurking lurker who lurks at July 12, 2015 09:21 AM (KkVB6)

23
Still reading "In the Shadow of the Sword: the Birth of Islam and the Rise of the Global Arab Empire." Neat stuff. The author states there are no historical documents written by Muslims at the time Mohammed walked the earth. You'd think there would be letters written like: "Hi Honey, We're all very excited because the Prophet gave a pep talk to our battalion before the big attack on Mecca tomorrow. Love you! Say hello to everyone for me and please feed the goats."

Oh there's plenty of such letters and diaries written by Christians and Jews at that time, but Muslims? Nothing. It's like every letter mentioning the Prophet went into some gigantic shredder somewhere.

Posted by: Craig at July 12, 2015 09:21 AM (YmaPs)

24 late suggestion, and I was going to email OM this--but the horror/fantasy series "The Tome of Bill" is on Kindle for the seriously cheap price of $6.99 for about 6 books, and they're funny as hell.

It's about a nerdy game developer who gets turned into a vampire and has to deal with all that entails.

TRIGGER WARNING for language that may offend special snowflakes and "misogynistic" ramblings

(i.e. Bill refers to his female vamp mentor on several occasions as a "bitch" when she does bitchy things)

Posted by: clsesq at July 12, 2015 09:22 AM (cdiDN)

25 Our biggest propaganda device is that boob tube that boobs sit in front of daily. It all liberal all the time.


And I would bet that 99% of them never crack a book or a book thread.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 09:22 AM (GpgJl)

26 I once taught a " Boys' Own Books " course in a summer school program for middle schoolers . Treasure Island , Kim , Youth even Heart of Darkness , with some poetry on the side, Light Brigade Last Fight Revenge .Drummer Hodge The course was a pretty fair success : the boys liked it so they even did the reading . However , the administration did not like it , it was not 'inclusive'. So I was told it could not/ would not be offered the next summer .

Posted by: jay hoenemeyer at July 12, 2015 09:23 AM (uvj0z)

27 Is 'syphon' not used there as for the tool for moving liquids from one site to another that is 'siphon' in American 'English'?

Posted by: andycanuck at July 12, 2015 09:24 AM (kivUY)

28 "...if you want boys to read, then give them books they will want to read, i.e. action, adventure, narrow escapes, hair-raising chases, featuring men who are strong and tough."

Pretty much my theory, when I wrote Lone Star Sons and pitched it toward the adolescent male reader: lots of action, daring-do, mystery, adventure.

Just yesterday afternoon, as it got into the high 90s, our central air conditioner cut out, and we had to call the maintenance company for a repairman. (It's a relatively new unit, and we have a pre-paid maintenance plan with them, which did get them to hopping on a Saturday afternoon) The tech showed up in an hour and speedily got everything running smoothly again, and did make note of all the books around the house. Daughter unit explained that I'm a writer and we own a Tiny Publishing Bidness ... and the tech said he hardly had time to read these days ... but his second-grade age son was reading far above his grade level. So - Daughter Unit cunningly suggested that I give him a copy of Lone Star Sons for his boy. So here's hoping another fan, and a boy who bucks the "boys don't wanna read" paradigm.

I'm off to the SA Indie Writer's Festival today - all this afternoon at the Wonderland Mall - about thirty or forty indy writers in all genres -- taking back publishing one book at a time.

Posted by: Sgt. Mom at July 12, 2015 09:25 AM (95iDF)

29 This is the Kindle version, but no doubt it's available for free on Gutenberg or other e-book sites.


It is available for free there. I downloaded and read it.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 09:26 AM (GpgJl)

30 ...whatever you call a bunch of were-seals.


****

That would be a 'tupper' of ware-seals

Posted by: Muldoon, a solid man at July 12, 2015 09:27 AM (NeFrd)

31 Our teenage boys read. Mostly stuff on their tablets but books too like LOTR and Scifi. Oldest boy likes books on tech and architecture. If I give them something I think they will like they will usually read it.

I have a whole bunch of Peanuts paperbacks from the Sixties and Seventies, reprints of old strips. Both boys read all of them over and over again when they were little. I think that they not only helped them learn to read but helped them understand how the world works.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:27 AM (BO/km)

32 LOL Muldoon

Posted by: uh huh at July 12, 2015 09:28 AM (WlTl7)

33 "NY Slime is basically saying bulk sales don't count"

One of the banana-republic aspects of the Obama years has been that the U.S. State Department bought up huge numbers of copies of Obama's ghostwritten books for free redistribution abroad. To the global masses hungry for more doubleplusgood Obamathought.

Having the government pay to officially propagate the thinking of the Maximum Leader has a long and unpleasant history, and I won't cite examples, of which I figure most of you can easily fill in the blanks.

But those were by damn sure "bulk sales", by the literal truckload, and I suspect the likes of the _Slimes_ were untroubled by scruple in recording them as though they were retail.

Note also that Canquelles had the family foundation buy up and give away many copies of the least read book in recent memory, _Hard Choices_. Again it would be most instructive to figure out how the NYT tabulated those.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 09:28 AM (noWW6)

34 Mandy -

You can try the GA Henty books, written in another time for real boys: http://www.henty.com/s86p1427.htm

or if you have a kindle : http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/author/1032

I picked up a full set of the Collier's Junior Classics cheap, check e-bay.

Posted by: Mordineus at July 12, 2015 09:28 AM (tjuki)

35 g'mornin', 'rons

Posted by: AltonJackson at July 12, 2015 09:28 AM (KCxzN)

36 Robb White was a great boy's author, back in the day.

Posted by: uh huh at July 12, 2015 09:29 AM (WlTl7)

37 >>>
The progressive viewpoint offers them an illusory freedom from want.
Posted by: Muldoon, a solid man at July 12, 2015 09:19 AM (NeFrd)
-----
Also the assurance that they are the "nice, caring" people.

Posted by: Mindy at July 12, 2015 09:29 AM (P4sGF)

38 After reading House of Usher for tonight's discussion I started going through some other Poe stories and poems. I had forgotten how rich and effective his writing was, if I ever knew. What I can get from his stories now is so much more than when I was in high school or junior high. (That's another reason, beside tradition, I read LOTR every year. Somehow the story improves as I get older.) The word choice, the pacing, even word arrangement add to the effect Poe was striving for. The result is lyrical. There are passages that could be sung, at least as a dirge.

Time to start going through some of my other teen age reading, perhaps "Tarzan of the Apes", to see if they have aged well in the book like a good bottle of wine ages.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 09:30 AM (FvdPb)

39 Great post on propaganda, OM. Looks like I'll have to order another book or two for the ever-growing queue.

Posted by: PabloD at July 12, 2015 09:30 AM (roESk)

40 From Milady's reads this week:

Len Slye had been an adoring fan of Will Rogers for years. And he and his co-workers were surprised and pleased one day in 1935 when they received word that Will was a fan of "The Sons of the Pioneers" and hoped they could appear with him at a Salvation Army benefit at San Bernardino. When the evening arrived and the program was over, Will shook hands all around, thanking the boys warmly. "I won't be seeing you for a while, fellows," Will Rogers said. "I'm taking off tomorrow with Wiley Post for Alaska."

(For those who may not know, the famous commentator and the famous aviator never returned. I've been to the lake where they went down.)

Len Slye later became famous as Roy Rogers, and "because of the name and his own homespun qualities and his own grass-roots language, he would often be mistaken in the future for the great American humorist's son."

The Answer is God
The inspiring personal story of Dale Evans and Roy Rogers
by Elise Miller Davis
McGraw-Hill, 1955

Posted by: mindful webworker - name Dale's horse at July 12, 2015 09:31 AM (rvtDF)

41 And if the only things they're being pushed to read are about girls at a time when all things girl are gross to them, I can see how that would be a turn off.
Posted by: Mandy P., lurking lurker who lurks at July 12, 2015 09:21 AM (KkVB6)
---
Oh yeah, I agree about the cootie factor. I'm just getting tired of the whining. Just as I said to women complaining about lack of "female role models" in books ((blecch - spinach reading!)): We have a free market. Support the writers you like, or write what you want to read.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:31 AM (jR7Wy)

42 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.


Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)

43 "[Ellul] views propaganda as ultimately dehumanizing, necessary and inevitable at the same time. Propaganda, ANY propaganda, regardless of motives or veracity, serves to reduce the individual to function as a meaningless syphon.

('syphon' is an actual word, by the way. I had to look it up)"

So he's saying that we would have a society consisting of nothing but people stealing gas from each other's tanks? Weird.

Posted by: Emmett Milbarge at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (nFdGS)

44 24 The Tome of Bill

Okay, it's on the wishlist.

Posted by: Agent J at July 12, 2015 09:35 AM (ueOgE)

45 ...whatever you call a bunch of were-seals.





****



That would be a 'tupper' of ware-seals

Posted by: Muldoon, a solid man at July 12, 2015 09:27 AM (NeFrd)


There's nothing like a good pun to set the tone for the day.

Posted by: Count de Monet at July 12, 2015 09:35 AM (JO9+V)

46 The "bulk sale" thing isn't ambiguous it's a straight up lie.

Posted by: Lauren at July 12, 2015 09:35 AM (VCv/b)

47 The progressive viewpoint offers them an illusory freedom from want. The conservative viewpoint offers them freedom to strive. This is a tough sell for conservatives.

Yes. "Personal responsibility" is always a hard sell. And comes in second every time to "free sh*t from the government".

Posted by: OregonMuse at July 12, 2015 09:36 AM (X1y52)

48 Still watching a recording of Trump's speech. Some whisper thin SJW in view of the camera is deliberately holding a sign so it reads "RUMP".

Which is admittedly pretty funny.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:36 AM (jR7Wy)

49 "7 NY Slime is basically saying bulk sales don't count. A pretty defensible argument, IF it was applied to all."

It's not, and it doesn't matter if it were because Cruz' sales weren't bulk sales. His publisher released the numbers.

Posted by: Lauren at July 12, 2015 09:37 AM (VCv/b)

50 42 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.

Ia! If you want mega cool points, get the bumper sticker that says, "Cthulhu 2016: Don't Settle for the Lesser Evil."

Posted by: Agent J at July 12, 2015 09:37 AM (ueOgE)

51 42 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.


Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)

Roll a sanity check.

Posted by: Insomniac at July 12, 2015 09:37 AM (mx5oN)

52 So he's saying that we would have a society consisting of nothing but people stealing gas from each other's tanks? Weird.

Heh. I think "passive conduits that just suck up whatever they're given" is the image he was getting at.

Posted by: OregonMuse at July 12, 2015 09:38 AM (X1y52)

53 50 42 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.

Ia! If you want mega cool points, get the bumper sticker that says, "Cthulhu 2016: Don't Settle for the Lesser Evil."
Posted by: Agent J at July 12, 2015 09:37 AM (ueOgE)

Heh. I have a tshirt like that.

Posted by: Insomniac at July 12, 2015 09:38 AM (mx5oN)

54 Good on you, Sgt. Mom!

Posted by: Infidel at July 12, 2015 09:39 AM (kDvjH)

55 "Menticide" is *exactly* what I felt I was watching just before I pulled my kids from public school. Watching bright, curious children change into beings with no curiosity what-so-ever, no understanding that the world began before they arrived on the scene, and no ability to put any new information they might accidentally receive into coherent order with that they already had (processing) was horrifying.

Posted by: Polliwog the 'Ette at July 12, 2015 09:39 AM (GDulk)

56 42 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.


Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)
---
Rent "Call of Cthulhu" and "The Whisperer in Darkness" by the HPL Historical Society, done in silent film and 30's horror style, respectively.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:40 AM (jR7Wy)

57 This week I read Paul Johnson's A History of the Jews. As my knowledge of religions is minimal, I learned a great deal. Johnson's research and writing style made this a very engrossing book to read.

Posted by: Zoltan at July 12, 2015 09:42 AM (lFkeD)

58 Also still rolling through "When to Rob a Bank" by the Freakonomics team. Got it for a flight to Boise last month and still paging through it. It's great stuff for a toilet read. Two or three pages per "chapter."

Posted by: clsesq at July 12, 2015 09:42 AM (cdiDN)

59
Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.
Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)
Roll a sanity check.


His or mine?

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:43 AM (BO/km)

60 My brothers read the Doc Savage books when they were kids. Also Edgar Rice Burroughs. My son loved books of comics, especially Calvin and Hobbes and Get Fuzzy.

Posted by: Emily at July 12, 2015 09:43 AM (7Rn+/)

61 I recently read the New Annotated H.P. Lovecraft. Very high quality book and recommended for everyone, particularly someone new to his work as the footnotes provide a lot of context that may be lost on a modern reader.

Also slogged through A Dance with Dragons - all the while wondering 'why am I reading this?'. This happens all the time when a series get 'yuge' - the editor just stops editing and lets the author crush his word count as if they sell it by the pound. And I'll probably read the next one despite getting sick of it...sigh.

Posted by: Todd W at July 12, 2015 09:43 AM (lrkg9)

62 "Actually Trump is showing one good way to fight -- with confrontational ballsiness and emotive narratives."

Not as though that path hadn't already been trodden.

Obama 2008 was all about emotive narratives. Larded about with heaping helpings of outright fiction.

"My grandfather helped liberate Auschwitz!"

Not unless he was serving in the Soviet military, he didn't.

"My parents first met on the bridge at the Selma march!"

After Obama was born? Quite the trick.

And then Obama went on to run for re-election in 2012 with more emotive narratives that were outright horseshit.

I was particularly taken with the story he told the press of "a waiter" at a restaurant campaign stop who, Obama said, had come up to him and said that his cancer-ridden mother's life had been saved by the guaranteed-issue provision of Obamacare.

The press all dutifully wrote that down and regurgitated it on cue to the public. None of them noted that the guaranteed-issue provision of Obamacare hadn't yet taken effect at that time.

So, yeah, emotive narratives are a powerful political tool, but they are a hell of a lot more powerful in the hands of candidates who repeatedly prevaricate and who are never contradicted or fact-checked on what they say.

For some reason I doubt any Republican will ever enjoy that exalted status. Quite the opposite. A GOP candidate can say things that are absolutely factually true, and have the press corpse spin those assertions to the public as being dubiously founded.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 09:44 AM (noWW6)

63 Didn't Walt Whitman sing "Cthulhu calling you who......"

This is depressing, thought had written some story that was amusing with a twist ending. Then I awoke from a deep sleep and all fragments of the story disintegrated in the morning light.

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 09:44 AM (OLLOK)

64 At least the governor of Oklahoma defied the OK Supreme Court and did not take down the Ten Commandments . At least for now.

Posted by: Cruzinator at July 12, 2015 09:45 AM (4SgJh)

65 14 Posted by: Nip Sip at July 12, 2015 09:14 AM (0FSuD)


Thanks, I never turn down a free book.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 09:46 AM (GpgJl)

66 When I was a boy in the mid-60s, I subscribed to the Science Service series of books:

http://www.infomercantile.com/-/The_Science_Service_Science_Program

Scroll down to see the covers. Each book was a 64 page softcover, and included slipcases that would hold about six of them. I replied to an ad much like the one shown.

Learning about science and technology is something that would definitely interest most boys. I still have all of mine, although they are somewhat dated now.

Posted by: rickl at July 12, 2015 09:47 AM (sdi6R)

67 59
Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.
Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)
Roll a sanity check.


His or mine?
Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:43 AM (BO/km)

Both.

Posted by: Insomniac at July 12, 2015 09:47 AM (mx5oN)

68 There is no evidence of bulk sales of Cruz's book, his publisher says. He scares all the right people and must be suppressed.

Look for "HarperCollins Hits Back at NYT at Mediaite

The miserable commenting system will not allow the URL because "long strings of text are annoying."

Posted by: Jeremiah McCarthy at July 12, 2015 09:47 AM (FxyAf)

69 Great book thread, Oregon Muse! Thank you!

Read Fall ofctge Hose of Usher last night in a short Poe anthology that was in the YA section of our public library. It's illustrated.

Posted by: @votermom at July 12, 2015 09:48 AM (cbfNE)

70 "The demagogue himself is almost incapable of humor of any sort, and if we treat him with humor, he will begin to collapse..."

Takes after his father, then:

"The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn." -- Martin Luther

"The devil ... the prowde spirite ... cannot endure to be mocked." -- Thomas More

(These are, incidentally, the epigraphs of The Screwtape Letters.)

Posted by: Elisabeth G. Wolfe at July 12, 2015 09:49 AM (iuQS7)

71 "We have a free market. Support the writers you like, or write what you want to read."

Well, we have a semi-free market now that is struggling to become a genuinely free one. Thanks to liberative technological change.

But the publishing industry was a tightly controlled non-free pseudo-market for a long, long time. Right up until the Internet started to bust open the closed shop.

And to the extent that publishing insiders still are able to shape and control the market by excluding authors of whom they disapprove, they sure as hell do still try. Witness the recent flap at Tor Books.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 09:50 AM (noWW6)

72
63Didn't Walt Whitman sing "Cthulhu calling you who......"


I think that was Slim Whitman. Grandma's favorite.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:50 AM (BO/km)

73 15 It's all obviously above his comprehension level,
but he grabs his dictionary and struggles through them, and I think he
will be better off for it.

Posted by: Mandy P., lurking lurker who lurks at July 12, 2015 09:15 AM (KkVB6)


The more he reads the better he will understand. I was reading Heinlein when I was young.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 09:51 AM (GpgJl)

74 "The miserable commenting system will not allow the URL because 'long strings of text are annoying.'"

This will all be fixed in #twoweeks.

In the meantime, Pixyware will accept URLs that have been condensed via the likes of TinyURL.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 09:52 AM (noWW6)

75 C.S. Lewis starts out his Screwtape Letters with a quote from Martin Luther: "The devil, proud spirit, cannot be mocked."

Screwtape's one weakness is that he hates being laughed at. He must be taken seriously. Not that one should ignore the presence of evil, of course, but evil can be both ridiculed and opposed.

The classic WWII movie, "To Be or Not to Be" with Jack Benny and Carole Lombard skewered the pomposity of Hitler while fighting him. (A great classic movie, by the way.)

Posted by: Rosley at July 12, 2015 09:53 AM (551XJ)

76 I loved the WaPo's intro to their so-called news piece on Trump's speech... "Trump, whose CAUSTIC comments on Mexican immigrants INFLAMED the immigration debate..."

Caustic to whom? Or maybe "caustic" is their substitute for truthful, and "inflamed" for having revealed those hidden truths and thus forced open the debate and the Narrative-keepers to defend their abominable homicidal policies.

Posted by: rrpjr at July 12, 2015 09:54 AM (s/yC1)

77 Re books for young'n's, IIRC, Asimov early in his career did a series of books for kids, which should be good straight-up SF.

IIRC. Man, it's been getting close to half a century since my steeped-in-SF yout'. Biomemory is an unreliable tool. Mine is, anyway.

Posted by: mindful webworker - to experience, and beyond! at July 12, 2015 09:55 AM (rvtDF)

78 I have a whole bunch of Peanuts paperbacks from the Sixties and
Seventies, reprints of old strips. Both boys read all of them over and
over again when they were little. I think that they not only helped them
learn to read but helped them understand how the world works.



It is a rare person who is able at a young age to tie written words to real world events. Comic Books tie those together in a way that allows young minds to understand them. The problem with Comic Books is that they may train the mind to need pictures to go along with words for comprehension - thus stunting the ability of the mind to understand without illustration.

Posted by: An Observation at July 12, 2015 09:56 AM (isNLO)

79
I read all of the Hardy Boys books when I was young. I could not get either of our boys to get thru just one bookthough. Wonder why? They had mystery and adventure andstuff but they couldnot grab the boys' attention.

Maybe it's because the setting is so long ago and far from what they know now they can't relate. Or maybe theywere notthat good in the first place and I didn't know any better.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:57 AM (BO/km)

80 66 When I was a boy in the mid-60s, I subscribed to the Science Service series of books:

http://www.infomercantile.com/-/The_Science_Service_Science_Program

....

Learning about science and technology is something that would definitely interest most boys. I still have all of mine, although they are somewhat dated now.
Posted by: rickl at July 12, 2015 09:47 AM (sdi6R)
----
Rickl, those are so cool! Do you still have any? Has anybody downloaded them? I would love to read them.

We had shelves of How and Why and Little Golden Books, and the entire sets of the Time Life science and nature series. They still can't be beat IMHO.

Any fans of Jupiter Jones or Tom Swift here? I love the old !Atomic! age Swifts and wonder if they've been updated.

We need Edisonades for the new millennium.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:58 AM (jR7Wy)

81 *rummages around*

Larry Correia on how the New York Times calculates best sellers.

The NYT bestseller list is based upon the reported numbers from a select, supposedly secret group of reporting bookstores. It is also based on the sales for one week, so it isn't looking at overall sales as much as sales velocity. For example, if a book sells a thousand copies a week for the whole year, it probably won't make the list, but if a book sells 10k copies in one week and never sells another copy again, it will be a bestseller. This is how the Snookis and various Real House Wives end up on the list, yet they're the most bargain binned and remaindered type of book there is.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ok49aj4

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 09:59 AM (OLLOK)

82 I like the suggestion to ridicule the SJWs (and the left in general) but how can this translate into helping out our causes? What do we need to do to accomplish this? Specifically, how do we use the sources available, like Twitter and Facebook, and what do we have to do with these that we aren't doing now or doing well enough?

I know we're doing some of these things now but what do we need to do in the future to make this an even more effective tool?

Posted by: Sasquatch, the trans-Wookie Original at July 12, 2015 10:02 AM (JUdR1)

83 "So, yeah, emotive narratives are a powerful
political tool, but they are a hell of a lot more powerful in the hands
of candidates who repeatedly prevaricate and who are never contradicted
or fact-checked on what they say.

For some reason I doubt any
Republican will ever enjoy that exalted status. Quite the opposite. A
GOP candidate can say things that are absolutely factually true, and
have the press corpse spin those assertions to the public as being
dubiously founded.



Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 09:44 AM (noWW6)"

My father used to tell me about a college history course he took where the professor frequently praised the brilliance of British diplomats. My father noted that the British diplomats were a lot more brilliant in the days when the British had the most powerful Navy in the world and could pound any coastal city into rubble whenever they wanted to.

The Democrats are brilliant at politics because all the conventional media are controlled by Democrats.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at July 12, 2015 10:02 AM (QHgTq)

84 15 ... Mandy, You have a treasure trove with those early Heinlein books. I started them at that age with "The Rolling Stones". Worth every second of effort to work through them both for their vocabulary and concepts. If it matters, Heinlein usually had strong female characters in his books as well as the males.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:03 AM (FvdPb)

85 About boys and reading... My 2nd grade son hated reading until his new teacher (who had a son of her own) introduced him to Captain Underpants books. It took off from there and he's now the top reader in his grade (4th grade this fall). He loves reading almost everything now.

Posted by: Rory at July 12, 2015 10:03 AM (fsN5v)

86 *waves g'mornin' at Anna Puma*

That's very interesting Anna, and explains a lot. Who could have guessed they manipulate data?

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 10:04 AM (jR7Wy)

87
I know we're doing some of these things now but what do we need to do in the future to make this an even more effective tool?


Skywriting.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 10:04 AM (BO/km)

88 I am enjoying these suggestions as I try to think of things my little nephews might enjoy.

When I was a kid, I read this series at the library about kids getting dropped into another time period (revolutionary war, etc). But I can't figure out what it was called.

I also read the bobsey twins and sweet valley twins.

Posted by: Lea at July 12, 2015 10:05 AM (vmMMi)

89 From June of this year, Larry Correia echos something Esther Freisner said a few years ago - "Writers are like mercenaries, they like to get paid."

http://monsterhunternation.com/2015/06/25/how-authors-get-paid-part-2/

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 10:05 AM (OLLOK)

90
Hah! I actually finished a book. I usually say "I am reading x" because I've started it but I don't get much reading time. So I started on a camping trip and finished yesterday.

"When the Killing's Done" by T.C. Boyle. He used to be my favorite author, then I got sick of him. So I took a decade or so break. I really enjoyed this book.

It's green vs. green. Multigenerational (as is his wont) and historical (likewise) account of the indigenous and introduced fauna on the Channel Islands of Santa Barbara, it pits two versions of environmentalism against each other and milks it for the wry humor of humanity being awful.

Posted by: Bandersnatch at July 12, 2015 10:05 AM (1xUj/)

91 "how can this translate into helping out our causes"

That wasn't written quite how I wanted it. I do know that ridicule is a powerful tool. I just want to know what we can do to use it more effectively.

Morning coffee hasn't set in!

Posted by: Sasquatch, the trans-Wookie Original at July 12, 2015 10:07 AM (JUdR1)

92 80
Rickl, those are so cool! Do you still have any? Has anybody downloaded them? I would love to read them.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 09:58 AM (jR7Wy)



Yes, they are very cool. I loved them, and I still have all of them. I doubt they've been digitized, but I'll bet you can find used copies at Alibris or Abebooks.

I said in my earlier comment that they are dated now (they're 50 years old, after all), but they still contain useful and interesting information, and all of them include the history of the development of that particular field.

I wonder if there is anything like them today?

Posted by: rickl at July 12, 2015 10:07 AM (sdi6R)

93 It seems someone has sketched my bookshelves.

I love books. Really, I do. I can barely pass them up in the store, particularly if they are a bargain. Then, they sit on my shelves or in a bin and are almost never read.

When younger, I read quite a lot, then I started having migraines and now have a lot of problems with auras which, although they do bother me when reading a computer screen, bother me considerably more when reading a book.

I should buy a Kindle but, again, I really love the books themselves. Perhaps books on tape will suffice but, still, I can guarantee I'll keep buying hardcovers anyway.

There's knowledge in them that books, and I wanna extract all I can from them. I kills me not to be able to read like I used to.

Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at July 12, 2015 10:08 AM (PMlgt)

94 Posted by: An Observation at July 12, 2015 09:56 AM (isNLO)
---
Peanuts and MAD Magazine were woven into my very genetic stuff as an impressionable bratling. Far from making me dependent on pictures to assist in storytelling, they built vocabulary and made me seek out the very things they were lampooning.

And anyway, Mort Drucker is a 20th Century Master.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 10:08 AM (jR7Wy)

95 G'mornin All Hail Eris.

Apparently the New York Times has been 'hiding the delicne' long before Mann thought of it.

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 10:08 AM (OLLOK)

96 "79

I read all of the Hardy Boys books when I was young. I could not get
either of our boys to get thru just one bookthough. Wonder why? They
had mystery and adventure andstuff but they couldnot grab the boys'
attention.

Maybe it's because the setting is so long ago and far
from what they know now they can't relate. Or maybe theywere notthat
good in the first place and I didn't know any better.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:57 AM (BO/km)"

I remember reading the Hardy Boys in the 1960s and they were pretty dated even then. Stuff about the rear curtains closed on a roadster turning off the pavement to drive to the road house.

I remember reading an even more dated book by Horatio Alger. It was something about selling the farm and buying a covered wagon to go out west for better opportunities. I couldn't really relate but it was sort of interesting.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at July 12, 2015 10:09 AM (QHgTq)

97
Oh yesthe boys loved Captain Underpants. All kinds of crazy gross stuff that boys like in there.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 10:10 AM (BO/km)

98 Loved those Tom Swift jr. books! 'Atomic' this and 'advanced' that with great covers on the hard back editions. That was over fifty years ago for me and don't know if they are still around in any form. As an adult I've enjoyed the original Tom Swift books from the WW I era. I wonder if they inspired Clive Cussler's Isaac Bell series?

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:11 AM (FvdPb)

99 With technology being what it is, shouldn't there be a number of good conservative publishing houses that can offer good books for sale in an on-line format (and perhaps even paper format) for young boys to read? I would imagine that money would be an important impediment here to preventing this from coming into being, so what should we do to help bring one or more of these type of publishing houses into being?

I know there are plenty of good authors among the Moron Horde that would write these books, so what can the rest of us do to help bring this about?

Posted by: Sasquatch, the trans-Wookie Original at July 12, 2015 10:12 AM (JUdR1)

100 what do we need to do in the future to make this an even more effective tool?

Posted by: Sasquatch, the trans-Wookie Original at July 12, 2015 10:02 AM (JUdR1)

One tactic I'm trying in my next book is to strip away the SJW context and show the basic personality type beneath, which is far, FAR older than the Internet. (The character in question gives serious thought to pulling Mattress Girl tactics before her story takes a very unfortunate turn indeed--and this is 1870.) I'm hoping that punctures the image of the Righteous Womyn Fighting 4 Hir Ryghts! effectively.

Posted by: Elisabeth G. Wolfe at July 12, 2015 10:13 AM (iuQS7)

101 An Observation: The problem with Comic Books is that they may train the mind to need pictures to go along with words for comprehension - thus stunting the ability of the mind to understand without illustration.

I suppose, if all a person ever read is comic books, and mostly just skipped captions, glazing over dialog, and just looking at the pictures, this might be true. Might be. Trying to stretch my imagination to encompass such a person.

I was mad comics collector (mom did not throw out my 1960s Marvel collection, but a "friend" did steal it). I was also a voracious print reader. Started out with illustrated Dick and Jane books, by the way. See Spot run. Run, Spot, run! Did not seem to hamper our literacy.

My mother-in-law imbibed that 1950s propaganda about comics stunting kids, and worried because her son Jack was reading them. Poor Jack ended up being just a lowly Chicago cabbie, barely able to read street signs with icons. Just kidding. You can purchase Jack's gritty big-city books on Amazon (and if I did it right should benefit AoSHQ) using this link:
http://bit.ly/jack-clark

I raised my kids on the Classics. The original Steve Ditko run on Spider-Man. $crooge McDuck stories by Carl Barks and Don Rosa. Because with all power comes mighty responsibility, thrift and hard work are valuable, and if life hands you a buck of worms, go fishing.

But, you know, they're "only" comics.

Posted by: mindful webworker - funny, books at July 12, 2015 10:14 AM (rvtDF)

102 Alright, I'm going to buy one of these captain underpants books and see if the nephew likes it.

I usually buy him comic book stuff.

Posted by: Lea at July 12, 2015 10:15 AM (vmMMi)

103 Don't get saucy with me, Bernays.

Posted by: wvcondad at July 12, 2015 10:15 AM (ko7nW)

104 The author's main point is that conservatives know nothing about social psychology while progressives are expert at exploiting it, which is why we keep losing.

I don't know accurate this idea really is. We live in a time where its very easy to whip up a twitter mob that seems intimidating and large at the same time people have less and less integrity and courage.

Combine that with a loss of rational, logical thought being replaced with emotional reaction and a love of sophistry, and you can easily get people to abandon what they know to be true to what they fear they should hold or feel seems nicer.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 10:16 AM (39g3+)

105 102
Alright, I'm going to buy one of these captain underpants books and see if the nephew likes it.



I usually buy him comic book stuff.

Posted by: Lea at July 12, 2015 10:15 AM (vmMMi)

he'll love them

Posted by: phoenixgirl, i was born a rebel at July 12, 2015 10:17 AM (0O7c5)

106 Cant say for sure but I think boys would like the Hank the Cow Dog series and if you have a senior reader that grew up in a farm/ranch background they probably would too. My dad and aunt enjoy them. You can find them in lot packages on ebay to get pretty good prices per book.

I'm recently interested in the Civil war. I'd like to learn more about the north rationale for the bloody war although my recent interest in European history suggests that it could be as simple as not wanting a new war every generation and belief that it would likely to happen if there were two countries vying to add western territories and just in general. Also anything on Lee? I find it fascinating that he chose to go with VA given his personal stance on abolition.

Posted by: PaleRider at July 12, 2015 10:17 AM (iA/+T)

107 "The problem with Comic Books is that they may train the mind to need
pictures to go along with words for comprehension - thus stunting the
ability of the mind to understand without illustration."

I was out in a Midwest union-autoworker town in the early 1990s and came across an official UAW bulletin. It was in comic book format.

What writing it did contain was at about a ninth-grade level for reading comprehension, or what was a ninth-grade level more than two decades ago. Terribly simplistic stuff.

I said to my host, "Are they *all* this way?"

He said that not only were the UAW union circulars in comic book format, but the training manuals at the plant itself were the same.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 10:18 AM (noWW6)

108
Alright, I'm going to buy one of these captain underpants books and see if the nephew likes it.

Oh, No. 2 Son loved the Captain Underpants books. I don't remember -- because life is a blur -- but I think he was around 7 or 8 at the time.

He also loved the Lemony Snickett series of unfortunate events.

Posted by: Bandersnatch at July 12, 2015 10:18 AM (1xUj/)

109 Lea there are a bunch ofC U booksso get the first one. You may start something!

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 10:19 AM (BO/km)

110 It's green vs. green. Multigenerational (as is his wont) and historical (likewise) account of the indigenous and introduced fauna on the Channel Islands of Santa Barbara, it pits two versions of environmentalism against each other and milks it for the wry humor of humanity being awful.


Interesting. We sailed to and stayed at the Channel Islands one year when I was a kid. Lots of cool exploring.

Posted by: Infidel at July 12, 2015 10:19 AM (kDvjH)

111 One book I have been planning on buying is Psychological Warfare by Paul Linebarger.

People know him better by his pseudonym, Cordwainer Smith

http://preview.tinyurl.com/q5f4vjt

Posted by: Kindltot -buyng my social positioning sweepstakes ticket at July 12, 2015 10:19 AM (3pRHP)

112 The propaganda arises from the 'current' generation being taught they are the smartest most original ever in history. And with no history taught to provide any perspective or counter-balance.

So we have a rapidly growing population of 'Cescas from the Decameron cluttering the world with their self-assured superiority.

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 10:19 AM (OLLOK)

113 I need my spaces. See ya later.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 10:20 AM (BO/km)

114 Hank the Cowdog! Used to read them to my two - we would listen to
cassettes [!] on long trips with the author[?] reading them in the "voices"
of Hank et all! Ohh...Hank, my leg!

Posted by: geezer der mensch at July 12, 2015 10:20 AM (DE31Y)

115 Loved those Tom Swift jr. books! 'Atomic' this and
'advanced' that with great covers on the hard back editions. That was
over fifty years ago for me and don't know if they are still around in
any form. As an adult I've enjoyed the original Tom Swift books from the
WW I era. I wonder if they inspired Clive Cussler's Isaac Bell series?

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:11 AM (FvdPb)

I've got about 30 Tom Swift e-books so they're still available. I still have 6 or 7 hardbacks. As a ten year old I really lapped those up.

Posted by: Tunafish at July 12, 2015 10:23 AM (eTIRR)

116 >>Oh, No. 2 Son loved the Captain Underpants books. I don't remember -- because life is a blur -- but I think he was around 7 or 8 at the time.

Sound just the right age range! Thanks all.

Now I am going to go read myself.

Posted by: Lea at July 12, 2015 10:23 AM (vmMMi)

117 Mandy, look at getting him a kindle or just splurge on paper and toner and go the Gutenberg.org site.

There are lots of kids' books from the 1800's and up, and golden age Sci-Fi, and travelogues and what-not.
There are books on farming from the 1700's.
Go to the Book Categories page, and browse the bookshelves

Posted by: Kindltot -buyng my social positioning sweepstakes ticket at July 12, 2015 10:24 AM (3pRHP)

118 106 Also anything on Lee? I find it fascinating that he chose to go with VA given his personal stance on abolition.

Posted by: PaleRider at July 12, 2015 10:17 AM (iA/+T)

At the time of the war people gave their loyalty to their home State more so than the federal government.

Posted by: Vic We Have No Party at July 12, 2015 10:25 AM (GpgJl)

119 Listen, the only way to win on culture is to assert your cultural dominance and fight for it tooth and nail, day in and day out.


But what happens is that those who wish to change culture fight, scratch and claw while those who to keep their culture do not and timidly acquiesce with little or any push back.

Literally in the blink of an eye the CBF, which I could give to farts about other than it's historical significance and connection to a TV series I used to watch as a teenager, has been swept away by the entire weaponized government/oligarchy/agitator complex.

Religion is next.

I being a devout agnostic who understands the importance of religion and to the Judeo-Christian principles that were instrumental in shaping the western world and America in particular, will fight the best I can in any way I can but it's going to take a tremendous amount of energy to prevent religion, especially Christian forms, from being swept away.

In a country that was founded on religious liberty and conscience.



Posted by: Kreplach at July 12, 2015 10:26 AM (WVvzl)

120 i read "Dwelling Places" by Vinita Hampton Wright. I don't read fiction but I've enjoyed all of her books. She is considered a Christian writers but it's not a major focus. This book is about a family trying to hold together after losing the family farm and the death of a son. The other son, the husband has a nervous breakdown and is coming home to his family. She writes about the people in small towns, the ones that stay even as the town is dying.

I don't have anything for young boys but I've heard "Little Britches" is good. It's on my list to buy.

Posted by: Nitwit boreal at July 12, 2015 10:26 AM (Lqy/e)

121 My son loved the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books.

Posted by: no good deed at July 12, 2015 10:27 AM (GgxVX)

122 When I was a wee lad, I hated reading class, and was in the lowest reading group. So my parents decided to bribe me to work harder. It worked.

3rd group ---> 2nd group: BB gun.
2nd group ---> 1st group: pellet pistol.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at July 12, 2015 10:27 AM (Zu3d9)

123 I just did a search for some of the Science Service books at Abebooks, and they are indeed available. All you need is the author and title, which were shown in my earlier link at #66.

https://tinyurl.com/qxsmc9x

https://tinyurl.com/pcnk6oj

A few of them are apparently somewhat rare:

https://tinyurl.com/osjkbk7

I'm fairly certain that "Space Exploration USA" (which I have) was a revised and updated edition of "Cape Canaveral" (which I don't, and am really really tempted to buy).

Posted by: rickl at July 12, 2015 10:28 AM (sdi6R)

124 I have no idea how they would be received these days but two of my favorite series in grade school and junior high were the 'Lensman' and 'Skylark' books by E. E. Doc Smith. I still have my copies and dip into them once in a while. Sheer fun and nostalgia. I was shocked to learn some of them had been written in the 1920s and 1930s. Space opera at its best.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:29 AM (FvdPb)

125 I have no idea how they would be received these days but two of my favorite series in grade school and junior high were the 'Lensman' and 'Skylark' books by E. E. Doc Smith. I still have my copies and dip into them once in a while. Sheer fun and nostalgia. I was shocked to learn some of them had been written in the 1920s and 1930s. Space opera at its best.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:29 AM (FvdPb)

126 Kreplach: ...weaponized government/oligarchy/agitator complex. ...

I remember Ike warning us about that in his farewell address.

Posted by: mindful webworker - aged tater at July 12, 2015 10:29 AM (rvtDF)

127 and CBD brings it full circle. Wish I had more time with the grandson, would do the same thing.

Posted by: Infidel at July 12, 2015 10:30 AM (kDvjH)

128 Posted by: rickl at July 12, 2015 10:28 AM (sdi6R)
--
I'm at Abe Books too, looking at Ryland's Spa-a-a-a-ce books. I think I may splurge. I'm a sucker for old space age stuff.

Posted by: All Hail Eris, Literate Savage at July 12, 2015 10:30 AM (jR7Wy)

129 Oldie but goodie:

Faint the Trumpet Sounds

Major Marcus Reno and aftermath of Little Big Horn

Posted by: Tom Custer's Eaten Heart at July 12, 2015 10:33 AM (Gcu5R)

130 "When one book closes,
Another one opens."
-Wagnall Funk

Posted by: mindful webworker - un common tater at July 12, 2015 10:33 AM (rvtDF)

131 Y'all should read Larry Correia's description of how the New York Times best seller list works. http://preview.tinyurl.com/ok49aj4 Because I'd read that recently, I wasn't at all surprised that there was nonobvious stuff going on at the NYT best seller list.

I recently read Jim C Hines's Libriomancer and had the occasion to meet the author. For those of you that don't know, Mr. Hines is a huge SJW type on-line (he did a series of pictures where he put himself in the poses of the art on the covers of some books--I don't get the point, myself, but it had something to do with the subjugation of women or something) but he's actually a reasonable fellow in person. Anyway, Libriomancer is a lot like Jim Butcher's Dresden Files books. I don't think that Jim is copying Jim, nor do I think that Jim copied Jim. Instead, I think that means that they're both combining the classical noir tropes (such as a detective type protagonist caught up in a series of events he can't control and can barely perceive and which regularly kick the crap out of him) with urban fantasy elements. Anyway, although I'll never believe that a boy will daydream about ending world hunger, it's a good book with interesting characters. I'll probably get the second book the next time I'm in a position to.

The other thing I've been "reading" is The Martian. I have an hour drive to work and another hour drive back home every day, and to fill that I listen to audio books. I've been listening to "The Song of Ice and Fire" (A.K.A. "Game of Thrones") by George R. R. Martin mostly because they're freaking long, and for a change of pace from endless pages of unnecessary descriptive detail, I got The Martian. It's being made into a movie set for release October 2, and the popular references I've seen to it have made it sound interesting, so I took the plunge.

Holy Cow what an amazing Book! Although as something to listen to on the way to and from work, it's a complete bust because I listened to it all the way through in three days. I just couldn't keep away. It tells the story of Mark Watney, who is a member of the third mission to Mars and who is left for dead when the rest of the mission has to leave in a hurry or die themselves. XKCD says that The Martian is for people who wish "Apollo 13" had been made up entirely of the scene where the guy says "We have to figure out how to connect this thing to this thing using this table full of parts or the astronauts will all die." Well, yeah.

Fortunately for Mark Watney, he's both a mechanical engineer and a botanist. Fortunately, for the reader, he's the crew's smartass. There's a lot of tension and believable danger, but I laughed out loud in some places. Although there were a few technical errors in the book, they didn't detract very much from the overall effect. Highly recommended.

Not so well recommended is the novel Thirteen Orphans by Jane Lindskold. This story is based on the premise that when the first Chinese emperor destroyed all knowledge from before his reign, it created a separate universe called the "Lands Born of Smoke and Sacrifice" and, centuries later, 12 servants of the emperor of this land as well as the emperor himself were exiled into the earth that we know, and a century or so after that, these orphans are losing parts of themselves for some reason. This is the first book of a trilogy and, while it's an okay read, I'm finding it a bit of a slog and I'm having trouble keeping track of all the characters. There's a lot of discussion of Chinese history and a detailed discussion of Mahjongg, which is the basis of the orphans' magic.

I know others may absolutely love this sort of thing, but it's not my absolute favorite. I'll read the whole trilogy, mostly because they're borrowed from a friend, but it's not encouraging me to seek out Jane Lindskold's other stuff.

And that's all I have to say this week.

Posted by: R. Kipling at July 12, 2015 10:34 AM (Tb8YD)

132 Hank the Cowdog! Good reads, those. Also--and I may have recced these before--the Indian in the Cupboard series. British author, but some good Western adventure along with the fantasy element (body-swap time travel).

Re: AP's point about lack of history education: Horrible Histories may be changing that to a degree, as might the Rush Revere books. What I think we could use, though, backed by Rush or maybe by Prager or Whittle, is an American version of Horrible Histories written by conservatives. Webseries might work best so as to bypass network nonsense.
(I might have already attempted scripts for a Shouty Man spot and a season's worth of "Historical Masterchef: Texas Edition"... *cough*)

Posted by: Elisabeth G. Wolfe at July 12, 2015 10:35 AM (iuQS7)

133 Sorry about the double post.

OM, That graphic at the top of the post is about right. But I really want that shelving to put all the books I have in boxes since the book cases are full.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:35 AM (FvdPb)

134 I would not be surprised if the super-sekrit bookstores that determine bestseller status thought Cruz's book was radioactive, and the Times thought *of course* it had to be bulk purchases. Nobody they knew bought it! (They would buy Palin's book to laugh at the ignorant snowbilly, but they can't do that with Cruz very easily. He has the same credentials they do.)

It is good the indie revolution happened. Not only can we write good books for boys (Jinxers!) without the PC Committee to Purge Counterrevolutionary Thought breathing down our necks, we can write better books for girls too. There's enough emotional drippiness without *encouraging* it at that stage. Some of the all-girl-hero-all-the-time was an overreaction to the old style of story where the princess did just droop in a windowsill waiting to be rescued, but we don't need an overreaction the *other* way. Just write cracking stories with fun characters and tell the SJWs to stuff themselves.

Posted by: Sabrina Chase at July 12, 2015 10:36 AM (GQdlU)

135 Also, our 15 year old just discovered Lovecraft. Hoo boy.

Posted by: freaked at July 12, 2015 09:33 AM (BO/km)


My favorite story about Lovecraft was from an old guy I know who claimed that, while in the Army on maneuvers he took several HP Lovecraft paperbacks with him. He got hassled by guys in his unit to read them a bed-time story so he serially read them "At the Mountains of Madness." He said it was an effective story while sitting in the dark in the middle of the desert.

Posted by: Kindltot -buyng my social positioning sweepstakes ticket at July 12, 2015 10:42 AM (3pRHP)

136 Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:35 AM (FvdPb)

I bought an inexpensive bookcase from Ikea a few years ago to handle some of the overflow, and was pleasantly surprised at the quality.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at July 12, 2015 10:42 AM (Zu3d9)

137 I hate just hate any Book that has a female character that dresses and fights in armour, most if not all could hack it, that's why in Game of Thrones he keeps saying over and over how huge the Female Character is. My Neighbor taught how to fight in Armour and was a Grand Master, I would love to watch his students fight on a Friday night and they would fight. I tried putting on the armour it is so heavy I was 19 and playing college football and 2 minutes of the stuff kicked my butt.


Also Hank Screw The Galaxy, Thanks for the recommendation.

Posted by: Patrick from Ohio at July 12, 2015 10:46 AM (c4yY7)

138 "When I was a boy in the mid-60s, I subscribed to the Science Service series of books"

I recall also that there were glossy Time-Life books on science and technology in the same general era.

Posted by: torquewrench at July 12, 2015 10:48 AM (noWW6)

139 This may have been mentioned by others. The author doesn't seem to understand that the term #GamerGate has been repurposed by allies on our side of the cultural battle.

Or I may have just misread the article.

Posted by: dude guy at July 12, 2015 10:51 AM (QCc6B)

140 This was a good week for me at the local used book store. I FINALLY found 'The Demolished Man' and a collection of short stories by Alfred Bester. Then a one volume version of Churchill's 'History of the English People', unabridged. And a couple of books by Horace Kephart. I love his books on camping, written in the WW I era.

No place in town has a copy of the Geneva Bible, not even the Christian book store. I may just order the Patriots edition and be done with it although I prefer to see a book like that before buying it.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 10:51 AM (FvdPb)

141 99 Sasquatch With technology being what it is, shouldn't there be a number of good
conservative publishing houses that can offer good books for sale in an
on-line format (and perhaps even paper format) for young boys to read?


It is fall-off-a-log easy to write and put up ebooks for sale nowadays, no publisher needed. That's the indie revolution :-D Even the on-demand print version is not very difficult. I do all that my own self.

The difficulty is getting the word out. Which is why we authors love our Book Thread, we do. And all the reading Morons who tell their friends, enemies, parole officers, etc. about the good books they find. To make a concerted push, to take the culture back, though, we need a more effective campaign. There are things like Book Bundles that collect up a bunch of related books and sell for a reduced price, but again, you usually need a big name or someone with a big microphone to spread the word and get noticed.

The ideas of marketing Morons are hereby solicited and enticed.

Posted by: Sabrina Chase at July 12, 2015 10:52 AM (GQdlU)

142 Patrick from Ohio, that reminds me of one of the few stories I've heard of my paternal grandfather's time in the Army during WWII. At some point when they were in Europe (maybe in Aachen?), he and his buddies came across some swords and decided to try one of the first training exercises for any medieval swordsman: holding the sword out horizontally in front of you, fully extended at arm's length and with both hands on the hilt. None of them lasted more than a couple of minutes!

Posted by: Elisabeth G. Wolfe at July 12, 2015 10:54 AM (iuQS7)

143 Well I guess I better put money where the keyboard is. Got editorial feedback on my short novel, the first 100 pages of it. It is a truly illuminating experience to encounter a professional editor.

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 10:55 AM (OLLOK)

144 Its tough to get boys to read when there's so much else out there to do. The internet is way too much of a good thing, for instance. But once you get them started, its easier to get them continuing to read.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:00 AM (39g3+)

145 I loved reading comics and Mad Magazine when growing up. And the best combination of books and comics was the old Classics Illustrated. Those got me interested in a number of books.

Posted by: HH at July 12, 2015 11:01 AM (Qia1Z)

146 I write books that boys would like to read, there's a ton of good ebook material out there. The tough part isn't finding books that boys would like, its getting your boy to be less distracted and more focused.

It is a truly illuminating experience to encounter a professional editor.

A good editor is worth their body weight in gold.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:04 AM (39g3+)

147 When I was a kid, I read this series at the library
about kids getting dropped into another time period (revolutionary war,
etc). But I can't figure out what it was called.

I also read the bobsey twins and sweet valley twins.
Posted by: Lea at July 12, 2015 10:05 AM (vmMMi)


I remember the Danny Dunn books, there was some time travel in those.
I thought they were great.

I liked the Alvin Fernald books by Clifford B Hicks. (I just looked, there were a number that I never heard of that I didn't read)

I also like the Henry Huggins books by Beverly Cleary, and I loved Walt Morely.

Boys doing interesting things. That is what I loved to read about.


Posted by: Kindltot -buyng my social positioning sweepstakes ticket at July 12, 2015 11:06 AM (3pRHP)

148 I go to the library just to lick the pages of politically incorrect books. I regret that I have but one tongue to give to my country, so please do what you can. This is why we need state sponsored censorship. You cannot lick the pages of an ebook.

Posted by: Ariana Grande at July 12, 2015 11:07 AM (F1Z8f)

149 This may have been mentioned by others. The author doesn't seem to understand that the term #GamerGate has been repurposed by allies on our side of the cultural battle.

Good point. I knew this, and actually, #Gamergate was never "repurposed", it was always ours to begin with. It was first coined by conservative actor Adam Baldwin.

But son #2 doesn't know this, and I needed something to fit into the "You may not be interested in <blank> but <blank> is interested in you" template to get it through his head that the SJWs are never going to leave him alone, despite his desire to be a non-combatant.

So I rate your criticism as "mostly true".

Posted by: OregonMuse at July 12, 2015 11:07 AM (X1y52)

150 That is what I am finding out Christopher Taylor...

Which is making me want to revamp Princess.
http://astore.amazon.com/aoshq-20/detail/B00K9GTQP0

But first this short novel needs my attention. I call it short because it clocks in at just under 53k words.

Posted by: Anna Puma at July 12, 2015 11:11 AM (OLLOK)

151 I agree that our side must heap with ridicule and scorn all the little tyrants in the SJW crowd. But they have that angle covered too. If you make fun of them, you are a bully.

Posted by: JoeF. at July 12, 2015 11:11 AM (tjGZE)

152 By the way, the unhinged 1-star Amazon reviews of Cruz' book are hilarious.

One of those 1-star reviews, which appears to be pimping an anti-Cruz book, accused him of stealing the plot-line from Scent of a Woman in high school. For what nefarious ends I have no idea, or if it even matters. Scent of a Woman came out in 1992. Cruz graduated high school in 1988.

Posted by: Jeff Weimer at July 12, 2015 11:12 AM (Edob3)

153 The dragon turns out to be a lesbian dragon who rescues the damsel from her perverted, sexting-obsessed husband, and the two fall in love and live happily ever after. That'll be my next bestseller. Hillary: 2, Cruz: zero. Why anyone would vote for that loser over me is still a mystery.

Posted by: Hillary Clinton at July 12, 2015 11:13 AM (F1Z8f)

154 I'm going to give the "new" Harper Lee book a shot. Even if it undoes Atticus Finch. I'm seeing it less as a "sequel" and more a revisioning of the same characters.

Unrelatedly, My dad's interest in All things Regan is sparking an interesting "Some things Goldwater."
Anyone got a recommendation for a good Goldwater Biography? Dad's starting to think (realize) he got the bad end of the media treatment stick during his time and wants to see what fairer history says.

Posted by: tsrblke, PhD(c) rogue bioethicst at July 12, 2015 11:13 AM (s92xH)

155 The article by Correia has some real gems in it about how the NYT "bestseller" list works, and why for a long time its puzzled me with its inconsistency and illogic.

For a while now I've been reading and hearing that publishers can game the NYT list and he explains why and how. Its pretty insidious.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:14 AM (39g3+)

156 Oh my god! It just occurred to me that a bundt cake is actually a really large donut!

How could I have been so blind for all of these years! Damn you, German chefs!

Posted by: Adirondack Patriot at July 12, 2015 11:16 AM (KQTmr)

157 Nood

Posted by: Y-not at July 12, 2015 11:16 AM (RWGcK)

158 Patrick from Ohio, that reminds me of one of the few stories I've heard of my paternal grandfather's time in the Army during WWII. At some point when they were in Europe (maybe in Aachen?), he and his buddies came across some swords and decided to try one of the first training exercises for any medieval swordsman: holding the sword out horizontally in front of you, fully extended at arm's length and with both hands on the hilt. None of them lasted more than a couple of minutes!
Posted by: Elisabeth G. Wolfe at July 12, 2015 10:54 AM (iuQS7)
I even got to hold a Heavy CrossBow, those guys were strong. Not to mention trying to drawing it back.

The only way to read Game of Thrones is the Audiobook, there are just too many characters to keep track and Listening to the book with the Different voices for each Character helps you keep track, it's like listening to old time Radio shows.

If you get the Chance "Hank Screw the Galaxy" Audiobook is very well done and I love the way it's read as if Hank himself is narrates the book Himself.


I will have to get The Martian, seems like the horde here enjoy it, I do Audiobook because I stay at home with my son.

Posted by: Patrick from Ohio at July 12, 2015 11:16 AM (c4yY7)

159 Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend.

Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.


- Groucho Marx

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this sh1t at July 12, 2015 11:17 AM (eEb+d)

160 Read the second book in Brandon Sanderson's 'Legion' series this week.
Pretty good, but I wish he would cough up the 3rd book in his Words of Radiance Series, already.

Posted by: Garrett at July 12, 2015 11:17 AM (14Ncy)

161 89 From June of this year, Larry Correia echos something Esther Freisner said a few years ago - "Writers are like mercenaries, they like to get paid."

http://monsterhunternation.com/2015/06/25/how-authors-get-paid-part-2/

There's a line attributed to Heinlein that the most sublime text in the world consists of " Pay to the Order of."

Posted by: Fox2! at July 12, 2015 11:18 AM (brIR5)

162 "It is fall-off-a-log easy to write and put up ebooks
for sale nowadays, no publisher needed. That's the indie revolution :-D
Even the on-demand print version is not very difficult. I do all that
my own self.

The difficulty is getting the word out. Which is why
we authors love our Book Thread, we do. And all the reading Morons who
tell their friends, enemies, parole officers, etc. about the good books
they find. To make a concerted push, to take the culture back, though,
we need a more effective campaign. There are things like Book Bundles
that collect up a bunch of related books and sell for a reduced price,
but again, you usually need a big name or someone with a big microphone
to spread the word and get noticed.

The ideas of marketing Morons are hereby solicited and enticed.


Posted by: Sabrina Chase at July 12, 2015 10:52 AM (GQdlU)"

That sounds like an opportunity for Ace to make some additional money. Ace can have a weekly or monthly bundle of a few books for $5. Ace gets a dollar. Kindle gets whatever they charge for the transaction and the authors divide the rest. Authors will not get rich from this system but they will get better known. Best of all for Ace is that he can have the cobs read the books and make the recommendations so that he can spend the proceeds flying down to Rio in a G-6 full of hookers and blow without having to waste his time reading or consorting with authors and similar lowly folk.

If the idea catches on, maybe Instapundit or Drudge will do something similar.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at July 12, 2015 11:18 AM (QHgTq)

163 I read Robert Kaplan's "Imperial Grunts" during a recent roadtrip. I think he does well in explaining the term Empire in relation to US foreign policy and no, it's not a "America is evil,wants to own the world" definition. It's a good read because it's all about his travels to spend time with troops in multiple AORs over the course of a couple of years. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to hear troops' opinions on things.

Posted by: fastfreefall at July 12, 2015 11:19 AM (UbT44)

164 Elisabeth ... In line with your grandfather's account. I took a fencing class in college to fill the PE requirement. I was the only one with a sports background, football and shot put in my case. The rest were mostly dance students, even the guys. (Yes, I looked like Conan fighting pixies.) The instructor let me use an accurate repro cutlass for fun and practice against a wall. It was exhausting after five minutes! No doubt the adrenalin flow in combat would help, but sheesh. It was actually easier using a two-handed broad sword.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 11:19 AM (FvdPb)

165 155 The article by Correia has some real gems in it about how the NYT "bestseller" list works, and why for a long time its puzzled me with its inconsistency and illogic.

For a while now I've been reading and hearing that publishers can game the NYT list and he explains why and how. Its pretty insidious.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:14 AM (39g3+)
Anybody remember when they dropped the Kids books from the list because the Harry Potter books were kicking Real books off the list. I think Amazon's list is better.

Posted by: Patrick from Ohio at July 12, 2015 11:23 AM (c4yY7)

166
No doubt the adrenalin flow in combat would help, but sheesh.

You think it helps? Honest question. The hardest thing I've done (maybe outside of learning ice hockey at age 40) is sparring at Tae Kwon Do.

Punching and kicking are really hard when someone is punching and kicking back at you.

Posted by: Bandersnatch at July 12, 2015 11:26 AM (1xUj/)

167 I just finished Margaret Macmillan's "The War That Ended Peace", which is her book on the lead-up to WWI. It covers much the same material as Massie's "Dreadnought" or Tuchman's "The Guns of August", though from a different perspective: asking not why the war happened, but why peace failed. (Answer in brief: because most parties, Wilhelm II, wanted a war.) The book, like her book on the Treaty of Versailles, is well written and presents an enormous amount of material succinctly and with admirable clarity. However ... she is given to making little side comments that correlate events in 1914 with current events; and her take current events is, without exception, cliched and steeped in PC. Rather than illuminating 1914, those comments lead me to question her judgement about the past.

Right now, I'm in the middle of James Turner's "Philology: The Forgotten Origins of the Modern Humanities", which is a history of philology. Philologists were the naturalists of their day: as naturalists concerned themselves with all natural phenomena, so too, philologists took all human activity as their area of study. It's a marvelous book, filled ith a love of language and history, and with oddball scholars popping up on every page. So far, I'm finding it well worth reading.

Posted by: Brown Line at July 12, 2015 11:30 AM (a5bF3)

168 Sorry it's Hard Luck Hank Screw the Galaxy.

Posted by: Patrick from Ohio at July 12, 2015 11:31 AM (c4yY7)

169 But my theory is simpler: if you want boys to read, then give them
books they will want to read, i.e. action, adventure, narrow escapes,
hair-raising chases, featuring men who are strong and tough.



Nah. More Maya Angelou. That's the ticket.

Posted by: Jay Guevara at July 12, 2015 11:32 AM (oKE6c)

170
"When the Killing's Done" by T.C. Boyle. He used to be my favorite author, then I got sick of him. So I took a decade or so break. I really enjoyed this book.

Posted by: Bandersnatch at July 12, 2015 10:05 AM (1xUj/)

Same with me! The first T.C. Boyle novel I read was "Water Music" and I thought it was so original and clever that I sought out everything he wrote. But I suddenly got really sick of him - the way you can eat too much of a favorite food and then you can't even look at it for years. I think the smart-alecky cynicism got to me.

But that was about 15 years ago. A T.C. Boyle book satirizing environmentalists sounds fun. So thank for reminding me of an old favorite I had forgotten about.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at July 12, 2015 11:37 AM (+XMAD)

171
Yes, Donna, exactly. My first was "World's End" and then I went through the exact same cycle as you.

It was fun to come back to him and find it enjoyable.

Posted by: Bandersnatch at July 12, 2015 11:41 AM (1xUj/)

172 I know how to make boys want to read.

Posted by: Mack Bolan at July 12, 2015 11:42 AM (14Ncy)

173 The ideas of marketing Morons are hereby solicited and enticed.

I like Obnoxious' bundle idea, but honestly beyond just keeping product coming out, having a social media presence, and encouraging feedback I do not even know what works any more.

There was a time when reviews got you attention, but it got oversaturated, and now Amazon is changing their review policy so that if you have an author liked or 'friended' on any social media they are aware of.... they won't post a review. The theory is this cuts back on BS "flood the reviews with positive from buddies" effect, but all it does is cut back on fan feedback.

Ordinary publicity doesn't tend to work for fiction because fiction readers don't really buy based on the personality or their expertise. Most people buy based on word of mouth and reference by people they trust.

Blog tours supposedly used to help, I don't know if they still do. The problem is people don't read blogs like they used to as I understand it so its not going to be as effective as it once might have been.

The bottom line is: I really don't have any answers, and wish I did. If I knew some magic trick, I'd sell more than 1 novel a month. The best I can suggest is to get more books on the shelf so you get more chances of being noticed and seem more established.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:42 AM (39g3+)

174 Finished reading The Black Count by Tom Reiss. The story of General Thomas-Alexandre Dumas who was the father of Alexandre Dumas. Dumas the son used his father, who he worshipped, as the inspiration for The Count of Monte Cristo. It's a pretty good book that covers the rise and struggle the General, who was half black, from salvery through the French Revolution to being one of Napoleon's top generals. Utimately leading to problems for the General. Three out of five stars for and interesting story that lacked something that could have been better.



Posted by: RGallegos at July 12, 2015 11:44 AM (49Jfq)

175 Three out of five stars for and interesting story that lacked something that could have been better.

Yeah... I read a couple Napoleonic War era (I hate the "regency" title, as its romance-biased) detective novels by C.S. Harris. She has an interesting setting, great historical bits, and a fair amount of writing skill but... I can't help thinking that someone else would have done better with the same material. It probably doesn't help that she's one of those authors that seems to have fallen in love with her protagonist and his "golden wolf-like eyes" she gushes about over and over.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:48 AM (39g3+)

176 170, I was a huge Boyle fan for the longest time. I read all his novels--may favorites are "Budding Prospects" (about a pot growing scheme that went--as all the plots of all his novels eventually go--seriously and hilariously awry) and World's End, an epic that goes back and forth through 300 years of upstate NY history). But I dropped of after Drop City when I found that I couldn't root for any of his characters. All of them--good and bad, hero or villain--were extremely unpleasant. His novels were always populated by self-righteous and anal-retentive yuppie and SJW-types (yes, he's a big Lefty), but he's such a good, descriptive writer that I was always able to look past that. But I couldn't get through When the Killing's Done and didn't even bother with Sam Miguel. Maybe I'll give it another shot. His new one, The Harder They Come looks promising too.

Posted by: JoeF. at July 12, 2015 11:48 AM (tjGZE)

177 The Black Count sounds fascinating though. Putting it on my library list.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at July 12, 2015 11:52 AM (39g3+)

178 One more thing about TC Boyle---and this dovetails with the idea of boys (and young men) not bothering with fiction. In 1984 when I first read "Budding Prospects", I was able to get my brother and two of my friends who were all NON-readers to read it and they all loved it. I think it was the marijuana plot-line, but there you go...it was a subject that "interested" them....

Posted by: JoeF. at July 12, 2015 11:54 AM (tjGZE)

179 White Gold, The Forgotten Story of North Africa's One Million European Slaves

Our Number One name in popular history is back with an explosive new paperback, a sensational new cover look and a 'fiction' style marketing campaign that will strike gold in summer 2005 This is the forgotten story of the million white Europeans, snatched from their homes and taken in chains to the great slave markets of North Africa to be sold to the highest bidder. Ignored by their own governments, and forced to endure the harshest of conditions, very few lived to tell the tale. Using the firsthand testimony of a Cornish cabin boy named Thomas Pellow, Giles Milton vividly reconstructs a disturbing, little known chapter of history. Pellow was bought by the tyrannical sultan of Morocco who was constructing an imperial pleasure palace of enormous scale and grandeur, built entirely by Christian slave labour. As his personal slave, he would witness first-hand the barbaric splendour of he imperial court, as well as experience the daily terror of a cruel regime.

I recommend this book to Brad Thor on Twitter and favorited it, it's good

Posted by: Patrick from Ohio at July 12, 2015 12:01 PM (c4yY7)

180 Meerloo/Rape of the Mind:
http://pyreaus.com/pdf_downloads/pyreaus_library_the_rape_of_the_mind.pdf

Posted by: ouch at July 12, 2015 12:04 PM (zYgqi)

181 I was reading a sci fi book by a (I think) Brit author last night: The Abyss Beyond Dreams by Peter Hamilton. This book is so very strange. It starts out as a Space epic with one story line then becomes a political future colonization story then becomes a time travel hard science hero and damsel tale then something else. I had stopped reading months ago at the Space epic part because i had no idea where it was going. The author is also quite a fan of PG Wodehouse. Then I started again a few weeks ago but stopped because it seemed to turn into a trojan horse story pushing a straight up communist political theme but wait! Not so fast. Keep going and the characters discover that as communists they are actually pretty stupid about running things.
Anyway, what struck me serendipitously is that I had just yesterday read that Billionaires are buying up Australia's cattle and farm land in anticipation of the TPP. Aparently they know the export deals for food to Asia details we can't be told. One of the characters in Abyss is insanely wealthy and very very very old. He is on a colonized world and looks at the palace holding the government. He says just by looking at how expensive the gold and marble finishings are that the government is corrupt in a particular way: Though a multi-branch system the power rests in one branch with the others rubber stamping its rule. That the illusion of democracy is maintained but all parties vote the same way to continue the status quo and that the chief executive decides who gets rich, richer or broken by who curries the most favor by supporting his worthless expensive initiatives, propaganda machines and secret domestic police groups.
It sounded just like America. Just like our USA. A rich banana republic.

Posted by: Daybrother at July 12, 2015 12:04 PM (vkZKZ)

182 166 ... I assume an adrenalin kick due to real danger/combat would let someone last longer in a fight versus solitary practice. Never been in combat but the (fortunately) few times I've been in perilous situations, a rescue and some emergency prep, I was able to lift more and work longer because the adrenalin was flowing. The exhaustion afterwards was profound.

My brief attempts at hand to hand instruction were terrible. Lots of power in my younger days but too slow to bring it to bear. I'm better off relying on 45 caliber hand guns.

Posted by: JTB at July 12, 2015 12:07 PM (FvdPb)

183 #180 thanks for the link

Posted by: OregonMuse at July 12, 2015 12:13 PM (X1y52)

184 Read Monster Hunter Vendetta (MHI #2) by Larry Correia, where CPA Owen Pitt has a bulls-eye on his back for what he did in book one and monsters come after him and his family. Lot of fun and gunfire, not necessarily in that order, look forward to reading book three soon.

Read Brad Thor's The Lions of Lucerne (Scot Harvath #1), a breathless political thriller along the lines of '24' but without Bauer's penchant for torturing suspects for information. The President is kidnapped while on vacation and Secret Service agent Harvath tries to find him while unraveling a conspiracy. Terrific stuff, will have to read more of this series.

Read Poe's short story The Fall of the House of Usher, will look for the thread on it this evening.

Posted by: waelse1 at July 12, 2015 12:27 PM (FqhxT)

185 I think the statement that SJW are humorless untrue.
On the other hand I think that many conservatives and especially morons seem to enjoy imagining a fantasy life in the past or future

Posted by: righter at July 12, 2015 12:33 PM (r6HrP)

186 When I first got the Kindle app I was looking for free books (which Amazon has a ton of) and stumbled onto G.A. Henty. They are marvelous. Every book has a young hero at some historical battle or situation; Waterloo, Corunna, Agincourt, The Thirty Years War. And on every continent. Henty would immerse himself in all the info he could get on a certain time and place and write away. Just checked and Amazon lists 74 free books right now. Some are better than others but the price is right and the history lesson is painless.

Posted by: alo89 at July 12, 2015 01:05 PM (FWu5C)

187 I quote Theodore Dalrymple once more:

“In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is...in some small way to become evil oneself. One's standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”

Posted by: Mike Hammer, etc., etc. at July 12, 2015 01:13 PM (9mTYi)

188 Though not directed toward a general theory of propaganda, much of what's said above was anticipated by Adm Sir John Fisher and the journalist W. T. Stead, in the late 1800s, to agitate for a stronger navy. There is an interesting chapter in Marder's Anatomy of British Seapower on this; their strategy made me, when I read it, think of the way the Greens were working. And wonder, "why can't we do this today?"

Also, the last Elluls quote - on the susceptibility of the intellectuals to propaganda - sounds just like C S Lewis in That Hideous Strength.

Also

Posted by: George LeS at July 12, 2015 01:19 PM (etvdr)

189 Re the cartoon and the category of "books I wish I hadn't read": my sister started reading Augusten Burrough's "Running with Scissors" and got about half-way through before she decided it was so vile that she couldn't finish it. Not only could she not finish it, she didn't even want to pass the book on to someone else so she put it through the shredder.

Posted by: biancaneve at July 12, 2015 01:21 PM (vP4/o)

190 OK, I haven't finished all the comments, so if this was already mentioned, I never claimed to be an original thinker.

In regard to books for boys, I lived on the Hardy Boys (original and '60s-'70s remakes) and read a fair amount of Tom Swift Jr. (Also Nancy Drew.)

But the book that fifth-grade me reread the most was "The Mad Scientists' Club," a collection of short stories about a bunch of guys who got up to all kinds of exploits using the technology of the day. Some of the stories appeared in Boys' Life. I think they would still hold up and fire a boy's imagination.

Posted by: Weak Geek at July 12, 2015 01:49 PM (+P39t)

191 In line with The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series, The Three investigators might be of interest to kids today. Teenage boys in a more modern setting than the other sleuths.

Posted by: Polliwog the 'Ette at July 12, 2015 02:03 PM (GDulk)

192 Yes! I loved The Three Investigators. I tried to use blocks and a shoebox to build their secret headquarters. (And the sand pile to build Stalag 13.)

Posted by: Weak Geek at July 12, 2015 02:44 PM (+P39t)

193 My son lived on Hank the Cowdog, both books and audio. We all listened to the audio, actually, because it's very funny.

Posted by: Actinide at July 12, 2015 03:13 PM (0mwvC)

194 Lois McMaster Bujold is apparently *not* retired, and just released a novella in her "Five Gods" setting: "Penric's Demon. It feels like it was trying to be a full-length novel, and then LMB knocked it on the head and commanded "be finished". Still pretty good - it rather weirdly comes across as a romance between its bookish hayseed of a protagonist and the "demon" he is possessed by on the road as he was travelling to his betrothal. LMB's fantasies are, as always, kind of strange, as she is very much an Analog writer, and her theologies are very schematic and rational.

Posted by: Mitch H. at July 12, 2015 03:56 PM (TyX4J)

195 189
Not only could she not finish it, she didn't even
want to pass the book on to someone else so she put it through the
shredder.


Seems a bit extreme. Perhaps she should have just called the firemen, who could have dealt with it easily and professionally.

Posted by: Montag at July 12, 2015 05:26 PM (o78gS)

196 The author [Tom Holland] states there are no historical documents written by Muslims at the time Mohammed walked the earth. You'd think there would be letters written like: "Hi Honey, We're all very excited because the Prophet gave a pep talk to our battalion before the big attack on Mecca tomorrow. Love you! Say hello to everyone for me and please feed the goats."

This is basically true.

There does survive Arabic graffiti from slightly later; defined as 'Umar's sultanate (k. 644 AD). Islamic Awareness has a roundup - the site is Islamic apologetics, so they will post anything they can get. There are also papyri in Egypt, again, from that slightly-later.

From Muhammad's time - uh. We can't count the Qur'an because it's such a mess and contains so many interpolations.

There might be a few poems by Arabs praising the man. The Doctrina Jacobi passes on some third-hand information which, it claims, are from Arabs boasting to Jews. There's the so-called Constitution of Madina; other Arabic treaties survive (although a lot of them are forged).

There are several problems here: (1) the Umayyads burned most of the stuff that might help their rivals (2) the rivals sometimes took over Madina and/or Iraq, and burned most of the Umayyad books (3) the Jews were silent through most of this time (4) the Iranians were too busy not getting killed (5) the Byzantines - oh where do we start. Iconoclastic paroxysms that resulted in the near-destruction of their *own* culture, twice, plus the fact that they were just so very embarrassed by their recent international de-pantsing.

So we're left with poetry, graffiti, and Christian work - mostly Syrian. Sometimes the Mandaeans and Samaritans have something. Usually not.

Posted by: boulder terlit hobo at July 12, 2015 06:06 PM (qcQCV)

197 >>194 Lois McMaster Bujold is apparently *not* retired

She also has another Vorkosigan book coming out, eARC this fall I think.
http://tinyurl.com/pt73y5g
I am pleased to report that a new Cordelia Vorkosigan novel has been sold to Baen Books for publication, tentatively, in February of 2016.

The title is Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen.

It is not a war story. It is about grownups.

Posted by: gingeroni at July 13, 2015 09:02 PM (baKy9)

198 Currently reading "The Gandhi Nobody Knows" by Richard Grenier, originally published in the March 1983 issue of Commentary magazine.

Linked to by Instapundit yesterday or the day before. Fascinating read.

Posted by: BornLib at July 14, 2015 07:33 AM (zpNwC)

199 I also just picked out an audiobook for the girlfriend and I to listen to for a long car trip later this month. I think I've settled on "American Gun: A History of the U.S. in Ten Firearms" by Chris Kyle and William Doyle

Posted by: BornLib at July 14, 2015 07:44 AM (zpNwC)

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