Via David Thompson, take a quiz of All Counties of the United States by Proximity.
Some Mars links:
If you’ve been cooped-up indoors lately, like we are for Corona, then you’re probably experiencing ‘cabin fever’. Bouts of restless energy, boredom, and frustration are common.
Imagine for a moment you’re stuck on Antarctica, the next delivery weeks away, the temperature -40 F outside. It’s been months and that guy you never liked anyways just passed by your room and he’s totally f**king with you by casually mentioning the ending to the book he sees in your hand (some reports suggest alcohol was involved). The base smells like body odor, cooking oil and that same streak is still on the kitchen floor in that same exact spot.
Now imagine somewhere much colder than this, the atmosphere so thin your blood would alternately pressure boil and freeze. It’s drier than the driest desert on Earth. The surface outside is rusted and toxic (like you could breathe the air or play in the dirt anyways). The next delivery, well, there is no next delivery. This is another planet.
Was there ever water? How acidic was that water? Did the EM dynamo just run out, the planet left to spin alone, slowly losing any atmosphere it might have had? Did any microbial life move underground with the ice billions of years ago? Could it have done so?
It’s only about 49 million miles to get back home.
Moving along, and because you didn’t ask:
For me, it’s refreshing to hear any celebrity, politician, or public figure express anything other than support for what the latest moral cause might be these days. New rules are being formed.
The late Ken Minogue:
On the many dangers of political idealism, and using political theory as the limits of your field of vision:
‘We may sum this up by saying that the more the style of what used to be called politics becomes theorized, the more political problems come to be reintrepreted as managerial. Working out the least oppressive laws under which different and sometimes conflicting groups may live peaceably together is being replaced by manipulation and management of the attitudes different groups take towards each other, with the hope that this will ultimately bring harmony. In other words, in the new form of society, human beings are becoming the matter which is to be shaped according to the latest moral idea.’
-Minogue, Kenneth. Politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995. (Pg 111).
Related: A definition of humanism:
“‘…a morally concerned style of intellectual atheism openly avowed by only a small minority of individuals (for example, those who are members of the British Humanist Association) but tacitly accepted by a wide spectrum of educated people in all parts of the Western world.”
Denis Dutton suggested art could head towards Darwin (and may offer new direction from the troubles of the modern art aimlessness and shallow depth…the money and the fame) Review of Denis Dutton’s ‘The Art Instinct’…
Roger Sandall, Australian critic of romantic primitivism and the Western’s Left’s penchant for the Noble Savage: His home page where his essays can be found. Here’s “The Rise Of The Anthropologues“ and…
Robert Hughes, Australian and often fierce critic of modernism and post-modernism.
The classical liberal tradition…looking for classical liberals in the postmodern wilderness: Isaiah Berlin’s negative liberty: A Few Thoughts On Isaiah Berlin’s “Two Concepts Of Liberty”…