The Traditional DE Blog (est. 2004)

August 3, 2021

I’m leaving this afternoon to pick up daughter Meg, who is wrapping up a summer internship with the Augustine Institute in Denver. Expect uneven blogging.


August 2, 2021

Granddaughter, Nora Jade, was born this evening! 9 pounds, 8 ounces.


August 1, 2021

Youngest son, Max, turns 18 today. Old enough to fight our endless wars, not old enough to buy a beer.

If you missed it: Satire Saturday: Alleged Sex Slaveholder Tom Bombadil in Custody.

Satire Sunday: Scourging of Shire Scoured from YouTube.


July 30, 2021

Company to Make Weightless Barbells?

Maine brewery will make non-alcohol beer only.

Far out. I hope it works for them. Here are a few other oxymoronic and/or nerd business ideas:

Non-movement treadmills

Vision-free binoculars

Books without pages

I know people like non-alcoholic beer, but I don’t get it.

Years ago, I was reading a book about how to play poker. The author was an accomplished gambler, and I remember he made this point (which he was adamant about): Poker sucks if there’s no gambling involved. There are, he said, many great card games that don’t involve gambling and poker isn’t one of them. Gambling is the sine qua non of poker.

To me, beer without alcohol is like playing funzies. If you don’t want to drink alcohol, great. I respect that.

But why drink beer? There are a ton of great non-alcoholic beverages … Read the rest

The Beatniks were a Bunch of Consumerists

Well, kinda

William Burroughs liked opium, a lot. He liked its derivatives, morphine, and heroin. He liked other types of dope. He liked women. He liked men and boys. He wrote recklessly. He lived recklessly. He loved his common-law wife. He shot her dead in a drunken game of William Tell in a Mexico City bar.

William Burroughs was a member of the Beatniks, that dope- and jazz- and danger-loving generation that dazzled and unnerved America during the decades following World War II and gave rise to the peace, love, and hippie movements of the late 1960s.

If a person compiled a list of history’s Most Hip, Beats would litter the top 20: Burroughs, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassady. They’d be right up there with James Dean, Miles Davis, Lou Reed, Dennis Hopper, Jackson Pollack, and Lenny Bruce.

And Nike, McDonald’s, Madison Avenue, and the army of men in grey flannel suits that have marked American business for the past 100 years.


That’s right: Kerouac and McDonald’s, Miles Davis on Madison Avenue, Burroughs donning Nikes, James Dean in a grey flannel suit. They’re related: they’re all hip.

Every manifestation of hip — from Walt Whitman to the Harlem Renaissance to the Beatniks to Kurt Cobain — has this in common: it lives for now. That’s what makes it so cool, whether it’s a heroin junkie playing saxophone (see Charlie Parker) or a speed junkie who … Read the rest

The Weekly Eccentric

Should We Love the Encyclopedia Even If It Doesn’t Love Us?

When asked what he wanted to do with his life, a young man supposedly replied, “Nothing, nothing at all. I like to study; I am very happy, very content; I don’t ask for anything else.”

That was me at age 23, except it wasn’t. It was Denis Diderot (1713–1784). Which is bizarre.

Diderot could’ve been the bizarro me. He was an ex-Catholic-turned-rationalist deist. I’m an ex-non-Catholic-turned-realist Catholic.

But we both loved to study as young men.

We also both liked women. Though I’ve limited my interest to just one, Diderot banged many, including a woman who, though not physically attractive, had such a virile tongue and “male mind” that men called her “the hermaphrodite.” He lost interest in her sexually after a while, since he couldn’t get past rumors that she was involved in a lesbian affair with her own sister.

My love interest, though not a hermaphrodite, played softball for four years in high school . . . and was the catcher, at that.

The bizarro parallels continue.

Diderot, like me, also had a lot of children. Four, to be exact, though all but one died young. Although he loved his surviving daughter tenderly, his home life wasn’t good. His wife was a harridan (which is one of the most under-utilized words in the English language (thanks to Joseph Epstein for bringing it back … Read the rest

Scourging of Shire Scoured from YouTube

Silicon Valley Eye

August 1, 2021

SAN JOSE – A happy ending in JRR Tolkien’s popular story turns out not to be happy after all.

At issue is a chapter known as “The Scourging of the Shire,” in which a band of hobbits (small, half-person creatures) kills and rebels against a group of non-whites.

“Tolkien’s last battle scene promotes aggression against people of color,” said Bonnie Mace, a YouTube spokesperson. “That’s why recent video adaptations of ‘The Scourging of the Shire’ have been removed from the platform.”

Critics disagree with the decision.

“The men who subjugated the Shire weren’t black or brown. They were just men,” said John Kramer, a producer of one of the scrubbed videos. “Tolkien merely said the leader, Bill Ferny, was ‘swarthy’ and said many of the men were ‘Southrons.’”

YouTube disagrees.

“Clearly, ‘swarthy’ and ‘Southron’ imply something different than ‘white,’” said Mace, “so even though most of the deleted videos don’t use people of color in their adaptations, our company policy is to delete them.”

Still, outrage remains, with some suggesting the scourging of the Scourging isn’t related to race at all.

“It’s about COVID,” said Kramer. “The hobbits were told to stay in their houses or get thrown in jail. Instead, they rebelled and killed their oppressors.”

Mace said such an interpretation of YouTube’s actions is absurd, though she did note that the hobbit actors in the video adaptations … Read the rest

Alleged Sex Slaveholder Tom Bombadil in Custody

Goldberry in protective custody

October 4, 3018

Where the Old Forest meets the Great East Road

THE OLD FOREST – Police claim to have apprehended long-suspected kidnapper Tom Bombadil.

Police have long sought to apprehend Bombadil for the alleged kidnapping and detention of Goldberry Riverdaughter.

“Bombadil has long been a person of interest in the disappearance of Goldberry,” said Lieutenant Buckwater. “Numerous witnesses over the years have come forward, saying Bombadil is holding her in his realm.”

Police, however, could never confirm that Goldberry and Bombadil were living together, until a lead broke in late September 3018. Bombadil accompanied four hobbits outside his lands to the Great East Road, where a bystander heard him say, “Tom has his house to mind, and Goldberry is waiting.”

The exchange was reported to the police, who immediately obtained a search warrant for Bombadil’s lands and found Goldberry.

“We can’t provide any details,” said Buckwater, “but we can confirm that Goldberry insists she was not being held against her will. We have our doubts, however.”

Gail Riel, a psychologist at Oxford University, said it sounds like Stockholm syndrome.

“Bombadil is widely-known as a master manipulator,” said Riel. “Even Gandalf has alluded to Bombadil’s great mental powers. It’s definitely believable that, after such a long period, which no doubt seemed literally like ages, she told herself she wanted to be with him, but was really there against her will.”

Neighbors, … Read the rest

The Weekly Eccentric

The Religion of Scientism and Slavs

Point 15 in Zuby’s “20 Things I Learned or Had Confirmed from the Pandemic” would’ve greatly appealed to August Comte, who hoped that science would become a religion (literally).

Zuby’s Point 15:

‘The Science’ has evolved into a secular pseudo-religion for millions of people in the West. This religion has little to do with science itself.

The founder of sociology, August Comte (according to Henri de Lubac), saw society evolving from the primitive religion of fetishism to the advanced religion of scientism. He literally believed in “social physics” (which he later called “sociology”), as a type of science that could figure out how to run society as well as math can add numbers. The scientists who would do this for us would be revered and become our new clergy.

“Social physics would be ‘as positive as any other science based on observation,’ as scientific as celestial, terrestrial, vegetable or animal ologies. Thus the scientists will soon have gained ‘all the territory successively lost by the clergy’ and they will constitute ‘a new spiritual power.’”

Henri de Lubac (quoting Comte), The Drama of Atheist Humanism (Ignatius, 140).


The parallels of the religion of Scientism with other religions are striking. Below are six parallels between the Scientistic (a member of the Church of Scientism) and the Theist (a believer and church-goer):

1.            The certitude of faith. The average Theist can’t … Read the rest

Pressure Mounts on Tolkien Estate to Finish Legolas-Gimli Tale

LGBTQI+: “It’s time to make explicit what everyone has always known”

July 25, 2021

PORTLAND – The greatest love story of Middle Earth has been repressed long enough.

So assert members of the LGBTQI+ Tolkien community who believe the love affair between Legolas the Elf and Gimli the Dwarf needs to be finished.

“Tolkien struck a bold blow, not only for gay love but for inter-species love,” says Jay Martin, President of the Portland Gay Love Association. “In Legolas and Gimli, you have the ultimate ‘love is love’ symbol that breaks all boundaries, codes, and repressions.”

Critics say it wouldn’t be proper to change the Middle Earth oeuvre to meet contemporary fads.

But Martin and others disagree.

“First off, it’s not a fad. Gay love is now accepted in all quarters, by all people. Second, inter-species love is progressive.”

Others note that Tolkien’s son, Christopher Tolkien, finished other tales that his father’s death left undone, so they aren’t asking for anything new.

“Middle Earth had a Fourth Age,” says Brad Cupich, professor of literature at San Jose State University. “It probably had a Fifth Age, too. Those tales haven’t been told, but there’s no reason they can’t be. And when they are, they’ll be inclusive of all people and all species.”… Read the rest

Zuby’s Twitter Thread: 20 Things I’ve Learned (Or Had Confirmed) About Humanity During The ‘Pandemic’

Oxford

I don’t know a lot about Zuby. Oxford-educated rapper that was on Joe Rogan. That’s all I really know. I also remember enjoying his interview, then this morning, I heard about this Tweet by Zuby about the pandemic. All 20 points are worth reading. I’ve just pasted below the ones that resonate with me the most.

1.     Most people would rather be in the majority, than be right.

2.     At least 20% of the population has strong authoritarian tendencies, which will emerge under the right conditions.

4.     Propaganda is just as effective in the modern day as it was 100 years ago. Access to limitless information has not made the average person any wiser.

5.     Anything and everything can and will be politicised by the media, government, and those who trust them.

7.     Most people believe the government acts in the best interests of the people. Even many who are vocal critics of the government.

8.     Once they have made up their mind, most people would rather to commit to being wrong, than admit they were wrong.

10.   When sufficiently frightened, most people will not only accept authoritarianism, but demand it.

11.   People who are dismissed as ‘conspiracy theorists’ are often well researched and simply ahead of the mainstream narrative.

14.   A significant % of people thoroughly enjoy being subjugated.

15.   ‘The Science’ has evolved into a … Read the rest

Department of Civil Rights Investigating the Prancing Pony

Strange News from Bree

October 18, 3018

The Prancing Pony has been closed, pending investigation

BREE – Innkeeper Barliman Butterbur vigorously denies that he committed a civil rights infraction, but the Department of Justice isn’t drinking his ale.

“The record is clear,” says Mel Coors, lead prosecutor for the Civil Rights Division. “Mr. Butterbur committed a heinous act of discrimination.”

At issue is the following statement by Butterbur: “No black man shall pass my doors, while I can stand on my legs.”

“By any measure,” said Coors, “this is a case of racial discrimination and we intend to seek full redress.”

Butterbur refused to comment, but his attorney, Ron Leonard, said it was just a misunderstanding. “I can’t go into details,” said Ron, “but I will say my client was not referring to black men. I mean, he was referring to black men, but not to black men.”

Butterbur made the statement on September 30, 3018, to four guests who were staying at The Prancing Pony. The guests, by all accounts, had been drinking heavily and enjoying themselves in the all-white establishment. The festivities apparently carried over after hours to one of the guest’s rooms, where Butterbur made the statement.

Officials are also investigating whether Butterbur violated the Disabilities Act and engaged in hate speech by privileging “standing” and “legs.”

“The implication,” said one authority who didn’t want to be named, is that … Read the rest