In Appreciation

  • In Appreciation,  Music,  Weirdness

    Addendum to the Grateful Dead post

    I came across this interview with Ann Coulter on, evidently she’s quite the fan. Favorite Quote:

    Moreover, I really like Deadheads and the whole Dead concert scene: the tailgating, the tie-dye uniforms, the camaraderie – it was like NASCAR for potheads

    Most interesting fact

    My collection of Dead tapes, by the way, was the reason I heard one of the Linda Tripp tapes before Ken Starr did. Tripp’s lawyer obviously needed to hear the tape before turning it over to the prosecutor, but he only had an old 1950’s tape player and couldn’t get it to work and Ken Starr wanted the tape the next morning. He was terrified he’d hit the wrong button and erase the evidence. In the wee hours of the morning, it occurred him, a Deadhead himself, that he knew one person in D.C. who definitely had a tape machine. So, at around 2 AM, he called me and asked to come over to use my tape deck.

  • In Appreciation,  Music,  Weirdness

    Friday in appreciation, volume III

    I was in Chicago last week so I didn’t get a chance to do the in appreciation post, but here is this week’s.

    This week’s in appreciation is the Grateful Dead. While I’m not a huge fan of the music (I love Old and in the Way, and the Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band is quite good) they stand out as true American icons, especially for artists. Not only did they commit to a style of music and a style of life, they created it first. And seemingly with the attitude that it’s better to have a small achievement than a great excuse (to paraphrase Hoffer). They spend 30 years doing what they wanted to do without asking favors or permission. Contrast that to the Live 8 and the Live Earth crowd and they become a marvel.

    So, Grateful Dead, you get this week’s In Appreciation.

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  • Economics,  In Appreciation

    Friday in appreciation, volume II

    The In Appreciation for this week goes not to a person, but to the economic force known as Capital Flight. Wikipedia defines it accurately as

    when assets and/or money rapidly flow out of a country, due to an economic event that disturbs investors and causes them to lower their valuation of the assets in that country, or otherwise to lose confidence in its economic strength. This leads to a disappearance of wealth and is usually accompanied by a sharp drop in the exchange rate of the affected country (devaluation).

    Modern technology makes it easy to move money from one country to another; giving an immediate cost to bone headed economic decisions and plundering. For examples, think of governments defaulting on debts and anything that has happened in Zimbabwe over the past few years.

    So Capital Flight, for enforcing some degree of fiscal and monetary responsibility on the governments for the world, you get my second Friday In Appreciation.

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  • Culture,  In Appreciation,  Religion

    The start of the Friday In Appreciation Series

    I’ve decided to start a more or less weekly series about the people and forces of that don’t get enough credit in our society. I call it the Friday In Appreciation Series.

    We live in age when sanctimonious piety rivals hydrogen as the most common thing in the universe. Be it suburbanites railing against city-dwellers not having children, Ultra-Calvinist urbanites railing against Bushies standing in the way of progress, or Muslims from loser countries blaming Danish cartoons for their crappy lives, it’s hard to walk five feet without getting smacked in the face by righteous outrage, backed up by the usual litany of reasons people have for telling other people to run their lives.

    But there’s one group that not only walks the walk and talks the talk; they also handle the snakes. Yep, I’m talking about Snake Handlers. It’s refreshing to see someone use the fine print and not bother other people. They actually follow the fine print just because it’s there. They even keep going when their leaders die of snake-bite. Now that’s faith!

    Thus I begin the series.

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