Typically a biography looks at the events from an overly dispassionate, objective point of view. There is an obvious attempt to portray the biographyTypically a biography looks at the events from an overly dispassionate, objective point of view. There is an obvious attempt to portray the biography as completely unbiased. The biases are still there, just not admitted.[return][return]Shenk admits he believes Abraham Lincoln, an American icon, openly paraded his depression in front of everyone in his youth. Lincoln even used his depression to make others feel sorry for him to gain advantages. This book is really an argument for this belief. I'd have liked more dissuading evidence or acknowledging the weaknesses in the belief. Areas where Shenk or others can perhaps fill in with more evidence.[return][return]Shenk is an excellent writer. The book flows better than most biographies I have read....more
No idea why it took me so long to get around to reading this. It felt good to read something that portrayed slavery in the United States where the slaNo idea why it took me so long to get around to reading this. It felt good to read something that portrayed slavery in the United States where the slaves were both treated as property and subhuman. Books like Gone With the Wind treat slaves as secondary family members.
Uncle Tom bothered me throughout the book. While maybe there were people who maintained such loyalty to both God and master. Pretty sure I would have been more of a George and figured a way to escape. ...more
The authors are Founding Fathers. So these essays are a good way to get a sense of what the framers of the Constitution were thinking as they attempteThe authors are Founding Fathers. So these essays are a good way to get a sense of what the framers of the Constitution were thinking as they attempted to convince the citizens of New York to ratify it.
Monotonous and difficult to read, getting through these essays was a long hard slog. I started it back in March and did not finish until July.
It was worth it coming upon an election.
Someone wanting to read just the essentials might read: 10 - Advocates a large, commercial republic 14 - Extended republic 39 - Explains Federalism 51 - Checks and balances 70 - One-man chief executive 78 - Judicial review ...more
As a database administrator, we think in terms of maximum stability and how to predict failure so we can neutralize it. The cool and sexy are distantAs a database administrator, we think in terms of maximum stability and how to predict failure so we can neutralize it. The cool and sexy are distant concerns. So I guess I lack much sympathy for the traders looking to maximize profits and neutralizing the risk desks.
If a model looks great, then you missed something important. Something that will bring it all crashing down.
Also, this book made me mull on this quote:
"All these voices on the outside were saying, 'You are not relevant,'" Mudd later recalled. "And you have an obligation to be relevant."
No! No! No! Anyone telling you this wants you to do something not in your best interests. It is a ploy to make you stop paying attention to the risks and screw yourself by giving them what they want. Not sure people deserve multi-million bonuses when they lack this knowledge....more
Read the 2007 edition not 1996 which is claimed to be "completely revised and updated." Others who have caught me reading it, seem to have it but notRead the 2007 edition not 1996 which is claimed to be "completely revised and updated." Others who have caught me reading it, seem to have it but not yet read it.
Loewen defends the point we Americans ignore the bad parts of our history in order to revere our past and maintain to the young America is the greatest country in the world. The lies generally are lies of omission... Not discussion controversial material. If he is to be believed, then knowing about our past could help the young make better decisions when they get older. It seems the conservative right in Texas are responsible for publishers avoiding this past.
He has some good points. He just makes the same mistakes he accuses of history textbooks....more
Back in 2007, I went to Thanksgiving with Mom to the home of a Philosophy professor. The professor's father discoursed on why United States presidentsBack in 2007, I went to Thanksgiving with Mom to the home of a Philosophy professor. The professor's father discoursed on why United States presidents should only be intellectuals. His arguments made sense. Someone able to understand the options, determine risk, and plan for contingencies will likely do a better job than someone who cannot. (Most PotUS surround themselves with those capable of doing this, but at the time, the PotUS had political sycophants rather than intellectuals.)
The most spectacular portion of the book was the discourse on Junk Thought, which is what Jacoby calls pseudoscience, since she uses Junk Thought to bash it.
Really, I agree with 90% of the conclusions made in this book. My issues with the book rests with how the arguments link together in odd leaps that seem to rely more on faith than evidence. Plus, it is easy to tell who the author dislikes with the ad hominems used to discuss them.
The United States does need a well educated, well read, and actively engaged electorate to ensure our elected representatives possess the highest caliber. Books like this hurt that conversion instead of aiding us to somehow navigate the issues to achieve it....more