Bob Koo

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The Common Rule: ...
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The Border
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by Craig Groeschel (Goodreads Author)
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Say Nothing by Patrick Radden Keefe
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The Common Rule by Justin Whitmel Earley
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Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison
Lawn Boy
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“The view that the citizen and dictator have nothing in common has another corollary: the view that the dictator’s victims are inherently innocent, not merely innocent victims of someone else’s evil, but innocent in everything, so that even after the murderous dictator has been destroyed, their own actions, no matter how oppressive or unjust, may not be judged by the same standard as his actions. As victims of irrational hatred, they cannot imagine themselves acting on comparable hatreds. Against this fantasy of inherent innocence, Auden recognized that victims, no matter how guiltless in their own victimization, are tempted to become victimizers in turn. As he put it briskly in a song, “Many a sore bottom finds/A sorer one to kick.”
Anonymous

“At literary gatherings he made a practice of slipping away from “the gaunt and great, the famed for conversation” (as he called them in a poem) to find the least important person in the room. A letter-writer in the Times of London last year recalled one such incident: Sixty years ago my English teacher brought me to London from my provincial grammar school for a literary conference. Understandably, she abandoned me for her friends when we arrived, and I was left to flounder. I was gauche and inept and had no idea what to do with myself. Auden must have sensed this because he approached me and said, “Everyone here is just as nervous as you are, but they are bluffing, and you must learn to bluff too.”
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“But, as the conflict-studies scholar Jayne Docherty argues, the F.B.I.’s approach was doomed from the outset. In “Learning Lessons from Waco”—one of the very best of the Mount Carmel retrospectives—Docherty points out that the techniques that work on bank robbers don’t work on committed believers. There was no pragmatism hidden below a layer of posturing, lies, and grandiosity. Docherty uses Max Weber’s typology to describe the Davidians. They were “value-rational”—that is to say, their rationality was organized around values, not goals. A value-rational person would accept his fourteen-year-old daughter’s polygamous marriage, if he was convinced that it was in fulfillment of Biblical prophecy. Because the F.B.I. could not take the faith of the Branch Davidians seriously, it had no meaningful way to communicate with them:”
Anonymous

“All parenting involves choosing between the day (why have another argument at dinner?) and the years (the child must learn to eat vegetables). Nancy’s error seems to have been that she always focussed on the day, in a ceaseless quest to keep peace in the home she shared with the hypersensitive, controlling, increasingly hostile stranger who was her son. She thought that she could keep the years at bay by making each day as good as possible, but her willingness to indulge his isolation may well have exacerbated the problems it was intended to ameliorate.”
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“In 1939 he left England for America, partly to escape his own public status. Six months later, after making a speech at a political meeting, he wrote to a friend: I suddenly found I could really do it, that I could make a fighting demagogic speech and have the audience roaring…. It is so exciting but so absolutely degrading; I felt just covered with dirt afterwards. He was disgusted by his early fame because he saw the mixed motives behind his image of public virtue, the gratification he felt in being idolized and admired. He felt degraded when asked to pronounce on political and moral issues about which, he reminded himself, artists had no special insight. Far from imagining that artists were superior to anyone else, he had seen in himself that artists have their own special temptations toward power and cruelty and their own special skills at masking their impulses from themselves.”
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