Assorted Opinions: Unusual Turnout

      Assorted Opinions Unusual Turnout       Much noise has been made this week in pursuit of voter fraud claims…so far found unwarranted. But there’s another side to this coin that the noise drowns out: election fraud. Tales of voter fraud—individuals forging ID in some way, then voting more than once—have the […]

Marjorie Bowen: The Sword Decides! (intro part three)

Marjorie Bowen The Sword Decides! Introduction: part three                       A Different Kind of Translation, continued:     A Question of Taste Chapter One, Joris Middelstum’s Strong Points   Joris Middelstum was a bachelor. Do not be angry with him, ladies, on that account. Supposing that […]

Marjorie Bowen: The Sword Decides! (intro part two)

Marjorie Bowen The Sword Decides! Introduction: part two                       A Different Kind of Translation, continued:   Most of what you want to achieve contradicts itself to a degree, the writing of a story or novel being like every other enterprise…all things in their rightful places, […]

Baron Haussmann’s Story of the Murderous Innkeepers

From Mémoires de baron Haussmann, 1890                 excerpted from a section called Excursions           These events take place in the 1830s, Haussmann on his way to his new job at Nérac, the post he held in our last story of his assisting George Sand. […]

Assorted Opinions: Stupid Loyalty

Posted by ractrose on 20 Jul 2020 in Nonfiction

Assorted Opinions Stupid Loyalty                 Scenes from America’s protests, which began with the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, and continue as general dissent under the banner of Black Lives Matter, play onscreen like a surreal clown show, tragic and brutal, while the enforcement conduct often seems comedically […]

The M Word That Isn’t Moscow (opinion)

Posted by ractrose on 1 Feb 2020 in Nonfiction

Assorted Opinions The M Word That Isn’t Moscow                  From one of the books I’m reading, Heaven Cracks, Earth Shakes, by James Palmer (Basic Books, 2012), on the last days of Chairman Mao and the horrific Tangshan earthquake, comes this translation of a Maoist anthem:     The […]

Republicans’ Last Chance (opinion)

Posted by ractrose on 20 Jan 2020 in Nonfiction

Republicans’ Last Chance Or, advice from an observer                           As to politics, I believe in doing what works and not doing what doesn’t work. Human society has never been able to figure out why this principle is so difficult, rather than so easy, […]

Assorted Opinions: Plastic

Posted by ractrose on 4 Jan 2020 in Nonfiction

Assorted Opinions Plastic             The thing you’re doing isn’t wrong. In most cases. What comes athwart environmental activism is the scorn, distrust, frustration of people who feel themselves harried over things that were always “okay in the past”. When you drink a Diet Coke and faithfully drop your bottle in […]

Best of the Season to You!

Posted by ractrose on 25 Dec 2019 in Nonfiction

    And, for today, I have a small historical anecdote, from the American Civil War, with a certain lesson to be derived.      Respect the Flag   A day or two after we established headquarters at the City Hall, the national flag was hanging over the street, when one of the principal ladies […]

Assorted Opinions: They

Posted by ractrose on 16 Nov 2019 in Nonfiction

  Assorted Opinions They                   2020 seems a bad time for the Democrats to become the party of pronouns. History shows, of course, that they can pull it off, this snatching of defeat from the jaws of victory… And liberal forces appear to be gathering towards a […]