The writer who foresaw the rise of the totalitarian state

From BBC News Magazine:

The 19th Century Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote about characters who justified murder in the name of their ideological beliefs. For this reason, John Gray argues, he’s remained relevant ever since, through the rise of the totalitarian states of the 20th Century, to the “war against terror”.

Why Read New Books?

From The New York Review of Books:

Hasn’t it all been done before? Perhaps better than anyone today could ever do it? If so, why read contemporary novels, especially when so many of the classics are available at knockdown prices and for the most part absolutely free as e-books?

Interesting answers in the article…

STRONG GENETIC COMPONENT for male homosexuality

Found at Instapundit, referencing an article from New Scientist. What a conundrum! IF one finds a genetic marker, which can be tested in an unborn child, women who don’t want a gay baby might choose to abort. I would expect gay activists would worry about a much reduced population of gays, over time, and perhaps call it genocide, but does that trump the “right to choose?” And pro-lifers who may not like gays would also have a serious dilemma—raise a gay child or abort. And what about lesbians?—little mention from the scientists.

If you’re interested, please be sure to read the comments at Instapundit.


Scientifically, What Is the Worst Way to Die?

From Motherboard. Well, since this isn’t the Middle Ages (also, see scaphism, an ancient Persian method of execution), the worst way to die is how many of us will—a lingering death, alone. Managing pain is no doubt the critical element.

“Why are we so fat?”

From The New Yorker, an article that tries to explain it all. My simple view: we eat too much of the wrong things and don’t get enough exercise.

My diet book, that will never sell because it’s only one sentence: Burn more calories than you consume.

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