Current Reading

Reviews, recommendations, books to avoid. What have you been reading?
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Reviews, recommendations, books to avoid. What have you been reading?

Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » June 30th, 2017, 9:37 am

I finished reading a book written by Malcolm Muggeridge who died in November 1990.The title is "Christ and the Media". It was first published in 1977 and what he says is as true today as it was yesterday.
It is a short book and I heartily recommend it.It is about how the media lies to us through images which suggest the opposite of the truth every day on television. You can see that daily on TV in comments about Trump. Muggeridge was involved in the production of documentaries and is still the best journal!ist the UK has produced. In fact he maybe the best journal!ist the world has produced.
If your mind is your brain and your brain is just material , would you rely on it?
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Sprocket » June 30th, 2017, 12:02 pm

Muggeridge was a phenomenally boring, conceited idiot.
"I'm fucking busy, and vice versa" - Dorothy Parker.
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Re: Current Reading

Postby GregB » June 30th, 2017, 1:45 pm

(Post moved forward after being sidelined by the immediately following one.)
Last edited by GregB on June 30th, 2017, 1:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » June 30th, 2017, 1:46 pm

Sprocket wrote:Muggeridge was a phenomenally boring, conceited idiot.


I have read his autobiography, "The Green Stick" and a book called "Something Beautiful for God" which was about Mother Theresa which he wrote in addition to "Christ and the Media" and Muggeridge is the opposite of boring, in fact the latter mentioned book I have read at least twice before , and it is still fresh like morning dew on garden leaves in Spring in my mind.I could read the last one over and over again without end.
Muggeridge does acknowledge some early faults in his autobiography before he became a Christian and ultimately , just before his death, a Roman Catholic. The book "Christ and the Media" is from that part of his life when he was a non-Catholic Christian.He understood the television media better than anyone..He quotes the following from Blake.

This Life's dim windows of the soul
Distorts the Heavens from Pole to Pole,
And leads you to believe a lie
When you see with ,not through, the eye.

Muggeridge compares the eye to a camera.
Last edited by Pondero on June 30th, 2017, 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Current Reading

Postby GregB » June 30th, 2017, 1:48 pm

(Responding to Steve's post:)

Oh, I say, dear boy, are you really sure? (His speech delivery was the nearest thing to a human ventriloquist's dummy's and his permanent sour lemon rictus defied caricature.)

However, he did a stalwart job in the 1930's after a disillusioned visit* (when he was still politically on the left) to the Soviet Union by denouncing Stalinism as a cruel, self-serving totalitarian phenomenon equivalent to fascism when gullible useful idiots like Beatrice and Sidney Webb, George Bernard Shaw and other comfortable bien pensant leftist, basically stupid, intellectuals were heaping praise on the dictator after a well-controlled visit to 'the radiant future' and who undoubtedly would have thought that Gulag was a Hungarian culinary dish.

(*Ditto other cynical anti-false utopia realists like Arthur Koestler, Richard Crossman, André Gide and others in that excellent book, 'The God That Failed'.)
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » June 30th, 2017, 2:09 pm

I agree with Greg's comment about Muggeridge's report to the Manchester Guardian about that dictator Stalin, which contrasted with the false reports of other English intellectuals ,Greg mentioned, who were fooled by Stalin.
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Sprocket » June 30th, 2017, 9:47 pm

I've got a book, published in the 1930s, called "The Soviet Sixth of the World", by Rev. Hewlett Johnson. I got it from my paternal grandfather's house after he died in the early 70s, and was invited to take any volumes I wanted from his considerable library - he was a "tackler" - maintenance man - in a cotton mill, a Methodist lay preacher, and an autodidact.I was in my early 20s, and mentioned the book to my father, as being by someone who was both an anglican priest and a communist. When I mentioned his name, my dad laughed and said "Oh, the Red Dean!". I'd never heard of him before then, but he was of course famous (or notorious) in the 30s. I think he was more of a well-intentioned silly-ass than sinister.
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » July 30th, 2017, 2:42 pm

I am currently reading a book entitled Cosmic Numbers by James D.Stein.
Well he is a professor of mathematics at California State University.. (as I mentioned somewhere else ) .
He says , quite correctly, that an object on Earth weighs less on the moon. I think we all know that. But, he says that the mass stays the same.
Now, how can this be, I said to myself, that the mass stays the same.
Well, an answer was forthcoming on subsequent pages.

The mass of an object is 32 lbs on the surface of the earth and that is equal to one SLUG.
Yes, one SLUG.

That means my mass is about five and a quarter slugs whether I am on Earth or on the moon :scratch:
If your mind is your brain and your brain is just material , would you rely on it?
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » August 15th, 2017, 10:16 am

Yesterday I visited the library and took out two books.One was "The Mechanical Age" by Celia Bland, and the other is titled ,"A Companion to the Industrial revolution" by Clifford Lines.
I read the first book yesterday, in two sittings.It is of course about the Industrial revolution in Britain.
What was frightening was the cruel manner (both before and after) the Industrial revolution in which they treated children of the poorer classes. The worst offenders were the nouveau riche who were jumped up entrepreneurs like Sir Richard Arkwright, who made millions of pounds and like others of his class thought himself now superior to the lower class "inferiors" from which he sprang"
It was not the real landed Gentry or Upper Class people who were the main offenders .
We all know of child chimney sweeps and women labourers and children working six days a week in coal mines of Lancashire, Cheshire and the West Riding of Yorkshire for 12 hour days and some times 18 hour days. Bloody horrible.
Then there was of course The Prince Regent who later became King George1V of England. No comment :eek:
If your mind is your brain and your brain is just material , would you rely on it?
John Lennox
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Re: Current Reading

Postby Pondero » August 17th, 2017, 3:10 pm

Yesterday I started reading "The Bullie$ of Wall St." by Sheila Bair. Former head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
It is about the 2008 banking crisis in the USA. Thanks to Basel II Europeans were also guilty. a tale of greed , anything for a quick buck which led to families taking out sub prime mortgages, losing their homes and jobs.
If your mind is your brain and your brain is just material , would you rely on it?
John Lennox
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