Confederate Flags

“The history of the antebellum South is the history of two million slave sales.” – Walter Johnson, Soul by Soul: Life Inside the Antebellum Slave Market, p. 187

I’m not an addict

“History had its fascinations, but could be burdensome. Too much of it and you became . . . obsessed with a catalog of vanished species, addicted to nostalgia for things you’d never known.” – William Gibson, The Peripheral, page 85

Personal Gods

The world isn’t safe. The verdict is still out as to whether it’s overtly hostile to us, but it certainly isn’t going out of its way to do us any favors. That sucks. Inherently. It’s hard not to imagine that everything would be better if some powerful externality with a penchant for supernatural interventionalism was… Continue reading

Never feel safe

“That they had got this far did not give them an automatic guarantee of success. The world did not work like that. It took pleasure in punishing the cocksure.” – Alastair Reynolds, Terminal World, page 455

Magnificent Desolation

Units of culture – civilization, nation, ethnic group, religion, corporation, styletribe – rise and fall; and from a distance of time those arcs are as obvious as they are inevitable – the seeds of destruction as clear as their eventual harvest. Such perspective, however, is not a luxury afforded to those riding the train. To… Continue reading

Grim Theology

“Remember two things. The gods don’t owe us anything. That’s not why we worship. We worship because they’re gods. This is their universe, not ours. What they choose they choose and it’s not ours to know why.” -China Mieville, The Kraken, page 101

Contingent Godlessness

“[He] did not want to eradicate the idea of evolution: he wanted to eradicate the fact of it. And with evolution – that key, that wedge, that wellspring – would all those other things follow, the drably vulgar contingent weak godlessness that had absolutely nothing going for it at all except, infuriatingly, its truth.” –… Continue reading

The End is Nigh

Just so that we are clear  . . . there isn’t a happy ending. The bad guys win – then all die too. Vengeful Gods of every stripe rain down hellfire. Everyone in steerage drowns. The barbarians (gays/minorities/creationists/secular humanists/whatever) are already well inside the gates. You can pick your poison, but it’s just details. The… Continue reading

Spring Grove Cemetery

Last night I dreamt of death. I know that other people’s dreams have all the appeal of babies and vacation photos – so I’ll skip the details. She wasn’t some benevolent and wise caretaker of the Gaiman school. There was nothing kind or insightful about her. She was elemental and instantaneous. More Frank Miller on… Continue reading