Saturday, June 25, 2005

Three from LRC
Gary North on the fast-changing media we use
Going digital

We spend much of our lives collecting, learning, cataloguing, and generally burying ourselves in information that later turns out to be trivia.
Sounds like an insight about life and fallen human nature in general. I’m not the only one who’s found himself stuck in that trap!

My mania ended with the advent of the Web. I stopped subscribing to magazines and newspapers.
That saves money.

Nevertheless, my files have convinced me that all that time was not wasted. The discipline of reading, clipping, and cataloguing articles did provide me with an overall sense of what was going on.

I offered to give away the collection to a college library. The librarian politely refused. He is even dumping hard copies of scholarly journals, as are most librarians.
This change is largely a good thing — it wastes less paper and space — but one wonders about the Orwellian risk of not having any ‘hard copy’. (Or why modern liturgists like disposable newsprint booklets and not hardcover missals, prayer books and hymnals. Not only does this scam make a mint for certain printers but it makes it easier to take tradition away from the proles by throwing it down the memory hole.)

Writers imagine that they will be remembered, but here is the grim reality. First, hardly anyone reads old novels, except when they are assigned in an English class. Second, nobody reads old non-fiction books, except when they are assigned in a history class. The Great Books make Great Shelves, but hardly anyone ever takes one of them down from the shelf to read it in order to gain greater wisdom.
Of course the Great Books are necessary even if one only reads them once in school to ‘discipline your mind’ to work well (critically, being able to tell right from wrong, good from bad — yes, discrimination) in future... to read articles like this one and understand them, for example. But it doesn’t matter if it’s a paper book or not!

Mr North is telling the truth. Honestly, I think I could get by with only a handful of hardbacks — things like the King James Bible, the missal (of whatever traditional rite), the breviary (same) and books related to using them (like Cranmer’s Prayer Book for the psalms and canticles), and a reference book or three like a catechism. They’re what I’d grab in a fire and save.

For my purposes the rest — theological and political books and articles — is just a Google search away for the taking.

Karen De Coster notes something similar about saving and listening to music. I use a flat (one time only)-fee downloading/file-sharing service and don’t waste money on CDs anymore either. (Just downloaded: Allegri’s Miserere.)

Is Japan being played today?
By military expert William Lind

It is exactly the right strategy for a Fourth Generation 21st century, where survival will depend heavily on staying off other people’s hit lists.
These sound like words to live by!

The real Darth Vader vs the Bringer of Life

No comments:

Post a comment

Leave comment