I understand the economic theory behind this, but my gut reaction is so negative I can’t help wondering if the theory is simply wrong.
“Emmanuel Gambiri said an educated wife in his cattle-herding Mundari tribe in South Sudan costs 50 cows, 60 goats and 30,000 Sudanese pounds ($12,000) in cash. [. . .] Gambiri recalls a time when wives cost as little as 12 cows and tribal chiefs wielded enough power to call the parents and set an affordable bride price.” (link)
A man is going back to his small town for the funeral of an aunt. He remembers.
The faces around the table had been masterful and full of life. They had been grown-up and permanent–one could not imagine them young or growing old. Together, they made a nation; they were the earth. If one took the trains of the morning, even as far as Bradenburg, lo, Uncle Melrose was there, at his desk with the little brass postage-scale on top of it, as it had been from the first. If one walked out to Mount Pleasant through the buckeye fall, at the end there was the white gate of Cousin Edna and the iron nigger boy with the rainstreaked face, holding out his black hand stiffly for the buckboards that drove no more. There were princes and dominations and thrones and powers; but what were these beside Aunt Emmy and Cousin Millie, beside the everlasting forms of Mrs. Bache and Mr. Beaver, of the ladies at the Women’s Exchange and the man who lighted the gas street-lamps with a long brass spike? Then, suddenly, the earth had begun to crumble. A wind blew, a bell sounded, and they were dispersed.
Robert Zubrin approaches problems like an engineer. He tries to solve them. The engineering approach to problems is problematic when the problems are unsolvable–like the problem of human nature, for instance. But when it comes to fuel, actually trying to solve our fuel problems is an idea whose time has come. Zubrin’s flex-fuel plan allows vehicles to use methanol, which can be economically derived from coal, natural gas, and wood and organic byproducts. It’s a great plan. (more…)
Vacation travel had thinned out the ranks to the point that calling upon me to teach the quorum seemed a reasonable thing to do. A conference talk on service. But it’s July 24; that has to be worked in somehow. Ah, I’ve got it. (more…)
About the Pioneer Day broadcast yesterday, the least said the better. The proportion of show tunes was slightly less than in recent years. That’s something. But Yellow Ribbonism Support Our Troops sentiment isn’t really the core of the holiday either, and that’s what they replaced the surplus of show tunes with. I don’t object exactly. Pioneer Day is the celebration of the ethnogenesis of one of the American peoples, so American patriotism is appropriate. But American patriotism alone isn’t enough. There needs to be some pioneer stuff too. (more…)