Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The bloodwood and the desert oak

I'm reading Kevin Phillips' American Theocracy and find it quite good. The author has a bad tendency to make bold claims and not back them up, but I am sympathetic to his idea the the reliance on oil, the trumping of science by religion and an overleveraged economy could spell disaster for the US. In case you think all this talk of religous rule is a bunch of hooey, check out the rock band called....Theocracy. I'm gonna start a band and call it Oligarchy. Dan Drezner has a related piece on why gas prices matter.

I'm quite fond of the author's use of the idea of a Great Disenlightenment. All this talk of intelligent design, stem cell research and Terry Schiavo makes me think of those hordes of torch wielding peasants chasing that which they do not understand. And let me tell you, they do not understand.

Phillips uses Charles Freeman's the Closing of the Western Mind (meaning 4th century Roman) as an example of where he thinks the US might be going. The Amazon page is a great example of what the web can do. A number of people wrote critiques of the book online and the author responded in a fair and friendly manner. Worth reading.

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