Saturday, May 13, 2006


Recently, the wise Tim posted this post on the wonderful Hawk Wings blog, which features interesting news and views about e-mail (specifically Apple's He admitted that this post had nothing to do with the point of the site, but he felt it was worth posting. I don't mind this. My real qualms come from one of the comments, as seen in a second... His post went a little like this.
Santa Claus, hobbits and the space pen

This post doesn’t really have anything to do with what this site is about.

Sometime during your childhood you realise that Santa Claus and hobbits aren’t really real. A bit later, maybe in your twenties, you work out that Marx asked the right questions, but might not have hit upon the right answers.

Advancing age brings further bitter-sweet advances in maturity. I had just such a moment today.

Merlin Mann ruthlessly strips away a myth that has sustained me for many years. I have always believed that the Fisher Space Pen is the archetypal example of American extravagance and waste, the icon of a culture gone mad with abundance.

I was wrong.

That's fine. But then some idiot posts this comment:
Marx was wrong? Perhaps the cycle is to read Marx (Karl, not Groucho, though I rank them equally in the scheme of world history), then believe Marx, then listen to the right-wing criticism of Marx, then abandon Marx, then grow up larer to re-consider Marx, then settle in to an understanding that Marx was right–just how to apply his principles is the crux of the problem with socialism. “The devil is in the details” as they say, and dumping Marx into a country such as Russia which seems to have had an eternal history of exploitation and abuse of ordinary citizens did not fare well.

I’d move from the USA to Norway, a socialist/Marxist state, except I just don’t want to freeze my butt off. Norway is sometimes ranked using tangible and not-so-measurable factors as the “best” country on the planet. In terms of the overall economic wealth, personal health, and happiness of the citizens.

So, maybe Marx was right after all, but few schools in the US offer meaningful discussions about what constitutes a free, happy, and healthy society. For all the hoopla about the US, our government throws away such a vast quantity of money on war that (the money spent on the war in Iraq alone could wipe out world-wide starvation, according to the UN) our own standard of living continues to degrade. One could cogently argue that capitialism and the American experiment failed. We live by the myth of the entrepreneur. “Each of us could be a Bill Gates worth 250 billion, if we only got the right break tomorrow.”

So, just as we might do well to re-assess the role of the Space Pen, tossing out Marxism as you did in an off-the-cuff remark perhaps is worthy of deeper discussion in some other forum.

I'm SURE he was just trying to be cute, but after a while... It just gets OLD! This commenter seems to have real acceptance problems. He'd have to, wouldn't he?

Okay. I'll calm down. Taking a page from Jenn's book, here are the bunnies... (which she learned about from me, I'll have you know!!)

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