I normally avoid patriotic events. They invariably remind me of the flag-waving idiocy that led to World War I. In fact, I was even kicked out of the Boy Scouts in New York City after loudly commenting that their uber patriotic display of flags, drums, crashing music and paramilitary uniforms […]


As President-elect Donald Trump fights off fierce assaults by the massed national security apparatus, Democrats, the neocon Praetorian Guard, and a host of other political foes, I am feeling a sharp sense of déjà vu. Trump claimed that these attacks were like ‘living in Nazi Germany.’ Not so. The president-elect […]


31 December 2016 One of my favorite literary expressions is the term ‘Parthian shaft.’ It refers to the favored tactic of the Parthians, a Persian people, of turning while on horseback and firing arrows while retreating. The Roman consul Crassus, who defeated Spartacus, may have died from such a Parthian […]