Here are the Blogs in the z - John Derbyshire category.
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Friday, 7 July 2006
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Just a subversive thought: The President repeated his belief that the desire for freedom "is inscribed on every human heart." (Or some such—I haven't found a complete transcript yet.) I don't believe this myself. I have lived in an unfree country, and most of the people around ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/07/2006 1:22 PM by John Derbyshire
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Friday, 7 July 2006
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My Hypothesis of Collective Imprudence may have an unhappy corollary:  When the human race (or some largish subset of it) really does get its collective act together to avert a foreseen evil, the evil is likely imaginary.  This is the Corollary of Misplaced Collective Prudence.  A sapient ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/07/2006 8:23 AM by John Derbyshire
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Friday, 7 July 2006
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In my "Robotics vs. Helotics" piece I said the following thing:  "There are signs that the advance of robotics may be about to speed up dramatically." A friend at Stanford comments on one of those signs: "The last sentence is truer than you might think. By any measure, ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/07/2006 8:19 AM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 6 July 2006
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Why is it always "village atheist," never "big city atheist"?   A reader supplies the perfect answer:   "Because there are no atheists in potholes." ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/06/2006 6:41 AM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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TWO ungrateful (ungrateful for my freely-dispensed wisdom, I mean) readers have pointed out that the Hypothesis of Collective Imprudence is self-validating.  Any counterexample is disputable, since, a nation having acted prudently to avert some anticipated evil, the evil will then not occur.  I ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 4:10 PM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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I assume that my erudite co-Iconoclasts will all know this one, but some readers may not.  Did you hear about the dyslexic insomniac agnostic?  He used to lie awake all night wondering if there really was a dog. [DISCLAIMER:  No dyslexics, insomniacs, or agnostics were harmed in the ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 2:28 PM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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A reader was so taken with my Hypothesis of Collective Imprudence that after checking to see that it truly is mine, he made a Wikipedia entry of it. ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 2:27 PM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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Several reader emails to the effect: "Mr Derbyshire—You are a godless twerp for looking down on GWB because he's a born-again Christian.  I have dropped you from my will, etc., etc."  For goodness' sake calm down.  While I may indeed be a godless twerp, I don't in ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 1:13 PM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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Sitting with friends at the July 4 barbecue table, I mentioned that I have to get all the peeling old paint from the siding of my garage, and repaint the whole thing.  I mean, actually HAVE TO — my home insurer won't renew next year unless I do, they tell me. Friend:  "Take a drive ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 11:22 AM by John Derbyshire
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Wednesday, 5 July 2006
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I believe Global warming is actually an instance of the Hypothesis of Collective Imprudence.  The HCI says that no large collectivity of human beings (nation-state or larger) will ever act to avert an obvious calamity until that calamity begins to cause really major, dramatic, unignorable damage.  ...Read More...
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Posted on 07/05/2006 9:57 AM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 29 June 2006
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Did we ever do favorite first lines of poems?  Here's my nomination: "I work all day, and get half-drunk at night." —-Philip Larkin, "Aubade"  That should cheer Rebecca up. ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/29/2006 7:01 PM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 29 June 2006
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From a reader:   "Derb—-You wrote, about Jenna:  '...can see is not likely to bring, any political advantage to the GOP.  It's a strange thing.  Anyone got explanations?'  Yeah, you're kind of a nut.  With all due respect.  Not everything in the world ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/29/2006 6:58 PM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 29 June 2006
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Jenna Bush is leaving DC for a taching job in Latin America, it says here  It also says: "Last week marked her final day at the Mount Pleasant charter school where she taught for a year and a half ... Jenna and a fellow instructor oversaw a class of third-graders being taught in both English ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/29/2006 4:27 PM by John Derbyshire
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Tuesday, 27 June 2006
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 Events in the womb, according to this study.    But readers of NRO heard that from me a year and a half ago.  It's number 13 on my list here. ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/27/2006 3:15 PM by John Derbyshire
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Friday, 23 June 2006
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In re the global warming fuss, please note the following from my review of Nicholas Wade's Before the Dawn in our Summer Books suggestions.   "Halfway through the 50,000-year span of modern human history outside Africa, when the moderns were in complete possession of Eurasia (though ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/23/2006 11:28 AM by John Derbyshire
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Friday, 23 June 2006
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Strictly Brit-com...  but look at the timing. ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/23/2006 11:26 AM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 22 June 2006
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(1) A story from a reader:  "On an unusually clear summer day, we were walking on a countryside road [in Scotland]. We passed another gentleman, and remarked to him what a nice day it was. 'Aye,' he said, 'we'll pay for this tomorrow.'"(2) Dr. Johnson:(2a) "The noblest prospect which ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/22/2006 5:37 PM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 22 June 2006
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If our resolve were absolutely without question, we wouldn't NEED to make declarations like that!  It's just because our resolve is questionable that we need to; yet for the same reason, we can't.  Catch-22.  And besides (or perhaps not so besides), no-one has the authority to make such ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/22/2006 5:35 PM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 22 June 2006
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A fan — I think he's a fan — has constructed the following image of my humble self. It apparently refers to some TV show or other, but I really have no idea....Read More...
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Posted on 06/22/2006 3:54 PM by John Derbyshire
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Thursday, 22 June 2006
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Noah Millman wondered the following thing to me:   "Ignoring Wales for a moment, and ignoring non-territorial ethnic minorities like Jews, Pakistanis, etc., and ignoring really tiny places like the Falklands and Gibraltar, if Scotland went independent and Ireland were unified, England ...Read More...
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Posted on 06/22/2006 2:07 PM by John Derbyshire
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