March 4th, 2024
Judicial Temperament, Oklahoma

 [Judge Brian Lovell] was arrested for reportedly firing a gun at five cars, then ramming his SUV into the back of a woman’s car twice. [He] then attempted to push the woman’s car into oncoming traffic.

March 4th, 2024
Late at night, cram hundreds of people into a dark shed in the middle of nowhere, and let men with guns roam free.

It’s the sort of scene you associate with SS massacres, but our own West Point Mississippi offers just this scenario every Saturday. Y’all come down.

March 3rd, 2024
UD has owls every night because her tall old trees have been left alone for so long.

When she walks her paths, piles of feathers mark battlefields.

Here are two feathers (mourning dove?) she picked up and brought inside yesterday.

A local poet, who lives next to an old forest slated for development, writes about her owls.

***************************

The owl came because he wants this scrap of woodland, wants the beeches and their hollow hearts, their cavities. He came because so long ago the farmer left his fields alone to grow their latent crop of trees that no one came to cut. The owl wants this wooded hilltop, its ancient oaks that stand among heaped quartz the farmer or his father or his father’s father cleared. The owl wants the hilltop’s crown of hollies, wants the deep-shade roost they’ve made; he wants this open branch that ends a wing-wide tunnel through the hollies’ shelter, wants this place to watch, to rest and cast his pellets, wadded clumps of fur and bone the rain dissolves to show he wanted squirrels, and voles, and frogs, and once a huge black beetle. If you knew a wood would call an owl back, if you knew the owl’s calls would fill the winter wood until another owl answered, wouldn’t you want to leave the land alone to grow its woodland, wouldn’t you want to grant the owls what they wanted?

March 2nd, 2024
March 2nd, 2024
Headline of the Day

Fox News Guest Decrying “Migrant Crime”

Previously Arrested After Getting Violent

Over a [Too-Cheesy] Grilled Cheese Sandwich

March 2nd, 2024
‘The 55-page complaint accused the official, Alade McKen, of copying material in his 2021 dissertation at Iowa State University from more than two dozen other scholars and from Wikipedia, which is written and edited by volunteers from the general public.’

See when it’s this bad, it’s on Iowa State as much as the plagiarist. To pass a dissertation that plagiarizes more than twenty-four other authors!!!! seems to me to display a contempt for the ordinary decencies of family life that reminds one of the worst excesses of the French Revolution.

No, that’s Bracknell. Make it a contempt for the ordinary decencies of scholarly life. Make it a remarkable incuriosity about a document that must be a pretty fucking weird read. If anyone at Iowa State read it.

March 1st, 2024
When a person who has everything kills himself…

… it’s a frightening reminder of the power of the brain. Our brains, when diseased, can kill us.

**************

**************

No worst, there is none. Pitched past pitch of grief,

More pangs will, schooled at forepangs, wilder wring.

Comforter, where, where is your comforting?

Mary, mother of us, where is your relief?

My cries heave, herds-long; huddle in a main, a chief

Woe, wórld-sorrow; on an áge-old anvil wince and sing —

Then lull, then leave off. Fury had shrieked ‘No ling-

ering! Let me be fell: force I must be brief.”‘

    O the mind, mind has mountains; cliffs of fall

Frightful, sheer, no-man-fathomed. Hold them cheap

May who ne’er hung there. Nor does long our small

Durance deal with that steep or deep. Here! creep,

Wretch, under a comfort serves in a whirlwind: all

Life death does end and each day dies with sleep.

******************************************

David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest:

[I]t was as if a large billowing shape came billowing out of some corner in my mind. I can be no more precise than to say large, dark, shape, and billowing, what came flapping out of some backwater of my psyche I had not the slightest inkling was there. … It was total psychic horror: death, decay, dissolution, cold empty black malevolent lonely voided space. … I simply could not live with how it felt. … I understood the term hell as of that summer day and that night in the sophomore dormitory. I understood what people meant by hell.

******************************

It is a level of psychic pain wholly incompatible with human life as we know it. It is a sense of radical and thoroughgoing evil not just as a feature but as the essence of conscious existence. It is a sense of poisoning that pervades the self at the self’s most elementary levels. It is a nausea of the cells and soul. It is an unnumb intuition in which the world is fully rich and animate and un-map-like and also thoroughly painful and malignant and antagonistic to the self, which depressed self It billows on and coagulates around and wraps in Its black folds and absorbs into Itself, so that an almost mystical unity is achieved with a world every constituent of which means painful harm to the self. … It is also lonely on a level that cannot be conveyed….

February 29th, 2024
ugh

“It is dismantling white epistemic logic, removing the centering of the oppressor’s historical lens, and lifting the Black perspective voices. To be clear, I am not arguing for an essentialization of African culture and Blackness; Blackness and Black people are complex and multifaceted, but I am interested in the historical narratives that throw away the Eurocentric ways we think about Black people throughout history.” 

It’s not that this has been plagiarized. It’s that it was ever written in the first place. The worst thing about the ongoing march of DEI plagiarism stories is toppling undefended into this prose. Reader, beware.

February 29th, 2024
UD’s father-in-law, Jerzy Soltan, hits the glitz of Architectural Digest, Polish Edition

It’s a (positive) review of a book that just came out about him.

Click English in upper right corner.

February 29th, 2024
Mr UD visits his grandfather’s plaque in the catacombs at Powązki Cemetery, Warsaw.
February 28th, 2024
Homage to UD’s colleague, Daniel DeWispelare, who died last month, age 41.

From a grateful GWU student.

I still remember how he proposed and facilitated my first event as a Resident Advisor: a trip to the Library of Congress, where he gave a personal tour of the institution’s collections and architecture (and pointed out the best study spots within the facility). He was also just as detailed in planning for the after-tour meal, finding the group, with a day’s notice, a Capitol Hill establishment that met all of our attendees’ numerous dietary and allergen needs.

Daniel was also instrumental in facilitating my final event as a Resident Advisor: a Friday night baseball game at Nationals Park. It was no secret that I was a huge fan of baseball, and accordingly, I deliberately selected a baseball game with a rather nice giveaway (bobbleheads). The proposed budget for the game exceeded my allotted funds, but Daniel, without hesitation, sponsored the event, even calling the box office personally to select our seats. When I arrived at his office to pitch the event, he handed me an envelope with the tickets and explained, with a mischevous smirk, that he was happy to fund a game against his hometown Colorado Rockies (along with any other activity I proposed). For the remainder of the hour, we instead discussed my studies, with Daniel probing about domestic elections theory, how the Senate works, and a wide range of other topics.

I share these two memories because to me, they epitomize Daniel at his best. He was always a scholar, passionate about sharing his experiences and studies with the world. But he was also a kind soul: he always placed others first, he did his best to make academia seem less intimidating, he always thought about the finer points and worked tirelessly to alleviate any issues, and he had a genuine sense of wit and generosity …

February 28th, 2024
Blown up, framed photographs of bloody fetuses, the photos mounted on sticks so everyone who drives by can see them, are FAR more…

aesthetic.

“Disobedience to God certainly should not be esteemed by society,” commented Ali Khamenei. Er, Texas Right to Life.

February 28th, 2024
From a low ranking of 176 in 2018…

… to an appalling 216 today, Texas Tech got there the traditional southern way: Appoint political hacks to run the place; make athletics everything, with its full complement of disgusting fans, sadistic/litigious/mentally retarded coaches, corrupt boosters etc etc etc; make sure everyone on campus is fully armed.

And fully drunk. In a typical day in basketball, Texas Tech fans threw water bottles and lots of other shit on the court cuz they were losing.

To round out your reasons to attend this school, Lubbock is one of the most dangerous cities in Texas.

February 27th, 2024
Shockingly paltry amount.

I’ve been covering campus fraud for a long time; and if you’re lucky enough to be at NYU in a position of real financial responsibility, you should be able to steal at least ten million dollars if you simply put your mind to it.

Alvin Bragg seems to agree, because his office let a finance director at that university who managed to peel off only three million get off with probation plus a teeny weeny restitution.

February 27th, 2024
‘In 1982, the year Forbes released its first-ever annual list of the 400 wealthiest Americans, the shipowner and real-estate tycoon Daniel Ludwig topped the list with a net worth of about $6 billion in today’s dollars. In 2023, the top three wealthiest individuals, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Larry Ellison, were worth $251 billion, $161 billion, and $158 billion, respectively.’ 

Much ado about income inequality.

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