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  • My Top Posts of 2010

    Posted by David Foster on December 27th, 2010 (All posts by )

    I did several posts over the last year that I un-humbly think were particularly significant, and link them below for any potentially-interested readers who missed them the first time around.


    Sleeping with the enemy. A forgotten novel by Arthur Koestler sheds light on the West’s loss of civilizational self-confidence.

    Faustian ambition. An analysis of the theme of ambition in Goethe’s great play.

    What happened in Germany? Sebastian Haffner, who grew up in Germany between the wars, tries to understand how his country became “a pack of hunting hounds directed against humans.”

    From a galaxy far away. The extreme oddness of Obama’s mind and emotions.

    Faux manufacturing nostalgia. How cultural factors are involved in the problems of American manufacturing. See also dancing on the ruins.

    The limits of radicalism and expertise.

    Eisenhower, Obama, diplomacy, and sensitivity.

    Is “liberal guilt” a myth? An essay by C S Lewis, written more than half a century ago, provides some psychological insight.

    Computation and reality. As incredibly fast as modern computers are, there remain many important problems for which they are completely inadequate.

    Heartsignals. A selection of popular songs in which person-to-person communications media…letters, telegrams, telphone calls…play a role.

    Krystyna Skarbek. An agent of the WWII British organization called Special Operations Executive, who worked underground in Eastern Europe as well as in occupied France. Also, a review of Between Silk and Cyanide, written by Leo Marks, who was SOE’s Codemaster.

     

    4 Responses to “My Top Posts of 2010”

    1. Lexington Green Says:

      David, thanks for these. I read all of your posts.

      I liked the ones about Koestler, Haffner and “Between Silk and Cynanide” the best out of this group.

    2. Tatyana Says:

      Thank you, David, for reminding of that 10-months-ago conversation about manufacturing economy; that was a productive thread and very much to the point.

      Just couple of days ago, talking to a client of mine, we touched again on that subject. That talk left a bitter taste in my mouth…

    3. Charles Cameron Says:

      I’m relatively new around here, and hadn’t seen “Computation and reality” — thanks for the pointers!

    4. Assistant Village Idiot Says:

      I thought I was the only person who had read Leo Marks. I loved codes and the cerebral side of espionage as a boy and young man. Others fantasized being a conqueror at sports – I entertained what it would be like to be invisible.