Comments or suggestions: Gerard Van der Leun

Site Notes

New American Digest Is On Final Approach

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I am finally coming to grips with the new Wordpress American Digest and getting it ready. Basic design is done and the basic templates formed. It will be a day or so more since I have yet to figure out how safely transfer the 30,000 MovableType American Digest entries over to the new site.

I am however feeling confident that the new version will be viewable on tablets, pads, phones, and bones.

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Update by azlibertarian I've mentioned this here before, but in my meat-space life, I am a Captain at a major national airline. Allow me to inject some inside baseball to that video.....

* The procedures we fly--the departures (which we call SIDs--Standard Instrument Departure), the arrivals (STARs--Standard Terminal Arrival), and the approaches (which take you to the landing runway)--are constantly changing. Sometimes the changes are major and sometimes they're minor. The video begins with an "arrival" called the SADDE6. We now fly the SADDE7, which has only minor changes from the SADDE6.

* The turn right after coming over the beach is over the Santa Monica VOR (a type of navigational aid), and almost always to a air-traffic-control-directed heading of 070ー.

* The camera doesn't do this, but right before the downtown L.A. label, if I turn my head to the left I can see the Hollywood sign, and then later on downwind, right after passing the downtown area, and again on the left is Dodger Stadium.

* The video touches on one of the scariest parts of my professional day: If you look at the google map image of LAX, on both the north and south sides of the airport, you can see two parallel taxiways, just north and south of the terminals. In between those parallel taxiways is a roadway (which is where the plane holds position to allow the fire trucks to pass). I'm pretty sure that a fireman wouldn't run into my plane, but the guys who drive the baggage carts, catering trucks, etc don't inspire my confidence. Those guys drive around airplanes all day, every day, and I think that some of them get inured to the idea that that other vehicle crossing in front of them is a 737/747/757/767/777. Years ago, I once saw a fuel truck (!) with a fender-bender crease in the tank. Who drives a fuel truck like it isn't made of glass?

* And here is my final point: I suspect that some airline pilot got a new Go-Pro, and mounted it to the dash to take this beautifully-done video and then post it to YouTube. Why he would do this is more than I know. I get it that the view from my "office window" is a special sight and one that someone might want to share. I get it that someone without access to the view I routinely have might be interested in seeing it. But taking that video and sharing it on YouTube is a potentially career-ending move.

Imagine yourself on the surgeon's table, and your surgeon, or the anesthesiologist, or one of the nurses is fiddling with their cell phone looking at Facebook. That cell phone is at the very minimum, a potential distraction from the important work that they're being paid to pay attention to. The FAA sees that Go-Pro on the dash in the same light. Those guys driving those catering trucks are supposed to yield to airplanes, but if one of them ran through an intersection and into my plane, and I had a Go-Pro on the dash, it would be all my fault.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jun 15, 2017 11:24 AM |  Comments (6)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Moving Daze

With the duct tape and chewing gum wads of the MovableType software that holds this site together slowly falling apart, I've no choice but to move the type here to another platform: Wordpress. This means that I have to do what nobody my age ever wants to do; learn a new program. Result? Posting here shall be light through the weekend as I try to set up a new home in space.

All I have to do is move over 30,000 items from one planet to another. Confidence is high. Repeat: Confidence is high.

What I think I'm building:

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What I am probably building:

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Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jun 8, 2017 11:14 AM |  Comments (18)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Site Down: The Crash of O'Keefe

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Crash on the levee, mama
Water's gonna overflow
Swamp's gonna rise
And no boat's gonna row

A server crash took this site down for about eight hours. It was fixed with alacrity and competence as things like this always are with the venerable and wonderful Hosting Matters. I guess that the O'Keefe server is toast. I'm being restored on Picasso.

And now back to our regularly scheduled pogrom.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at May 11, 2017 4:23 PM |  Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
It's Golden: Not only the best rectangle in the world, it's the schematic on which the layout for this page was made.

I not only love this rectangle, I used it 14 years ago. Right here.

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UPDATED [as per Eskyman]:

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Continued...
Posted by gerardvanderleun at Mar 20, 2017 10:51 AM |  Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Is Your Internet Busted? Blame Amazon. Today.

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Details at: Blame Amazon | The Daily Dot

Is It Down Right Now is down right now: Is It Down Right Now, a website that tells you when websites are down, is down right now. With Is It Down Right Now down, you will be unable to learn what other websites are down — at least until it’s back up. At this time it’s not clear when Is It Down Right Now will be back up.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Feb 28, 2017 9:06 PM |  Comments (7)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Happy Birthday to Me: In My Extreme Age

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Turn around, a decade [plus one] is gone. 70? 71? Doesn't feel so old. I'm told that it is but it doesn't feel that old. At the same time I confess I'm not exactly sure who that geezer is who shows up in the mirror every morning -- or where he came from. The thing is he keeps writing notes like this and leaving them where I can't help finding them:

In my extreme age --
In my age extreme --
Skin planed to glassine,
Bone buffed to crystal,
Light locked in the marrow,
And memory melded to images only....

In my extreme age --
In my age extreme --
Thoughts thinned to one
And dreams dimmed to soul;
To that one shred of thread
Which stitches the shroud

Of my extreme age --
In my age extreme.

In that age extreme,
That extreme edge of age,
There shall still
In such stillness
Sing in my deaf ears
One echo of now;

Your echo of now.
And your echo shall glimmer
Still on the river that streams
Through time’s silted canyons
Of my extreme age --
In my age extreme.

-- Vanderleun for Emma Jean.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Dec 26, 2016 4:33 PM |  Comments (80)  | QuickLink: Permalink
On Donations

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In the last couple of months my readers have been especially generous with donations for which I am deeply grateful. I am always pleased to receive them but of late they have been especially helpful.

The last time that I expressly asked for donations I was stunned by the response. It was right after I had relocated from Seattle to Paradise, California, and was a chaotic time of unpacking and sorting. Unfortunately I had elected to thank everyone personally with a handwritten, stamped and mailed note. After I had finished over two hundred of these notes the shopping bag in which I had placed them for mailing at the Paradise Post Office was mistakenly put into my recycling trash bin and taken away to the local landfill before I knew about it. The bag also contained all original envelopes and addresses in a folder and those were gone as well. Hence, to my chagrin, I was unable to replicate the effort.

Since then I have relied on PayPal and a mail forwarding service in Seattle to handle donations. This has worked well for a couple of years but evidently this is not longer the case. This morning I received an email from a kind soul who informs me that she received a cash donation for me since she now holds the box number I held. As a result I have to assume that other donations to the mailing service have also gone astray. I apologize if you have sent a donation to that address and failed to receive a thank-you note from me.

To address this I have stopped the Seattle service and am now using a local address here in Paradise, California to handle this. This new address is at the top of the sidebar.

Again I wish to thank all those who donate to this nearly 14 year old project and to apologize to any who have not been properly thanked. Life’s been a bit hectic of late.

To paraphrase Tiny Tim, “God Bless you all, everyone.”


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Dec 20, 2016 2:50 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
It's Not Me. It's Not You. The Internet Has Been Slowed Down or Terminated This Morning

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Heat Map of DOS Attack

Major internet problems reported after cyberattack

On Friday morning, Dyn — a company that hosts domain name systems — announced it has been the subject of a cyberattack that caused major problems for numerous websites. People reported issues with Twitter, Spotify, SoundCloud, Vox Media sites, Airbnb and numerous other sites.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Oct 21, 2016 2:37 PM |  Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
American Digest is 13 Years Old

American Digest: 10,000 entries.
"The Top 40" / SideLines: 19,200 entries.

Well, turn around and a decade plus is gone. Or, to put in another way, I've been trapped inside this thing for nearly 5,000 days. Which was pretty much as long as The Count of Monte Cristo was imprisoned at Château d'If before digging his way out. I'd do the same at this point but all I've got is this little rock hammer I keep inside my Shawshank Bible.

Yes, indeed, every year about this time my aging brain goes, "Hasn't this thing been going on for awhile now?" And I look deep, DEEP, DEEP into my archives and there it is. At least in this iteration.

In a previous iteration American Digest goes back to the first half of 2002 and was spurred on by 9/11. The Wayback Machine has a couple of captures from that time:

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Of interest from that era are the names in the sidebar. Arts and Letters Daily is still going as one of the original "curated and aggregated" pages although it has outlived its creator. Andrew Sullivan seems to have disappeared into his odd gay marriage and the ravages AIDs battles can wreak on a body. He still shows up from time to time on the web as a "consultant" on various "TrumpVeryEvil" pages. Best of the Web rides on lashed to the Wall St. Journal. Instapundit still looms over the center-right blogsphere like the Colossus of Rhodes. Lileks, James is still cranking out pop culture commentary with the best of them even if I miss his rants. Jonah Goldberg continues at his high-paid sinecure at National Review as the Pillsbury Posterdoughboy for Cuckservatives. Kaus is still about and still working against illegal immigration still without making the inner neural network connections with conservatism. The rest fall into the categories of "I don't know" and "I don't care."

The second oldest post in American Digest's current incarnation is this one from June 2003 starring Michael Totten (still current and working after all these years) and Roger Simon (also still going strong even if his tennis game isn't improving.)

Small Satori: Zen Moments for Democrats @ AMERICAN DIGEST

Over on Roger Simon's comment boards the thoughtful and articulate Michael Totten is working his way through the current flavor of Democratic Party Angst:
Do I want a Democrat to win the next election? In the abstract, yes, but in the real world, it depends. I've never voted for a Republican president in my life, and it would be physically difficult for me to do it. But I can't vote for a peacenik. If the Democrats pick a peacenik in the primary who wishes Saddam Hussein were still in power, I will have no choice but to vote for Bush. I'm not going to get on the wrong side of this issue. I would rather break party ranks.
I would choose Joe Lieberman or Dick Gephardt over Bush. I would probably pick John Edwards over Bush, too. I will not vote for Howard Dean or John Kerry, and especially not for Al Sharpton.
It's good to hear someone like Totten looking about for a viable Democrat to vote for. I'll be looking too since I too don't know if I want to break a life long voting record of never voting Republican. Check that. I just lied. I looked into my heart and realized that right now, today, I desperately want to vote for Bush. And I suspect that there are other deep and secret longings among lifelong Democrats like myself. And I suspect that no matter who the Democrats run there will be a goodly number of people who talk the Demo talk but won't walk the Demo walk when the curtains close behind them on election day. I looked at Totten's list of likely candidates (two) and realized that old and deep truth of electoral politics: "You gotta beat somebody with somebody."
I would think, at this point and with this year's offering of the ClintonThing that Totten is well over his yearning to find a Democrat.

Also back at the beginning I was given over to posting my photos from my massive photo project "1,000 Photos of New York City." This was one of them from June, 2003,

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Street Scenes: On 14th Street. @ AMERICAN DIGEST

At that time I was hearing Bob Dylan in "Like a Rolling Stone" sing:
Once upon a time you dressed so fine
Threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn't you?
People call say 'beware doll, you're bound to fall'
You thought they were all kidding you

These days, looking at the bills, what I hear is more like:
You used to laugh about
Everybody that was hanging out
Now you don't talk so loud
Now you don't seem so proud
About having to be scrounging your next meal

Ah well, we didn't get into this line of work to become rich.

So it's been 13 years with more at the door. I guess the most I can say at this point I feel (even if I do not dress) exactly like Lili VonSchtup from Blazing Saddles:

And the other thing I can say is to thank you, past and present readers all, for tuning in. Thank you all very much.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jun 10, 2016 2:03 PM |  Comments (36)  | QuickLink: Permalink
These Days I Would Give Almost Anything to Be Able to, Once More, Write in the Affirmative

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In the nightmare of the dark
All the dogs of Europe bark,
And the living nations wait,
Each sequestered in its hate;

Intellectual disgrace
Stares from every human face,
And the seas of pity lie
Locked and frozen in each eye.

Follow, poet, follow right
To the bottom of the night,
With your unconstraining voice
Still persuade us to rejoice.

With the farming of a verse
Make a vineyard of the curse,
Sing of human unsuccess
In a rapture of distress.

In the deserts of the heart
Let the healing fountains start,
In the prison of his days
Teach the free man how to praise.

In Memory Of W.B. Yeats Poem by WH Auden


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jan 31, 2016 7:42 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
With American Digest Pretty Much Splitting the Middle at 155, We Present

for your dining and dancing pleasure..... Doug Ross @ Journal: The Top 300 Conservative Websites, August 2015


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Aug 15, 2015 5:47 PM |  Comments (15)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Nota Bene

Due to family obligations updating may be sparse for the remainder of the week.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at May 7, 2015 8:30 PM |  Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Technical Difficulties

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I regret that the new entries have fallen off, but I am dealing with some problems involving my left eye that make it difficult to type. These should be cleared up soon.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Dec 6, 2014 7:21 PM |  Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
After Eleven Years and 24,797 Published Items, I Find I Need to Raise Some Cash

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A thoughtful reader inquires, "I view your site a few times a day, -=several times=-, and I find it invaluable. How the heck do you make a living? Some other authors/producers that I appreciate, like the great John Derbyshire or World Wide Words.org, accept PayPal. I usually send them a few dollars each year to express my appreciation and I would gladly do the same for American Digest."

My recent move seems to have drained my never-too-overwhelming reserves. Hence, after eleven years, I thought I might pass the hat among my readers for the first time. I'm new to this "Donate" business but I am informed that Paypal's Donation button here should work. Let me know if it doesn't and I'll work to fix it. To paraphrase Chicago politicians, "If you feel the need to donate, donate early and donate often."




UPDATE: A number of readers have asked if they can send a donation by other means. By all means. As they used to say in the ads on the Wolfman Jack radio show: "You can send cash, check, or money order to...."

Gerard Van der Leun
c/o Lake Union Mail
117 East Louisa, #380
Seattle, WA
98102

Posted by gerardvanderleun at Nov 19, 2014 11:58 AM |  Comments (43)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Number 9, Number 9, Number 9,000

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Just to keep the count going, this particular item is item number nine thousand at American Digest.

My sideblog, "The Top 40," has to date published 15,797 items.

The first item at American Digest was Do You Want Fries with That? @ AMERICAN DIGEST published on JUNE 9, 2003.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Nov 15, 2014 9:19 AM |  Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Moving In

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After more than 60 days in the wilderness of California, the next few days will be taken up with the final steps of my move from Seattle.

As a consequence internet access and overall energy may cause a momentary interruption in this page which has, I note, already survived one wife, one death, two long distance moves, and ten years.

I'm sure I'll be fit as a fiddle by next week and not at all undone by this particular ordeal.....

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Posted by gerardvanderleun at Oct 18, 2014 7:08 AM |  Comments (22)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Moving On..... and on and on and on and on.... [Pinned]

"Three moves equals one house fire."

Because of a series of events too strange to tell, the house I rent is being put on the market. As a result I have to clear it of all my possessions over the coming labor day weekend and find another place to live. Even with the help of dear friends it's a daunting task and I do not, as of this writing, know exactly where I will find my next home. It will, however, not be in Seattle but rather in a town much closer to my mother in Northern California who, as she turns 100, is happy to hear of the prodigal's return.

The consequence of all this is that posting on American Digest will be a much less regular thing than in the past ten years. This note will be pinned to the top of American Digest for the next month. Regular ranting will resume when I am packed, moved, and settled.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Aug 27, 2014 9:02 AM |  Comments (57)  | QuickLink: Permalink
American Digest's Birthday: "These go to eleven...."

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American Digest: June, 2003 to June, 2014. "What a long strange trip...."

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11 (eleven i/ɨˈlɛvɨn/ or /iˈlɛvɛn/) is the natural number following 10 and preceding 12.

In English, it is the smallest positive integer requiring three syllables and the largest prime number with a single-morpheme name. If a number is divisible by 11, reversing its digits will result in another multiple of 11. As long as no two adjacent digits of a number added together exceed 9, then multiplying the number by 11, reversing the digits of the product, and dividing that new number by 11, will yield a number that is the reverse of the original number. (For example: 142,312 x 11 = 1,565,432. 2,345,651 / 11 = 213,241.) 11 (number)

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Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jun 25, 2014 8:11 PM |  Comments (28)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Did I Mention That American Digest is Ten Years Old? Now I Have

Now I have. From June 28, 2003: On books promiscuously read @ AMERICAN DIGEST

From Areopagitica by John Milton

"I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue, unexercised and unbreathed, that never sallies out and sees her adversary but slinks out of the race, where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat.

"Assuredly we bring not innocence into the world, we bring impurity much rather; that which purifies us is trial, and trial is by what is contrary. That virtue therefore which is but a youngling in the contemplation of evil, and knows not the utmost that vice promises to her followers, and rejects it, is but a blank virtue, not a pure; her whiteness is but an excremental whiteness. Which was the reason why our sage and serious poet Spenser, whom I dare be known to think a better teacher than Scotus or Aquinas, describing true temperance under the person of Guion, brings him in with his palmer through the cave of Mammon, and the bower of earthly bliss, that he might see and know, and yet abstain.
"Since therefore the knowledge and survey of vice is in this world so necessary to the constituting of human virtue, and the scanning of error to the confirmation of truth, how can we more safely, and with less danger, scout into the regions of sin and falsity than by reading all manner of tractates and hearing all manner of reason? And this is the benefit which may be had of books promiscuously read."


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jun 28, 2013 1:18 PM |  Comments (22)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Spam Storm: A Comment on Comments

Starting last Friday there has been a continuing attempt by spam comment creators (Blotted be their names from the Book of Life, and may a thousand weasels nest in their pants for eternity!) to overwhelm the Spam filters. Some inevitably get through and I have to weed those out by hand.

Total spam comments usually run to a total of a few hundred a day for both the main column and SideLine. Irritating but manageable. The recent onslaught, however, is running up to five or six thousand a day. This tends to overwhelm the site with read /write / filter operations which slows down legitimate comments as well as the site in general. There are fixes for this that I'm working on, but for now it is going to a slow going.

Oh yes, the filter is set to hold comments that contain a URL / link until I can approve it by hand. Sorry about that but if it were otherwise I'd be weeding out around 500 comments a day by hand. I'd have blisters on my fingers.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Mar 25, 2013 5:19 PM |  Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Flight Level 390 and Captain Dave: Status

As so many others have asked me in comments or in email: "Off topic: Does anyone know what happened To Capt. Dave? Flight Level 390 has disappeared from the blogosphere. I miss him."

Here's what I know: I've been in a brief email exchange with Capt. Dave and he tells me that he may well be back in the future with Flight Level 390 but with another blogging platform.

When I know more, you'll know too.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Nov 30, 2012 2:54 PM |  Comments (17)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Note

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It would seem that some side-effects of being recently dead still linger. Chief among them is a strange side-effect in which food that normally tastes delicious either tastes bland, utterly unappealing, or nauseous.

More disconcerting still seeems to be a tendncy on the past of my hands to type with a focus that comes and goos randlmly.
Although I did keep notes, off and on, and althoj=gh I have several sourvces of witynesses, it's going to take awhile to come pbak to full utility. [<-- That last sentence left as typed to illustrate the problem.]


Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 27, 2011 6:10 AM |  Comments (32)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Will American Digest Be Back On the Air Soon?


Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 25, 2011 11:28 PM |  Comments (14)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Happy UnBirthday to Me: I Almost Forgot to Mention That American Digest is 9 Years Old

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American Digest became nine-years-old back in May. At least that's far back as the Wayback Machine tracks it in the year of Our Lord 2002: The New America - Dispatches. It is a bit older than that but I no longer remember exactly how much. Early 2002 in post 9/11 New York City was, as they say, "a life in interesting times."

The first incarnation of the page (shown above) was in another space and another time.

To date my counters show 6,311 posts in the main column and + 5,768 posts in "Thinking Right." That's 12,000 items and change. I've really got to tidy that up someday and move this whole endeavor to a newer and spiffier platform. Tasks I keep putting off until tomorrow.

Maybe I'll get to it someday. For now, thanks for stopping by and putting up with me. God knows I wouldn't.


Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 12, 2011 10:37 PM |  Comments (26)  | QuickLink: Permalink
ימח שמו וזכרו: "May his name and memory be obliterated."
Continued...
Posted by Vanderleun at May 4, 2011 6:48 AM |  Comments (18)  | QuickLink: Permalink
You know, I've been doing this for almost 9 years. I need a vacation.

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Click and check the blogroll. Almost everyone on it is still going as one sort of life form or another.

"Just before dawn in Brooklyn Heights a dream woke me...." from "Will the Sleepers Awake," American Digest The New America - Dispatches Thursday, May 09, 2002.


Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 8, 2011 7:42 PM |  Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Little Miss Attila Will Be Enforcing Discipline at This Site

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As astute readers might have noted I am out of here for a bit. In my stead I have appointed Joy McCann (aka Little Miss Attila ) as first speaker, prime poster and enforcer. So play nice.

Besides her amazing blog and star-class word-smithing skills, Little Miss Atilla has sometimes been know to live a double life. Here are some other facts about McCann you may not know:

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Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 8, 2011 2:39 PM |  Comments (18)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Status: Adrift and Becalmed

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“As I imagin’d, so it was, there appear’d before me a little opening of the Land, and I found a strong Current of the Tide set into it, so I guided my Raft as well as I could to keep in the Middle of the Stream: But here I had like to have suffer’d a second Shipwreck, which, if I had, I think verily would have broke my Heart, for knowing nothing of the Coast, my Raft run a-ground at one End of it upon a Shoal,

Continued...
Posted by Vanderleun at Feb 18, 2011 5:57 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
OUR LONG NATIONAL NIGHTMARE IS OVER

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KA-CHING! IS BACK


Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 29, 2010 4:02 PM |  Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Honored to be a "Near Miss" on this list

Top 100 Conservative Websites: The Conservative 100, July 2010 | DBKP - Death By 1000 Papercuts - DBKP

DBKP has released its (mostly) monthly ratings of the Most Popular 100 Conservative sites on the web, the Conservative 100. The ratings are based on Alexa traffic rankings 3-month worldwide average.
Good company to be in even if one is allllllll the way down at the bottom at 108.


Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 30, 2010 9:04 AM |  Comments (7)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: Coming This August

I'll be busy elsewhere for a bit.

You'll see.

Watch this space.

Updated: Land of Hope And Dreams - Bruce Springsteen - Live in NY City:

Continued...
Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 8, 2010 11:54 PM |  Comments (12)  | QuickLink: Permalink
1,400 Miles Later

It was all about my mom's bench. On that, more anon. But it was 1,400 highway miles start to finish. Going to California I did the 700 miles in two days. Coming back I did the same distance in one day and I'm suffering a severe case of road burn.

Two signs of the times seen en route.

First, spotted outside a restaurant (The "Kalico Kitchen") in Paradise, California, proof positive that the public telephone network won't be back.

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Continued...
Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 27, 2010 6:32 PM |  Comments (20)  | QuickLink: Permalink
TUMBLIN' DICE: Saturday Promo for My Tumblr Site

I'm using my Tumblr blog -- Van der Leun: Things That Go Boing in My Brain -- more and more as a simple and effective scrapbook of things I find and things that go boing in my brain. As the rain and snow settle in across this not-so-warming-globe, you might want to check it out every so often. In the last couple of days you'd have found, among many other things....

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So far this month there's over 200 items @ Van der Leun: Things That Go Boing in My Brain, so if you do decide to go, pack a snack.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 17, 2009 3:19 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
American InDigestion: August News-Fast

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Continued...
Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 2, 2009 6:42 PM |  Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Happy Birthday to Me

[Video goes here but Youtube seems to be unreachable. Friday. 12:23 PM] Back.

I know what you're thinking. "Did he blog for six years or only five?" Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a .44 Magnum webpage, the most powerful handblogged page in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?

American Digest Stats
First post: June 9, 2003
Entries: This will be entry 6,900.
Visits: 4,686,425 (But who's counting?)

Through some sort of odd harmonic convergence, the stories and items on the page below represent a pretty fair cross-section of American Digest so far.

Thanks to all my readers for coming by and coming back.


Posted by Vanderleun at Jun 11, 2009 11:26 AM |  Comments (24)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Family Matters

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My uncle has seen fit to have his 100th birthday this week. I'll be escorting my mother to the celebrations. As a result, posting will be light and/or archival.


Posted by Vanderleun at Jun 2, 2009 10:29 AM |  Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Leader of the Pack

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[SiteNotes: At some point in the near future, this site will roll over to a new Wordpress / Thesis format. (Currently Movable Type.)There's a lot to be done in the background so posting will be light. In addition, many items in the 6,000 entries deep archives are going to be expunged as well. Fair warning.]


Posted by Vanderleun at May 20, 2009 3:14 PM |  Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
HOLP! And Now a Message from Yet Another Sponsor

Just in time for MOTHER'S DAY!

And remember that "HOPE OPPORTUNITY LIBERTY & PROSPERITY" spell "HOLP!"


Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 27, 2009 9:06 AM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Is it humanly possible to go 3 days without an Obama post?

I don't know but, as God is my witness, AS GOD IS MY WITNESS!, I'm going to try starting right now, 9:10 PM Good Friday evening. Pray for me.


Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 10, 2009 9:09 PM |  Comments (8)  | QuickLink: Permalink
American Digest Regretfully Announces Its First Sponsor

I have not sold out. I have bought in! Your clicks help to keep this site smooth and trim.


Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 3, 2009 9:28 AM |  Comments (16)  | QuickLink: Permalink
News to Me: Thursday April 2

I'm looking at using this feature of Twitter as a way of tracking items of interest in the 200 odd (some very odd) pages I follow on a daily basis. Sort of like a rolling Instapundit scroll with enforced terseness. I'd like to know from readers how this item loads in their browsers. Any feedback would be appreciated.


Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 2, 2009 11:50 AM |  Comments (14)  | QuickLink: Permalink
We'll See About That

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Yes, that. Over there. At the top of the right sidebar.

I must admit it rather suits me to have no followers. I must be doing something right to the right, right? Right.

[Bumped]


Posted by Vanderleun at Mar 27, 2009 11:02 AM |  Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
You've Got Questions. I've Got an Answer

Hootsbuddy notes that "Gerard Vanderleun is up to something." And he is, indeed, correct.

At present, and for the immediate future, I've taken a position as Editor-in-Chief for Pajamas Media.

As Maynard G. Krebs would say: "WORK!?!!" Oh well, it keeps me in champagne and skittles.

It's an amazing team to work with and, with a host of new projects being built backstage at Pajamas, an immensely interesting task. From time to time, I can be seen in the brief posts at that site as "PJM in Seattle," but the posts seen at the page now are, I can say, only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The roster of affiliated blogs built by Pajamas also gives me the chance to work with some of the most significant writers and minds of this new medium; a resource I am hoping to tap in a host of new ways as we go forward into the elections of this year and the braver, newer world that lies beyond.

I promise that I will be writing here again soon, if not at my former rate, but with, I hope, better quality. For now, however, just working with my colleagues at Pajamas is taking much of my time and energy.

And, yes, I am posting this in my pajamas.


Posted by Vanderleun at Jan 11, 2006 8:49 PM |  Comments (16)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Seasonal Shifts

TODAY, now that the rain in Seattle has stopped for at least 17 minutes, we'll be moving the vast American Digest editorial offices from the Queen Anne Moss Cavern to sunnier climes down at Lake Union:

No policies will be changed:


Posted by Vanderleun at Jan 4, 2006 8:31 AM |  Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Note: Comments Are Set to Moderation

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Patience Please. A Spam-Free American Digest Comes First.


Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 30, 2005 1:52 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Meanwhile @ My Other Site

There's a brand new look and feel to Pajamas Media this morning. This and Politics Central represents pretty much what I've been working on with a great team for the past couple of months. (Oh, yes, there was that On-Hold War in the Middle East too.) Drop on by and see what you think.


Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 15, 2005 11:23 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
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SIDELINES

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By Mail: Gerard Van der Leun | 6616-D Clark Road #176 | Paradise, CA 95969

Your Shower Is Lame, Your Dishwasher Doesn’t Work, and Your Clothes are Dirty

It’s not just about the showerhead.
The water pressure in our homes and apartments has been gradually getting worse for two decades, thanks to EPA mandates on state and local governments. This has meant that even with a good showerhead, the shower is not as good as it might be. It also means that less water is running through our pipes, causing lines to clog and homes to stink just slightly like the sewer. This problem is much more difficult to fix, especially because plumbers are forbidden by law from hacking your water pressure. | Foundation for Economic Education [HT: Never Yet Melted]


In 2016 the Western political system had a stroke.

The American political system is operating in the curious condition of being an impaired state.
It's not really thinking -- about China, Russia, Syria, Kurdistan. It's not really thinking about anything except half remembered slogans from 1968. Like a person afflicted by a stroke, it can't take a consistent view of external reality because it's regressing into atavisms by a loss of brain function. Impaired


Fake News. At the same time of the political putsch, the mainstream media outlets,

in particular the Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, and the major networks, via broadcasts and social media, began an orchestrated campaign of defamation and delegitimization.
The crazier and more diverse the media mythologies, the better. Melania Trump was a former call girl and illegal alien. Ivanka Trump was peddling her business wares from the West Wing. Jared Kushner was a profiteering collusionist. Steve Bannon was a racist, Sebastian Gorka an unrepentant Nazi. Baron Trump was a spoiled, autistic child. The late elder Trump had run a racist campaign for mayor. And on and on. Resistance & Regime Change: Any Means Necessary – Lies, Leaks, Violence | National Review


Crime simply does not pay as well as politics or banking.

That may be the way to look at something like the Clinton Foundation and, coming soon, the Obama Foundation.
These are not explicitly criminal organizations, but they certainly play outside the spirit of the laws. Obama is out of office and prohibited from running again, but he still controls the Democratic party. The Clintons would be in charge, if not for the fact that the voters took their under boss out in the Tuesday Night Massacre, otherwise known as the presidential election. Even so, the Clinton Family is still a player. Late Phase Capitalism | The Z Blog


Bodymore, Murderville”

Most whites have become habituated to the reality of life in this part of the world.
Everyone, white and black, knows the reality on the street. The blacks with anything on the ball do exactly like the whites and that’s put distance between themselves and the black ghetto. That does not stop the Progressive maniacs from ranting about racism, but they do it from high up in the towers of their whites-only neighborhoods. As a result, no one hears them and so they can be ignored. The Killing Season | The Z Blog


New Blog Arriving Soon

Some have asked, "Gee whiz, Unca Gerard, where is that thar new blog you keeps a promisin'?"

I am hoping for sometime tonight. Hoping. We've been having some issues getting this winged dinosaur landed.


Drink Tea

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Drink tea, together with your friends; pay attention to the tea, and to your friends, and pay attention to your friends paying attention to the tea. Therein lies the meaning of life. The Essence of Peopling

We would love to cut a deal with the noble indigenous peoples across the Earth—

you can have your Navajo panties and aboriginal dot paintings and every last freaking burrito on the planet so long as you give us back our computers and cell phones and cars and indoor plumbing and electricity and air conditioners. Deal?

If people go their separate ways such a divorce would be an astonishing defeat for the Left.

As late as 2016 it was possible to imagine an America led to a "progressive" future by Hillary Clinton;
an EU guiding all of Europe to a similar destiny and the G20 taking the whole world to the same destination. Indeed everyone told they were fated to follow an Arc of History. Yet after Brexit, Trump and G-Zero it is no longer possible to visualize this outcome. A blue-red division would confirm the failure to create a "progressive" world. No conceivable rollback will ever put Humpty Dumpty together again. Opportunity


Trump, Julius Caesar, and killing tyrants

The Roman lower classes, with whom Caesar was popular, became enraged that a small group of aristocrats had sacrificed Caesar. -- neoneocon

Execute Trump? Nah, You First.

Draining the swamp means not only ejecting Trump from the presidency,
but also bringing himself and everyone assisting in his agenda up on charges of treason. They must be convicted (there is little room to doubt their guilt). And then — upon receiving guilty verdicts — they must all be executed under the law. Impeachment Is No Longer Enough; Donald Trump Must Face Justice | HuffPost [Retreived from GoogleCache after it was expunged from the Huffington Post]


A bee in her bonnet

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Thousands of bees took over a car in the UK and beekeepers are struggling to make them leave -
At first it wasn't clear why the bees chose the blue Nissan car and he and a colleague were trying to determine whether this was just a temporary stop or a new nesting site. But as the bees moved to the inside of the bonnet, filling every nook and cranny, things got more serious. "They're building a lot of wax in there now, and of course once they start doing that, they're reluctant to leave it, because it's the start of building a house. They put a lot of effort into producing the wax," Coulson told Hull Daily Mail. "I've got a feeling this might be their chosen permanent home."


[Bumped] "They send one of ours to the hospital, we send two of theirs to the morgue."

Baseball Shooter a Big Wake-Up Call for the Left | Roger L. SimonRobespierre is alive and well in 2017 USA.

This pathetic character in Alexandria is, now was, the left's ungoverned id. By any means necessary -- that's for sure. They will undoubtedly try to shove him under the rug as quickly as possible, just one more aberrant individual to be forgotten, just one obscure Bernie volunteer gone bad. Sanders did his best to separate himself within minutes of the revelation. Yes, it's undoubtedly true that this was just one rotten apple, but it's also true that only five years ago Bernie was recommending Venezuela -- now ground zero for starvation, kidnapping and murder -- as a path for us to emulate.



Greatest antitheft device when the thieves are millenials:

Man leads Jeffco deputies on low-speed chase in stolen flatbed truck after unable to get out of 1st gear The driver - later identified as 29-year-old Randy Dewayne Vert - refused to stop and continued driving south on Center Point Parkway, Christian said. Vert was apparently unfamiliar with the complexities of a modern manual transmission.

The natural impulse of a political system in institutional crisis is to dig in.

Too many institutions in the West remain decades after their birth, frozen in the moment of their creation.
NASA, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the university system and the United Nations rule us from the past. Public life has become a museum of memes from which nothing can escape without a mummy hand dragging the fugitive back into the darkened interior. It is perhaps no coincidence the two most popular leaders of the Western left, Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders, might credibly impersonate Boris Karloff. They are here to lead us back to 1968. Stuck


The Japanese. Nuked Too Much... or Trying to Get Their Mouths Around Fujiyama Volcano Plate

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We put Japan's most phallic-looking roast beef meal into our mouth at VolcanoKitchen | SoraNews24
Since we’d already become somewhat desensitized to the initially unsettling sensation of peeling strips of meat off the top of the shaft, we mercilessly crushed the egg, sending viscous, gooey liquid running down to the base of the meat rod.
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The power of the press is a figment of the imagination -- humbug --

Oscar Diggs behind the curtain projecting the image of Oz the Great and Powerful!
The Internet did not kill the power of the newspapers. It was suicide. And not just because most of them had Marxist editorials, editors, and reporters. Newspapers lost their sense of community -- and their credibility -- when the heirs to hometown publishers didn't want the paper, sold it to a chain for $1,000 per subscriber to a chain -- Gannett, Knight-Ridder, Thomson -- and moved on. Don Surber: Craigslist killed newspapers


When terrorists enter your children’s school and begin to execute them...

will the gun ban (you favored) in school that prevented abiding staff and teachers from saving your child, come to mind as a good idea?
If the answer to any or all of these and many more reasonable questions, is 'yes,' then you may be a delusional liberal, and likely a coward, and almost as big a threat to our nation as the terrorists who are at war with us." - Morgan K. Freeberg


"Happy birthday, Mr. President...."

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First truth which has been grounded into dust, must spring forth from the earth again.

At the present time . . .he who practices loving-kindness is esteemed and sought after, while he who champions the truth in word and in deed is persecuted and shunned. 
For men desire to base their affairs on everything except the one incorruptible truth which has been set down before us by God , and therefore these affairs have no permanent value . . . only when love and truth meet together, only when men come to understand that the highest act of loving-kindness is to bring men to know and practice the truth, only then will the marriage of love and truth produce that condition on earth in which everyone and everything will occupy the place which has been assigned to it by the will of God. Truth and Peace - Men Of The West


What happened to Nuclear Winter?

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As the media glare faded, its robust scenario appeared less persuasive;
John Maddox, editor of Nature, repeatedly criticized its claims; within a year, Stephen Schneider, one of the leading figures in the climate model, began to speak of "nuclear autumn." It just didn't have the same ring. A final media embarrassment came in 1991, when Carl Sagan predicted on Nightline that Kuwaiti oil fires would produce a nuclear winter effect, causing a "year without a summer," and endangering crops around the world. Sagan stressed this outcome was so likely that "it should affect the war plans." None of it happened. Raconteur Report: Aliens Cause Global Warming by Michael Crichton


If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus.

I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks.
Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. - - Woodpile Report


Joe Biden’s niece dodges jail after $100K credit card scam

She walks on a major felony? Of course she did. And who believes she'll keep her end of the deal? In her defense, we're assured she's "a very complicated girl who has a lot of feelings and a lot of issues." Oh ... okay. That explains everything. Hugs from all the little people. Woodpile Report

Why is English so weirdly different from other languages?

There is exactly one language on Earth whose present tense requires a special ending only in the third‑person singular.
I’m writing in it. I talk, you talk, he/she talk-s – why just that? The present‑tense verbs of a normal language have either no endings or a bunch of different ones (Spanish: hablo, hablas, habla). And try naming another language where you have to slip do into sentences to negate or question something. Do you find that difficult? | Aeon Essays



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