August 26

? There is a very good article on “Freudianism” centered on arch-critic Frederick Crew’s new book (New Yorker Aug. 28, 2017, p. 75-82), entitled, Freud: The Making of An Illusion. New York: Metropolitan Boos, 2017. In the New Yorker’s A Critic at Large section, Louis Menand’s critique is entitled, “The Stone Guest: Can Sigmund Freud ever be killed.”

? By far the most illuminating work on the radical right/libertarian plans for the takeover of the United States is Nancy MacLean’s Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America. New York: Viking, 2017. This book makes visible what is mostly hidden, hidden on purpose and by design. Once you read this book, you will be able to see what is happening in our country and why things are developing the way they are. This is essential reading as is Professor MacClean’s earlier book, Behind the Mask of Chivalry: The Making of the Second Ku Klux Klan.

? Paco and I are working on the second volume of Dreams, Bones & the Future. It will be subtitled, “Queries & Speculations.” We hope to be finished in the fall. Watch for excerpts soon.

? Rose-Lynn Fisher is an artist, writer and photographer whose latest work is photographing tears through optical magnification to create an extraordinary and fascinating look at human emotions as pictured in the microscopic landscape of tears. If you want a break from the craziness of today’s news, look at The Topography of Tears. New York: Bellevue Literary Press, 2017.

? The 1981 film My Dinner with Andre with Andre Gregory and Wallace Shawn is one of my favorite films. I watch it from time to time and see how prescient so much of the conversation was. Now I have spent time with Wallace Shawn’s new book, Night Thoughts (Chicago: Hay market Books, 2017). It’s a short book, but long on implications for considering possibilities amid the rubble of our time.

? Did you know? In Brown vs. Board of Education (1954), the Supreme Court ruled that segregation in public education was unconstitutional. This not only sparked the civil rights movement, but energized the southern states to find innumerable ways to block this decision from changing what the states considered was their “rightful way of life.” This “fight” is still going on. In 1959, Prince Edward County in Virginia, padlocked all public schools, and used public funds for whites only education. For five years, black children had no public education. The backbone of racism and inequality is alive and well in many parts of the country. One of the purposes of “originalism” in court appointments, and particularly to the Supreme Court is to revitalize the original aspects of the Constitution that permitted (without naming) the fact of slavery. If originalism gains a clear majority, watch for civil rights cases, such as Brown vs. Board of Education, to be nullified.

? The anti-science stance of the current government will escalate dramatically as it is a part of the deeper and broader embrace of anti-truth. “Climate change” as a phrase has been outlawed in all government connected and government supported activities. The basic idea here is that “the truth is not what is, but what we say it is.” At some point, reality is going to bite hard.