"THAT'S THE CHICAGO WAY"
A couple of noteworthy posts from blogfriend Lexington Green
at Chicago Boyz :
"Old, Old News
""Having mediocre politicians is a consequence of our having a superb private economy. We are, actually, fortunate that we have some relatively competent and public-spirited people in public life at all.
This is not a problem with a solution, but a permanent, structural condition.
Nor is it one that needs to concern us much.
We do not rely for the success of our public institutions that they be staffed by geniuses or the shining lights of the age. To the contrary, as Walter Bagehot noted, we rely on our legislatures to act in the aggregate, to be wiser and abler collectively, or at least able to discern and respond to the public mood and public interest, than the mere sum of its parts, to capture the "wisdom of crowds". The process seems to work. Despite all its defects, our Congress, in much this form, has legislated for the country throughout its rise from a strip along the Eastern Seaboard to global power. The system works despite the apparent, even manifest, deficiencies of its components, as it it was designed to do."
While I agree, I will take time to note that we seem to have a surfeit of deficient components these days, on both sides of the aisle. No Daniel Webster serves in Congress today, much less an American Pericles. H.L. Mencken would have had a field day with the 2006 election.
"DC Trip -- Claudio Veliz Lecture, Anglosphere Institute Launch
""This led to his conclusion, which he left as an open question. Will the English speaking world die out? What could cause it to fade away as the prior culture-forming civilization of Greece died out, giving rise to a Hellenistic successor civilization? He seemed to believe that there is nothing in the world that is a mortal threat from outside the Anglosphere (a word he did not use). Rather, the danger is from a lack of understanding and a lack of cultural confidence within the Anglophone world. In other words, the danger is not conquest from without but suicide from within."
Read the whole thing here
. Victor Davis Hanson
had some interesting commentary on Alexander and Hellenism in Carnage and Culture
while Rene Grousset
shed some light on the most exotic outposts of the Hellenistic world, the Greco-Buddhist syncretic kingdoms north of the Syr Darya and west of Tibet in his classic, Empire of the Steppes