Catching Up On My Reading


While a return to regular blogging here at ScruHoo is still days away, lots of other bloggers are banging away – holidays be damned:

Paul Rosenberg at Open Left compares a biblical basis for oppressing homosexuals to the biblical basis for asserting the earth is flat.  I expect Chad Netherbits will seize the moment to do battle with the spherical earthers’ radical liberal agenda.

“The Internet is perhaps the greatest source for reestablishing an open communications environment in which the conversation of democracy can flourish”, Jose Vargas at the Washington Post channels Al Gore to argue that Obama’s Internet savvy is indicative of a wave of political interactivity.

Tim Peck is flying that libertarian flag over in the AC-T LTE section:  “the inevitable consequences of government interference in the marketplace”.

Tell your unemployed, underemployed, and unhappily employed friends all about it:

The third annual Homecoming Job Fair will be held Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Biltmore Square Mall in Asheville. The job fair will showcase regional employment opportunities in advanced manufacturing, health services, hospitality and other growth industries.

Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton, the legendary WNC moonshiner, has had his sentencing postponed again.  It’s no easy task putting away a folk hero, and there are a lot of us who hope Popcorn never sees the inside of a cell.  FYI - “Popcorn,” a name he acquired following an altercation with a popcorn machine that gave him neither popcorn nor his money back.”

On January 15th we’ll get our next look at the Downtown Master Plan.  There’ll be public input, then a ‘final’ draft will be completed by March.  City Council will then have the task of modifying and trying to pass this plan which will have far-reaching consequences.  

Mountain Xpress has an interesting roundup of their most popular pieces of 2008.

Asheville’s Chapter of Drinking Liberally sent an email:

Thanks to everyone who showed up for the movie night … Milk was fantastic and we all enjoyed the viewing.
Naomi asked me to thank everyone who contributed to the sickle anemia fund she started … she collected over $200 from us!
On December 24th several DL members did volunteer sorting and packing work at Manna Food bank … we had a blast and during the 2+ hours we worked, we packed boxes for 4500 meals … nice work and we will plan on doing this event again.
Since we will not have a regular gathering on Thursday due to the holiday, I am planning another movie night on Tuesday to see Slumdog Millionaire at the 7:20 showing.  We will meet at Barley’s at 6:45.
Eldridge and friends will be hosting a New Years eve party on their place on Wednesday … starting around 7:30 … bring light snacks and something to drink…

Shoot me an emait at if you want more info on the DL New Year’s Eve.

What have you been reading?


  1. Tom Sullivan says:

    Funny, but I had occasion to mention the Flat Earth Society in comments over at Campaign for America’s Future about ten days ago. I was suggesting bringing a pocket calculator to TV talk shows and visibly doing some quick math to debunk obviously bogus statistics:

    An astronomer friend did something like this back in the 70s (sans calculator) on talk radio when he appeared opposite a member of the Flat Earth Society. The Flat Earth guy cited an experiment they’d done with a transit. They sighted sticks set a fixed height above the water surface of a long British canal. He mentioned the length. If the Earth were really curved, he argued, the sticks would drop away slightly with distance. They didn’t. Aha!

    The astronomer pointed out that given the Earth’s diameter and the canal’s length, the angle involved was too small to measure with a transit. Aha, back at you.

    Flat Earthers have a marvelous world map, by the way.

  2. smc says:

    I’m on a Churchill kick. Having read the story of how he advocated for war in the face of the overwhelming majority, I was reminded of those of us who advocated against it in January 2003 against an overwhelming majority.

    Now I’m reading Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat: The Dire Warning– Churchill’s first speech as prime minister.

  3. Bob Falls says:

    Currently reading Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution by Woody Holton

    The best book I’ve read this year is What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America 1815-1848 by Daniel Walker Howe. One of the main reasons that I like this book is he makes the case that James K Polk was certainly the worst president until George W. Bush. Polk still might hold the claim because he did his damage in just one term.

    The most influential book (the one that changed me the most) I’ve read this year was This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War by Drew Gilpin Faust. Her chapter titles provide the thematic outline: 1) Dying: “To Lay Down My Life” 2) Killing: “The Harder Courage” 3) Burying-“New Lessons Caring for the Dead” 4) Naming: “The Signficant Word UNKNOWN” 5) Realizing: Civilians and the Work of Mourning 6) Believing and Doubting: “What Means This Carnage?” 7) Accounting: “Our Obligations to the Dead” 8) Numbering: “How Many? How Many?” Epilogue: Surviving

  4. bobaloo says:

    I got “The Trials of Shazam” and “Annihilation” collections for Christmas, which was awesome.

  5. Tim Peck says:

    “What have you been reading?”

    Liberalism: In the Classical Tradition by Ludwig von Mises.

  6. Jim Jenkins says:

    “What have you been reading?”

    Blood Done Sign My Name by Timothy Tyson.

  7. David Roat says:

    sigh… I’ve been reading voter data for the city of Asheville over the past few elections and dissecting it geographically and demographically…I’m a sick sick man.

  8. Doug Gibson says:

    The Paradox of Tar Heel Politics, in which I learned that Ludwig von Mises had a major influence on Jesse Helms’ political philosophy.

  9. Michael Muller says:

    For the last week, I’ve mostly been reading various warnings from the Surgeon General and ignoring them.

    I plan to start Merton’s New Seeds of Contemplation today; it’s been sitting on my bookshelf for as long as I can remember and I’ve never quite had the temerity to crack it.

    Funny how books work. It’s been my experience that you don’t find them, they find you. And sometimes, once they find you, they sit and wait until you’re ready (or out of beer).

    Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas.


  10. xty says:

    I have been reading Zombie Haiku, which was left inside my grill by my friend Gordon while I was not home.
    I am also reading a neat book called The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.

  11. Michael Muller says:

    This made me smile. From today’s AC-T (emphasis mine):

    …of Gid Flynn Road, Marshall, was charged with two counts of forgery of an instrument (check) and uttering a forged instrument, misdemeanor attempting to utter a forged instrument, misdemeanor larceny, an order for arrest for failure to appear in court on charges of forging and uttering a forged instrument and resisting officers. Her bond was set as a written promise to appear in court.

    There’s something perfect about that. Like a hot Krispy Kreme.

  12. Jim Jenkins says:

    Non-Zombie, Marshall Crime Haiku:

    A forged instrument
    And an utterance of same
    Sign your name and go

  13. Michael Muller says:

    Justice served up hot
    So circular, so sweet
    Come twelve to a box

  14. Arratik says:


    Your meter is off.
    Line two, seven syllables.
    May I suggest “and”?


  15. Michael Muller says:

    One handed typing
    Six sticky fingers counting
    Got my meter off

  16. shadmarsh says:

    technically, since he is writing in English, not Japanese, the syllable count is more malleable.