Category Archives: Social Commentary

Heinleinian or Asimovian?

Jane Galt asks an interesting question. I match to type, preferring Heinlein and being basically libertarian. The fact that Paul Krugman is an Asimov fan only confirms my preference.

I also think that people who are SF readers in general are much more prepared to deal with the future than those who are not, and this is becoming more the case over time as the pace of technological innovation continues to accelerate.

Do You Defile Books?

This post (related to e-books) brought up an interesting subject in comments. There are people who think nothing (and in fact find it necessary) to highlight or make margin notes in books, and there are others (like me) who consider this sacrilege, and would never consider doing such a thing. I remember being in awe of books as a child, and even though they’re now mass produced, and it’s not a rational thing, I still can’t bring myself to write in one (except perhaps to sign it, if I were to write one myself). And frankly, I never found it useful as a study aid, so there was never much pressure for me to do it.

It’s not something that anyone ever taught me, or lectured me about, it’s just a visceral repugnance at the thought. How weird am I (always a dangerous question with this crowd, I know…)?

The comments section is open.

[Update in the early evening]

Look, just to clarify here, I’m not saying that my position is rational, or anything. I’m just curious to see how many share it. It’s really psychology research. I guess I’m wondering if it’s some kind of intrinsic personality trait (like being interested in space) that’s not (obviously) explainable either by upbringing or genetics.

More Of This, Please

The UCLA Alumni Association is fed up with nutty professors. Alumni associations actually have a lot of power in the war to take back academia from the radical left, but they have to care, and exercise it.

[Update on Monday evening]

As Jane Bernstein points out in comments, if you read the fine print, it’s not the UCLA Alumni Association–it’s another group (probably less official) called the Bruin Alumni Association. Kudos to them anyway.