Monthly Archives: November 2013

blog housekeeping: Storify’s slideshows

Just for the sake of explanation, and to note these user-experience matters while they’re on my mind…

Posted in Internet, Meta, notes Tagged with: , , , ,

The Iran Deal Concretely 2

The absolute sentence on the Islamic Republic, like the indictment of the West from within Iran, is based on and designed to justify and reinforce mutual hostility and exclusion. In effect the enemy image is circular and self-validating, hermetically self-sealing. To accept it and at the same time to favor meaningful negotiations would be paradoxical, a seeking of common ground under the presumption of its absence. We have already examined the alternative perspective, which offers no guarantees, but points to the absurdity, or the pathology, of an approach that always ends and must end where it also always begins, at “the worst very much still before us,” re-producing itself perpetually until signifier becomes indistinguishable from signified. If neither the Islamic Republic nor America nor the West nor the alliance of Maccabees and Pilgrims is susceptible to evolution at all, if they are (if there can be) eternally static and unitary entities, perfectly and imperviously self-sufficient, then there is nothing to analyze or discuss – or negotiate – at all, and what is presented as if analytical will amount to the extended recapitulation of non-negotiable and inalterable premises, from the worst to the worst, over and over again, til Kingdom come.

Posted in History, International Relations, Neo-Imperialism, Philosophy, Religion Tagged with: ,

Expononsensiation – Phase 4

Storify version with twitter links at:; Sulia version at

Posted in Internet, notes Tagged with: , , ,

The Iran Deal Concretely

By completing a deal, we therefore co-effectuate the realization or authentication of an objectively liberal-democratic tendency or potential in the Islamic Republic. We do not, of course, completely liberalize-democratize the IR. We offer it a partial and reversible, but all the same real and indispensable, for the moment undeniable, validation.

Posted in History, International Relations, Neo-Imperialism, War Tagged with:

Israel’s “Wig-Out”

The political costs to Israel of a unilateral conventional attack on Iran in defiance of an international agreement with Iran would be comparable to, might even amount to the the effective equivalent of, the costs of a unilateral nuclear first strike. Israel, or rather the current Israeli government, can be presumed well aware of this fact. Its recent “wigging out” is probably intended to serve particular political ends, and does not likely reflect a high near-term risk of Israeli military action. The real problem for Israel, both the source of its apparent panic and the in one way or another final limitations on its ability to act, remains geopolitical, as symbolized but not exhausted by Iran’s nuclear potential, more generally appearing as the uncertainties of a shift to a new balance of power in the region that, as in the not too distant past, as indeed for thousands of years, very well may not favor the existence of a small but relatively powerful, fully independent Jewish state.

Posted in International Relations, War Tagged with: ,

Tod Kelly, Ta-Nehisi Coates, et al. vs. Richard Cohen

A serious discussion on the main underlying question – on the roles and uses of the concept of “race” in American politics and culture – might be worth having, but not according to the the kind of license to mislead, to testify for effect rather than for accuracy, that Kelly, Coates, and their peers grant to each other. If such a discussion somehow qualified as serious, it would likely be so in only the worst ways.

Posted in Culture & Entertainment, Internet, Politics Tagged with: , , ,

bit of blog housekeeping

News to me, but the Safari browser and some Apple products apparently can’t handle GIF animations, or, even when they can handle them, can handle them only in small doses, or play them very slowly. A little bit of web research suggests that Apple browsers and devices have had this problem in one form or another since… 2004! Also had a bit of hinkiness on my own main browser (Firefox on Windows 7), though nothing too severe. Anyway, I’m putting the recent GIF pieces off the front page, with a warning to Safarists. I’d be curious about other user experiences.

Posted in Meta, notes

Rosenzweig’s Pre-Emption – Part II

“It wants to be implored with both hands.”

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Rosenzweig’s Pre-Emption (of Strauss) – Part I

“Divine truth hides from the one who reaches for it with one hand only.”

Posted in Philosophy, Religion Tagged with: ,

fun new toy at Sulia

Finally inspired me to post to Sulia, a platform whose appearance and interface I’ve long admired.

Posted in Internet, Meta, notes Tagged with: , ,