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- October 24, 1931
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Topics I've Started
23 April 2013 - 06:07 PMA Book, entitled "How Polish People Helped Germans Murder Jews;" was published recently (January 2013) in Poland.
I hope it will be translated into English. The author, Stefan Zgliczynski, is a journalist associated with the Polish version of Le Monde Diplomatique. His book generated many interesting comments on a Polish website:
The link below will take you to selected observations (translated by me).
Thay are worth reading and thinking about.
09 April 2013 - 05:29 PMI am reading "Simplexity," the 2008 book by J. Kluger. He writes:
"Electronic devices ... have gone mad. It is not just your TV or your camera or your twenty-seven-button cell phone with its twenty-one different screen menus and its 124-page instruction manual. ... The act of buying nearly any electronic product has gone from the straightforward plug-and-play experience it used to be to a laborious, joy-killing experience in unpacking, reading, puzzling out, configuring, testing, cursing, reconfiguring, stopping altogether to call the customer support line, then calling again an hour or two later, until you finally get whatever it is you've bought operating in some tentative configuration that more or less does all the things you want it to do--at least until some error message causes the whole precarious assembly to crash and you have to start it all over again. ... "
After elaborating on this topic (for several pages), the author concludes that "there's necessarily complex and then there's absurdly complex."
What he does not analyze, at least in the chapter I am reading, is the effect all this may have on the minds of our push-button youngsters. Push-button experience is very different from building radios, repairing grandfather clocks, tractors, cars, etc. Will the overall effect be positive or negative? What do you think?
08 March 2013 - 10:19 AMThe message below has been posted at our university forum. The author once accused me of spreading cold war propaganda (referring to my two books).
Ludwik Kowalski, author of "Diary of a Former Communist"
” March 7 2013
To the Editor:
Istvan Deak’s review “Could Stalin Have Been Stopped?” (NYRB March 13 2013 - http://www.nybooks.c...…topped/?page=1) is filled with statements about Soviet history that are factually false. Here is a partial list:
* There was no “intentional killing by starvation of millions of Ukrainians” by Stalin. Every Western expert rejects the “Holodomor” myth, which originated with pro-Nazi Ukrainian nationalists in the 1950s.
* Stalin did not “shoot hundreds of thousands of imaginary political enemies in the later 1930s.” NKVD chief Nikolai Ezhov did so, as a part of his conspiracy against the Soviet government. In 1939-40 he and over a hundred of his top NKVD men were tried and executed for these horrific crimes.
* Stalin did not “attempt” to “eliminate much of the Polish leadership”. It was the Nazis who did so, in their “AB-Aktion.”
* There exists an important dispute over who shot the Poles in the murders known as the Katyn Massacre and good evidence that the Soviets shot some Polish POWs and the Germans later shot the rest.
* Stalin was not a “dictator.” He worked collaboratively with other Politburo members and was sometimes defeated. Stephen G. Wheatcroft has termed Stalin’s prewar method of rule “Team Stalin.”
* There were no “combined Nazi and Soviet invasions.” The Red Army did not “invade Poland” on September 17 1939. Abandoned by its government the Soviets had to prevent the German army from marching up to the existing Soviet border, something no country would have permitted. Winston Churchill said that the Soviets were right to do so.
* Though armed and equipped by the Soviet Union in 1941-42 the “anti-Nazi army formed by General Władysław Anders” refused to fight the Nazis until 1944.
* The Polish Home Army”, riddled with anti-Semitism, shot Jews escaping from the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943 and collaborated with the German army against the Red Army.
* American and British pilots were not “routinely denied landing rights” when “trying to help the Home Army.” They were denied such rights for a few weeks in August-September 1944 because, like General Władysław Anders, Stalin considered the Warsaw Uprising to be a crime against the Polish people.
* There is no evidence that the Soviets “massacred thousands of innocent” Poles.
A Hungarian, Deak fails to mention that Hungary invaded the Soviet Union side by side with Nazi Germany, and Hungarian forces murdered at least hundreds of thousands of innocent Soviet citizens, including many Jews.
Grover Furr, Montclair State University “
30 January 2013 - 05:06 PMThe following advice is from a prayer book:
“Pray as if everything depended upon God, act as if everything depended on you.”
I think that this is consistent with the idea of NOMA, formulated by the biologist Stephen Gould. We exist in the material world; God exists in the spiritual world.
The context in which the idea of NOMA was formulated is summarized in my article about futile conflicts between theists and atheists:
20 December 2012 - 12:57 PMThe Fight for Religious Freedom in America
This PBS video, broadcasted on 12/18/2012, is worth watching and thinking about.
Video: First Freedom: The Fight for Religious Liberty | Watch First Freedom Online | PBS Video
It is full of topics worth debating, either here or elsewhere. Please share the link with those who might also be interested.
Best wishes to all,
http://csam.montclai...tro.html]Former Communist: Thoughts, Feelings, Reality