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Le Morte d’Egypte

By on Oct 30, 2014 in Featured, Politics | 0 comments

Excuse the title. I like the Camelot myths. I’ve never read the original Malory though and wasn’t quite so interested in it when I was a child. The whole knight in shining armor thing never quite caught my fancy. However, I was lucky enough, years later, to run into The Sword in the Stone, T.H. White’s wonderful take on the Arthurian myths, in the first volume, we see a young Arthur, slowly becoming aware of what Merlin’s oblique lessons were forcing him to understand. It is a key moment, and here it is, brutally shortened, for your benefit. It’s still a bit long for an excerpt, but it’s important, and if you give me your attention for a few minutes, you’ll see why it’s so important that you get a feel for how it unfolds… “I have been thinking,” said Arthur, “about Might and Right. I don’t think things ought...

This Is The Egypt You Have Allowed To Exist

By on Oct 26, 2014 in Politics | 0 comments

This is the only Egypt your actions have allowed, one in which innocents are sentenced for standing up for their own rights or the rights of others. It is the same Egypt, in which you support a military dictator (whether elected or not), and believe his lying supporters on TV while you ignore everything your son or your daughter tells you about what’s actually going on at universities and on the street. It is the same Egypt in which you mourn for dead soldiers while you allow the government to arrest and imprison the youth who protested against the terrorist regime you now claim to be at war with. It is the same Egypt that you’ve had for more than 60 years, and it is an Egypt that has been sinking under the weight of the rampant corruption that you have, if not participated in, then catered to. It is an Egypt in which there is no justice, in which the phrase ‘human...

Three Common Errors Made By Otherwise Intelligent Idealists

By on Jul 21, 2013 in Featured, Media, Politics | 0 comments

There are 3 intellectual errors that intelligent and moral people regularly make. The first is to assume that others are bound by the same moral codes as you are. This is simply not true, and the entire history of humanity proves otherwise, and yet – many good people still cannot help but continue to make that assumption, because they find the alternative ‘unimaginable’ – well, you don’t have to imagine it, because it’s real. The second is to assume that anybody of intelligence would, by definition, also be moral. Again, this is completely false, and whereas your intellect might have positioned your moral positions, for others it is nothing more than a tool to achieve whatever their goals are, moral or otherwise – again – I won’t bother with historical examples, but the most cursory of historical overviews will confirm that this is...

The Doomsday Hijab

By on Nov 30, 2011 in Politics | 1 comment

Several years ago I was sitting in a restaurant downtown. There were no prophetic utterances of ‘revolution’ or but my friend was expressing fears regarding Islamist control of Egypt. ‘What, exactly, are you worried about?’ I would ask. The Hijab. Alcohol was a second issue. My counter at the time was that if the government / leadership was actually honest, then the amount of good they could accomplish would by far exceed what I considered the mild inconveniences involved. If the Brotherhood would swoop in, I argued, run a non-corrupt, honest government, and actually channel the country’s resources to create better standards of living for millions now deprived of it several stages down along Maslow’s Pyramid – then who the hell am I to complain if I can’t have a drink? But, of course, that’s simplistic. It’s just as easy to...

Sultans and Scarves

By on Jul 30, 2009 in Media, Politics | 0 comments

Three weeks ago, an Egyptian Muslim mother and wife, four months with child, was stabbed to death in Dresden, the civilian city bombed to the ground by the allies during World War II. She was stabbed in full view of her son and husband, and when her husband rushed to defend her, he himself was shot by the German police because they assumed him to be the attacker. Go figure. For the last three weeks, I’ve heard people say, and I’ve said it myself based on what I’ve seen – that the international media hasn’t found this story quite as interesting as that of The Death of Neda Sultan. I’ve now done the numbers: As of today, a search for Neda Sultan on Google, brings up about 1.14 Million results (I’m accounting for spelling variations by adding up the results for ‘Soltan’ and ‘Sultan’ – so this is the total of the two) for Neda. A similarly conducted search for Marwa Sherbini (with...

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