Monday Musings 69

Like Galileo, many people today are being shunned for speaking the truth. I hope that doesn’t happen to me.

In this country, college educated whites under 40 and evangelical christians don’t have anything in common, do they? Actually, they do: both groups have a much higher proportion of anti-vaxxers than average.

The first group has fallen under the spell of “social media.” My writing this will not change anyone’s mind, but your cousin posting on Fack Fucebook that her husband’s cousin had a bad reaction to a vaccine, or that her friend heard that vaccines are an effort at mind control is not credible in any way, shape or form and certainly does not constitute meaningful data.

I know less about the second group but understand that many evangelicals have always been ambivalent at best and mistrustful at worst of large secular institutions. They interpret the “words” of Jesus of Nazareth that his followers are in the world but not “of the world” to mean they should engage with secular institutions with a certain measure of suspicion. Some skepticism about all institutions is healthy, in my opinion. Of course, they blindly follow their favored institution.

I have given up on the hope that most people will use their brains to seek real knowledge. I think we are headed to a new type of Dark Age, where people get off the information superhighway and use the technology of the day to reinforce their prejudices and misguided beliefs and to be “entertained” by mindless garbage.

In his review of one of my favorite movies, “Quiz Show,” the late Roger Ebert wrote this:


“The early quiz shows rewarded knowledge, and made celebrities out of people who knew a lot of things and could remember them. The post-fix quiz shows rewarded luck. On “The $64,000 Question” and “Twenty-One” you could see people getting rich because they were smart. Today people on TV make money by playing games a clever child can master. The message is that it’s not necessary to know anything, because you can be ignorant and still get lucky.

The 1950s have been packaged as a time of Eisenhower and Elvis, Chevy Bel-Airs and blue jeans, crew cuts and drive-ins. “Quiz Show” remembers it was also a decade when intellectuals were respected, when a man could be famous because he was a poet and a teacher, when TV audiences actually watched shows on which experts answered questions about Shakespeare and Dickens, science and history. All of that is gone now.”


I think those words are spot on. I will once again offer my opinion that much/most of the decay in the respect for knowledge stems from bad and/or indifferent parenting and the serious decline in the quality of public education. Political correctness is also a negative factor. I don’t think any of this is fixable at a macro level, anymore.


Here are two recent photos taken from our house:



I tried to keep my phone as steady as possible for the first picture. We have these views almost every day here. Oh, these photos were taken inside through a window in the bonus room on the second floor on the north side of the house.


Someone on our block has a first generation Firebird and first generation Mustang, each sporting Arizona historical license plates. The picture below is not of that specific Firebird, but of one I took earlier this month:



I think the first-generation Firebirds are at least as sharp looking as their F-body cousins, the first-generation Camaro. Both models took a bite out of the Mustang’s position in the niche they really created, the ponycar market.

Mustang production declined by about 135,000 units, or 22 percent, between model years 1966 and 1967. Of course, the latter was the first model year for the Firebird and Camaro. It is not true that Mustang sales declined by almost the same amount as Camaro sales or Camaro/Firebird sales. The two GM cars sold more than 303,000 units for model year 1967, of which 73 percent were Camaros. The entire ponycar market grew. Competition is not inherently evil.

A restomod first-generation Firebird (or Camaro) sounds like a great car to me, but one that I will almost certainly never own. Oh well, such is life…










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