Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A Few Books on the Go ....

Don't know what else to say today. Think I'll mention some books I'm working on ...
First up is David Nasaw's biography of Andrew Carnegie called Andrew Carnegie. Dig, ... I bought it a long time ago, for $6 at Sears. But it's a good book. Comprehensive and fair. I think it's important to learn how the USA become an industrial super-power and these biographies by honest historians help give the story a human scale.
Nigel Hamilton's The Mantle of Command, I don't like quite so much. There haven't been many books that focus on FDR's role as actual Commander-in-Chief during WWII. This book does and it makes a good case that FDR really was in command. He pushed forward a lot of plans that became victories. He actively disagreed with his military advisors about the invasion of France and faced-down an almost-mutiny from them. But Hamilton appears to overstate his case to me; presenting FDR as a god, a master, and pretty much anyone who disagreed with him as clueless or delusional.

More to come. I've got to do the dishes.
Now I'm 2/3rd's through God: the failed hypothesis bu Victor J. Stenger. He decides that the evidence is against the existence of a God who is everywhere, who designed the universe, created it, maintains it, interacts in our affairs, performs miracles, etc., etc. I found the first part, where he constructs the hypothesis of "God" that he intends to de-bunk, a little dry, but the rest is pretty good. I especially like the part where he deals with whether we have souls, and the question "Why is there something and not nothing?". (I think that section is a little too light-hearted for my tastes, but even then, the ideas he plays with are much deeper than the nonsensical and unhelpful "God" hypothesis for creation.

Well, I guess that will do for now.


greg said...

Wikipedia says FDR died three months into his fourth term while vacationing at the Polio Centre.

Then Disney World opened and everyone said, let's go there.

I hope this in no way exploits a horrible disease. And if you don't find this funny, that's okay. But I gotta say, I really don't think he was on vacation.
JEsus, I've spent a long time on this comment and I've really weighed the pros and cons of sending it. If it was the wrong thing to do, I'll have to live with it.

thwap said...

that's true