Some Wednesday morning links

| September 23, 2009
I guess we should make that imodern/i Western Civilization.

I guess we should make that modern Western Civilization.

ITEM: According to the Onion, the absolute low point of Western Civilization will be reached at 3:32 pm this coming Friday:

Experts predict that the penultimate catastrophe will occur at approximately 7:15 p.m. Thursday night, when the social networking tool Twitter will be used to communicate a series of ideas so banal they will instantaneously negate the three centuries of the Renaissance.

“The sciences, the arts, the humanities—all aspects of society as a whole will reach their respective low-points in just a matter of days,” said anthropologist Robert Davidson, gesturing toward a nearby line graph illustrating western society’s collapse. “We’ve been charting this cultural descent for generations now, from the advent of New Wave music, to the rise of scientific creationism, right through to the trampling death of several Wal-Mart greeters on the morning after Thanksgiving. Everything has been leading up to this Friday.”

According to the panel, the final event will occur at 3:32 p.m., when a tourist, believing the impressive structure to be a giant mall, will enter Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, and, not finding what he is looking for, ask where “the damn Radio Shack is supposed to be.

I would dispute them, but I went grocery shopping yesterday, which means that I had to go through a check-out line with tabloids and women’s magazines.

ITEM: First day of Fall, and we have a winter storm warning issued for portions of Colorado east of the actual Rocky Mountains (that is, out here on the plains):

The first day of fall in Colorado felt more like winter, and Wednesday’s weather should be even more unseasonable, forecasters warned tonight.

The National Weather Service office in Denver has issued a winter weather advisory for the Front Range, foothills and Palmer Divide from midnight to 6 p.m. Wednesday.

A winter storm warning is in effect for central and northern Colorado from midnight until 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Snow should be widespread, leaving 6 to 16 inches in areas about 7,000 feet. . . .

Rain is expected to turn to snow above 6,500 feet tonight, with periods of heavy snowfall before daybreak.

Accumulations between 2 and 10 inches are expected, with the largest amounts forecast for southern Douglas and southwest Elbert counties.

Personally, I blame Bush. (Early morning update: here’s the latest from the Denver Post.)

ITEM: Mark Helprin gives some political and historical perspective to the burgeoning foreign policy blunders of the Obama Administration:

When Neville Chamberlain returned from Munich at least he thought he had obtained something in return for his appeasement. The new American diplomacy is nothing more than a sentimental flood of unilateral concessions—not least, after some minor Putinesque sabre rattling, to Russia. Canceling the missile deployment within NATO, which Dmitry Rogozin, the Russian ambassador to that body, characterizes as “the Americans . . . simply correcting their own mistake, and we are not duty bound to pay someone for putting their own mistakes right,” is to grant Russia a veto over sovereign defensive measures—exactly the opposite of American resolve during the Euro Missile Crisis of 1983, the last and definitive battle of the Cold War.

Read the whole thing. Hat tip to the Gormogons (and I agree it’s been way too long since Helprin published a novel).

ITEM: A group at MIT has a website up called Personas that is intended to show you how the ‘web’ views you.  It’s a bit weak — you can pretty much get the same sense from typing your name into Google. When I entered “Bruce Webster”, I got most of the usual suspects (and a few new ones); when I entered “Bruce F. Webster” instead, it only came up with items dating back 10-20 years. But, hey, it’s fun to try out.  Hat tip to Popehat.  ..bruce w..

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Category: Climate Change, Colorado, Geopolitics, Obama Administration, Western Civilization

About the Author ()

Webster is Principal and Founder at Bruce F. Webster & Associates, as well as an Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at Brigham Young University. He works with organizations to help them with troubled or failed information technology (IT) projects. He has also worked in several dozen legal cases as a consultant and as a testifying expert, both in the United States and Japan. He can be reached at, or you can follow him on Twitter as @bfwebster.

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