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  1. #371
    The Eagle of the Ninth The Eagle of the Ninth is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by derryman View Post
    there has been a twist in all of them so far. Have you read them all?
    No, Ive read (out of order) Dissolution, Sovereign and Lamentation.

    They're very good. He has a real instinct for how power works - who has it, who wants it, who had it and doesn't have it anymore, who had it and is getting it back, who will never have it and who doesn't understand what it is anyway.
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  2. #372
    ergo2 ergo2 is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by General Urko View Post
    Gulliver's Travels - Swift

    Has it ever been translated into Irish?
    Check if An Gúm did so. The published many such books translated into Irish. Used to be staple at school prize-givings fadó fadó.
    Last edited by ergo2; 25th November 2014 at 09:06 PM.
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  3. #373
    derryman derryman is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Eagle of the Ninth View Post
    No, Ive read (out of order) Dissolution, Sovereign and Lamentation.

    They're very good. He has a real instinct for how power works - who has it, who wants it, who had it and doesn't have it anymore, who had it and is getting it back, who will never have it and who doesn't understand what it is anyway.

    Darkfire, Heartstone and Revelation to go then.
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  4. #374
    Dearghoul Dearghoul is offline

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    Can anyone remind me of the name of a Berlin based thriller, highly recommended here by many posters some time back, but I can't find it now that this thread has surfaced again.
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  5. #375
    Cruimh Cruimh is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dearghoul View Post
    Can anyone remind me of the name of a Berlin based thriller, highly recommended here by many posters some time back, but I can't find it now that this thread has surfaced again.
    One of the Len Deighton series?

    Berlin game - the first of a trilogy.

    Just ordered this because of a good review

    A History of Loneliness: Amazon.co.uk: John Boyne: 9780857520944: Books
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  6. #376
    Dearghoul Dearghoul is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cruimh View Post
    One of the Len Deighton series?

    Berlin game - the first of a trilogy.

    Just ordered this because of a good review

    A History of Loneliness: Amazon.co.uk: John Boyne: 9780857520944: Books
    Thanks Cruimh
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  7. #377
    DaveM DaveM is offline
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    A couple of non-fiction recommendations...

    American Caesar: Douglas MacArthur 1880 - 1964 by William Manchester

    American Caesar: Douglas MacArthur 1880 - 1964: William Manchester: 9780316024747: Amazon.com: Books



    This book is so good I came close to suspending all personal hygiene activities I was so engrossed in it!

    Another one I've recommended on other threads...

    Fatal Path - British Government and Irish Revolution 1910-1922 by Ronan Fanning.

    Fatal Path: Ronan Fanning: 9780571297399: Amazon.com: Books



    The definitive account of how partition came to pass. Cuts through a lot of the bullsh*t myths that all too often go unchallenged on this topic.
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  8. #378
    roc_ roc_ is offline
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    I thought this book really brought to light a critical element in the demise of "left" thinking over the last few decades.

    Diary of an Anti-Chomskyite: A Three-Year Journey into Noam Chomsky's Heart of Darkness

    Here is an extract from interview with the author:

    MJT: Can you boil down your case against him into a couple of sentences or paragraphs?

    Benjamin Kerstein: There are a couple of main points that should be made. First, Chomsky is an absolutely shameless liar. A master of the argument in bad faith. He will say anything in order to get people to believe him. Even worse, he will say anything in order to shut people up who disagree with him. And I’m not necessarily talking about his public critics. If you've ever seen how he acts with ordinary students who question what he says, it's quite horrifying. He simply abuses them in a manner I can only describe as sadistic. That is, he clearly enjoys doing it. I don't think anyone ought to be allowed to get away with that kind of behavior.

    Second, Chomsky is immensely important to the radical left. When it comes to American foreign policy he isn't just influential, he's basically all they have. Almost any argument made about foreign affairs by the radical left can be traced back to him. That wasn't the case when he started out back in the late '60s, but it is now.

    Third, he is essentially the last totalitarian. Despite his claims otherwise, he's more or less the last survivor of a group of intellectuals who thought systemic political violence and totalitarian control were essentially good things. He babbles about human rights all the time, but when you look at the regimes and groups he's supported, it’s a very bloody list indeed.

    Communism and fascism are obviously dead as the proverbial doornail, but I doubt the totalitarian temptation will ever go away. The desire for unity and a kind of beautiful tyranny seems to spring from somewhere deep in the human psyche.

    Fourth—and this may be most important—he makes people stupid. In this sense, he's more like a cult leader or a New Age guru than an intellectual. He allows people to be comfortable with their prejudices and their hatreds, and he undercuts their ability to think in a critical manner. To an extent, this has to do with his use of emotional and moral blackmail. Since he portrays everyone who disagrees with him as evil, if you do agree with him you must be on the side of good and right. This is essentially a kind of secular puritanism, and it's very appealing to many people, for obvious reasons, I think. We all want to think well of ourselves, whether we deserve it or not.

    There is an intellectual side to this, as well. You see it clearly in his famous debate with Michel Foucault. Chomsky says at one point that there is a moral and ethical order that is hardwired into human beings. And Foucault basically asks him, why? How do you know this hardwired morality exists? And even if it exists, how can we know that it is, in fact, moral in the first place? We may feel it to be moral, but that doesn't make it true.

    Chomsky's answer is essentially: Because I believe it to be so. Now, whatever that is, it isn't thinking. In fact, it's an excuse for not thinking. Ironically, Chomsky later said that Foucault was the most amoral man he ever met, whereas I would argue that Foucault was simply pointing out that Chomsky's “morality” is in fact a form of nihilism.

    I think people come to Chomsky and essentially worship him for precisely that reason. He allows them to feel justified in their refusal to think. They never have to ask themselves any difficult questions or provide any difficult answers. It’s a form of intellectual cowardice essentially, but I'm sure you can see its appeal.

    This may be one of the reasons for Chomsky's hostility to psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis may be many things, but it is certainly a method of gaining self-knowledge, of asking difficult questions about one's self and others. And that is precisely what he, and his followers, want to avoid.

    My apologies for the length of this answer, but I think you'll agree that, of all the bad things people are capable of, their refusal to think is one of the worst, mainly because it leads to most of the other bad things of which they are capable......

    Noam Chomsky: The Last Totalitarian | World Affairs Journal
    Also, in the same vein I think "The Anti-Chomsky Reader" is worth a read - excellent set of essays on the same themes. Anti Chomsky Reader: Peter Collier, David Horowitz: 9781893554979: Amazon.com: Books
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  9. #379
    gerhard dengler gerhard dengler is offline
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    I'm re-reading Moondust by Andrew Smith.

    It tells the story of the Apollo Mission astronauts and about their lives after returning to Earth.

    It is a great read. If you were alive during the years of the Apollo Missions, you'd well remember the excitement and the aura which surrounded the men who explored space.
    For some of them, what happened after they returned to Earth was tougher in many ways.
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  10. #380
    Degeneration X Degeneration X is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerhard dengler View Post
    I'm re-reading Moondust by Andrew Smith.

    It tells the story of the Apollo Mission astronauts and about their lives after returning to Earth.

    It is a great read. If you were alive during the years of the Apollo Missions, you'd well remember the excitement and the aura which surrounded the men who explored space.
    For some of them, what happened after they returned to Earth was tougher in many ways.
    I wasn't alive at the time but it is a great read.
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