Thursday is hammer day. After all, it is named for that Scandinavian deity who settled his disagreements with a hammer. So much for negotiation? Or is it just a Teddy Roosevelt thing?
Anyway, the gym was at its ebb this morning for occupancy during my regime, and few of the weight bouncing asentients were present, nor even many of the teacher taliban and their loud stridencies. The podcast today was the BBC’s “In Our Time” and the episode was “The Whale”, which started out with the ubiquitous references to Moby Dick and then transformed into a discussion of the evolution and molecular biology of cetaceans. Aside from the intriguing comparisons between Melville and Darwin the individuals, the key thought I emerged from the discussion with was the question of whether land whales chewed a cud. If not, then whale is definitely not Kosher.
Other thoughts in and around:
Is the Iranian election thing about whether they want to be a medieval state or a modern state, a theocracy or a consumerocracy?
St. Barak and the Fly: there goes the Jain vote and with it any hope of a second term. The associations here are massive. Especially if one is made between Bernard and Barak. After all Bernard can be given responsibility for the revival of Donatism as well as Manichism in Europe. What will Barak be given responsibility for?
And a study of medical intercessory prayer by researchers at Brandeis U indicates that the studies tell more about the mysticism of the researchers than about any efficacy of the activity. [Link] Hmmmmm. That may be about all that one can find from such studies since they clearly are not and cannot be experiments.
On a dissonant note, it seems that the Eddie Bauer corporation has filed for bankruptcy. [Link] It is not at all clear that this is anything more than the recession intensifying the effects of indecisive management. Of course, some of the problem is the deepening disconnection between humans and ‘nature’. That makes it hard for any corporation that ostensibly sells stuff for the ‘outdoors’.
I personally mourn still for the demise of Willis and Geiger, and Atlantic Rancher. They were early victims of this disconnection and perhaps goods of a quality and price too dear for MalWart consumers. I shall refrain from saying anything nasty about Land’s End; they did the deed for good management reasons but I still have a sour taste in my mental mouth for them. And I enrich Orvis, where some of the W&G staff went, in preference to them.
But I am not sure I will cry too hard for EB. As an outside supplier they have been schizophrenic, unable to decide whether they produce consumerist drek like Land’s End – that’s a nasty comment about their goods, not their management – or stay an outdoor supplier. If anything they seem to have been trying to simultaneous compete with both LE and Abercrombie and Fitch, which abandon its outdoor supply tradition to be the clothier of bog college students long ago.
The management mutters are that EB will not go away but streamline and maybe make up its mind what it is going to purvey. Sounds familiar, like Yankee car manufacturers parasitic to the public weal. I suspect that economically this will be much more successful although I doubt my business with them will increase. Unless they rediscover quality over facade, which seem unlikely these days. But that probability is still an order of magnitude higher than for GM.