Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Greeks and Geeks

Neal Stephenson’s piece on the movie"300" is worth reading. Although I don’t exactly agree with his point regarding the "few conservatives still able to hold up one end of a Socratic dialogue are those in the ostracized libertarian wing," yet he has a point. I have always been fond of science fiction, including Jerry Pournelle’s books, like this or this.

Discussions - 6 Comments

Put that DVD when it comes out right next to your copy of "Manliness"!!! Hu-ah!

Hard for me to imagine a context in which I, or most conservatives I know/read, would speak of liberals
having "cut all ties to their intellectual moorings," but this guy does the equivalent with conservatives, and w/o much connection to the movie and cultural phenom he’s discussing. All ties? For some reason movie reviews or other cultural commentaries often seem the place where you see such sweeping lefty political gestures presenting as passing comments.

I watched "300" with my 14 year-old yesterday (my 16-yr-old has watched it twice with his buddies). I allowed myself to enjoy the film, though it was work at times to avoid getting distracted by the CGI and the relatively bad acting, absence of body armor, and the apparently resurgent Spartan art of substituting abdominal muscle for body hair.

But, last night, when the kids went to bed, my wife and I watched the first half of "Spartacus." There was a movie, and not a computer-generated special effect to be seen!

BTW, I would NOT recommend taking 14 year-olds to see "300," due to some sex scenes for which I was not prepared.

When I took ancient Greek history as an undergrad, I learned that most classicists viewed Sparta the way the Athenians viewed Sparta - as backward, fanatical, and their women were loose. Classicists also added the Spartans were proto-totalitarians. When did they decide Sparta embodied virtues liberal democrats should aspire too? Or was my undergraduate classics teacher jaded toward Sparta as a result of his Thatcherism?

They still held many of the same ideals as Athens even if the culture of the city-state was entirely different. Read the works of Paul Cartledge to balance out your ideas about ancient Sparta. You might even start seeing the Athenians as soft, decadent, luxurious philosophers. :)

Geez Fung!

BTW, I would NOT recommend taking 14 year-olds to see "300," due to some sex scenes for which I was not prepared.

Good grief sir! What about the VIOLENCE!

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