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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

David Brooks, "The Big Decisions": Want to Be a Vampire?

Want to be a vampire? David Brooks begins his latest New York Times op-ed, "The Big Decisions," with this profound philosophical question:

"Let’s say you had the chance to become a vampire. With one magical bite you would gain immortality, superhuman strength and a life of glamorous intensity. Your friends who have undergone the transformation say the experience is incredible. They drink animal blood, not human blood, and say everything about their new existence provides them with fun, companionship and meaning.

Would you do it? Would you consent to receive the life-altering bite, even knowing that once changed you could never go back?"

A vampire? And have Governor Brown call upon Hillary to put a stake through my heart? I don't think so.

Proceeding to observe that "we're historical creatures," "we're mystical creatures" and "we're moral creatures" ("What you mean 'we,' kemosabe?"), Brooks concludes:

"These days we think of a lot of decisions as if they were shopping choices. When we’re shopping for something, we act as autonomous creatures who are looking for the product that will produce the most pleasure or utility. But choosing to have a child or selecting a spouse, faith or life course is not like that. It’s probably safer to ask 'What do I admire?' than 'What do I want?'"

Got it: Be virtuous, not narcissistic. Thanks for the advice, David, but what happens when Donald and Hillary admire themselves more than anything else?

1 comment:

  1. I thought Gov. Brown was telling Hillary to drive a stake through her... never mind. All eyes on Biden, who has survived two brain aneurysms.

    Grandpa Friedrich from Kallstadt, Germany:

    "...By June 1900, he was living in White Horse, a Yukon outpost at the end of the newly built railroad but hundreds of miles south of the gold fields, and he was the proprietor of yet another eatery, the Arctic Restaurant. Once again, he had chosen a prime location, across the street from the railroad depot; once again he had built on land for which he did not have a valid legal claim; and once again he was deploying the Trump formula of giving customers still in search of their first nugget something they could enjoy on the spot—a bar, gambling facilities and separate areas, curtained off with dark velvet, for what were known as “sporting ladies.” ..."

    Awaiting in February, 2016.
    After all, if all eyes are still on The Donald and Hillary after the Iowa caucus on Feb. 1 and before the New Hampshire primary on Feb. 9, seems David Brooks can figure out the difference between vampires and zombies for yet another daydream of a column..

    or just wait for Cheney's speech on the Iran deal, Sept. 8 at the AEI. Then the NYTcan resurrect Darth Vader as our primal fear...

    I need a minute...