Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Inferno By: Dan Brown

I was hoping for so much more.  This is not what I expected.  Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the book, but I felt that it was so much about geography than the actual plot.  Maybe it was that I enjoyed 'The Lost Symbol' so much and it being in Washington D.C. area had a lot to do with it.  This was very slow in the beginning, even though there was a "murder" in the first few chapters.

The book is loosely based on Dante's Inferno.  I must admit that I had never read "The Divine Comedy of Dante Alighieri The Inferno" but found this book interesting.  There is so much description of architecture that it is at times numbing.  Brown takes you on a whirlwind tour of countries and gives you an intense history of many of the locations.  At about the midpoint of the book, it got a bit more interesting and the author threw in some shifting hero and villains for good measure.

The book dives into Trans-humanism and their view of life in particular.  ***SPOILER ALERT***  Inferno is the title of the book but you will be surprised of what it is and its purpose.
Hardcover: 480 pages
Publisher: Doubleday; First Edition edition (May 14, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0385537859
ISBN-13: 978-0385537858

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Ecomic Facts and Fallacies by Thomas Sowell

I love common sense thinking.  Unfortunately is is not so common these days.  Mr. Sowell breaks down the fallacies in economics as seem today.  He holds nothing back as is his style.

"Thomas Sowell is an American economist, social theorist, political philosopher, and author. He is currently the Rose and Milton Friedman Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University" ~ Wikipedia

Thomas Sowell delivers a common sense view of the fallacies that are fed to the public on a constant basis.  Many will argue his views which is fine, however at a 10,000 foot view it is CLEAR that what the politicians are asking for has not worked heretofore since there is an insatiable need to provide more of it.  If it were so effective in delivering what it claimed to, the problems would be solved.

The book is an easy read.  Not too many numbers which can be daunting to follow.  His insightful views start in the very beginning of the book when he explains the "undefined" words used by politicians of today such as 'fair'.  There is no standard definition of the word fair nor for its brother 'unfair'.  However these words tend to move people and bring them together regardless of their respective meaning and sometime opposing results.

One of my favorite chapters in the book was on the education system.  He blows the lid off of the scam in the Ivie League schools and education in general in my opinion.  I will not lie, although I oppose political parties, Mr. Sowell does align with my own views on politics, society, and economics.  As I have said before in other reviews, I am fiscally more conservative than Conservative and socially I am more liberal than Liberals.  I disagree with using force to make others act as there are ALWAYS unintended consequences that require more force to try to deal with those.  It is like big-pharma, you take a medication that causes worse side affects than the initial problem; which is then treated by more medications etc, etc.

I read several review on this book prior to embarking on reading it myself,  Ironically, I found many reviews of people that criticized Sowell in the same manner they claimed he criticized his "subjects".  Claims such as "who cares how much green space is there is in Maine if you live in the park-free suburbs of some city..." well unless you are compelled to live in such an area, I do not see how this becomes a country wide issue.  Also "women get to spend their husband's money".  Firstly, Sowell never said that.  Secondly, I have been married for 21 years.  My wife and I have agreed to our particular situation.  I would much rather her be home with the kids and be home when they arrive from school than the income she had the potential to make.  I do not discriminate on others who choose differently though.

The book is great.  I think all should read it.  If you keep and open mind, you can see that he is using common sense.  If you read it with agenda, you will not get anything out of it. 

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Basic Books; 2nd edition (March 22, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0465022030
ISBN-13: 978-0465022038

Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism & Treachery By: Steve Sheinkin

Many hold Benedict Arnold synonymous with treason.  However, Arnold was, a heroic patriot in the beginning of the Revolutionary War. I will say that I had the propensity to ignore Mr. Arnold's Masonic past due to the disgrace his name eludes to, and sadly the disgrace is well placed.  

While reading the book, the author asks why Washington woul still trust and defend Benedict Arnold.  This does not show much on Arnold but more so on Washington.  Washington held true to his Masonic principles and his obligation; it was Arnold that was not worthy of being called a Brother.

This books paints an action packed life of a brave man wanting to and actually fighting for liberty; unfortunately it also shows that man's traitorous ways and how he not only sold out his Country but his Fraternal Brother.

The book is action packed describing the many battles Arnold was involved in, even those as a British officer.  Benedict Arnold the 6th, was on a mission to cleanse the name of the Arnolds.  His ironically, no one remembers the misdoings of the previous Arnolds.  It is a light read, possibly geared towards younger reader however due to the lack of material on Arnold, I decided to read it.   

Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Flash Point; 1 edition (November 9, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1596434864
ISBN-13: 978-1596434868