May 14, 2005 11:00 AM   Subscribe

Spengler of the Asia Times. Right-headed, wrong-headed, at times off-headed, but always interesting. You can spend a lot of time wading through the archives. The fellow, anonymous for whatever reason, has written on US/China trade, Ratzinger as a dark age theologian, the American empire , how Europe might be re-Christianized, US vs Islam, religion vs philosphy, Tolkien vs Wagner, internet stocks , and anti-semitism. A bit of something for everyone. Also runs a lively little forum.
posted by IndigoJones (20 comments total)
We're on a mission from god. Who knew?
posted by cytherea at 11:59 AM on May 14, 2005

All sing: "A paradox, a paradox, a most ingenious paradox! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! A Paradox!"

Good stuff.
posted by airguitar at 12:27 PM on May 14, 2005

While you're over there, you can check out Henry Liu, the Maoist finance wiz (???)
posted by TimothyMason at 12:29 PM on May 14, 2005

(Airguitar is rightly referrring to The Jihadis of Penzance. As I say, the man has many sides to him)
posted by IndigoJones at 12:58 PM on May 14, 2005

"What religions do to ameliorate social or political conditions is incidental; religions exist because humankind is terrified of death."
posted by laptop_lizard at 1:08 PM on May 14, 2005

your point being? fear of death invalidates all?
posted by quonsar at 1:57 PM on May 14, 2005

"People don't like music; they just like the way it sounds," quipped the English conductor Sir Thomas Beecham

This stuff dosn't nessisaraly make any sense, but it reads cool.

This text is like a soup of crunchy metaphores. Tasty, but ultimately meaningless. He (or she) meanders wildly from one grand pronouncement to the next without every laying down enough of a foundation for his main thesis.
posted by delmoi at 2:10 PM on May 14, 2005

he seems to entertain a wealth of religious hallucinations. Why does the otherwise sane asia times have this throwback religionist on its site?
posted by telstar at 3:53 PM on May 14, 2005

To preserve the miracle that is Anglo-Saxon culture against the orcs.
posted by cytherea at 4:08 PM on May 14, 2005

I like how in the one about Tolkien and Wagner he offers an interpretation, rejects it but then barrels along with it anyway:

What Tolkien has in mind is nothing more than the familiar observation that the high culture of the West arose and fell with the aristocracy, which had the time and inclination to cultivate it. With the high culture came the abuse of power associated with the aristocracy; when this disappears, the great beauties of Western civilization and much of its best thought disappear with it. That is far too simple, and in some ways misleading, but it makes a grand premise for a roman-a-clef about Western civilization.

To add some weight to his rather spurious conclusion he could have made the perfectly simple and generally accurate observation that the true hero of LotR is Sam. Also, I don't think it speaks highly of his intellect goes around claiming that "American Culture" is an oxymoron.

(But then, I shouldn't go around knocking other people's LotR interpretations, I've written an essay where I argue that Sam and Frodo were in love)
posted by Kattullus at 5:23 PM on May 14, 2005

(But then, I shouldn't go around knocking other people's LotR interpretations, I've written an essay where I argue that Sam and Frodo were in love)

link! link!
posted by telstar at 5:31 PM on May 14, 2005

i read the title as "right winged, wrong headed"

and it was actually kind of funny that way
posted by reflection at 5:56 PM on May 14, 2005

He bungles the Beecham quotation.

"The English may not like music, but they absolutely love the noise it makes."

Anyone who's ever seen footage of or attended the proms will understand what that means.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 6:08 PM on May 14, 2005

Writing with a pseudonym implies, in some cases, that the writer is exorcising ideas s/he her/imself wouldn't/doesn't ascribe to, or wouldn't take seriously, but wants to play with. Raoul Duke. Jim Anchower. Oprah Winfrey. Airguitar. It's a good time. It can be.
posted by airguitar at 7:20 PM on May 14, 2005

For some reason, this guy's writings remind me of what Robert Morgan used to talk about way back in the day.
posted by bugmuncher at 7:38 PM on May 14, 2005

telstar: I posted it in my livejournal.
posted by Kattullus at 8:07 PM on May 14, 2005

Quite right about the Beecham quotation, spleen. It's amusing that Spengler dumps on American culture but conveniently censors a dig at English culture.
posted by QuietDesperation at 10:43 PM on May 14, 2005


I suppose ecto-containment units don't pay the bills any more.
posted by NinjaPirate at 4:11 AM on May 15, 2005

Spengler?I suppose ecto-containment units don't pay the bills any more...posted by NinjaPirate

I so wanted to post the connection between this and spengler/venkman/stantz aka the ghostbusters.

the spengler/asia times stuff is interesting for the depth with which this posthumous pundit explores topics in the news and the variety of arcane references made. I mean, how often do the Washington Post or NYT work TS Eliot into an editorial?
posted by beelzbubba at 5:45 AM on May 15, 2005

i like war nerd (in lieu of SDB :)

altho more mainstream, fareed zakaria is pretty great too and he even has a tv show :D his latest on china, i thought, was particularly good!

posted by kliuless at 8:22 AM on May 15, 2005

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