Currently reading

The Art of Fiction: A Guide for Writers and Readers
Ayn Rand, Tore Boeckmann, Leonard Peikoff
The Name of the Rose
Umberto Eco
Ghostwritten
David Mitchell
To the Lighthouse
Virginia Woolf
The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Edward Gibbon, Daniel J. Boorstin, Gian Battista Piranesi, Hans-Friedrich Mueller
Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid
Douglas R. Hofstadter
Perfect Wrong Note - Learning to Trust Your Musical Self
William Westney
The Prince
Niccolò Machiavelli
The Varieties of Religious Experience
William James
Twenty Questions: An Introduction to Philosophy
G. Lee Bowie, Robert C. Solomon

Brave New World

Brave New World - Aldous Huxley Maybe a little pain and suffering is good after all. This book was so different from 1984, yet so similar. It's interesting how free love and the suppression of love can lead to basically the same end - when "everyone belongs to everyone else" nothing is sacred or worth fighting for, when nobody belongs to anybody, again, nothing is worth fighting for. I couldn't help but notice the similarity between the axioms that came from speakers under the pillows of sleeping students in Brave New World and the giant Ministry of Public Thought at the disposal of the government today that we call the Public Education System. Both take advantage of the captive attention of students to deliver whatever messages that the state deems appropriate. This sounds like a conspiracy theory, but really, is it that far of a stretch? Public administrators working, not for their happiness, but for the happiness of everyone else. Of course there are exceptions and differences, but the parallels are there.The book is completely relevant today. People are still willing to sacrifice liberty for the siren song of government-provided comfort and security, Brave New World is a great testament as to why that is such a bad, bad idea.