Happy Thanksgiving!


Can I be thankful for this blog? Professors Cowen and Tabarrok put in a lot of effort to create a really wonderful place on the web; seeing "assorted links" appear in my RSS feed is one of the consistent highlights in my digital day. And keeping a blog like this going day in day out is no easy feat, much less keeping it brimming with fascinating content. So, thanks!

Yes! Thanks for the links, commentaries, speculations and insights.

This article is really a good one it helps new web viewers, who are wishing
in favor of blogging.

Completely agree. There is no other place on the blogosphere that delivers such a consistent high quality diverse set of postings. The range is and depth is incredible.
Thank you Tyler and Alex and a happy thanksgiving to you and your family.

Hear, hear!

Happy Thanksgiving to our hosts, their families, and to the many insightful posters who make our visits here informative and worthwhile.

Hear hear. I am thankful for how MR brings cucks like you, like me together and share our cuckish, deeply unmasculine way of life in these comments.

oh you poor "anti-cuck" poseur ! if you had a good looking wife she would so so so want to sleep with me. You probably don't, though, I guess ...

if you want some insight into your problems, read a little about Charlus, the Proustian character based on an unusual person like you, and who similarly decried what he ( a married man but also a passionate and extremely embarrassed secret wannabe lover of strong young men) saw as insufficient masculinity in the young men of his day.

You aren't fooling anybody with your "anti-cuck" rhetoric ....

Write to Vox Day, who runs a website or two that offer to help people like you.

Happy Thanksgiving, and you are welcome!

feel free to delete my comment, along with the poor unkind sad troll, I am not emotionally attached to my internet interactions with trolls !!!

feel free to delete my comment, along with the poor unkind sad troll's comment, I am not emotionally attached to my internet interactions with trolls !!!

But I do wish the best for him, if he comments on some Vox Day thread
with an explanation of what is troubling him the minions there will tell him his anti-duck stance is transparent (I am assuming that it is a him)

"anti-duck stance"
Today is Thanksgiving so I can at least understand why they feel that way.

+1. Libertarian nerds don't know how to be men. Economics is not a true, red-blooded pursuit.

Yeah, not like calling people cucks from behind a monitor!


I'm basically waiting for that assorted links notification every day around lunch. So much fun to take a break from work, read through and chew on some new ideas for the rest of the day

Double fun when it's a culture war topic and people write entertaining.

Thank you to the people that make MR possible :)

This time, one can be thankful for actually turning on images after reading a comment which gives no hint at all of what picture was chosen.

Because nothing represents American Thanksgiving like a picture from 1565 that 'shows a large number of activities representative of the 16th-century Belgian rural life' - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Harvesters_%28painting%29

No hint? Let's play =)

a) It's been a century that the painting is part of NY's MET collection.

b) A painting from 1565 which is not about angels, virgins, fauns or any other mythological figure. People is more important than superstition, which is the idea behind different people living in the same nation and feeling part of it (modern ethos of the US, mind the Puritans executing whoever is non-Puritan)

c) Thanksgiving is (was?) related to being thankful for harvest and the painting depicts a copious harvest. Just look at those exuberant wheat spikes.

d) The colors. Any present autumn decoration uses more or less the same colors. You might call this painting an archetypal depiction of autumn.

You think virgins are mythical?

I’m grateful for holiday that is secular, and that the Dems have not found a way to whine about yet.

Oh, wait. Well, it’s secular anyway.

'I’m grateful for holiday that is secular'

You really have an alternative view of history - or were not educated in the Fairfax County public school system of the 1970s. Of course Thanksgiving involves religion - along with being persecuted while retaining the faith that a new world can be found that will allow faith to flourish.

There is no Belgium. Ask any Flem, Walloons all agree. They frequently discuss this issue in the streets of Brussels.

Nah, was chosen for the guy stretched out sleeping at the foot of the tree.

But perhaps it has prompted you to reflect on how thankful you surely are, for wikipedia?

Certainly, though that thankfulness is for the Internet in general, not simply the GPL inspired wikipedia.

However, it was my GMU art history survey class that made it so easy to know the painting was from Brueghel, and the fact that it was painted decades before Jamestown was founded, much less the arrival of the Pilgrims.

Ah well, then you have the singular good fortune that your two nemeses started a blog on which you can daily cavil at them! Most of us don't get that kind of satisfaction, or have that much clarity to begin with. Plus art history to boot. I was too clueless during college to have acquired any bugbears, and the one class in which what I learned, stayed with me* - botany - I got a C.

I teased you about your seeming fondness for wikipedia, but for someone like me, with very poor memory, maybe brain damage - it's the marvel of the age.

Also, I don't know what GPL is - my impression was that wikipedia started off with the wholesale borrowing of the (older, better) Encyclopedia Britannica.

*My Western Civ teacher was so entertaining. I really looked forward to her lectures, but even just weeks after the close of term, all I could remember was the defenestration at Prague.

Neither Prof. Cowen nor Prof. Tabarrok are a nemesis - why would they be? Starting with the fact that you would have to assume that they are the only two people involved here. (Emergent Ventures is just a tiny bit more than Prof. Cowen spending some free time on philanthropy, by the way - assuming you trust what the Mercatus Center says.)

'or have that much clarity to begin with'

I worked at the PR dept. at GMU - the same games are being played today 'at' GMU as were played 30 years ago. What has been interesting is just how little the game has changed, though it does make it easy to point out. Not that it matters in the end, of course.

'your seeming fondness for wikipedia'

Well, this web site (unsurprisingly) has a large number of filters which limit (often surprisingly) what links are possible to post. I like giving links to source material, though that too does not seem to matter much in the end.

'my impression was that wikipedia started off with the wholesale borrowing'

Not really, though anything in the public domain is legal to use, of course, such as the 1911 Britannica edition. Here is a bit of background - 'The old dream for a world encyclopedia of Paul Otlet and Herbert Wells from 1930s became possible in 1990s, after the rapid progress of Internet and World Wide Web.

First known proposal for online Internet encyclopedia was made by the Internet enthusiast Rick Gates in October, 1993. Gates proposed in a message titled The Internet Encyclopedia, published in the Usenet newsgroup alt.internet.services, to collaboratively create an encyclopedia on the Internet, which would allow anyone to contribute by writing articles and submitting them to the central catalog of all encyclopedia pages. Later the term Interpedia was coined for this encyclopaedia, but the project never left the planning stages and finally died.

Several years later, in 1999, the famous open-source activist Richard Stallman popularized his concept of an open source web-based online encyclopedia, but his idea also remained unrealized.

The first working online encyclopedia became Wikipedia, launched in January 2001 by Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger. The founders used the concept and technology of a wiki devised in 1994 by the computer programmer Ward Cunningham. A wiki is a website that allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser, using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor. A special wiki software has been created, which is often used to create collaborative websites.


In January 2001, Wales decided to switch to the GNU Free Documentation License at the urgings of Richard Stallman and the Free Software Foundation, and started the Wikipedia project, reserving Wikipedia.com and Wikipedia.org domain names. Initially Wikipedia (the word was devised by Sanger) was created as a side-project and feeder to Nupedia, in order to provide an additional source of draft articles and ideas, but it quickly overtook Nupedia, growing to become a large global project, and originating a wide range of additional reference projects. Jimmy Wales announced that he would never run commercial advertisements on Wikipedia.' http://history-computer.com/Internet/Conquering/Wikipedia.html

And an anecdote of early 80s GMU - the professor ended up failing easily half the class, and then apologized for clearly failing her students, even if she was unable to lower her standards to help more of the class to pass. That was back in the old days, of course. One of the better professors I remember having, to be honest. Of course, she was teaching an art class - I'm sure that a more rigorous professor in a more rigorous subject would fail even more students these days, right?

"the defenestration at Prague." First or second?

And now I have nothing.

There were two Defenestrations of Prague. The one you remember is probably the second which resulted in the Thirty Years War. The first resulted in the Hussite Wars, small potatoes compared to the TYW.

Not forgetting Masaryk, who was probably pushed out of a window in Prague.

Your points are fine, but as an American, one of the main points I was taught about Thanksgiving was how thankful the Pilgrims were to have left the Old World, with its endless wars and religious persecutions, now being able to create another place.

A romantic fantasy in its way, of course (though with more truth than not), but one which does not involve a European Old Master depicting Europe.

There are few artists who can match Bruegel's ability, and harvest time in Belgium in 1565 was probably not all that different from harvest time in Massachusetts in 1623. If there were any painters around to depict the latter, please post one of their pictures. Meanwhile, I'm satisfied with the Brueghel.

Well, this painting certainly captures a more American perspective than Brueghel's, though you are welcome to ignore the accompanying text commentary (generally a good idea when viewing art) - https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/opencollection/objects/167

Of course Brueghel is a great painter, but the entire point of the Pilgrims and their journey was to leave Europe behind.

happy Thanksgiving Tyler (& the other guy)

Today is the 55th anniversary of JFK's assassination. And it's Thanksgiving. I will always associate Thanksgiving with that horrible event - Thanksgiving came six days later. I remember watching the television news day after day, hour after hour, in the days following the assassination, seeing Oswald himself assassinated on live television. My parents supported JFK, so it was a sad time at our home. But not so in many homes in the South, where the assassination was considered reason for giving thanks. Strident partisanship today has nothing on the strident partisanship in 1963; and yes, it was motivated then as today by racial animus. Some things never change. The world did not end on that November day in 1963, even though it certainly felt like it at the time. No, we muddled through then as we muddle through today in the belief that somehow tomorrow will bring a better day. For that belief, for that hope, we give thanks.

Happy Thanksgiving. Some of us differ on what's important and what our political concerns should be short or long term, but that's for tomorrow. Be with your friends and family, have a good time, and no politics!

lol, a darker take from Josh Brown.


I don't know about you, but we were successful. Not only did no one discuss politics, no one talked about Bitcoin either! The second one was important because we think one couple took a bit of a bath there.

The kids lost a bit on Bitcoin, but more in the lesson range than the tragedy range.

Look at how tall that wheat is. Clearly Norman Borlaug and others put a lot of work into genetically modifying the crops Europe uses today. Of course they did it the old fashioned way, which apparently doesn't count.

my eyes aren't good enough to know it's wheat.

my eyes are good enough to see fine arable land with a couple of individual trees standing haphazardly and implausibly within a field. Composition, I suppose - if the peasants had been sitting under a tree at the edge of the field it would have been a duller picture.

Anyway, three cheers for the painters of the Low Countries.

I could have referred to it as corn, but that would have confused Americans.

Can you see that it's not barley? Or even rye? (I have never knowingly seen rye but I understand that infantry at Waterloo had hidden in a field of rye.) The corn I grew up with was oats. Those stooks don't look much like the ones I grew up with.


But wot the hell - a jolly painting without, as Axa wisely observed, angels, virgins, fauns or any other mythological figure. Mind you, that wouldn't be a November scene.

I don't know what the crop is, but they've all generally been shortened so the plant can put more energy into producing grain instead of stalk. These days you can play "spot the mutie" by looking across a field of grain to see if there are any much taller than the others. People are working on perennial grain crops so the energy won't have to go into growing the root system every year, but pests can become a massive problem. With pest ranges creeping northward it is a massive headache. On the other hand I can see robots of one sort or another dealing with pest issues at the level of individual plants in the future. European children used to be used as cheap labor to pick Colarado Kafers off crops after WWII improved technology can allow machines to do the same at similar or lower cost.

Thanks for introducing us to Bruno Maçães.

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