Skip to main content

Idle thinkings.

So I mused (to myself) a bit on this in the other day's post, but

The other day I blogged about self-determination in Afghanistan. In that post, I referred to Max Fisher's article in The Atlantic, in which he explains the significance of the recent outbreaks of violence in Afghanistan in terms of muzzled self-determination.

Part of me wanted to muse, then, on whether he really meant 'popular sovereignty', though I soon figured he prolly didn't. Still, it was interesting, if utterly idle, to reflect on the differences between the terms, and what impact the choice of either would have had on the content of the argument.

While self-determination deals with a nation's right to make decisions for itself without outside intervention, popular sovereignty seats the authority & legitimacy of a legislative body and its laws with the people it governs and is elected by.

Still, though, if you look at the article he could have meant some mixture of either. The article focuses on the people, not the nation, in their reactions to perceived infringement by exterior forces upon their country's right to make its own decisions. As it seems Fisher's inferring the national temperature based on individuals' reactions and outcry, it would seem, naturally, that Fisher is presuming some kind of popular sovereignty; Fisher has implied the legitimacy of a nation's self-determinations resides in the sovereignty of its people.

That's hardly a surprising or groundbreaking suggestion, really, but I drift in and out of these sorts of mental meanderings rather often. I find them enjoyable enough, mostly. Idle musings can be delicious.


Other things that might interest you...

This moment: A tattoo.

So I read Mrs. Dalloway in high school, and it was perhaps the most beautiful thing I'd ever read. One passage in particular, very early in the book, hit me hard with my first experience of the sublime, and stayed with me—and led at last to my first tattoo. In people’s eyes, in the swing, tramp, and trudge; in the bellow and the uproar; the carriages, motor cars, omnibuses, vans, sandwich men shuffling and swinging; brass bands; barrel organs; in the triumph and the jingle and the strange high singing of some aeroplane overhead was what she loved; life; London; this moment of June .  ( Emphasis added; full paragraph included below. From the full text of the novel as made available by the University of Adelaide. ) The paragraph this is from, the 4th paragraph of the novel, is the 1st passage with the stream of consciousness the book is famous for; although self-limited here, the flow is no less gorgeous. In the passage, Clarissa is walking on a street to get those famous fl

QP: Changes to come, I hope.

My grandmother passed away about 2 weeks ago. I hope to write about her more soon, but for this moment, I want to speak briefly about where I'm at overall: Her passing has led me to reevaluate aspects of my life because I'm realizing that the status quo amounts to just wasting my life away. (This is another "quick post," which means it's a short update that I likely didn't edit and revise quite as much as the more "thoughtful" pieces I aim for. I say this because I'm self-conscious and worry that you, my reader, will judge me!) I'm up in Boston and have today and tomorrow off, and I want to spend at least a portion of each day figuring out (some of) my life. I say this fully aware how often I've variously done so before: asserted a need for change, described how I was going to do it, made an attempt, then fallen off in the follow-through. I'm honestly not sure what to do about that, though. It frustrates me now just as much as eve

Sarracenia 'Ennui.'

I mentioned in a recent post  that even hybrids of the same species can demonstrate disparate variety. Which is the case with the other cultivar I discovered. Yes; there's another. I could go into how this variety among hybrids should surprise no one, but I'm not here to teach you genetics (poorly). No, I want to talk about my other big cultivar-related excitement: Sarracenia 'Ennui,' or so it's being called for now. I guess it's semiofficial now that I've "announced" it in a blog post. Welp. (My main hesitation in calling it this is that the name may already been claimed. But I think it's an  awesome  name for a plant and peculiarly kind of perfect for this one: It's got this muted glamour that feels not only somehow French but also weirdly existential...?) I found this beauty at Meadowview Biological Research Station . The other half of the main plant can still be found there, by the way, and that nursery has a gorgeous array of o