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Monday, October 11th 2010

9:52 PM

World War II

We had a nice visit this weekend from my mother and her significant other. They were in San Pedro celebrating Walt's 65th HS reunion. Walt is a WW-II veteran. When I was a kid, it seemed like all the grown men were WW-II veterans. My grandfather, whom I remember well, was a WW-I veteran who remembered Civil War veterans marching in parades. Now, though, the WW-II veterans are aging and becoming more and more scarce.

I wonder how the world would be different if America had joined the League of Nations and we'd made it into something effective. Was some sort of war inevitable? Or could we have avoided both WW-II and the cold war that came afterward? Russia/USSR was a joke before the war. They lost to Finland, for goodness sake. They were pulled into the modern age by a combination of German assault and US/UK's desperate need to keep them in the war. It's hard to imagine how bad it would have been if Germany and the USSR had reached a separate peace (or if they'd been able to maintain the alliance they created at the beginning of the war).

Anyway, it's fascinating to talk to people from an earlier generation from me and to think that it won't be long before people don't remember the Viet Nam war and the protests against it, along with the moon race--two factors that fundamentally pulled us into the modern era. I remember how hopeful we were that we could make things better. We were idiots, of course, but at least we were straining to learn. I get frustrated by the anti-intellectual movement that seems dominant in our country today.

Karen and I went to Barnes and Noble tonight. First time I've been in a physical bookstore for a while and I checked out the nook. It's less intuitive than the kindle but it didn't take me long before I was able to get around. I liked the color panel and the way you could actually use it for web buttons and things. Naturally I visited the BooksForABuck.com website and checked out some of our books available for the Nook. I'm thinking about buying one. Anyone who owns one have thoughts?

I'm going to make GOD OF TRAITORS by Zdravka Evtimova the www.BooksForABuck.com book of the day. A mysterious plague, strange dolls, and people whose personalities radically change. Something is going on, but finding out what is a challenge, especially if there's a traitor in the police force. Near-future SF by Zdravka. Only $2.99. Here's the link: http://www.booksforabuck.com/sfpages/sf_04/god_traitors.html. Here's the cover (cover design by Jane Graves):

rob

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