"Murder is Now Legal in the State of California" Edition
We here at THE ZONE are hard at work on our new merchandise. We know you aren't interested in stale, boring merch like t-shirts, mugs and whatever the hell a “tote bag” is, though. Instead, we're bringing you original products.Are you tired of logging with your old, stale, boring chainsaw? Log in style with the THE ZONE chainsaw.
I know there are a few design kinks to iron out but I'm optimistic about the finished product.
Obligatory shilling. I wrote a short item for UnHerd about the media successes and actual failures of Andrew Cuomo.
I also wrote for my paying Substack subscribers about the late 90s and early 2000s as a golden age of American nastiness.
Nu-feudalism. Ed West writes with typically sober elegance about the squeezing of the middle classes and the rise of a new aristocracy. Conservatism, for good reasons, has always rested on bourgeois values - but the future, and their continued existence, depends on transcending their imaginative limits.
Blogkanization. The always interesting Tanner Greer dislikes Substack, seeing it as a platform which disadvantages young talent and leads to “intellectual discussion [retreating] entirely behind the battlements.”
I’m hardly an intellectual, so I do not think it is a great loss to our times if some of my stuff is behind a paywall. But I do agree with Greer that the privileging of established writers gives them a special responsibility to elevate younger and more obscure voices. I would mention some here but that would make me look like a condescending asshole.
The Scruton Cafe. It exists, in Budapest. If I was going to have an establishment dedicated to my memory I would hope that it would be a little bar on the seedier edge of town: dark, dingy, vaguely poetic, and destined for ignominious bankruptcy.
European frontiers. David Patrikarakos reports on growing tensions between Greece and Turkey. From converting Hagia Sophia into a mosque to supporting the Azeris against Armenia, Recep Erdoğan has had quite a year. I wonder if overcoming that coup went to his head.
On longing. Father Edmund Walstein writes beautifully for the Point about the celibate life of the Catholic priesthood. I am sceptical about how many people can be satisfied without an earthly romantic and sexual life. But it is also a fact that many people are unsatisfied with them.
Trappists' coffins. A sad but lovely essay by Leah Libresco about the monks who build caskets for dead children.
Have a lovely week,