About Me

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Armchair theorist, poet, and occasional IT manager, Sascha B. is equipped with a Master's Degree in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Texas, and is not afraid to use it. His work has been published by the University Press of America, Edwin Mellen Press, University of Texas Press, and a variety of small journals nationwide. He is also the proprietor and baker for 3141 Pie, of which you should eat many.

The Deal

I stopped blogging in 2013, when life overtook me. My father became ill and died shortly thereafter, and my mother was left with increasing dementia. I became the primary caregiver, and now orchestrate my mother's care and our family estate.

Now, I am coming up for air again.

Looking for the next book to read. All suggestions welcome.

My reading list is over here.

Friday, January 02, 2009

The World We Made

The consequences of Flying While Muslim:
"The FBI agents actually cleared our names," Inayet Sahin, one of the family members kicked off the flight, told CNN. "They went on our behalf and spoke to the airlines and said, 'There is no suspicious activity here. They are clear. Please let them get on a flight so they can go on their vacation,' and they still refused."

"At the end of the day, people got on and made comments they shouldn't have made on the airplane, and other people heard them," Hutcheson said. "Other people heard them, misconstrued them. It just so happened these people were of Muslim faith and appearance. It escalated, it got out of hand and everyone took precautions."
At the end of the day, it is fear and racism. But hey, at least they "took precautions."

The Comments Have It

"Remember this. And remember, too, that for long years these people were considered heroic patriots, defenders of the nation."
Paul Krugman asks a good (if rhetorical) question about Alberto Gonzales and his ilk; the comments section responds with alacrity.


I'm listening right now to a discussion with Dan Pallotta, the author of the new book Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential. While I am not sure I agree with all his points, he is addressing a critical issue in the non-profit and charity world: the divide in creative and growth (and success) potential between NPOs and the for-profit world that is enervated and continued by the culture of low pay and martyrdom to the cause that imbues the NPO world.

If you have access to NPR Talk of the Nation, listen in.

Definitely going to read the book.

Howdy, 2009!

So you've noticed the dearth of posts lately; I'm afraid there is only one reason: physical pain. I am finding that despite chiropractic attention, the back issues I am having are fairly debilitating at the moment. What that means to this blog is that I am less able to easily write, let alone to concentrate on issues in the news and world. The war in Gaza is horrifying, and runs the risk of being a redux of the disastrous (for Israel) conclusion of their last action against Hezbollah in Lebanon. I am of the same mind as the Egyptian government: while the Israeli attacks are out of hand, Hamas is to blame for providing them an excuse for the attacks, with the constant and continuing rocket attacks into Israel. In any case, a wretched situation. I hope that the Arab League and the UN and Condi Rice are all successful in finding a way to halt the violence and death.

At the same time, the new year is upon us, with hopes and hangovers and all manner of expectations. I hope that all of you are finding the new year to your liking; for myself I am hoping for a cessation of pain, and looking forward to new opportunities and goals. It is pouring rain here in SF, and as I go about my chores this morning (wait for FedEx, do the dishes), I think in shades of grey.

Happy 2009 to all of you, and here's to the hope of a safer, saner, more joyful year for the world.