Commonplace Book: Hypocrisy and the Culture War, Rabbits, "Original Intent" and the Constitution, and Ye Ancient Dogge of Malta
“Of all wars, only culture wars offer the hope of sheer, unadulterated hilarity. Sex and hypocrisy were staples of farce long before America became a nation, and they never go out of style.”
"We Maltese — we bichon maltais, the Roman Ladies' Dog, the old spaniel gentle, the Maltese lion dog, or Maltese terrier – are suffered to know ourselves to be the aristocrats of the canine world."
(from the novel # The Life and Opinions of Maf the Dog, and of his friend Marilyn Monroeby Andrew O'Hagan)
“[T]he constitutional doctrine of original intent has always struck most historians of the founding era as rather bizarre. ... The doctrine of original intent rests on a set of implicit assumptions about the framers as a breed apart, momentarily allowed access to a set of timeless and transcendent truths ...
... [T]he doctrine requires you to believe that the "miracle at Philadelphia" was a uniquely omniscient occasion when 55 mere mortals were permitted a glimpse of the eternal verities and then embalmed their insights in the document. Any professional historian proposing such an interpretation today would be laughed off the stage.”
(Joseph J. Ellis, “Immaculate Misconception and the Supreme Court”, The Washington Post)
"Some men look at constitutions with sanctimonious reverence, and deem them like the arc of the covenant, too sacred to be touched. They ascribe to the men of the preceding age a wisdom more than human, and suppose what they did beyond amendment....
Let us follow no such examples, nor weakly believe that one generation is not as capable of taking care of itself, and of ordering its own affairs . . . Each generation is as independent of the one preceding, as that was of all which had gone before."
(T. Jefferson, in a letter to Samuel Kercheval, July 12, 1816)
“Rabbits are clever about manipulating humans and can seem stubborn about learning how to live in our homes. It helps to see things through rabbit eyes: a wire is root that needs trimming, a piece of furniture is a tree, a household is a rabbit warren with strict hierarchy and rules.
Rubbing chin on things, such as houseplants, priceless armoires, Italian leather shoes.
What it means
A great misconception: It does NOT mean marking territory. It is a rabbit custom, like saying grace before a meal. In short, "One day I will eat you."
What you should do
Give your bunny more sticks and branches, keep your stuff off the floor, and kiss the antiques goodbye.”
(from Rabbit Language , or: "Are you going to eat that?" by Carolyn Crampton)