Sigmund Freud

Freud the Fraud

This festive break’s big Christmas and New Year U.S. movie release, Freud’s Last Session, stars Anthony Hopkins as Sigmund Freud, telling the story of the “great” psychoanalyst’s meeting with the rather more genuinely insightful author C.S. Lewis, and their debates about whether or not God existed. Lewis thought He did, Freud thought He didn’t, but the latter disputant had perhaps the clinching argument in the matter: namely, that Sigmund Freud himself had actually been born. No loving Christian God would ever have allowed a sordid little incubus like that to plague humanity. It ...

Fred and Adele Astaire

My Lesbian Dance Theory

During the dog days of August, there was a brief flurry of partisan excitement when Republican congresswoman Lauren Boebert denounced the White House’s student loan giveaway as, ...

Damien Hirst

The Broken Publicity Machine

“As flies to wanton boys,” says Gloucester in King Lear after his eyes have been put out by the Duke of Cornwall at the behest of the evil Goneril, “are we to the gods: they ...

Waste of Ink

There are no sheep more ovine than those who get themselves tattooed in order to individuate themselves. Judging by the statistics, such sheeplike behavior is becoming more and ...

The Fallacy of the Real Me

According to a Gallup poll, the percentage of the American population that now “identifies” as LGBTQ+ has doubled by comparison with ten years ago, and now stands at 7.1 ...

Fit to Be Fat

A curious example of the power of social trends on thought is that two years into the Covid pandemic, nobody of any influence has yet bothered to launch a campaign to persuade ...

Norman Mailer

Be Your Own Advert

To mark the centenary of the birth of Norman Mailer—which I shall not be celebrating wildly—a publisher decided to reissue a volume of his essays. An employee of the ...

Ventura, CA

Isle of L.A. Part I: The Changing Colors of the Landscape

In honor of my upcoming 53rd birthday, I’m launching a two-part (or three...haven’t decided yet) series on the changing face of my native city. I’ve never understood why ...

If It’s All the Same to You…

Nearly a century ago, in 1925 to be precise, the Austrian writer Stefan Zweig wrote an article for a Berlin newspaper titled “Making the World Uniform.” It began: Despite the ...

The Pain Principle

There is a lot of misery in the world, it would be useless to deny it. The description of the world as a vale of tears surely conveys something to every one of us. And yet, all ...

Humility on a Cellular Level

Recently I have been dreaming a lot, unpleasant dreams but not nightmares. What this means, or even if it means anything at all, I don’t know. Perhaps it is a cerebral form of ...

Meghan’s Misery

Mrs. Clinton, who knows a thing or two about phoniness, praised Meghan Markle’s decision to speak of her “mental health” before tens of millions of her very closest ...

Crying Shame

It is difficult to tell the difference these days between what is the serious and the spoof. For example, I came across this recently, an article in the student magazine of ...

Rash Thinking

In a recent article, I mentioned the death of my friend, M…… D……, when I was 16 and he was but a few months older than I. He has been present in my mind more than usual ...


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