Bridges and Bastions

Autumn Fundraiser 2014, Day Five

The Löbel Bastion

The image at the top of this post (the Queensboro Bridge in 1929) is another one that I found in the New York City Municipal Archives when I was searching for period photos that fit the “Third Rails” theme of this week’s fundraiser. It doesn’t really have any particular relevance to what I’ll be writing about tonight, but I love the grand sweep of the perspective, the intricate architecture, and the evidence of industrious activity in the background. No land is visible, so we are tantalized by the thought of what might lie before us or behind us at either end of the bridge.

Before we get to today’s principal topic — and before I dun you all vigorously once again to donate to our blog — I need to give you a cardiovascular update on Dymphna. She and I went to the cardiologist’s office yesterday, where she had her dressing removed and her pacemaker checked. The device is functioning properly, according to the technician. The variability of her pulse rate, which is somewhat worrisome, is due to the instructions sent by the atrium, the upper chamber of the heart. Now that the pacemaker is installed, that rate is communicated to the ventricle, which beats with the same frequency and prevents “complete heart block”, which was what sent us to the emergency room two weeks ago. When the atrium slows down, the ventricle slows down, but this variability is not caused by the pacemaker. I hope to have some discussions about this problem with the cardiologist himself, when we see him at our next appointment.

The surgical implantation of the device triggered a major PTSD episode for her, and she is still trying to regain her equipoise so that she can resume normal activities, including writing. She says her distress left her with a case of writer’s block, at least until last night, which is why we hadn’t been alternating our posts this week, as is our usual practice.

Now down to business: yesterday was a special occasion. Not only was it the midpoint of our quarterly bleg, but it was also the anniversary of the founding of this blog. And it’s not just any old anniversary, but our TENTH anniversary. Ten years ago yesterday, the first post went up at Gates of Vienna.

Tip jarIt’s hard to believe that we’ve been at this Counterjihad business for a decade, but we have. It was a part-time operation for the first two years, at least for me, but since 2006 it’s been mostly full-time. A lot of strange and alarming things have happened in the interim. But here we are, still slogging away at it.

Readers are urged to make the tip jar ring with a couple of nickels — or a couple of sawbucks, or a couple of grand, or, heck, even a couple of large! — and then stick around and see what happens for the next ten years.

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Last spring I conceived the idea of collecting important articles and essays from the first ten years of Gates of Vienna and publishing them in a book. It would have to be self-published, of course, so most of the work involved would fall on my shoulders. I opened up the ancient archives and began collecting material, with the goal of having it ready to publish not too long after our tenth anniversary.

Well… it seems I was a bit overoptimistic.

A lot of events intervened between April and October. First there was the Orlando trip, and after that ISIS got going in earnest. Every week seemed to bring some urgent new project or crisis that kept Vlad and me up all hours of the night, producing the translations and videos and so on. There was never any spare time, and there still isn’t.

But I haven’t given up on the idea of the book. Some of the essays have been collected, and our major guest-essayists have given permission to have their work included.

What I’d like to see is a collection divided up into themed sections. There might be a “Multiculturalism” section, and it could include essays by Fjordman, Takuan Seiyo, and Paul Weston, among others. Scandinavia deserves its own topic, as does the UK.

Republishing any of the translated articles may be difficult, however, unless I happen to know the author of the original. Writers generally reserve rights to translations of their material.

I came up with a tentative design for the cover of the book. It’s based on a contemporary Turkish (I think) illustration of the siege of Vienna, from the vantage point of the Ottoman camp. The artist didn’t attempt to make an accurate schematic of the layout of the city walls, but since the Löbel Bastion was so crucial to the Viennese defenses, I like to think that’s what we’re seeing in the background. Those insouciant red-bearded feather-capped lance-carrying stalwarts strolling the ramparts are the Viennese garrison, hoping against hope that King Jan III Sobieski and the Polish hussars will come thundering down the Kahlenberg in time to save the city:

If this illustration looks familiar, it’s because I’ve used it before as the cover of an imaginary magazine. For the book, however, I took the trouble to straighten the image, restore the borders as well as I could, and clean it up thoroughly. I want it to look its best when company comes.

So stick around and see if the book happens. If I can manage to squeeze in a few minutes of work on it here and there, it might just come out before we ring in the twentieth anniversary of Gates of Vienna.

(For more about the Löbel Bastion and the breaking of the second siege of Vienna in 1683, see “The Other September 11th”.)

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Thursday’s donors represented the following places:

Stateside: California, Georgia, Oregon, Texas, and Virginia

Near Abroad: Canada

Far Abroad: Australia, India, Ireland, and the UK

Thank you all for your ongoing generosity. We’re overwhelmed by the response.

The tip jar in the text above is just for decoration. To donate, click the tin cup on our sidebar, or the donate button, on the main page. If you prefer a monthly subscription, click the “subscribe” button.

The photo at the top of this post is from the New York City Municipal Archives.

9 thoughts on “Bridges and Bastions

  1. I can’t keep myself from repeating the names Zuckerman, Soros, Gates, Adelson, Bloomberg, Buffett, Turner etc. and tallying up in my mind what I know of how much each has given, and to what causes, that almost invariably serve to destroy their country and their civilization. I have a feeling that even the economic upper tier of donors to GoV is four or five zeros short of the above swells. I wonder at what break point of net worth quantity becomes quality — i.e. rot of the brain and soul…

  2. Congratulations on your TENTH anniversary Baron and Dymphna I owe you my education in the major issues of the day! So, an unpayable debt and on to the next ten years of struggle, I will be ninety, there’s a fun prospect [just visited my cousins who have passed that signpost and we had a great discussion on the design of the hospital ward of today as they are both doctors].
    Courage mes amis, le diable est mort!!!

  3. I just got off the phone with a long time friend of mine. I have known her since I was five years old.
    She has been in the hospital for three weeks and one day. She told me that the total bill to her will be $500 based on the insurance her husband holds through a local school district.
    I was hospitalized last winter for pneumonia. I almost died twice according to the ICU Docs. The bill was $500,000. In addition, my bill for outpatient pulmonary rehab was $1,000. I am being asked to pay 20% of the hospital bill and the full deductible of the outpatient rehab bill.
    When I was told that a shower chair would cost $210 and a walker would cost $180 I balked… I contacted a person I knew from the local Garden Club who is also a primary in a “lending society” and asked for a shower chair and a walker. They were more than happy to do that and, according to my husband who went to pick these things up before my discharge, it was a warehouse of items for those infirmed.
    I hate to get to begging but, I did beg my friend to reject the insurance company “free” walker and shower chair. I told her I was willing to deliver the walker and the shower chair to her home.
    She didn’t want to hear about it. The insurance company was going to pay for this and that was that.
    This is what we have come to in the United States.
    People like me are expected to pick up the tab for people like my friend. Never mind that it might destroy us personally, the people that can’t pay or don’t want to pay are protected by those that can.
    It will take us years to pay off the bills for my pneumonia. I live in fear of contracting it again. Not the least of which is having to pay the bills for the illness.
    I look at the experience of my friend and I look at my own. We walked away from the hospital owing 10,000 dollars. She is walking away owning 500 dollars. There is something very wrong with this.

  4. If we add 10,000 and 500 and divide by 2 we would both end up owing 5,250. Maybe then my friend would find the reason in using a free shower chair and walker from a lending society.
    Healthcare has gone crazy in the US. The big losers are those that get up and go to work every day in a non-union job.

    • Babs, I’m sorry you were so ill. I’m guessing the reason you had this horrendous bill is because you weren’t insured.

      If you lived in the UK, you’d have been treated for free, and in the days when I was a taxpayer, I’d have been happy to put in my $5,250’s worth. Not trying to start an argument about socialised medicine, just pointing out that there are arguments on both sides.

  5. I see his wealthy little snobbishness Micheal Bloomberg used some moms in a attempt to get Krogers to ban guns and got rejected. And now its time for his little bratiness Prince Mikie to be turned into a toadiefrog and with all the princsess all married

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