Ski and Me: Update #3

Back in December 2020, I first posted on my sister’s medical adventures. Elizabeth Sciabarra (aka “Ms. Ski” to the thousands of students whose lives she touched as an educator for nearly fifty years) was taken seriously ill in mid-November. This was followed in mid-March by back surgery, which necessitated her entrance, on April 7, 2021, into a subacute rehabilitation facility. She has toughed it out, as only she can, and today—after 4+ months of physical therapy—I am happy to report that my sister is home again.

The first thing on our agenda was ordering some Brooklyn Pizza to celebrate her return!

Here’s to many more days of celebrating, as she continues to progress toward full recovery. Thanks to all those who have expressed their love and support.

Here’s to My Sister! My Friend! My Partner in Crime! With all my love, always …

Welcome Home!

Pete Alonso: HR Derby Champ Again!

I don’t care if you’re a Yankees fan (like me) or a Mets fan! Two cheers (for two consecutive wins) to the Mets’ Pete Alonso for winning the Home Run Derby again! Great show! And the kid’s got rhythm too (see below) —

JARS: Dedicating and Rededicating …

Over the last twenty-one years of The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies, we have lost key members of the JARS family. In 2005, one of our cofounders—the man with the vision to create this journal—Bill Bradford, passed away. This was followed by the deaths of original Advisory Board members Larry J. Sechrest in 2008 and John Hospers in 2011. David Mayer, who joined the Board of Advisors in 2012, died in 2019. And in June 2021, we were greatly saddened to learn that Steven Horwitz, another Advisory Board member from the class of 2012, lost his battle with multiple myeloma.

It is in Steve’s memory that we will dedicate the forthcoming December 2021 issue of JARS, published by Pennsylvania State University Press.

But dedications of this sort require rededications to our mission—as we continue to be the only nonpartisan, biannual, interdisciplinary university-press published, double-blind peer-reviewed scholarly periodical devoted to the critical examination of Ayn Rand and her times. To that end, we are proud to announce the addition of four new Advisory Board members and one new Editorial Board member (and fuller bios for these folks will follow in our December 2021 issue):

We are also pleased to announce that Roger E. Bissell, another prolific contributor to JARS since its debut in 1999, has become an Associate Editor. Roger is an independent scholar living in Antioch, Tennessee. A research associate with the Molinari Institute, he has edited no fewer than ten books and is the author of more than three dozen scholarly essays in philosophy and psychology and four books, including How the Martians Discovered Algebra: Explorations in Induction and the Philosophy of Mathematics (2014) and What’s in Your File Folder? Essays on the Nature and Logic of Propositions (2019). He is also the coeditor, with Chris Matthew Sciabarra (me!) and Edward W. Younkins, of The Dialectics of Liberty: Exploring the Context of Human Freedom. A lifelong professional musician, he has an M.A. in music performance and literature (University of Iowa) and a B.S. in music theory and composition (Iowa State University).

In welcoming these individuals, we remain profoundly grateful to all of our editorial and advisory board members for their continued support, which is integral to our ongoing intellectual journey.

Stay tuned for what promises to be a blockbuster December 2021 issue of JARS!

Props to Italy in Euro 2020!

It’s like the Fourth of July again in these parts of Brooklyn! Congratulations to Italy for winning Euro 2020!

Song of the Day #1873

Song of the Day: 1979 Disconet Top Tune Medley [YouTube link], mixed by Jersey native John Matarazzo and Brooklyn-born Mike Arato, is one of my all-time favorite Disconet gems. It was heard not only in clubs but played by Paco on “Disco 92, WKTU” in New York City, typically blaring from car radios on 86th Street in Brooklyn [YouTube link]. It features snippets from classic disco tracks such as “This Time Baby“, “Don’t Stop till You Get Enough“, “Dancer“, “Heaven Must Have Sent You“, “Don’t You Want My Love“, “I’ve Got the Next Dance“, “Ain’t Nothing Gonna Keep Me From You“, “The Break“, “Come to Me” and “There But for the Grace of God Go I“—a song by Machine of raw social commentary that provided one of the quintessential disco riffs of all time. This superb dance medley was done the old fashioned way, without digital sampling, and with all the talent that a remixer could muster!

Song of the Day #1872

Song of the Day: This Land is Your Land was given lyrics by Woody Guthrie over the melody of a Carter Family tune called “When the World’s On Fire.” Some folks have insisted this is some kind of “Marxist” response to Irving Berlin‘s “God Bless America.” Whatever its underlying politics, it was a song whose lyrics (all of them) we learned when I was in school, and has become a part of Americana. Check out the original Guthrie recording here [YouTube link]. A Happy and Safe Independence Day to All!

Song of the Day #1871

Song of the Day: 1978 Disconet Top Tune Medley [YouTube link], mixed by Silvio Barthez, produced by Bobby DJ Guttadaro and “Captain” Mike Wilkinson, features some of the biggest dance hits of that year. From “I Will Survive“, “Let’s Start The Dance“, “Boogie Oogie Oogie“, “Instant Replay“, and “In the Bush“—and we’re not talking Presidents!—to “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)“, “Shame“, and “Shake Your Groove Thing“, this one rocked the dance floor back in the day!

Thinking Outside the Box (III) – H/T Roderick Tracy Long!

This brief but wonderful presentation by Roderick Tracy Long pinpoints one of the key problems I was discussing in my earlier posts on “Thinking Outside the Box” (Part 1 and Part 2) with terms such as “capitalism” and “socialism.” Check it out!


NYC Board of Elections: Comic App!

The New York Democratic Party primary that will select that party’s candidate for the 2021 Mayoral Election this November has been in disarray due to all sorts of typical screw-ups by the Infamous “Board of Elections” here. “Ranked-choice voting” is starting to smell a bit, uh, rank.

When folks around here used to say that “the Board of Elections has its head up its ass,” I’ve always wondered exactly what that would look like. Bill Bramhall (of “Bramhall’s World“) has finally given us a pic!

Courtesy of the New York Daily News (July 1, 2021)