Dynamist Blog

This Is My Life

I had my final chemo round a week ago yesterday. The Herceptin regimen takes a year, with a dose every three weeks, but it doesn't knock me out the way the chemo does. Now I have to see lots of doctors to figure out the next step, which is most likely more surgery. As today's WaPost reports, a lot of women in my position opt for a double mastectomy, even though the evidence suggests that such extreme measures aren't necessary to save your life. What the article doesn't say is that surgeons--or at least my (female) surgeon--recommend the double procedure to avoid future paranoia. It's not always the patient's idea and, regardless of the surgeon's preference, it's culturally easier to go all-in (or all out) than to be cautious about surgery.

Another Book-Loving Kindle Fan

Will Wilkinson endorses the Kindle, for the reasons I've suggested it will catch on with book lovers: space.

I am inundated in books. I have way too many. I have no place to put them. I often can't find them when I want them. I often don't know what I want to read on a trip, so I carry six heavy books with me, which sucks. I now have something like 20 books in this one little package, and I love it.

But I still haven't bought a Kindle. I just use the library. Once I resume my pre-cancer traveling, however, I'd be tempted.

Reading for Super Tuesday

It's nine years old, but Michael Lynch's Reason profile of John McCain still holds up.

McCain's friends, foes, and biography suggest a more complicated, but no less politically worrisome, explanation. For John McCain, principle is fundamentally about honor--personal honor: about keeping his word, about doing what is right and doing it well. "Principle" combines honesty, stubbornness, and loyalty. This notion of principle is very different from adhering to a consistent political philosophy. It explains McCain's popular appeal, especially in contrast to the exceptionally dishonorable Clinton administration, but also accounts for the distrust, even contempt, he inspires among the ideologically committed.

Read the whole thing.

And for those with more time, I recommend Matt Welch's book, which masterfully uses McCain's own writings and public statements to limn a not-so-attractive portrait of his personality.

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