Monday, July 12, 2004
I'm just not feeling very smart right now. I think maybe I'm expending all of my intellectual energy on my work, which is probably a good thing. I'm knee deep in a treason and sedition trial from 1918, and it's simultaneously depressing and a little heartening. Depressing because the defendant was, as far as I can tell, guilty of nothing other than publishing unpopular opinions in an unapologetic and bombastic fashion. He was eventually acquitted of all charges, but not until he'd spent nearly a year in jail, been financially ruined, and had his name become synonymous with disloyalty. The government systematically and effectively destroyed his life, essentially for being the Michael Moore of his day. And as depressing at it is, it's heartening to know that the country got through 1918. Since A. Mitchell Palmer was like John Ashcroft on steroids, I think we'll probably get through this, too.