Briefly Noted: We Often Dream of Trains

Although its text is thin (and, according to some aficionados, error-prone), Robert S. Schleicher’s coffee table history The Lionel Legend: An American Icon (Voyageur Press) suggests why industries grow more politically potent as they become less important to the economy. The rapturous color photos reveal an enchanting world that a generation of man-children yearned to enter during the postwar period—the very time when cars permanently displaced trains as the real world’s ground transportation.

As a style, a sentiment, and an idea of how small-town America ought to look, railroad culture is hard to top—something worth remembering as the tentacles of Vice President Joe Biden’s high-speed colossus enfold an unwilling nation. Mostly bypassing Lionel’s century-long corporate history, Schleicher gives voice to the romance of rail—a romance that depends on those limitations that make trains suboptimal in reality.

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    My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I'm sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won't get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there's more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I'm not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that! It's just that he, like many types of religionists, seems to take it literally, take it straight...the Bible's books were not written by straight laced divinity students in 3 piece suits who white wash religious beliefs as if God made them with clothes on...the Bible's books were written by people with very different mindsets...in order to really get the Books of the Bible, you have to cultivate such a mindset, it's literally a labyrinth, that's no joke

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