Magazine May 4, 2009, Issue

Mortal Remains

(Darren Gygi)
The wisdom and folly in Albert Jay Nock’s anti-statism

There is a stock character in fiction, particularly science fiction, who might be called the Immortal. Whether he be vampire or angel, alien or just some everyman blessed — or cursed — with Methuselah-like longevity, certain traits define the Immortal. He is polite, generous, even kind, but also resigned to the fact that life is often none of these things. Sometimes he is dismissive or condescending, or perhaps bemusedly indulgent of men’s political or ideological passions, the way old professors relate to freshmen who insist upon the novelty of their ideas and the audacity of their fervor. He’s seen it

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