If there’s any lesson a simple-minded fuddy-duddy Platonist like myself takes away from James’s ongoing comments on the Pink Police State and various pertinent news items, it’s to keep my vices simple, and hedge with virtue.
For instance, the old troika of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms is cheaper and more fun than a creepy club full of mafia kitsch, let alone those new emotions, whatever they might be:
“We make clubs for people who don’t want to be out of date, who are always buying the new collections, the new cars, who are always getting the new girls, and who want new emotions.”
Maybe the Times article goes overboard in linking Moscow hedonism to a reluctant and neurotic pro-Putin sentiment. I suspect these guys would know. But after enough of these stories, something like, say, the Maryland State Lottery’s order to “Let Yourself Play” starts to sound even more sinister. The state is bad enough as the agent of one’s constraint — we don’t need it to dispense license as well.