Monsieur Jacques d'Nalgar

Monsieur Jacques d’Nalgar is a working curmudgeon with a cat-killing curiosity in politics, religion, history, and other manifestations of irrational human behavior. He resides in Hot Springs, Arkansas, a semi-autonomous region of the United States (a waning political experiment on the third planet of a minor solar system in a remote corner of the Milky Way galaxy), with his wife and other assorted wildlife. Jacques is a son and grandson of Baptist preachers, missionaries and educators. He was born in Beirut, Lebanon, where his father was a school headmaster for more than 30 years (and before that, a B-17 navigator in the last months of WW2). He grew up in the Middle East during the turbulent 50s, 60s, and 70s, but left just before Lebanon’s 15-year nightmare began in earnest. Most reputable historians do not associate the onset of that tragic conflict with his departure. He returned for a visit in 1978, three years into the civil war. His right eye still occasionally twitches as a result. After college in Oklahoma and working for a large oilfield servicing company now forever identified with the dark lord Dick Cheney, he moved his family to Hot Springs in 1994. Jacques spends most of his time reading, blogging under a barely-disguised snotty “Freedom Fries” pseudonym, and staring at the sun. He works tirelessly for the OAFS (Obsessive Alliteration-Fondness Syndrome) Foundation, as both its only benefactor and sole beneficiary. Jacques’ political pilgrimage has meandered across much of the left-right continuum. Once a staunch conservative (by all standard litmus tests), he found himself suddenly adrift when the rest of the country lurched hard-right after 9-11. He is a frequent critic of our national love affair with wars, rampant nationalism in general, and the resurgent, xenophobic frenzy that masquerades as patriotism. He once defined his religious confession as Zen Baptist, a burgeoning movement (of one) within the Southern Baptist Convention seeking to reclaim the mantle of Christian orthodoxy from fevered fundamentalists just itching for Armageddon. When evangelicals embraced the tangerine wankmaggot Trump and rejected Jesus, the futility of his quest was apparent. He abandoned the family faith and embraced Episcopalians' peculiar cocktail of ancient traditions and progressive inclusion. Monsieur d’Nalgar may be reached by sending him your questions telepathically, or by sending him money. He prefers the latter.

Most commented posts

  1. Bane of fundamentalism — 10 comments
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Author's posts

Evangelism 101

… … … This is from part of President Daniel Bliss’ speech when the cornerstone of College Hall was dedicated at the Syrian Protestant College (now American University of Beirut) in 1871: “This college is for all conditions and classes of men without regard to color, nationality, race or religion. A man, white, black, or …

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Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2005/06/09/evangelism-101/

Trolling for fools

With Trembling Finger By Hal Crowther, circa November 2004   I used to take a drink on occasion with a network newsman famed for his impenetrable calm — his apparent pulse rate that of a large mammal in deep hibernation — and in an avuncular moment he advised me that I’d do all right, in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2004/11/02/trolling-for-fools/

Vanished like the strange times we lived

Strange Days By Jacques d’Nalgar, October 11, 2004   1974 was the year I graduated from ACS. We were one of the last classes from those strange days between the wars of 1967 and 1973 and the horror that almost erased Lebanon, a time and place that 30 years later, still weaves itself into my …

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Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2004/10/11/vanished-like-the-strange-times-we-lived/

Rights and wrongs are rather more complex

Syria’s Shades of Gray By William Dalrymple, June 07, 2003   The United States has probably never been more engaged in the Middle East than now, with an American army of occupation in Iraq and President Bush promoting a Israeli-Palestinian road map to peace. Yet the Bush administration has virtually ignored Syria, which physically links …

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Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2003/06/07/rights-and-wrongs-are-rather-more-complex/

Fertile shores of the 700 Club

Dear editor, A couple of nights ago, channel-surfing landed me on the fertile shores of the 700 Club. The Reverend Pat Robertson was doing a spectacular job of keeping a straight face as he “logically” connected the dots for his audience, directly linking natural disasters in these United States — fires, floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes …

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Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2003/06/06/fertile-shores-of-the-700-club/