Table of contents

The finest hours 4

The problem with leadership

One other man faces trouble because of unruly men in his command–Cluff. He’s a Southerner among Yanks, & martial in dress & deportment. He feels the burden of authority as his own. He is constantly faced with all-but-open contempt which he cannot see for what it is, lest he be […]

The finest hours 3

The problem with Christianity

The crucial moment is Sybert’s decision to wreck the ship. Then do the men begin to understand that what matters is how they live as sailors. They have to resign themselves; they have to beg for a miracle. What they’re doing is buying time. They have to stop with the […]

The finest hours 2

The scientific ship & the miracle

The conflicts & communities of the men are repeatedly constructed as contrasts between the one & the many. The many are bitter because they are focused on the unfairness of life. This is most obvious in the struggle between Ray Sybert & the surviving crew of the USS […]

The finest hours

On the practical difficulty facing heroism

The year is 1952 & the place is Cape Cod. The Coast Guard stations learn there’s been a terrible accident–a tanker’s sinking in a Nor’easter storm–every effort is made to save the crew. By some strange coincidence, a second tanker, in the vicinity of the first, breaks in […]

Sully 3

The end of the world & business as usual

Sully has moments of fear & nightmares about what amounts to 9/11 happening all over again. His awareness of the limits of his powers torments him. He remembers his days in the Air Force, flying jets–keeping control of a plane & bringing it back to […]

Sully 2

The men & the people

It’s fair to say that the movie lies about how evil the government investigators of the NTSB really were–it was never about ruining Sully’s life. This is not mere drama, however, it is essentially the situation of the security bureaucracies. One wonders whether there is any truth, however, to […]


What’s wrong with American heroes?

Sully is the guy who landed a plane in the Hudson in 2009, three and a half minutes after birds took out his engines, 155 people on board, just after taking off in New York. As soon as every life is saved, however, it is no longer clear who […]