This Memorial Day, as we solemnly remember the ultimate sacrifices made by the brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces to protect our freedoms, the Washington Post runs a fascinating excerpt from Steve Vogel’s upcoming book, The Pentagon: A History. The excerpt explains how the iconic Pentagon building originated during our country’s nervous, reluctant preparations for the second world war. The design—originally driven by practicality and necessity—remains among my favorite building layouts. I have a Pentagon pass and go there two or three times each month, and—while it took some getting used to—I still love and appreciate the building’s sheer efficiency and simplistic beauty.

Scott Bradford has been building web sites and using them to say what he thinks since 1995, which tended to get him in trouble with power-tripping assistant principals at the time. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from George Mason University, but has spent most of his career (so far) working on public- and private-sector web sites. He is not a member of any political party, and brands himself an ‘independent constitutional conservative.’ In addition to holding down a day job and blogging about challenging subjects like politics, religion, and technology, Scott is also a devout Catholic, gun-owner, bike rider, and music lover with a wife, two cats, and a dog.