Monthly Archives: February 2013

Paint It Black: Post-Mortem on a Sort-Of Race Riot

Featured image We noted here the confusion that was engendered in local media by a melee at South High School in Minneapolis between Somali immigrants and native-born black students. It was hard to make the usual narratives fit. So today, the Minneapolis Star Tribune enlisted two Macalester College professors in a further effort at explication: The brawl between Somali-Americans and black students at Minneapolis’ South High School caught the outside world by »

Why Dartmouth cannot be saved

Featured image The Dartmouth Review, a publication with a proud conservative tradition, recently produced a list of “what we need from President Hanlon,” the College’s new president. It included items like restoring pre-matriculation AP credits, improving the pricing system used by the dining services, pushing back against the town police, ending the ban on kegs, doing a better job of monitoring of frat parties, and so forth. The list contained no suggestions »

Line of the day

Featured image Peter Kirsanow on the impending confirmation of “Caligula’s Horse” as Secretary of Defense: Just because they’re laughing in Tehran, Pyongyang, Moscow, and some hovel in Mali doesn’t mean this nomination is funny. »

The Weekly Winston: Immigration Reform Edition

Featured image While we follow the spectacle of prospective immigration reform and whether Congress employs various “terminological inexactitudes” (Churchill’s term for “lie”) to disguise what would be in essence a blanket amnesty, herewith Churchill’s remark from 1906 that bears on this point: In dealing with nationalities, nothing is more fatal than a dodge.  Wrongs will be forgiven, sufferings and losses will be forgiven or forgotten, battles will be remembered only as they »

Sequestering Common Sense

Featured image So we know, courtesy of that Washington oracle Bob Woodward, that Obama and the White House have simply lied about the origin of the sequester that the Establishment is saying will result in the loosing of the Seven Horsemen of the Apocalypse.  I guess we shouldn’t be amazed at the cynicism of the White House in predicting doom and gloom about a $42 billion (the real cut will only be »

Mark Falcoff: Venezuelan prognosis

Featured image Occasional contributor Mark Falcoff is resident scholar emeritus at AEI. He is the the author, among other books, of Modern Chile, 1970-1989: A Critical History and Cuba the Morning After: Confronting Castro’s Legacy. Mr. Falcoff comments on Venezuela’s future from a perspective that may have some resonance closer to home: Careful reading of news stories coming out of Venezuela these days lead one to an ineluctible conclusion: when president-for-life Hugo »

Germans Are Catching On to Global Warming Alarmism

Featured image In Europe, as in the United States, the climate alarmists’ failed predictions have become an embarrassment. In Germany, warmists have been warning hysterically that Germany and the rest of Central Europe would soon have hardly any winter at all, and little or no snow. Instead, however, winters have been getting colder. P. Gosselin, who translates climate-related papers written in German at No Tricks Zone, writes: With 11 days remaining, Germany »

On Guns, Don’t Listen to Slow Joe

Featured image President Obama has put Joe Biden in charge of his anti-gun initiatives. In another administration, you might assume that means Biden knows something about guns. In this administration, no such luck. Biden has drawn a lot of criticism for his advice to women who think someone may be trying to break into their house. Don’t buy an AR-15, buy a double-barreled shotgun! Biden says he told his wife Jill (at »

Rubio’s immigration plan — the lesser of two evils but not the best alternative

Featured image Charles Krauthammer demonstrates that Marco Rubio’s amnesty/path to citizenship plan is superior to the plan President Obama keeps threatening to propose. He also demonstrates that no other plan has any chance of being enacted. Krauthammer concludes that choice between Rubio’s plan — which he calls the lesser of two evils — and Obama’s is “straightforward.” But Krauthammer does not undertake to show that Rubio’s plan is superior to the status »

Vote for the Liberty Video Award

Featured image has conducted a contest for the best liberty video of 2012. There were four categories: Best Narrative, Best Docu-mini, Best Lesson in Economics, and Most Humorous. The winners in those categories have been chosen, and now it is time to select the overall winner. Here are the contestants, starting with Best Narrative, a stirring video about immigration and the American Dream from the LIBRE Initiative titled “My American Experience”: »

The Abnormal “Normative”

Featured image One of the more interesting exchanges I had with a faculty member in Boulder last week came over my offhand remark during questioning that I, and most conservative academics I know, tend never to use the term so common to academia in the social sciences: “normative.”  I think my interlocutor wondered whether I was going to repair to some kind of antediluvian challenge of the infamous “fact-value” distinction that is »

EEOC goes to bat for drunken steelworkers; strikes out

Featured image We sometimes hear of the savings that could be realized by eliminating “waste, fraud, and abuse” at federal government agencies. But substantial savings might also be achieved if only we could eliminate absurdity. Consider a lawsuit brought by the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against United States Steel and the United Steelworkers Union under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). The suit challenges a practice, approved by the »

Remembering the indispensable man

Featured image Today is the anniversary of the birth of George Washington. Of all the great men of the revolutionary era to whom we owe our freedom, Washington’s greatness was the rarest and the most needed. At this remove in time, it is also the hardest to comprehend. Take, for example, Washington’s contribution to the Constitutional Convention of 1787. Washington’s mere presence lent the undertaking and its handiwork the legitimacy that resulted »

What to make of adverse polling in the sequester blame game

Featured image Much is being made of a Pew poll in which 49 percent say they will blame congressional Republicans if the sequester occurs, compared to only 31 percent who say they will blame President Obama. 11 percent say they will blame both sides, while 8 percent don’t know which side they will blame. I suspect that if the sequester occurs the percentage that blames both sides will increase (in a sense, »

Hagel set to be confirmed

Featured image Richard “Hi, I’m Dick Shelby and I’m holding a fundraiser” Shelby has announced that he will vote to confirm Chuck Hagel. He becomes, effectively, the 60th vote in favor of cloture, with more to follow. Shelby explained that Hagel is “probably as good as we’re going to get” as Secretary of Defense. He’s probably the only Senator who believes this, assuming he does. Perhaps he missed Hagel’s confirmation hearings because »

Annals of Government Medicine

Featured image For a surprisingly long time, the British were proud of their system of socialized medicine, apparently because it was considered egalitarian. Now, however, a series of scandals in the National Health Service has focused attention on how low-quality government medicine is. The National Health Service has been rocked by one report after another of appallingly bad care, with many Britons demanding that NHS officials be criminally prosecuted. Personally, I don’t »

Blocking the Keystone Pipeline: Who Benefits?

Featured image As President Obama deliberates whether to continue blocking the Keystone Pipeline–or pretends to, anyway–environmentalists have gotten more passionate. Last week, 48 climate activists were arrested at the White House as they urged Obama to stop the pipeline. Notables who were arrested included the head of the Sierra Club, Robert Kennedy, Jr., Bill McKibben and Julian Bond. The activists’ sign said that blocking Keystone constitutes “leading on climate.” But does it? »