Culture

Garrison Keillor’s “erasure” — an update

Featured image Michael Barone takes up the case of Minnesota Public Radio’s erasure of Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion” and “The Writer’s Almanac” broadcasts from its website. Barone shares my unhappiness, and that of Rod Dreher, that Keillor’s work has been flushed down the memory hole because of the author’s sins. Barone notes that Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio was a criminal, quite possibly a murderer, yet he created great art. Indeed, »

Garrison Keillor flushed down the memory hole

Featured image After Kevin Spacey was excised from the upcoming movie All the Money in the World (his scenes to be reshot with Christoper Plummer), I modestly proposed that Hollywood remove and reshoot Spacey’s scenes in Beyond the Sea and The Usual Suspects, and destroy all copies of American Beauty — that hackneyed attempt at a takedown of suburban America. This expungement, I said in jest, was the required remedy for Spacey’s »

Darkest two hours

Featured image We went to see Darkest Hour last night. The film portrays Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman) in May 1940. When Neville Chamberlain stepped down, Churchill became Prime Minister on May 10 and became Great Britain’s war leader. In Five Days in London: May 1940 (1999), John Lukacs focused on these events and took us into the cabinet meetings portrayed in the film. Stick with Lukacs. The film reduces Churchill to a »

Weekend reading

Featured image I want to take the liberty of drawing attention to weekend reading of special interest without commentary from me. I recommend: • Douglas Murray, “The Russian Revolution, 100 years on.” Murray looks back at what Communism wrought and decries its continuing appeal. NRO has posted Murray’s recent cover story along with sidebars by Anne Applebaum, David Pryce-Jones, Noah Rothman, Roger Scruton, and Radoslaw Sikorski assigning notable books for extra credit »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll draws on painful personal experience to declare NOW IS THE TIME FOR ALL GOOD MEN…is not just a typing exercise! She writes: On an hourly basis, we learn of another woman making accusations of sexual harassment, assault, even outright rape. Other women claim to be “uncomfortable” or offended by a hand on a shoulder, a pat on the back, any human touch. I come from a warm “touchy” »

Bottom, er, Story of the Day

Featured image Every time I hear some liberal say they wish Twitter would close down President Trump’s Twitter account, I ask, “Why would they want to do him such a big favor?” (Of course, I know Trump uses his Tweets to great—as well as not so great—effect, but given how crazy it drives libs I like to confuse them with misdirection as often as I can.) Well lo and behold: Twitter employee »

George Bush’s speech

Featured image Last week, George W. Bush delivered an address decrying the rise of nativism, bigotry, and incivility in recent years. The former president did not mention the current one by name, but it is clear that he had Donald Trump mind. Whether Bush blames Trump for the rise of all three phenomena — nativism, bigotry, and incivility — is less certain. I suspect he does. Construing Bush’s speech as an across-the-board »

The Ken Burns version, cont’d

Featured image I watched all 18 hours of the Ken Burns/Lynn Novick/Geoffrey Ward documentary The Vietnam War. Ten years in the making, it draws on enormous resources to fix our history in falsity. It seeks to endow the war as portrayed by the antiwar left with the status of the authorized version. A credulous consumer of the antiwar literature of the era, I began to get a clue around about the time »

The human stain

Featured image The Weekly Standard has posted a brilliant column by senior editor Lee Smith reflecting on the meaning of the disgrace of Harvey Weinstein. Lee’s piece is titled “The human stain: Why the Harvey Weinstein story is worse than you think.” It is unlike anything else you will read on Weinstein and full of quotable quotes to boot, including this cutting “thought experiment”: Would the Weinstein story have been published if »

Notes on the Ken Burns version

Featured image I want to add a few notes to Paul’s comments as well as my own on the gargantuan Ken Burns/Lynn Novick PBS documentary The Vietnam War. I think it warrants more informed commentary than my own, but let me these offer notes while we wait for knowledgeable observers such as Mackubin Owens, Victor Davis Hanson and James Robbins to weigh in. As of this weekend, we do have George Veith’s »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll is not herself a vicim of GENDER DYSPHORIA or “GIRLS” GONE STUPID. She writes: I will not be commenting – except indirectly further on – on the monstrous evil in Las Vegas until more facts are known. I am writing this on Tuesday, must submit it for editing on Wednesday, so by the time you are reading this, anything I have to say about Vegas will either be »

Wake Up to Wokeness, or Something

Featured image We could use a little comic relief on a day of such grim news, so it’s worth taking in how Saturday Night Live once again skewers the political correctness of the left with their offering of “Woke Jeans.” Memo to campus crazies: when the pinnacle of liberal pop culture thinks you’re making a silly ass of yourself, you’re making a silly ass of yourself. Bonus flashback: This isn’t the first »

The Vietnam War gets the Ken Burns treatment

Featured image I didn’t watch all 18 hours of Ken Burns’ series about the Vietnam War, but I forced myself to endure roughly two-thirds of it. I found Burns’ version of the war biased and superficial. Scott has performed a service by posting a conference about the series held at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). As Scott says, Lewis Sorley’s presentation, which begins at 48:00, provides a devastating critique »

The Ken Burns version

Featured image Having lived through the period of maximum American participation in the Vietnam War as an interested observer and antiwar protester, I have come to doubt much of what I believed to be true at the time. For example, I took at face value the pseudo scholarly 1967 account of The United States in Vietnam by George M. Kahin and John W. Lewis. Kahin and Lewis asserted that the conflict was »

If you liked Ike

Featured image Dwight Eisenhower was one of the greatest Americans of the twentieth century. As Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces, he led the United States to victory over Nazi Germany in World War II. As president of the United States, he presided over a period of normalcy and peace with many accomplishments that benefited the country. A memorial is to be erected on the mall in Washington, DC, in his honor. »

The Causes of Income Inequality, Revealed

Featured image In 1995, Scott and I wrote a paper titled The Truth About Income Inequality, which was published by Center of the American Experiment, the organization I now lead. It got quite a bit of national attention, and I subsequently debated Congressman Martin Sabo, who then represented Minneapolis, on the subject at a Center-sponsored event that was televised by C-SPAN. That paper looked at the issue of income inequality from a »

That which must not be said

Featured image John Mortimer’s Rumpole of the Bailey gave us She Who Must Be Obeyed (i.e., Rumpole’s wife as he privately referred to her). J.K. Rowling gave us He Who Must Not Be Named (i.e., the villain Voldemort). Now higher education gives us daily lessons on That Which Must Not Be Said or, ideally, Thought. Thinking the guilty thoughts puts you at risk of saying them and they must not be said. »