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Al Über Alles

The Sony affair has revealed, in many ways, just how appallingly far our culture’s wasting disease has progressed, but this is by far the direst symptom of all: Sharpton to have say over how Sony makes movies Excerpt: Hollywood ​came to the Rev. Al Thursday as embattled Sony exec Amy Pascal ​met ​privately with the […]

Up And At ‘Em

I’ve recovered considerably from Monday’s little indignity, and although I haven’t had time or energy to comment on the big stories of the week, I should be back in fighting form soon enough. Just a couple of little items for tonight: At the conclusion of all the injecting and slicing and yanking and scraping and […]

Service Notice

It might be a little quieter than usual here for the next couple of days. I’m recovering tonight from a fairly substantial round of reconstructive oral surgery, and the next few days will be as busy as my capacities, which are likely to be somewhat diminished by powerful medicaments, will allow. My thanks as always […]

This Ain’t The Movies

Perhaps the silliest response to the Ferguson incident is one I’ve heard at least a dozen times, both publicly and privately: “Why didn’t the officer just wound him?” The speaker is invariably an Eloi hoplophobe who wouldn’t know a Ruger from arugula. It’s fatiguing. With a hat tip to the indefatigable JK, here’s Michael Yon […]

The Bonfire Of The Sanities

Following on last spring’s item on the NYPD, here’s a story from yesterday’s Post: FDNY drops physical test requirement amid low female hiring rate The Fire Department has stopped requiring probationary firefighters to pass a job-related physical-skills test before getting hired… Fifty years ago, it would have been obvious to any rational person that this […]

There Are Too Damn Many Laws

Recently I wrote: Have we reached the point where we want to forbid the police to use force, when necessary, to make arrests? Approach this idea with caution, for to grant a monopoly of physical force to the State, except in cases of immediate self-defense, is the very bedrock of the social contract that makes […]

He’s In The Details

Some time ago I offered a peek at the way modern legislation ensures transparency and ease of understanding. Given that getting at the meaning of almost any Federal bill these days entails reading not only the bill itself, but also the plexus of other Acts that it refers to or modifies, thoroughly unraveling these monstrosities […]

Sound And Fury

Yesterday’s Senate report on the CIA has sparked a lot of talk, most of it on a very shallow and very binary level. (Post on that forthcoming, when time permits.) As noted yesterday, the report is far from impartial. Several former directors and deputy directors of the CIA, who were active during the period covered […]

A Slight Air Of Unreality

Today we will have the Senate’s report on the use of harsh interrogation methods by the CIA. There will be a great spasm of hand-wringing — indeed, there already has been — and no doubt the report will be further confirmation, for those who scarcely need it, of the fundamental vileness of the United States […]

On The Rule Of Law

From a column by Thomas Sowell, today at NRO: Let the responsibility lie with whoever forces a resort to force. Also: For people who have never tried to take into custody someone resisting arrest, to sit back in the safety and comfort of their homes or offices and second-guess people who face the dangers inherent […]

A Dextral Potpourri

Here’s something I’ve only just come across, though it was begun almost a year ago: a running list of victims of left-wing purges for thoughtcrime. And don’t miss John Derbyshire’s commentary on it, here. Speaking of Derb, here’s a dour assessment of the State of the Union, recently published at Takimag. And as long as […]

Lord, Have Mercy

This exists.

And So It Goes

Well, Zemir Begic is already down the memory hole, it seems (who?), along with executive action on amnesty, etc. Now it’s Eric Garner, all the time, and race-hatred is ablaze in the streets again — the flames whipped up, as always, by those who delight and luxuriate in cultural arson. Mr. Garner’s story is a […]

The Audacity Of Mendacity

Even the Washington Post now agrees that President Obama’s unilateral action on immigration is unprecedented, and that his claims to the contrary are audacious and palpable falsehoods. It is now up to Congress to defend its Constitutional authority in the only way it can, short of impeachment: by using the power of the purse to […]

If They Had A Hammer…

Did you hear about the brutal murder of Zemir Begic in St. Louis a couple of days ago? He was beaten to death, with hammers, by ‘teens’. If you haven’t heard about this it isn’t surprising; none of the major news outlets thought it fit for much attention. After all, there’s no reason to think […]

Memento Vivere

As bad as things are, all is not lost. Here are three clips of good live music. First, a farewell performance, by Crowded House, of Neil Finn’s Don’t Dream It’s Over. I’ve always thought this is a beautiful, beautiful song, and by the time this version was recorded in 1996, Mr. Finn’s voice, which had […]

Next

In a post the other day I wrote: The universal acid of radical skepticism having nearly completed its work, all transcendent values have now been dissolved — and if all that once was sacred is now remembered at all, is only to be mocked and scorned. Nietzsche saw this coming: “the total eclipse of all […]

Happy Thanksgiving!

To all of you. Although dark clouds gather, we still have a great deal to be thankful for — and here’s a little historical reminder that much of what we have to be thankful for is still worth preserving and defending.

The Healing Touch

On Monday night, as the sack of Ferguson was just getting underway, President Obama appeared on television to make a lackluster appeal for decorum. (His remarks were broadcast in split-screen, with the gathering riot on one side and Mr. Obama on the other; the juxtaposition made for some memorable TV.) Writing at City Journal, Heather […]

Watching The World Burn

By now even the most rose-bespectacled Pollyannas among you (you know who you are) must be noticing that things are getting a little, um, frayed. As I write, civil order is fracturing, with impressive coordination, all over the country. Last night an American city was sacked by barbarians — looted, pillaged, and burned as the […]

Angels And Demons

When hopes and dreams are loose in the streets, it is well for the timid to lock doors, shutter windows and lie low until the wrath has passed. For there is often a monstrous incongruity between the hopes, however noble and tender, and the action which follows them. It is as if ivied maidens and […]

Meanwhile…

At least there’s some good news today.

Paging Dr. Richter

Everybody’s talking about the unilateral illegal-alien amnesty President Obama plans to announce tonight. (One thing you may not have heard, buy the way, is that it will add as many new foreign workers as there have been jobs created since 2009, at a time when, for example, unemployment among blacks, who will disproportionately be competing […]

Master Class

On my very short list of all-time favorite writers is the great John McPhee. (If you’ve never read him, stop wasting your life and correct this mistake at once.) Here, in the Princeton Alumni Journal, is an appreciation of Mr. McPhee by one of his students, Joel Achenbach ’82. Enjoy.

Where’s My Pitchfork?

“First of all, temporary protective status historically has been used for special circumstances where you have immigrants to this country who are fleeing persecution in their countries. Or there’s some emergency situation in their native land that required them to come to the United States. So it would not be appropriate to use that just […]

No-Win Situation

Here’s a pungent analysis of the situation in Iraq from the ‘XX Committee’ blog. (Hat tip to the indefatigable JK.) Key excerpt: The U.S. military is quite capable of defeating almost any adversary on the battlefield, even Da’ish, though that is not the same thing as producing lasting political outcomes that Americans will like. This […]

Fanning The Fire

The nation waits with bated breath for the Ferguson grand jury to return its verdict. The expectation is that there will be no indictment, as it appears that Michael Brown had attacked Officer Darren Wilson, badly injuring him, and was trying to take the officer’s pistol when he was shot. The expectation is also that […]

Boil That Frog

Yawn… ISIS beheads another American. You know, when I was younger, that would have been a pretty big deal.

Did This Happen?

Having unbosomed myself of that dyspeptic political rant yesterday, it’s time to change the subject. Here is an unsettling story about an encounter that the USS Donald Cook (DDG-75), an Arleigh Burke-class missile destroyer, had with a Russian SU-24 in the Black Sea last April. I have only just learned about this, and while it […]

We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Mandate

The Democrats, and by proxy Barack Obama, got hammered last week. Lest you think this was just some low-turnout election that doesn’t really mean much, a Gallup poll taken afterwards indicated that by a sizable margin — 53% to 36% — Americans would rather have the GOP at the helm than Mr. Obama. (And that’s […]

Links

I’ve been too busy, again, to discharge my duties around here for a few days — and I’m working late again tonight. Here are a few links that have been piling up: ‣   Nine horror films under 9 minutes. ‣   The Life of R’lyeh. ‣   What to get me for Christmas. ‣ […]

We’ll Leave The Light On For You

In case any of you blue-state types are losing some of your mojo in the wake of this week’s whuppin’, and might even be thinking about joining the forces of Good and Truth and Liberty and Tradition and Reason over here on the Right, here’s some gentle prodding from one Danusha V. Goshka: Ten Reasons […]

The Tingle’s Gone

In the wake of today’s bizarre, solipsistic White House presser, it seems that even Chris Matthews is beginning to see through Barack Obama’s charismatic aura. Better late than never, I guess. We all know people who are still under the man’s spell, even now.

America Resists

Last night’s election results were a welcome sign of life, and a clear indication that the Left’s cultural and political blitzkrieg of the past few years has outstripped its supply lines, and conquered more territory than it can hold. Exactly what legislative ground can actually be retaken by the forces of order, liberty, sanity, and […]

End Of The Road

More sad news today: Tom Magliozzi, who with his younger brother Ray hosted the weekly radio program Car Talk, has died of Alzheimers at age 77. I’m really, really sad to hear this. I loved this show, and I loved these guys. (Yeesh — first Jack Bruce, and now Tom Magliozzi, in a just over […]

Res Ipsa Loquitur

I’m a registered Democrat. Some of you may find this surprising. The reason is purely tactical: I am registered in New York City, where any conservative vote is just a drop in the left-wing ocean, so the best I can hope to do is to exert a microscopic influence, in the Democratic primaries, to support […]

Fact And Faction

The other day a group calling itself ‘Hollaback’ posted a video on YouTube called 10 Hours of Walking in NYC as a Woman. Its apparent purpose was to call attention to the oppressive conditions that women, even in these relatively enlightened times, must endure in a culture still in the grip of a malevolent and […]

Last Light

Here’s Wellfleet Harbor, just after sunset Sunday.  

Tweet Of The Day

Is this: Barack Obama couldn’t lift Bibi Netanyahu’s balls off the ground. Just so we’re all clear. — Narrative O'Failure (@MetricButtload) October 28, 2014 It was posted in response to this item, which explains that behind closed doors president Obama and his staff refer to Mr. Netanyahu as a “chickenshit”. It’s easy, of course, to […]

Into The Tumbrel

The comedian Bill Maher has, throughout his career, been a darling of the Left. His smug and odious schtick has for years consisted of taunting and ridiculing conservatives, Republicans, Christians, and pretty much anyone who represents American traditional values. (That he chooses to do so in the coarsest and most vulgar terms imaginable only serves […]

On Introversion

Last week at Maverick Philosopher, Bill V. put up a post comparing the introvert with the extrovert: The extrovert is like a mirror: being nothing in himself, he is only what he reflects. A caricature, no doubt, but useful in delineation of an ideal type. This is why the extrovert needs others. Without them, he […]

Pix

I love autumn in the Outer Cape. Here are a few photos I’ve snapped around Wellfleet lately: Here’s the sky in tatters over Wellfleet Harbor after last week’s storm:     And some fall color along Commercial Street:     A leaden sky over Cape Cod Bay, looking southwest from Bound Brook Island:     […]

What A Bringdown

It is with deep sadness that I must report the death of the great Jack Bruce, who died today in England at age 71. He was a giant to me, and my heart is heavy tonight. You can read about his life, and his long musical career, here.

Hillary On The Hustings

This from Hillary Clinton today: “Don’t let anybody tell you that, you know, that it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs.” I kid you not.

Filming A Hole

On my bookshelf at home is a massive tome called Gravitation, by the great astrophysicists Charles Misner, John Wheeler and Kip Thorne. I picked it up at a used-book sale about twenty years ago, at a time when I was reading everything I could get my hands on about cosmology and relativistic physics. It was […]

Just Random, Senseless Tragedies

This just in: RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson says there’s no evidence of a link between Parliament Hill gunman Michael Zehaf-Bibeau and Martin Couture-Rouleau, who ran down two Canadian soldiers in Quebec on Monday. No, nothing linking these two. Can’t seem to turn up anything they might have had in common. Well, here’s one thing: they […]

The Main Drawback

More and more over the past decade or so I’ve become convinced that modern, secular, post-Enlightenment civilization — perhaps high civilization in any form, but especially the sort we live in today — operates in such a way as inexorably to extinguish itself. Writing in the early 20th century, the prominent Progressive intellectual and author […]

Potpourri

I’ve been neglectful of the blog this past week — it’s been five days since the last post. I’ve been busy, but that’s not all of it; there are times when the well just runs dry, and this has been one of them. It certainly isn’t as if there isn’t a lot going on that’s […]

Why Is The Left So Willfully Blind To The Reality of Islam?

As is usually the case on Tuesdays, I’m working late, so “hie thee hence” to the Maverick Philosopher’s website, where our man Bill has put together an excellent post on this vexatious question. Better yet, Bill has opened the post to comments — a rarity these days — so if any of our liberal readers […]

“Greenhouse” Warming In Pacific Northwest? Just Hot Air

The Pacific Northwest has been getting a little warmer over the past century or so. As reported by the New York Times, however, a new (“and”, the Times hastens to add, “most likely controversial”) study shows that this appears not to have been due to rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Story here.