Need To Know with Mona Charen and Jay Nordlinger
Episode 67: The Growling Bear

Guest: Professor Richard Pipes, the historian of Russia (and national-security official in the Reagan administration)
Mar 8, 2014
Direct Link to MP3 File

Direct link to MP3 file

Mona and Jay’s guest this week is Professor Richard Pipes, the historian of Russia (and national-security official in the Reagan administration). His subjects are Russia, Ukraine, Putin, Obama—and some others as well. He is one of the leading scholars of our time. Then, Mona and Jay take up yet more subjects: national greatness, and the question of honor; America’s energy revolution; charter schools, and a fissure on the left; Lincoln and Churchill, as a pair; the abominable Harry Reid; the interesting Maria von Trapp (daughter, not governess); etc.

The concluding music is from Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 2, the “Little Russian.” As Jay has explained many times in print, the nickname does not refer to a short Muscovite; it refers to Ukraine.

Help Ricochet by Supporting Our Advertisers!

Need To Know is sponsored by Encounter Books. This week’s pick is Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Engaging Rogue Regimes by Michael Rubin. Use the coupon code RICOCHET at checkout and get 15% off list price.

  1. Nick Stuart

    To the extent that Common Core helps a limited number of children and their families, it’s a good thing. Can’t save every child, but it makes a big difference to the ones who are.

    That said, it is criminal that the best our elected officials can come up with is subjecting to pure chance in the form of a lottery the lives and fortunes of children for all of whom they have an obligation to provide an education, and all of whom the taxpayers are paying confiscatory rates of taxation to educate.

    Because of the malign influence of the adults whose livelihoods are dependent on it, public education is irremediably and irredeemably broken. It can only be fixed by real competition, which will only happen when public provision of education is decoupled from public funding of education. Education should be voucherized with every child getting a voucher for their full per capita share of state/local education spending in their district. Let the chips fall where they may.

  2. Sal

    Jay’s comment about tribalism, Russian and Arab, is really hard for modern Westerners to understand. Seeming adherence to the values and beliefs of the tribe are essential because the individual who dissents is ostracized. In primitive societies, where there are no institutions that reliably transcend tribe, ostracism is a dangerous thing. The outcast is beyond the mantle of protection of the tribe and easy prey for rival tribes. That is why Arabs will not speak ill of their atrocious governments to outsiders, that is why most Russians, with a few Pussy-Riotous exceptions, support their authoritarian government. I really admire those few brave souls who dare break with their tribe to speak the truth such as Sakharov and the Cuban dissenters.Another misunderstood aspect of tribal societies is the disdain in which people who betray their tribe are viewed by members of rival tribes. Americans who go to tribal societies and utter anti-American things are frequently surprised to discover that they are not held in high regard for their apostasy. Even people who hate America vigorously, despise self-loathing Americans even more. This is why the foreign policy of apology so beloved of leftists is so disastrous.

  3. doc molloy

    Another great discussion with Prof Richard Pipes..

    Going Home sung by Jane Froman and used to great effect at the end of The Snake Pit

  4. Benjamin Glaser

    I am not a fan of Abraham Lincoln, but do admire Winston Churchill. 

  5. Hartmann von Aue

    Here’s some recommended additional reading on Israel’s energy future, just in case any regular listeners have not yet seen it: http://www.commentarymagazine.com/article/will-israel-be-the-next-energy-superpower/

  6. kylez
    Benjamin Glaser: I am not a fan of Abraham Lincoln, but do admire Winston Churchill.  · 3 hours ago

    a semi-shrivelled soul. 

Want to comment on stories like these? Become a member today!

You'll have access to:

  • All Ricochet articles, posts and podcasts.
  • The conversation amongst our members.
  • The opportunity share your Ricochet experiences.

Join Today!

Already a Member? Sign In