“Hamilton’s” George Washington

 

I wanted to do something to honor George Washington’s birthday (his real birthday, not “President’s Day”) so I looked at the way Washington is portrayed in the Broadway musical Hamilton. It is one of my great surprises that he comes off as the most admirable character in the show. We still live in an age of revisionism where we look down on our historical heroes. I wish I remember where I heard this, but someone once said that we don’t see Washington portrayed much in drama because he was a man incomprehensible to our age.

Washington first appears in the song “Right Hand Man.” I got worried when he’s introduced with the lines “Here Comes the General,” because it sounds so over-the-top. But Washington is deeply concerned by the dire situation in New York and he wants Hamilton on his staff. Hamilton is ambitious but insecure and Washington is very much a mentor to him.

More

FIRE’s 2017 10 Worst Colleges for Free Speech

 

Unfortunately, it isn’t an easy undertaking deciding which schools belong on FIRE’s “10 worst colleges for free speech” list every year. This year was no exception.

This morning, we at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) published our annual “worst of the worst” list, which can be read with detailed descriptions of each school’s misdeeds at The Huffington Post.

More
Ricochet Member Recommended FeedRecommended by R> Members

Let Those Cowards Come

 
Tim Kennedy.

One can become despondent, looking at the sad state of masculinity in the US today. The image crafted by pop culture is that men today are metrosexuals, obsessed with obtaining the most flattering skinny jeans, and/or the most appropriate pomade for their beards. Heck, the new crop of rising males introduced into the vernacular the term “skinny-fat.” Jesus wept. [Note: more accurate here is a statement made about Jesus in Team America, but CoC.]

All is not lost in the realm of American manhood. We’ve still got guys like Tim Kennedy. [I might’ve posted the video here before, but it’s well worth a watch. And yeah, I can testify to the fact that there is no BS/promotional exaggeration going on, here.]

More
Ricochet Member Recommended FeedRecommended by R> Members

I’m Still with Milo

 

It’s whiplash-inducing how fast Milo had been tossed under the bus.

Before judging, make sure you know all the facts. Unfortunately too many people on the right (mea culpa, I’m as guilty of this as most) take the liberal headlines at face value and recoil from certain individuals. This happened with Mike Flynn and now it’s happening with Milo. In both cases people have made judgments based on partial information, which is what the other side wants. It isn’t for nothing that the late Andrew Breitbart referred to this as “war.”

More

What’s Up with Rape in Sweden?

 

President Trump was more right than wrong about Sweden. Fox News was slightly misleading.

As you’ve heard, Trump referred to “what happened in Sweden.” On Twitter, smug critics circulated lists of anodyne events like concerts and road accidents and accused the President of inventing a terror attack. He didn’t cite a terror attack, though his words were characteristically imprecise. Two days later, as if to underscore that Trump had a point, riots erupted in a suburb of Stockholm.

More

One Small Step for Crew, One Giant Leap for Crewkind

 

I should write a technical post on the emerging post-Shuttle age of manned space flight, but I’ll leave that for Rand Simberg, James Gawron(?), John Walker, and the others who are more knowledgeable. Instead, I’m going to bring up a NASA language peeve: The tendency to misrepresent the meaning of “man” and “manned.”

NASA, depending as it does on public relations, has probably always been a PC kind of place, at least in the public face it puts on. There is a great Bloom County cartoon satirizing the tendency to promote “firsts” in space by race, sex, and ethnicity. Those of you old enough to remember the Apollo days or earlier will no doubt recall discussions of “manned spaceflight.” But since at least the 1990s, and I suspect the 1980s, the term “manned” has been suppressed in NASA use in favor of the clunkier “human spaceflight.” Today, that inelegant phrase is increasingly replaced by the unfortunate-sounding “crewed.”

More

Nikki Haley Is trying to change the conversation in the UN

 

While we were all caught up in the big story of the day, Milo, Nikki Haley was at the UN. The UN Security Council held a meeting on the Middle East. Unsurprisingly the focus of the conversation is how Israel is bad.

Ms. Haley condemned the meeting and the bias of the Council. This should be a bigger deal. We have a UN Ambassador that is willing to represent the interests of the US and its allies. Ms. Haley is a strong improvement over Samantha Powers.

More

A Two-State Solution for the West Bank?

 

In December, the United States under President Barack Obama abstained on UN Resolution 2234, which “reaffirms that the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace.”

This past week, American policy under President Donald Trump took a sharp turn away from that Resolution with two key announcements. The first was that the two-state solution is not the only one the United States will support. The Trump administration signaled that it will consider other alternatives as well, without specifying exactly what those will be. The second was a cautionary note to the Israelis not to expand the territorial reach of their settlements to areas outside of those they have already occupied, mostly near Jerusalem. This statement echoes the understandings of former U.S. diplomat Elliott Abrams under George W. Bush (whom Trump unwisely rejected for a position as Rex Tillerson’s deputy at the State Department). The Abrams solution allowed the Israelis to place additional people in their existing settlements, but they could not expand the territorial boundaries—as a way to preserve the integrity of territories that would remain in Palestinian hands under any two–state solution.

More
Ricochet Member Recommended FeedRecommended by R> Members

The Truck Driver

 

The trucker who lives next door is seldom home.

He’s a long-haul trucker, he’s over-the-road. He earns good money and does not spend. There’s something ascetic about him. He’s forty-five. His hair is long. He wears jeans and combat boots. Sallow and haggard, his face is handsome nevertheless. His willowy wife does not ride with him but stays at home. They have no children. The wife is solitary, long-legged and tan. She has a ponytail of sandy-brown. She smokes Marlboros. They do not rent but own. The wife spends hours in her garden, or she reads in her backyard. Her eyes are pensive. She waves to us but rarely speaks.

More
Ricochet Member Recommended FeedRecommended by R> Members

Liberal Media Summed Up in One Sentence

 

An article in today’s Washington Post about President Trump’s Florida rally quotes a supporter on one of the administration’s early moves to preserve jobs in the mining sector:

Several people said they would have liked to see more coverage of a measure that Trump signed Thursday that rolled back a last-minute Obama regulation that would have restricted coal mines from dumping debris in nearby streams. At the signing, Trump was joined by coal miners in hard hats.

More
Ricochet Member Recommended FeedRecommended by R> Members

Deep Stasis: The Rubber Room

 

I assume that everyone here has heard about the Rubber Room policy in the New York City schools. This policy, is designed to deal with teachers who, frequently for reasons of criminal behavior, cannot be put in a classroom. Union regulations prevent the schools from doing the obviously sensible thing and firing them, so they warehouse them, having them come to a room every day and just sit there, in exchange for their salary and benefits, and if they stay around long enough, their pension. The last time I heard, there are 3,000 of them.

It occurred to me that the same type of strategy might be very effective in helping the Trump administration deal with the problem of politically motivated leaks, and other resistance to the implementation of his policies, the issue that is being called the Deep State. I propose that Trump set up a Rubber Room for each department and agency within the federal government.

More