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Our friends at The New Republic have published an article by Aaron Shulman who has proposed we adopt a new word for the murder of women: http://www.tnr.com/femicide-guatemala-decree-22 “Femicide” could be a term that changes the way people think, and act, regarding gender-based violence worldwide, or it could simply remain an interesting footnote in the annals of […]

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Bloggingheads is actually a really good website.  I’ve seen a couple over the years, but it seems like they know which two people to put across from each other.  The Hoover institute website (which is kinda wonky right now) linked me to Robert George and Cornel West discussing greed and the free market.  The full […]

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More than 200,000 people have been affected by relentless flooding in northeast Australia, with the flood zone now stretching over an area bigger than France and Germany combined, officials said Friday. Thousands of homes and businesses across Queensland state have been inundated with water after days of pounding rain caused swollen rivers to overflow. The entire population […]

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Free To Be Ungrateful

 

A pause is in order. A brief one, but a pause nonetheless to thank Colman McCarthy for removing the veneer of opposition to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” as the primary reason behind the left’s animus to the presence of ROTC organizations on college campuses. We wondered if the repeal of that policy would prompt liberals to welcome the guarantors of their freedom in their midst. We now have our answer.

Writing in the Washington Post, McCarthy argues that, “ROTC and its warrior ethic taint the intellectual purity of a school, if by purity we mean trying to rise above the foul idea that nations can kill and destroy their way to peace.” Lest the reader sense that Mr. McCarthy has examined the individual warrior who defends this nation and found him wanting, he quickly points out that, “I admire those who join armies, whether America’s or the Taliban’s: for their discipline, for their loyalty to their buddies and their principles, for their sacrifices to be away from home.” Well, I’m glad we got that cleared up. It’s reminiscent of Bill Buckley’s demonstration of a moral vacuity that would label a gentleman who pushes a little old lady out of the path of an oncoming bus and a scoundrel who pushes a little old lady into the path of an oncoming bus as simply two guys who go around pushing little old ladies. To draw no meaningful distinction between members of the Taliban and American service members is to expose a depravity of principled discernment worthy of tenure at an ivy league university.

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I’ve been hearing about the alleged conspiracy by the unions to do a poor job on clearing the snow. On Cavuto’s program on Fox News it was mentioned what these guys can make with overtime. A few hundred employees (administrative-types I think) get paid 6-figure salaries. Is this a chance to make a push for […]

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The James Clapper Affair and Our Bloated Bureaucracies

 

James Clapper, the director of national intelligence–the “DNI” as it’s known inside the Beltway–was recently embarrassed on national T.V. for his ignorance of the recent arrests of suspected terrorists in the U.K. While humiliating for Clapper, there is a bigger lesson here: the fault is not just in the man, but in the boxes (with all due apologies to Shakespeare). In gov-speak, boxes refer to the organization of the different agencies and bureaus of the government.

Clapper’s failure to keep abreast of the most important intelligence developments is yet another sign that the bureaucratic response to 9/11 was wrong-headed.  For those not keeping a scorecard, after 9/11, the answer to the failures of our intelligence community was even more bureaucracy.

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Okay, I’ll admit it; I have an agenda.  Ricochet is starting to suffer from chickafication . . . all this talk about “what women want” is rather too much yin for my taste.  This place needs more yang.  Time for manspeak (feel free to scratch and belch, gentlemen, while you add your comments). My idea of guy […]

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Next time you write the check for your child’s college tuition, think about this number: $257,757,825 That’s the bill the top ten spending schools in the nation ran up to fund their FBS football programs. And that’s just the top ten out of 120 FBS (Formally Div IA) schools. Preview Open

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There’s No Such Thing as Evangelicalism

 

Timothy Beal, in the Chronicle of Higher Education, reviews a series of new studies of the evangelical movement–notable, it seems, above all for the researchers’ discovery that the movement isn’t as simple as you might think:

It appears that American evangelicalism is finally coming into its own as a subject of social research and academic attention well beyond the scope of those who identify with it as insiders. It seems we now realize there is more to know than what we learned from the Simpsons’ neighbor Ned Flanders.

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Some months ago I wrote this as a series of two hundred word comments. Given the What Do Women Want thread posted by katievs, I thought it would serve to reprise it as a complete post. What has always troubled me about male/female differences, aside from the obvious ones that trouble me not one whit, […]

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We just returned from a holiday trip to Los Angeles. We occasionally go there to soak up some films at the excellent Arclight Cinemas (True Grit in the Cinerama Dome was a thing to behold), perhaps go to a museum, and hit some excellent restaurants. Over time we’ve been converted from LA-haters to finding the […]

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Christopher Hitchens, Hale

 

Dinner this evening–or, rather, since it has just gone midnight, yesterday evening–with the great historian Robert Conquest and the journalist provocateur Christopher Hitchens.  Christopher looked better than he has in recent photographs in Vanity Fair, and he proved utterly himself, talking about books, politics, and history for nearly three hours.  I offer it as a sign of his sweet indomitability that Hitch closed the evening by reciting, from memory, this poem:

A RAVEN sat upon a tree,

As 2010 Gasps to a Close, A Few Undeniable Signs of Hope

 

From my friend, Stephen Schmalhofer:

My favorite Christmas gift this year was Lord Kenneth Clark’s Civilisation documentaries on DVD.  The viewer gets barely 10 minutes into the comprehensive series before Clark makes his first bold thesis:  Civilisations collapse, not primarily from disease or invasion or corruption, but rather from exhaustion.