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As you might have noticed: During two days of public hearings starting on Tuesday, scientists were scheduled to present their research to outside advisers to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The agency will decide whether safety concerns raised by three-parent IVF are minimal enough to allow clinical trials to begin. More

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As the token Arizonan around these parts, several friends asked if I would write on Senate Bill 1062, Arizona’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The debate, if you can call it that, was mostly uneducated emoting. The louder the fight got, the worse it damaged the state I live in and love. Better to wait until […]

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From NRO:FEBRUARY 28, 2014 4:00 AM Legal Kidnapping Taking a child away from loving parents for ideological reasons is simply totalitarian.  More

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A question presented in the discussion about the venerable A-10 is: what is the point of spending billions and trillions on “next-gen” aircraft when we don’t have anyone against whom to use them? Here’s Fred Cole: Yeah, we’d need [F-22s] if we were ever in a conventional shooting war with the Chinese. I don’t see that […]

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Earlier this week, House Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp released a tax plan that, among other things: imposes a surtax of 0.035% on bank assets over %500B. eliminates the carried interest loophole for hedge fund managers. Somewhat predictably, Wall Street lobbyists didn’t much care for those aspects of the plan. Politico: More

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John Podhoretz joins the long list of pundits predicting huge gains for the GOP in the U.S. Senate in 2014. One state stands out as a downer among all his giddy prognosticating, however: And I haven’t even mentioned Al Franken in Minnesota, who won his race by a mere few hundred votes in 2008. Although […]

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An Elvis impersonator who changed his name to Elvis D. Presley is running for office on the Libertarian ticket. More

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It’s a rainy day here in SoCal, which makes me happy. Unfortunately the current state of the nation makes me unhappy. But I remind myself that we must appreciate the beautiful world God gave us and our many blessings. In that spirit, I plan to make a big pot of soup and some crusty European […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The US and the Ukraine

 

Here is a snippet from a report in The Telegraph that might be of interest:

Our foreign correspondent Harriet Alexander says worried politicians inside Ukraine’s parliament have pleaded with Britain and the US to come to their rescue.

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David Burge ‏@iowahawkblog  3m Cold War II: Ex-KGB versus Ex-Harvard Prom Decoration Committee More

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This link is amusing, in light of the discussion, in the recent Need to Know podcast, of beauty and modern art. More

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The Orbital Rescue Mission That Never Happened

 

Eleven years ago the space shuttle Columbia broke up on re-entry, the delayed result of a foam strike on liftoff that damaged the orbiter’s left wing. During the initial descent, hot plasma got past damaged thermal tiles, entering the wing’s structure and destroying the spacecraft. Seven astronauts died.

But what if the damage had been detected during Columbia’s ascent or on-orbit? Lee Hutchinson, a system administrator supporting the shuttle program for Boeing at the time, explores this question in an arresting what-if piece at Ars Technica.

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The gig is up—we know that the NSA has been making fake user accounts on social media to influence our opinions. As Ricochet is the fastest-growing center-right forum on the web, we’re surely attracting our share of NSA agents of influence right here. So ‘fess up! Who are you? My money is on 10 Cents. […]

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Via Mollie Hemingway, I came across this article by The Federalist‘s Brandon McGinley about the controversy in Arizona. The following section left me flabbergasted: There are ambiguities, however, in Arizona’s RFRA that have been sources of litigation, mostly about whom, exactly, these laws protect and in what circumstances. SB 1062 would have resolved these ambiguities […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. William F. Buckley, Jr. and the Central Revelation of Western Experience

 

As Bucky Boz notes below, William F. Buckley, Jr. died six years ago this very day. As Bucky also notes, Bill represented the outstanding conservative intellectual of the second half of the twentieth century.

WFB, addressing a rally in Carnegie Hall on September 17, 1960 to protest the visit to the United States of Nikita Khrushchev:

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I know, I know, a lot of you think it’s already here. But not real sextremism. Not FEMEN sextremism. FEMEN announced Wednesday that it’s out to bless America: FEMEN is announcing launching of US branch of sextremists.”I can’t name enemies, as it’s strategic information that we don’t share. But I can assure you sure that […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Ukrainian Student Speaks Out: ‘My People Deserve Freedom’

 

In a feature story today at The College Fix, Andrew Desiderio interviews Ukrainian-American student Andrij Tarasiuk, of Franklin and Marshall College, who has watched with growing concern the armed standoffs and violent protests in Ukraine:

“The uprising should reinforce the true identity of the Ukrainian people: determined, hard-working, culturally enthused, and, above all free,” he told The College Fix. “On the long term, it should establish a precedent that the people should uphold, that is: Ukraine is a free country and its people are a free people, therefore its government should do all that it can to serve them.”

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Some thinkers like Rod Dreher thought Social Conservatives could limit the effect of Same Sex Marriage on Traditionalists by supporting Religious Liberty laws like the ones proposed in Kansas and Arizona. In just a few short weeks the Kansas law has gotten nowhere, the Arizona proposal is dead, and now Mississippi and Georgia have tabled […]

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Need a break from the daily drumming of politics and kulturkampf? Wanna see how how we “fit” into the universe? More

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San Francisco Bay Area / Silicon Valley / Stanford Meetup: This Friday, February 286pmRay’s Grill750 Escondido Road, Stanford / Palo Alto More

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