Contributor Post Created with Sketch. NBA’s China Troubles Show Hard Choices Forced Upon American Firms


One way to pitch a Hollywood screenplay is by combining two existing works. “Think of it as Wolverine meets Lincoln.” Apparently this actually happens. Anyway, the descriptive technique also pops up elsewhere. The geopolitical tangle — economic, military, ideological — that is China can be expressed as “the Soviet Union meets 1980s Japan.”

Dealing with such a multidimensional challenge is difficult, as the NBA just found out. Its apologetic stance toward China over a Houston Rocket official’s pro-democracy tweet — “Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong” — has brought Americans together as few if any recent issues have. The bipartisan outrage over that apology parallels the growing bipartisan consensus that US foreign policy toward China needs a significant course correction.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Adam Schiff Ties the Hands of Republicans on the Intel Committee


When it comes to the Intel Committee, most people are expressing their dislike and disdain for Adam Schiff, who appears to have no intention of following precedent regarding the committee he rules . . . er, leads. We could spend much time parsing the meaning of the telephone transcript, or Adam Schiff’s inability to tell the truth, but I was glad to see the Republicans call out Schiff’s ignoring the rules of the Intel Committee. He’s been busy ignoring or revising the rules to suit his agenda.

Kevin McCarthy finally called for Nancy Pelosi to stop the impeachment inquiry “until transparent and equitable rules and procedures are established to govern the inquiry as is customary.”


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Life on Planet Thunberg


Without a doubt, it is a major challenge to accurately model and predict the course of climate change. Climate systems are highly chaotic, which makes it difficult to figure out the effect of any particular natural or human event on future climate changes. We should, therefore, proceed with caution before making bold claims that the main, or even sole, driver of climate change is the human-generated increase in the carbon dioxide level, which now is approaching 415 parts per million.

But today’s activists are in crisis mode. The 16-year-old Swedish student Greta Thunberg’s recent calls for action sparked thousands of students to skip classes last month in order to fight a global climate “emergency.” These students are long on indignation, but short on solutions. They are content to implore today’s business, political, and social elites to come up with a solution before it is all too late—after all, these activists claim, in ten years we could all be dead.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. In Harris Funeral Homes Supreme Court Case, We Should Ask ‘Am I Next?’


“Am I next?” That’s the question that should come to your mind when you think of G.R. & R.G. Harris Funeral Homes v. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, which the US Supreme Court is set to hear Tuesday, Oct. 8.

And no, that’s not a reference to funeral homes in general—along the lines of “ask not for whom the bell tolls”—but whether or not Americans can rely on what the law says. If the ACLU has its way and defeats Harris Funeral Homes, everyday Americans will face punishment for violating laws that unelected officials have changed out from under them.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The Death Of Europe, With Douglas Murray


In this episode of Uncommon Knowledge, I’m joined by author and columnist Douglas Murray to discuss his new book The Madness of Crowds: Race, Gender and Identity. Murray examines the most divisive issues today, including sexuality, gender, and technology, and how new culture wars are playing out everywhere in the name of social justice, identity politics, and intersectionality. Is European culture and society in a death spiral caused by immigration and assimilation? We also discuss the roles that Brexit and the rise of populism in European politics play in writing immigration laws across the European Union.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. (Un)broken Movies


With the notable exception of Chappaquidick, the post-Vietnam movie industry, including the later original content cable television business, has relentlessly bent history and even powerful works of fiction, imposing narratives designed to immunize younger viewers against ever discovering inconvenient truths and other voices. I started mulling this over with Angelina Jolie’s shocking betrayal of a man she claimed to deeply respect, in her deeply biased big-screen rendition of Laura Hillenbrand’s profound Unbroken. I saw both Jolie’s Hollywood production and a small budget Christian production of the rest of the story. I’ve cogitated over this and found more and more productions attaching to the idea which formed: this is all quite deliberate propaganda.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Hillsdale College Defends the Constitution and the Second Amendment


Hillsdale is a remarkable college in Michigan that was established in 1844. More of its students went to join up for the Civil War than any other western school. And it is known for offering a Classical education and teaching the Constitution. It also takes no money from the Federal government. And is highly celebrated for its requirements and high standards.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. True Compassion


President Trump has, at long last, the support of an administration team that is actually supporting his goals. Just as he fulfilled the decades-old bipartisan promise to move our embassy to Jerusalem, the capital of the state of Israel, so too he delights in finding other areas of law and policy that the swamp kept submerged or tangled up for decades. He is about to do so again, this time on immigration, and it can be a broader winner if he promotes it correctly.*

The president is taking up the old establishment on its false public professions: that all immigration benefits America, and that immigrants are not a burden on working-class Americans. Since we have been repeatedly assured that immigrants come here to work and do not wish to be burdens, or mooches on our health system, naturally it is reasonable to verify visa applicants have the resources to obtain health insurance at their own expense, or the expense of a sponsoring employer. So, President Trump is doing what Presidents Obama and Bush refused to do:


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Requiem for a Record Store


All Things Must Pass, a documentary about the rise and fall of Tower Records, is worth a look. It’s one of those interesting stories that are relevant to me because it’s ephemeral and generational. It’s like watching a doc about free weekly newspapers thick with ads, repertory movie theaters that showed old films, or even as recent as video rental stores; all things that were big in “our” time — baby boomer’s time — and have since faded. But whatever age you are, you may find it of interest.

I’d wondered how they managed to get interviews with people like Bruce Springsteen and David Geffen until I found out the director was Tom Hanks’ son Colin. As Colin’s dad nostalgically depicted in That Thing You Do, back when I was a kid, records were sold in places like TV and radio stores, department stores, and five-and-dimes (a pretty anachronistic phrase now).


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. 21st Century Democrat Electables


View original artwork here.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Lights on Hilltops: Grace in Dallas


Lights on HilltopsThe remarkable courtroom events, following the sentencing of Amber Guyger to 10 years in prison for the murder of Botham Shem Jean, called to mind the similarly remarkable courtroom events in 2015 in South Carolina. These, together, called to mind the famous passage in the Gospels about lighted lamps. Politically aware readers will at least recall President Reagan talking about America as “a shining city on a hill.” In an era of oppressively negative news, we were reminded at the beginning of October 2019 that an individual can make a significant positive difference.

Christians were challenged by the faithful witness of a young man this past week. Brandt Jean is the brother of the man murdered in Dallas. Botham Jean had graduated with an accounting degree from Harding, a private Christian college, and was working for the accounting firm PwC.* He was the first to speak in the victim impact statement phase, which comes immediately after the sentence (the time to be served) is pronounced. The sentencing phase follows the jury’s finding of guilt for one or more specified crimes.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Who’s the Joker Now?


For many, the attacks on the Joker movie coming from media outlets like CNN and the New York Times are mystifying. But it is actually easy to understand once you see the movie and sleep on it.

Joker – a horrible yet great movie – is premised on an underlying tale of disregard for a humane interpretation of the values of empathy and social justice.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. ‘Joker’ Is Incomplete Without Batman


“What would I do without you?” The Joker asks Batman in The Dark Knight. “You complete me.” He’s right in more ways than he realizes, as the newly released Joker shows: the Joker, by his very nature, needs Batman, and, more importantly, so does the audience. Because without the Dark Knight there to serve as a ballast, the Joker’s anarchic, twisted, disturbing nature, and Joker itself, becomes unbearably difficult to watch.

Admittedly, in terms of film qua film, Joker succeeds in what it sets out to do. It’s well directed, Joaquin Phoenix turns in an incredible performance as the titular character, and the story provides creepy insight into the psyche of its psychopathic subject. And in fairness, Phoenix’s Joker is not necessarily more evil than past incarnations of the character. Heath Ledger’s turn as the Clown Prince of Crime, for example, was just as twisted, just as nihilistic. Also, Batman: The Killing Joke featured a Joker committing acts just as depraved and horrific. These Jokers, however, did not exist in a vacuum, and the stories in which they’re present also feature counters to their dangerous ideology.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Moral Hazard of Elizabeth Warren


I know a lot of people love Elizabeth Warren. I don’t doubt that she’s smart, charming, and extremely likable in person, and that she exudes a kind of authenticity and decency for which people are desperate.

She’s an impressive woman. I think she will be the Democratic candidate, and I think there’s at least a 50/50 chance that she might become President.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. For Those of Us Who Care About Kindness…


Clearly, the Democrats don’t care about kindness. Their goals are strictly to search and destroy. I don’t know if they even know what it means to be kind to each other; too often, we see them attacking those who don’t line up with their cause. Kindness is probably a sign of weakness and vulnerability to them. Kindness is also an attribute that we may be in danger of losing as well, as Conservatives, if we aren’t careful.

Recently I had a conversation with a Ricochetti about kindness. We have different views on the meaning of the word, and another Ricochetti suggested one or both of us explore “kindness” in a post. And why it is so precious and hard to find.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. ACF #33: Eyes Wide Shut


Friends, here’s our first Kubrick conversation–his last movie, Eyes Wide Shut, about the erotic temptations Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, I mean their characters, have to withstand at the turn of the millennium and how the spirit of Christmas might be replaced by a shocking and elusive conspiracy of elite perverts who dedicate themselves to restoring paganism!


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Autumn Colors: The Color of Law, an in-depth review


When people are free to associate as they please, we can’t be surprised if they sometimes self-segregate. People self-sort along many affinities, including ethnic affinities. This is what lawyers call de facto segregation, and it’s none of the law’s business. De jure segregation — segregation imposed by law, including segregation promoted by public policy — is, on the other hand, very much the law’s business.

In 1866, Congress passed a Civil Rights Act (the 1866 CRA) asserting the equal rights of blacks before the law, including property rights, and real-estate rights in particular. The 1866 CRA warned


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Trick or Treat, then and now


I am old enough to remember when…we kids trooped around our neighborhood collecting candy from the neighbors. We mostly wore homemade costumes. Unless there was an old enough family child, our father was riding herd, while Mom held down the fort and doled out the candy to other little monsters, in accordance with her rules. Over the years, and with our incredible surge in material wealth, Halloween became an increasingly adult event, with slutty [occupation here] outfits and other costumes in adult sizes sold or rented from seasonal party stores.

For the past several years, yours truly has attended an adults-only party, but not like that. A couple with whom I am friends has a house party without the bacchanalia atmosphere. Yes, it is a costume party, a costume party with a difference.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Reminder: Google lies


DuckDuckGo over GoogleRemember the side-by-side search engine results in the 2016 election? Google has not changed, and if anything, they have gone from thumbs to whole hands all over the balance of search results. Here are the results for a phrase that might produce factual results unhelpful to Google and their fellow Democrats:

“Democrats asked Ukraine to investigate Trump” *


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Introducing Hashing It Out with Siraj Hashmi


I’m very excited to be partnering with Ricochet for the launch of my new podcast, Hashing It Out. While the title is a play on my last name, my goal is to delve deep into a particular subject each episode where I speak with a different guest that adds historical context to the news and politics of the day. I hope to bring a unique product that goes beyond the ranting and raving of political talk shows and provides the listener with a formidable understanding of current events.

Yesterday I interviewed my Washington Examiner colleague Tom Rogan, and last week I posted an interview with Andrew Bakaj, the attorney representing the person who filed a whistle blower complaint against President Trump. (I recorded the interview with Bakaj in August, so we don’t talk about the Ukraine complaint.) Please check out the podcast, and if you like it then consider subscribing in iTunes (or your podcast app of choice) and leaving a review!


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Amazing Grace


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. You Know What They Say About “They”


Most of my pet peeves have to do with words and their use, misuse, and abuse — though baseball caps worn backward irritate me too. Give me a few more years and I’ll probably let my inner Kowalski run free, but so far I’ve kept him pretty well in check: I’m generally a live and let live kind of guy.

The use of the third-person plural pronoun “they” in reference to a single individual has always stuck in my craw. Saying “he or she” isn’t so hard, and has the virtue of grammatical correctness. Anyway, that’s what I thought, until I bothered to look up the use/misuse of the word in this context.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Impeached or Not, The Trump Doctrine will Prevail


It seems it was months ago we were laughing at Swedish Veruca Salt yelling at the barking seals at the UN, but as most sane adults politely ignored being screamed at by Algore’s and Soros’s hand puppet, there was a meeting taking place behind closed doors. That day Nancy Pelosi contacted House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer who, like Pelosi, was fighting a growing tide of dissent by the leftists. These congresspeople would impeach Trump for jaywalking because, as they have stated, without taking out the King, he is likely to win reelection.

The Mueller Report and subsequent congressional testimony was a bust. Democrats were antsy and the shrill AOC+3 caucus was starting to get downright angry. Pelosi needed to jump on this, even though both the Democrats and their media spokesholes were flying blind as the actual transcript had yet to be released. Pelosi had to decide before the leftists imploded and started to cause electoral damage in 2020. Both Pelosi and Hoyer agreed: now’s the time.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Swamp Hunter


View original artwork here.