Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Brooding Intelligence, Part 2


(Intro Announcer:) Tonight, the second half of Ricochet Silent Radio’s latest adventure! In a time of quarantine, Judge Mental plunges into Miami’s underground worlds of lap dancers, seamy politics, steamy love, and sudden violence!

Last night, we learned that four of America’s top spy satellite experts were driven to suicide when sinister forces of social media tempted them onto an island of carnal sin, blackmailed them, and targeted them for social cancellation and personal destruction.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Piling on Debt Is Not the Answer


The consequences of the Great Policy Blunder – shutting down our economy in a futile attempt to escape a viral pandemic – are numerous and devastating. Widespread unemployment, cratering GDP, educational disruption, escalating overdose and suicide rates, and increased racial tensions are just part of the penalty we are paying for decisions made.

But when the dust has settled and we’re in the New Normal, whatever that is, we’ll have to deal with the most lasting of all the self-inflicted wounds – the broad economic destruction that will be the result of piling onto our debt load.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. ACF Masters #10: The Palm Beach Story


As promised last week, after The Lady Eve comes The Palm Beach Story, the story of Tom (Joel McCrea, ever the straight-shooting visionary) and Gerry (Claudette Colbert, as leggy, witty, and chasing after glamour as ever), a couple who can’t stick together because his business doesn’t really make money and her desire to spend money on herself doesn’t really lead her to work. A very American couple experiences the American problem, money and beauty, or how you find out what you really want and how to get it, and it takes a comic poet to solve it.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Fighting to Stay


Just when you are ready to give up on Millennials as ignorant, selfish, and anarchistic snowflakes, along comes a story that gives you hope for the future. A young lady, Melody Yang, was a student at the university, Santa Clara, where I teach. I’ve only just become acquainted with her (I’m in the English Dept., she was in the B-school and taught herself computer science), but her story is so compelling that I had to share it.

Melody Yang is Taiwanese, here on an F1 student visa, and behaving like a true Silicon Valley entrepreneur taking control over her life and earning the right to stay here. She already has designed — as an undergraduate — a successful new product and earned a job at Apple (as you can imagine, not an easy task). Apple now is applying for her to stay as “an individual of extraordinary ability and achievement.” In other words, when many of American’s children seem to despise their country, this young lady is fighting to stay.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Brooding Intelligence, Part 1


(Dramatic theme music climax. Network Announcer:) Tonight, Tales From the PIT brings you the first half of Brooding Intelligence, Judge Mental’s newest Ricochet Silent Radio adventure! It’s a tale of race and Red hokum, of faithful engineers and seductive strippers, of con games and espionage! It’ll take you from the warm embrace of a lover’s arms, to a deadly serious orbital race to prove once and for all whose spies have the coldest heart in the sky! And now here he is, Judge Mental!

(Voice of Judge Mental) Not even in my wildest dreams did I imagine myself entering a bank wearing a mask and asking for money. But in the bizarro spring of the Great Quarantine, that’s just what I was doing. I’d been in Miami all of three hours.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. If I Were a Hermit, I’d Live in a Cabin in the Woods


Since @cliffordbrown has given us the freedom to be anything or anyone we want to be for Group Writing this month, I have decided I would like to become a hermit. I would find a two-room cabin that is surrounded by trees but receives enough sunshine to light the small main room, bright rays splashing across the wooden floor. It would have to have electricity and indoor plumbing.

I would take special care decorating the cabin: hooked rugs, wooden shelves, two comfortable chairs, and a small sofa. The colors would be a tribute to fall—oranges, light browns, and deep reds. There would be small toss pillows to create the feeling of softness and healing. And a small wooden table with one wooden chair, with a pillow on the seat, in front of a window that looks out on the breathtaking scenery.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. When You Hear ‘Socialism,’ Think ‘Control’


When someone calls themself a “socialist” or says they think “socialism” has a lot of good ideas, what do they mean? After all, most of us are not political scientists or philosophers. And terms like “socialism,” “capitalism,” “liberalism,” and “conservatism” really get tossed around. Back in 2018, Gallup updated a question it first asked in 1949: “What is your understanding of the term ‘socialism’?”

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. UK: Faith, Character, Destiny, and Redemption: Jimmy Lai’s Continuing Fight For Hong Kong’s Freedom


This is our third conversation with Hong Kong entrepreneur and freedom fighter, Jimmy Lai in less than a year. During that time, Lai has been arrested twice, his family and his employees and colleagues have been harassed and in some cases forced to leave Hong Kong, and Lai himself has been incarcerated. Currently free on bond and facing a trial and an uncertain future, Mr. Lai gets philosophical in this conversation. He describes how his faith has given him strength and comfort and that he is willing to make whatever sacrifice required in order to maintain democracy in Hong Kong. We discuss the political situation in Hong Kong, the precarious position of Hong Kong Executive Carrie Lam, and how the United States and the world can apply pressure to the Chinese, and what’s at stake if Hong Kong becomes just another Chinese city.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Next Time Someone Calls You a Racist. . .


I’ve never been called a racist. If I were, I admit that it would be upsetting. But @gossamercat brought up the fact on @richardfulmer’s post that many of us feel obligated to defend ourselves when we are attacked; it’s only natural to protect ourselves and our reputations.

But what if we didn’t “bite”? What if we responded by not responding or making an off-handed acknowledgement? I think it would drive others crazy. Even on Twitter. Let me give you a couple of examples:

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. An Astronaut’s Son Tells His Story


In the late 1970s and early 1980s, from 1978 through the end 1985, being in the Space Shuttle program was fun. The Shuttle was new and an adventure.

“The Father, Son, and Holy Shuttle: Growing Up an Astronaut’s Kid in the Glorious 1980s,” by Patrick Mullane, tells that story.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Praise Where Praise Is Due, Care Where Care Is Due


President TrumpPresident Trump started September on his feet, on the road, and fully coherent, doing what presidents are expected to do in Wisconsin and North Carolina. This is in marked contrast to Joe Biden, whose words briefly became more of a tossed salad than Trump’s supposed ramblings, when he belatedly reacted to DNC prompts after bad polling on the Democrat’s street violence campaign. Biden’s reaction was to avoid any mention of leftist forces of intimidation and destruction, see the Biden Pittsburgh transcript for yourself. President Trump called him and the rest of the Democrats on this immediately in the Monday press briefing.

America saw President Trump on the ground in Kenosha, praising law enforcement, promising millions of dollars to rebuild the area destroyed by leftist black bloc militia before the Democrat governor finally relented and accepted federal assistance in the form of federal dollars and National Guard troops from more than one state. He then appeared on a stormy day in North Carolina to praise the state, the people, and our nation’s history of doing great good in the world.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Responsibility


“Have we reached the ultimate stage of absurdity where some people are held responsible for things that happened before they were born, while other people are not held responsible for what they themselves are doing today?” – Thomas Sowell

We sure have. After all, San Fran Nan didn’t do anything wrong by violating California’s COVID lockdown rules. She was set up. That excuses everything. Meanwhile, I am supposed to feel guilty about black slavery that ended decades before my grandparents arrived in the United States from Greece.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. I’m Just Fine in Here


Many years ago, my husband and I were invited to a small dinner party by friends of ours. We didn’t know the other people who attended, but I had heard of one of them. Her name was Peggy. She was a minister at the Church of Religious Science in Huntington Beach, CA and was living with ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. At this point, she was confined to a wheelchair and was there with her husband. Someone who knew her but hadn’t seen her in a while asked her how she was doing. She answered, speaking with some difficulty, “I’m just fine in here.” I felt her smile and her face was glowing. I was so moved by the peace and joy she had found.

* * * *

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Next Week: R> Radio Drama Returns


That’s right! Next week, Tales From the PIT brings you Brooding Intelligence, Judge Mental’s newest thrilling Ricochet Silent Radio adventure! In a time of quarantine, Judge Mental plunges into Miami’s underground worlds of lap dancers, seamy politics, steamy love, and sudden violence! Now in its fifth year, Ricochet Silent Radio is written with the soul of old-time radio action drama, but is fan fiction that includes leading roles and cameo parts of Ricochet members, such as @judgemental, @gldiii, @arahant, @zafar, and @bossmongo.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Don’t Blame Racism


Lawrence Mead had no idea he was going to be the center of a raging controversy about his lack of support for the “systemic racism” narrative. He had written for years about poverty and culture and was a professor at New York University, well-respected in his field.

But this is 2020: he made the serious mistake of writing about the difficulties the poor encounter due to their cultural understandings from countries outside of the west. He never wrote anything about racism as a cause of poverty, because he didn’t believe it; thus, he needed to be vanquished by the never-satisfied Left.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The First Trump–Biden Debate


The invention at Hillsdale University of a machine enabling conservatives to turn the clock forward selectively allows us to report now on the first Trump–Biden debate, held on September 29 at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. The two inventors, Italian-American sisters Lili and Veri Wight-Suprema, financed much of their research with the proceeds of a libel suit against the New Woke Times, which had argued to the jury, unsuccessfully, that the paper’s description of the two women as “white supremacists” was a typographical error.

The first debate was limited to 25 minutes — a save-the-planet measure insisted upon by the Biden committee. The questioners were randomly selected from a cross-section of woke journalists. And to shield their identities, they wore black robes with pointy hoods, which some in the audience were heard to grumble were shameless giveaways that they were Democrats.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Merkel in Tiff with Putin


merkel in Putin pocketThe Bundeswehr, the German military, has published findings that one of Putin’s domestic critics, Alexei Navalny was poisoned with a Russian government created nerve agent. It seems exotic poisons are a favorite of the old KGB colonel, who is not bothered in the least by the notoriety of repeated discoveries of high profile attacks, even on foreign soil. Then again, poison has long been a Russian security tool. This time, German Chancellor Merkel, who has been in bed with Putin for years, is publicly upset.

Alexie Navalny has been seen as the only serious and viable opponent to Putin’s perpetual rule. The Nation, a publication of the left, explains:

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Kayleigh Crushes Them


Kayleigh McEnany Beast ModeKayleigh McEnany took the leftist jackals of the press corps down to the canvas repeatedly and unleashed devastating rhetorical fists and elbows. The jackals cannot help themselves, anymore than the scorpion on the river bank. Monday, August 31, we witnessed a work of art.

Ladies and gentlemen! Set down your beverage and prepare for the main event with the reigning, the undisputed women’s flyweight champion of the political world. In the words of Bruce Buffer: “Iiiiiiits Tiiime!”

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. ACF Masters #9: The Lady Eve


Today, Zena Hitz returns to the podcast after collecting her laurels for the remarkable success of her book Lost In Thought: The Hidden Pleasures Of An Intellectual Life, or lifelong learning for all Americans. We’re continuing our series on America’s most hilarious comedy writer-director. Preston Sturges: We’ve already covered Sullivan’s Travels, today we turn to romantic comedy, or the problem of modern womanhood in America–The Lady Eve, or The Pratfall of Man. Hank Fonda is Charlie “Hopsy” Pike, heir to the Pike ale fortune and Amazon explorer returning to civilization. Barbara Stanwyck is Eugenia “Gene” Harrington (aka Eve), who hits him in the head with an apple the first time she lays eyes on him. Charlie Coburn is “Colonel” Harrington, her father, a wonderful con man. Eugene Pallette is his–Mr Pike of the bellowing laugh. William Demarest is Muggsy, Fonda’s guardian angel, a sweet soul and truthteller.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Who is the Fellow in the Field of Flowers? Hiding in Plain Sight


Teachers have been revealed more fully to many parents as radical leftist propagandists, party cadre members rather than the supposedly noble public servants politicians of all stripes venerate. The left is starting to notice and worry that their education allies are overplaying their hand here as the left’s black uniformed militia is on streets across the country. One story jumped out at me in Texas, not because of the teacher and selected student comments, but because of what was not said but shown. I invited others to look at the same picture. We were partially right, but the final answer was: Every Election Matters.

In mid August, the Rutherford County schools told parent not to monitor their children’s virtual classrooms. The administrators lied that this was about protecting privacy of other students, a clear fiction. Everyone knows this was about trying to intimidate parents into not collecting evidence of the ideological poison being poured into their children’s minds. We were treated a week before that to a teacher in another state musing on Twitter about losing the ability to conceal what he was doing in class from parents and saying that he had always had kids agree to keep it from parents. That is a giant red flag.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Training Children to be Activists


Our children have already been brainwashed in our schools with the dogma of Leftism, including the hatred of America, its Founders and its values. But the indoctrination has become more extreme than I thought: We are teaching our children to be activists.

I’m not just talking only about teenagers; I’m talking about grade school children being taught about social justice, about hating conservatives and about denigrating those who think differently than they do in a formal curriculum. Some people are having doubts about the process:

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The American Meltdown


Police confront rioters, South Portland, OR, Aug. 20.
It’s now a common trope to claim that the United States is so deeply racist that massive structural changes are needed in how government and private institutions operate. That dangerous claim has gained exceptional influence at all levels of education—from elementary school to graduate-level programs. But this idea rests on a wholly misguided understanding of the facts on the ground.

It is surely correct to mourn the death of any individual, regardless of cause. But it is also imperative not to make false causal accusations, as protesters have done, by attributing the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other African Americans to entrenched police brutality and institutional racism. It is not just activists who make this claim. It also our governing organizations. The New Jersey Educational Association uses the Black Lives Matter banner to advocate a major reformation of the education system: “It is impossible to see the video of [Floyd] being strangled under the knee of a police officer in broad daylight on a public street and not be disgusted, horrified, angry, [and] sad.”

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. ACF PoMoCon #27: Carl Eric Scott


This week, we’ve got Tocqueville, America, and rock music on the podcast–my friend Carl Eric Scott returns to the podcast to remember our great friend Peter Lawler and how blogging helped him both formulate and get across his thoughts to the great American audience, bridging the gap between his academic vocation and the press. We also talk about what we learned from him that’s led us to our own activity in music and film criticism respectively. We conclude with some talk about Carl’s Rock Songbook, a one-of-a-kind conservative investigation of rock music, the age, the ideas, even reflections on it in cinema, from a perspective educated by Plato, Allan Bloom, and Martha Bayless!

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Clear Choice


Putting aside for a moment the temporary disruption caused by the coronavirus and the panic associated with it, the world has been growing, and continues to grow, less poor. A smaller percentage of mankind is malnourished than at any time in history. Food production has never been greater, nor the sustainable yield per acre of farmland higher. More people are free now than ever before, fewer live under authoritarian regimes, and the world no longer faces the credible threat of nuclear destruction that characterized the old Cold War.

While we in America fret about problems that are increasingly marginal and contrived – racism, police brutality, gender identity, climate crisis, and the so-called failures of free markets – the world is on a broad upward trajectory.