Quote of the Day: All Our Yesterdays

 

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. . . .
[Life] is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.
— Macbeth, Act V, Scene V

I’ve always liked this quote. Perhaps you have too. It sounds, well, deep, something that I ought to be thinking about.

Sports Memories

 

Allen Rutter kindly welcomed me (as did many others) to Ricochet and asked for some dishy stories about people and events from my career in sports broadcasting. It seems like a good idea, so here goes!

As I have already said, I was lucky to enjoy a 40-year career in sports TV production. In that time I worked as a cameraman and replay operator in almost every major sport and and lot of minor ones. Some memories from my career are shared by millions of us, some are more particular. I hope to share some of both.

Book Review: Memories of His Mercy

 

The name Peter Gilquist is incredibly well known in the Orthodox churches of America today. Father Gilquist, along with several other pastors, led a mass conversion of Evangelical churches into the Antiochian Orthodox Church in 1987, after nearly 15 years of searching for the historical Christian church as described in the book of Acts, and in the epistles of the New Testament. That quest is told in his more famous work, Becoming Orthodox, and in related works by others from that movement (I reviewed one such memoir, Surprised by Christ, late last year), but towards the end of his life, Reverend Gilquist wrote a different sort of work – personal memoirs of many of the key seminal moments in his life, ministries, and faith. Those memoirs were compiled and published several years after his death in the book Memories of His Mercy: Recollections of the Grace and Providence of God.  

In Memories of His Mercy, Fr. Gilquist tells stories of his upbringing within a devout Christian home, the men and women who mentored him in his family and beyond, and the courtship of the woman he would later marry. He later moves through some of his fondest memories, particularly of people whose lives touched his. His aim is not to write an overarching narrative, but a much humbler one of attempting to convey how faith, charity and empathy for others, and a strong work ethic tempered by consistent honesty can allow one, with the grace of God, to both be a blessing to others, and be blessed in turn.  

The various tales are also quite simply experiences that he genuinely enjoyed and wanted to share (such as when he helped ghost-write Johnny Cash’s autobiography in the 1970s), or of which he was particularly and personally proud (such as his involvement in the creation of the Orthodox Study Bible). His greatest personal joys were, of course, in his wife and family, and so their lives feature prominently in the stories too. Through it all he talks about how he saw every interaction with other people as an opportunity to evangelize and make friends.

When the Woke Come for the Armed Forces

 

Men and women are the same and the only thing separating us is our sexual organs. This is the lie we’re being fed every day, all day. In countless ways, this lie has the potential to endanger our safety and our lives, and this is yet another example:

In the Strongest Terms Possible

 

In case of rhetorical emergency, break glass and use the following:

“Today the whole world witnessed [insert bad thing here], and on behalf of [insert your department/organization/government here] we are here to condemn [insert action here or person] in the strongest terms possible.

More likely than not, the only thing that’s possible when you’re using that phrase is using that phrase. It’s a political crutch and has been used for decades and is totally bipartisan in it’s usage. Its origins are unknown, although some like to try to peg it to a Monty Python sketch. (“Dear Sir, I wish to complain in the strongest possible terms about the song you have just broadcast about the lumberjack who wears women’s clothes. Many of my best friends are lumberjacks, and only a few of them are transvestites.”)

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.

And American business might be forced to change its ways, too, even if all the tariffs go away. The Hong Kong protests increasingly look like a dystopian film with an authoritarian Goliath vs. democratic David storyline that’s easy for Americans to follow. So, too, the detention of China’s Uighur minority inside reeducation camps is starting to resemble a rerun of the worst bits of the 20th century. It’s one thing for American firms to outsource manufacturing and develop markets in non-democratic China that seems to be following the same road as South Korea toward liberal democracy — but quite another when the endgame might be a totalitarian surveillance state.

Valuing Kisses

 

On Rosh Hashanah, my family did something we have never done before: at our table, we read out The Kisses.

What is a Kiss? A child trips and falls, scraping her knee. Tears and cries flow. The mother comes, scoops up the child in an embrace, and delivers, with great theater: a kiss.

The baseball master talks to Jay about a slew of issues: How was the 2019 season? What about the (current) playoffs? Who are the future Hall of Famers? Is the Hall selective enough? What reforms of the game would be advisable? What about the relative paucity of black American players? What about the preeminence of Latin American players? What is the role of managers? And of GMs? And of owners?

All this and more – including a blast against the NBA. The master, George Will, is at the top of his game.

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.”

From all appearances, the House Intel Committee and Adam Schiff appear to want to control and dominate proceedings and shut out the Republicans as much as possible. I doubt that the Republicans will be able to have him removed. They do, however, have ways to make his rogue activities more difficult.

The rationale for Donald Trump in 2016: border control, the opiate crisis, honoring America’s “forgotten man,” and much more. Charles Hurt, a Fox News contributor and author of Still Winning: Why America Went All In On Donald Trump – And Why We Must Do It Again, offers his thoughts on the rationale for giving President Trump a second presidential term.

 

Connie Nicholas Carberg was the NFL’s first female scout and the first woman to make a pick in the NFL draft (for the New York Jets). She joins Carol to share her amazing story of letting her passion for football and willingness to ask for help guide her into a place in the Jets’ scouting department, where her achievements included scouting All-Pro defensive end Mark Gastineau. Connie shares a unique take on breaking barriers and being successful with a positive attitude, a life-long love of football and the Jets, and even weighs in on the potential future of NCAA athletes being able to profit off their names and likenesses.

You can also see a fantastic NFL Films piece on Connie called “Forever a Jet” on YouTube.

Is Liz a Pathological Liar?

 

The definition of a pathological liar is: “someone who lies compulsively.”

Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has already been caught lying compulsively, in the form of her genetic and genealogical heritage. It’s not something one easily lies about in the age of Ancestry dot com and 23andMe DNA testing, and yet, she did, and was caught red-handed in the lie. President Trump’s favorite nickname for the wanna-be Native American – Fauxahontas – is one of his all-time best insults.

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.

The youth movement and its adult supporters assume that the fate of the world hangs in the balance unless some prompt and decisive action is taken. The proposed cures for addressing the climate crisis, such as the uncompromising demand that there be no more new fossil fuel projects, are highly intrusive. If implemented, even in part,  they will necessarily affect how ordinary people eat, work, travel, and vacation­—and even how they bear children. The common desire “to set a pathway for 100 percent renewable power” will force excessive reliance on alternative energy forms, such as wind and solar, that are too unreliable to offer a dependable energy source on land, and useless for such activities as air transportation.

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.

That’s at the heart of Harris. Ignoring almost a half-century of precedent—and more importantly, the text of federal law itself—a federal court of appeals effectively redefined “sex” to include “gender identity” to punish a funeral homeowner who was depending on the law to run his fifth-generation family business.

Gary Saul Morson, the Lawrence B. Dumas Professor of the Arts and Humanities at Northwestern University and the author of “Leninthink,” joins James Panero to discuss the pernicious legacy of Vladimir Lenin.

Statue-worthy Women

 

The First Lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray, decided to do something about the fact that there are very few statues of women in the city. She asked New Yorkers to nominate females that were worthy of having a statue in New York. The most nominated woman was Mother Frances Cabrini. Cabrini is a Catholic saint. She came to New York in the 1800s and set up missions for Italian immigrants. Italian Americans have had a huge impact on the city and Mother Cabrini played an important role in assisting this immigrant community.

When finally selecting seven statue-worthy women, McCray left Cabrini off her list. Many in the Italian American community felt slighted. Actor Chazz Palminteri went so far as calling McCray a racist for snubbing the Italian woman. Now McCray is married to Bill de Blasio, so maybe she hasn’t had a great example of Italian Americans. Still, is the mother of two half Italian kids really racists against Italians? Let’s take a look at who did make the cut:

They Can Resist Anything But Temptation

 

Those that breathe the rarified air of Washington DC are not like you and me. You know it, and they know it. Both Republicans and Democrats are circling the wagons to protect Joe Biden, and by extension Hillary Clinton, as well as Barak Obama. Donald Trump at times punches below the belt and the professional politicians and journalists are horrified. The elites are used to practicing the dark arts of cashing in on their influence out of the public view, they are not used to taking body blows in the public arena.

The parasites in the media world, you know the types that want to attend all the right parties on the cocktail circuit, have a vested interest in keeping the party going. There are others that attach themselves to the right people. The audible sighs of relief when Jeffery Epstein was found dead in his cell put out more carbon dioxide than 10 coal plants. No more wasting time checking their personal calendars on past trips taken on the Lolita Express, or trying to remember if they left anything to include DNA on Fantasy Island.

What if the Perps Get Away With It?

 

What if the Russiagate abusers of power and public trust get to walk?  

The “scandal-free” Obama years were about consolidation of power for the new elite despite its raging policy incompetence.  America was on notice that the rules had changed when the DOJ Integrity All-Stars (Friedrich, Rummler, Glavin and Weissman) were not only spared accountability for horrific abuses and false representations in the Enron and Ted Stevens cases but advanced into high public office and in and out of lucrative positions in top law firms. (And one of them more recently graced us with his execrable work on the Mueller probe.) Hillary was supposed to forever solidify the rule of the new elite. 

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.

(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.

Unbroken broken as told in two movies:

The Horror! The Horror!

 

Call me Asher.

The story I’m about to tell you is about a discovery I made, a discovery that could have dreadful consequences if it were revealed to the world at large. For that reason, I’ll have to ask you to swear to never tell it to another person. Promise? OK, we can go on then.

Group Writing: One Man’s Treat to Me Made My Life Complete

 

I woke up on the bus. It was silent, unmoving. I was right across from the driver’s seat, so I had an unobstructed view out the windshield. I was not looking out on the expected scene of night streets of New York City. I felt a moment of dread. I must have fallen asleep and slept past my stop, and now I appeared to be in a parking garage.

It was a Friday evening, and I had had conflicting social obligations in different boroughs. One group of friends on the Upper East Side was hosting several Japanese friends whom I hadn’t seen in a year or two, and there was no way I could miss that party. The other party was a house-warmer for my former roommate, who had just moved into her own apartment near mine in the Bronx. I felt obliged to be there as well. The Express Bus was my answer: a more expensive alternative to the subway, but much safer, and a direct ride from the UES to my neighborhood in the Bronx; no train switching, no riding with weirdos in the night. Since my grandmother lived in a nursing home in the UES, I took the Express Bus at least once a week after visiting her, so I knew how great it was.

Quote of the Day: Plus ça Change

 

“From their roosts in the great cities, and certain collegiate eyries, the left wing intellectuals of almost every feather (and that was most of the intellectuals in the country) swooped and fluttered in flocks like sea fowl – puffins, skimmers, skuas and boobies – and gave vent to hoarse cries and defilements. … No depravity was too bizarre to ‘explain’ Chambers motives for calling Hiss a communist. No hypothesis was too preposterous, no speculation too fantastic, to ‘explain’ how all those State Department documents came to be copied on Hiss’s Woodstock typewriter. Only the truth became too preposterous to entertain.”– Witness, Whittaker Chambers

I was born in 1952, the year that Whittaker Chambers publisher Witness. For all these years I somehow missed out on learning much about the late 1940s and the events that led up to the Hiss trial and eventually the McCarthy hearings. I finally picked up a copy of Witness and set about plugging the gaps in my education. The book is something of a hard slog as Chambers tends towards the philosophical and only sprinkles in the narrative at intervals but it is well worth a read if you have not.