NTK FeatureThis episode begins with Peter Wallison, who talks to Mona and Jay about the crash of 2008 and how to prevent another crash. A lot of people consider Wallison a guru. You’ll see why.

UnknownThen Mona and Jay take up some other concerns: Rand Paul and his presidential candidacy; the University of Michigan and “American Sniper”; Mitt Romney and the NCAA basketball tournament; conservative affection for the late Senator Moynihan.

There is the usual gnashing of teeth over Barack Obama, too. And memories of William F. Buckley Jr. The podcast goes out with the movement from Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 that WFB used as the theme music for his long-running television show, “Firing Line.”

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  1. Guruforhire Member

    I did not.

    • #1
    • April 10, 2015, at 3:23 PM PDT
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  2. Yeah...ok. Inactive

    Guruforhire:I did not.

    Wow, just like the Iran “framework“; they’re gonna give up their material – no they’re not. The Guru speaks – no he did not.

    • #2
    • April 10, 2015, at 3:37 PM PDT
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  3. DialMforMurder Inactive

    Hi Mona and Jay, love the show!

    I can shed some light on the Polish policy toward Jews. I have Polish heritage myself and multiple relatives living there who I still have contact with.

    In 1264 Prince Boleslaus the Pious issued the Statute of Kalisz, which allowed Jews to form their own communes called ‘kahal’ communes. They could worship freely, conduct business, travel and run their own courts. Christians who harmed Jews were fined and there was a death penalty for anyone who killed a Jew. Later on, after the Spanish Inquisition, the Polish kings passed a charter in 1551 that assured Jewish autonomy in Poland, and the constitution of 1791 confirmed this also. In effect, the Jews were allowed to run a state within a state (kind of like Sharia in Britain today! ;) )

    Jews were about 10% of the entire population and most of the small-business middle-class. The Polish nobility liked the Jews in the country, as they helped bring in profits through trade and export, especially grain. Jews also absorbed most of the heat from the resentful peasants: Jewish innkeepers would keep the peasantry drunk enough to avoid an uprising against the nobility, though at a price of peasant anti-semitism.

    There were still rules and restrictions, extra taxes, flare-ups of hostility, cat-calls on the street and so on. But when you compare with how ill-treated Jews were in other European nations (sometimes banned entirely) it was deemed a tolerable deal comparatively.

    When the first partition of Poland occurred, Prussia, Austria and Russia all expelled the Jews from the Polish territories they annexed, pushing those Jews into the sliver of Poland that remained. (I think Krakow mainly, as they were some archaic laws preventing them from living in the capital Warsaw). With the final partitions and the Polish rebellion, the rebel general and patriot hero Tadeusz Kosciuszko permitted the creation of an all-Jewish fighting brigade that was the first in recorded history since ancient times, led by a Polish Jew named Berek Joselewicz.

    After Poland was wiped from the map completely, it’s usually said that the Jews who still remained in Polish territory got the best deal if they were in the areas annexed by Austria. This included the city of Krakow, hence the city has many old Jewish buildings and artifacts. The Krakowians I’ve spoken to have a big fondness for Jews and feel a responsibility to be good custodians of the Jewish legacy there, though the Jews themselves are of course long gone. I think this also has to do with the nearby proximity of Auschwitz and the many tour groups from Israel that pass through. They also feel particularly bitter toward the nazis for destroying this vibrant part of Polish society. Of course I have also heard unfortunately counterclaims from some old Jews who left the country about the daily anti-semitism they endured from these “good old days”, so I take it all with a grain of salt.

    Alot of the info in this post I pulled from a book called “Tadeusz Kosziuszko: The Peasant Prince” by Alex Storozynski if you are interested. Otherwise it’s oral history and bits I’ve read here and there.

    • #3
    • April 11, 2015, at 1:32 AM PDT
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  4. David Guaspari Member
    David GuaspariJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    On open minds …

    William Buckley was no doubt quoting G.K. Chesterton:”The purpose of opening your mind, like the purpose of opening your mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.” [I’m relying on from memory, which may not be perfectly accurate.]

    • #4
    • April 11, 2015, at 4:42 AM PDT
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  5. Mona Charen Contributor

    I knew it! We have the best listeners. Great short history of the Jews in Poland. Thanks to all.

    • #5
    • April 11, 2015, at 7:28 AM PDT
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  6. Titus Techera Contributor

    In re the State Dept. spokesman mocking the WSJ editorial by Messers. Kissinger & Schultz: Here’s more hilarity, sanctimony, embarrassment, & self-righteous prickliness from this Ms. Harf at State.

    • #6
    • April 11, 2015, at 11:36 AM PDT
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  7. Rightfromthestart Coolidge

    Jay mentioned race being injected into everything. We’ve all often mentioned that race is the all-purpose cudgel of the left. We saw this in practice when somehow Health Insurance magically became a racial issue. After passing the law through pure chicanery and seeing the outrage that resulted the left simply marched the Congressional Black Caucus through the protesters, for no reason since a tunnel is available, hoping to catch someone doing or saying something and then when nothing happened they claimed it did anyway. In a flash opposition to Obamacare and opposition to Obama along with the Tea Party itself all became racist. Leaving us covered in the mud of racism and trying to explain to closed ears that nothing happened, and that health insurance and government waste are not racial. Their smear machine and its media steamroller to finish you off are simply amazing to watch in practice. 

    • #7
    • April 11, 2015, at 1:30 PM PDT
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  8. Petty Boozswha Inactive

    I think Mr. Wallison does his position a disservice by not dealing with the arguments originally made in favor of the Community Reinvestment Act; there was a filament of truth in “redlining” that community activists could point to that they in turn spun their cotton candy around when devising a remedy. I agree they put their shoulders to an open door – standards were ready to be corrupted in the mortgage issuance area, but the initial problem did have a basis in fact.

    • #8
    • April 11, 2015, at 4:09 PM PDT
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  9. Commodore BTC Inactive

    the way to avoid another crash is for the world to adopt Bitcoin

    • #9
    • April 11, 2015, at 4:23 PM PDT
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  10. listeningin Inactive

    Re: appreciating greatness.

    I have a theory. The concept of appreciating greatness or conversely the need to blandly value every person as just alike, etc., is bothersome in part because we are comparing it to a better way of understanding the world from our cultural heritage. When a culture has resonances of Judeo-Christian theology, there is a robust framework for understanding that while humans are inherently flawed because of the fall, they are also made in the image of God and have inestimable worth. Therefore, a) it is true that every person is immortal and has infinite worth, and b) humans are capable of incredible creativity, moral greatness, intellectual prowess, etc. Since God is both providentially in charge and good, He is in charge of doling out the gifts and assigning status, where folks are born, etc., He works out the justice thing in terms of “to whom much is given, much is required,” and because of the whole rewards thing in eternity, what we see of someone’s life is only ever a part of the story…and given the fact that the Great Hero of the biblical story was a carpenter who ended up on a cross, it is far from the most important part. One thinks of C.S. Lewis’ depiction of the street sweeper in The Great Divorce…while on earth she did menial work and fed the stray cats, in the heavenly realm, the goodness of her steadfast commitment to do her work well and care for God’s creature was rewarded such that she had become a creature of breathtaking glory.

    When these deep and rich theological themes are lost to cultural memory, then the natural need that these truths create in the human soul must be found through other explanations…so in American culture, where individualism and accomplishment is so critical for identity, there becomes a pressure to prove oneself…and a tremendous reaction against those who do and perhaps protectiveness of those who don’t…a protectiveness justified by the fact that it seems to be a form of compassion. It also must be dishonest by many who articulate it because the folks that say it a lot (such as academics in the field of education, for example…just outing my own field) don’t accept those parameters for their own sense of identity or success. And it doesn’t help those they influence a whole lot.

    A far richer gift to give someone is to explain that God is good, and powerful, and that He can provide the support and strength to enable a person to become the person He created them to be…and that work that is humble is dignified when it is done well because it is appointed by Him and important to society.

    Other than by revival, I don’t see that perspective taking root again (on our knees, peeps!) You have to accept many more central truths to get to the more extraneous benefits of good theology.

    • #10
    • April 11, 2015, at 10:43 PM PDT
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  11. Titus Techera Contributor

    listeningin:God is both providentially in charge and good,

    It amazes me that people can say that with a straight face, without batting an eyelid–after all that’s happened in 20th century. Is it so obvious to you that divine mercy & providence explain the slaughter of well over 100 million human beings, as you remind us, said to have been made in the image of God?

    • #11
    • April 11, 2015, at 11:04 PM PDT
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  12. Saint Augustine Member

    David Guaspari:On open minds …

    William Buckley was no doubt quoting G.K. Chesterton:”The purpose of opening your mind, like the purpose of opening your mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.” [I’m relying on from memory, which may not be perfectly accurate.]

    Indeed. Since you beat me to Chesterton, I’ll add from C. S. Lewis in The Abolition of Man:

    An open mind, in questions that are not ultimate, is useful. But an open mind about the ultimate foundations either of Theoretical or of Practical Reason is idiocy. If a man’s mind is open on these things, let his mouth at least be shut.

    • #12
    • April 13, 2015, at 1:38 AM PDT
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  13. Saint Augustine Member

    The impulse to blame the rich for poverty, and its tendency towards tyranny, is explored in the founding book of political philosophy. In Plato’s Republic, the tyrant’s rise to power is largely based in stirring up poor welfare abusers against the rich, “hinting at the abolition of debts and partition of lands.”

    • #13
    • April 13, 2015, at 1:51 AM PDT
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