Power Line https://ricochet.com Fri, 22 Jan 2021 05:49:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 174309703 The Ricochet Audio Network The Ricochet Audio Network support@ricochet.com https://cdn.ricochet.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/powerline-podcast.png Power Line https://ricochet.com no episodic 2021 by The Ricochet Audio Network The Power Line Blog's Podcast 235. The Three Whiskey Happy Hour: The Metaphysics of the Election The Three Whiskey Happy Hour: The Metaphysics of the Election 235 Sat, 16 Jan 2021 19:40:53 +0000 Settle in with your favorite single malt for this extra-long episode that offers a deep dive into the election results with Henry Olsen, the Trump-sympathetic analyst who concludes that Democrat voter fraud did not determine the outcome of the election. He fields a lot of fastballs and curveballs from me and "Lucretia" about why so many Americans can harbor reasonable doubts that the election was run fairly--about why this election seems, as I put it, "metaphysically wrong" and challenging to basic sense perception. Henry runs through a lot of numbers that are equally challenging for the Steal narrative. He agrees that the COVID-induced voting liberalization is problematic, and that we still need to get to the bottom of a lot of problems. And if we don't, future elections will be even worse.

We also unveil on this episode the first "Attack Ad" of the Three Whisky Happy Hour campaign; you'll just need to listen to hear who gets attacked first!

We could have gone on for two more hours easily, and in fact after we ended the recording, we ended up talking and arguing for another 45 minutes, so we're going to have to have Henry back for another round soon.


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870476 Power Line 1:23:47 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whiskey-happy-hour-the-metaphysics-of-the-election/
234. Special Edition: Should Trump Be Impeached? Special Edition: Should Trump Be Impeached? 234 Sun, 10 Jan 2021 20:28:52 +0000 I was caught up short yesterday when I spotted, on the generally very pro-Trump American Greatness website, William B. Allen's article entitled "Let Us Impeach Him." It pays to read past the headline of this article, because the argument is not what you think: it's not a "get-him-out-office-as-fast-as-we-can" manifesto. Rather, Prof. Allen argues that we should take our time and impeach Trump after he leaves office, thereby allowing scope for a full and complete public debate over the entirety of the Trump years--especially the bad faith of the Democrats and their corruption of our constitutional order.

This might not go as well for Democrats as you might think, and given that the left is going to be trying to use Trump's ignomious end of his term against us for months and years to come, maybe the best strategy is to emulate King Theoden's final counsel at the Battle of Helm's Deep, and "ride out to meet them" head on. An impeachment battle might just provide the opportunity to turn the tables on the Democrats (and there are hints a few of them know it).

Listen in for the explanation. (By the way, if you're interesting in listening to our previous podcast from two years ago referenced in our conversation, you can find it archived here.) And yes, for you prog rock geeks out there, I chose the lyric-less exit music today because of its title: "After the Ordeal." Bonus points if you can name the artist and specific album without looking it up.


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864386 Power Line 26:07 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/special-edition-should-trump-be-impeached/
233. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Open Mic Edition The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Open Mic Edition 233 Sat, 09 Jan 2021 19:12:55 +0000 Lucretia and I decided to pour triple shots and host an open bar episode of our regular whisky-drenched dialogue with two special guests, Power Line co-founder John Hinderaker, and Charles Lipson, frequent contributor to The Spectator and other publications. Partly this is because Steve wanted some company in the weekly "getting-thrashed-by-Lucretia" moments. And also because we taped this episode with a live virtual Zoom audience of Power Line VIP members, which kind of made it an open mic edition.

Naturally there was only one topic: how to think about this disastrous week in Washington, and where do we go from here? Steve and Charles are critical of Trump, while John and Lucretia urge us not to look beyond the massive hypocrisy and bad faith of Democrats and the media (but we repeat ourselves). What messages and strategies ought conservatives--and the reeling Republican Party--adopt going forward? What does the political landscape look like now that the Democrats control the Senate? Do we really want to repose our fate into the hands of Joe Manchin?

Settle in with your favorite drink (Steve had a peaty Japanese whisky, because it seemed to pair best with the temptation to commit hari-kari), and give a listen.


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863468 Power Line 1:02:59 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-open-mic-edition/
233. Some Needed Comic Relief from Stan Evans Some Needed Comic Relief from Stan Evans 233 Thu, 07 Jan 2021 22:01:33 +0000 For anyone looking for some welcome comic relief from the dreadful scene of this week, here is the episode for you!

M. Stanton Evans

As a few select people know, I am currently writing a biography of the late, great M. Stanton Evans, who passed away in 2015. Stan was one of the key figures in the conservative movement from the late 1950s (he was the principal author of the "Sharon Statement" that launched Young Americans for Freedom in 1960), and he was my first mentor out of college 40 years ago at his National Journalism Center. And he was the author of several books that will stand up for a long time, especially The Theme Is Freedom--a statement of his political thought--and Blacklisted by History, his defense of Joseph McCarthy against the gross distortions of conventional history.

In addition to his many books and enormous corpus of journalism over his lifetime, he was also one of the funniest human beings around. You never saw this much in his writing (though I have discovered a rare 1959 column from the Indianapolis News on the technique he called his "bore baffler" that explains his ironic and deadpan sense of humor), and in any case his humor depended a lot of his delivery, which always had the perfect timing of the best standup comics. It turns out there are a number of recordings of many of his speeches and lectures, and I decided to excerpt a small handful of his classic bits, especially his legendary story of the "human itties." Pour yourself a drink and enjoy some time off from the nasty business from the week, and stay tuned for announcements of the publication of the biography later this year.


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861536 Power Line 30:20 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/some-needed-comic-relief-from-stan-evans/
232. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: The Liberal Learning Curve is Flat The Three Whisky Happy Hour: The Liberal Learning Curve is Flat 232 Sun, 03 Jan 2021 01:12:24 +0000 We begin the New Year by examining three breaking news stories (to go with three shots of whisky, of course), all of which add up to the conclusion that the liberal learning curve is flat. First, Portland's Mayor Ted Wheeler is finally starting to understand that Antifa is an anarchist group that you can't reason with like a teenager. Second, Nancy Pelosi's fancy home in San Francisco was vandalized by leftists, which seems redundant since the Speaker is quite skilled at political vandalism without outside help. And third, we compare and contrast political and media interest in two military-related scandals: the infamous "Tailhook" scandal of 30 years ago, and the news out just in the last few days that West Point is not going to enforce its honor code on 73 cadets who were caught cheating on an exam.

From there we introduce what is likely to be a series or a running segment for several weeks to come on "the vindication of Donald Trump." Let's just say "Lucretia" and extend our usual dispute about whether conventional Republicans are pathetic or merely seem to be.


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856847 Power Line 1:08:23 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-the-liberal-learning-curve-is-flat/
231. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: 2020 in Review The Three Whisky Happy Hour: 2020 in Review 231 Sat, 26 Dec 2020 22:56:04 +0000

This week's whisky

In another wide ranging episode (our last for the year), "Lucretia" and I review the best and worst Christmas movies, the best and worst Christmas music, the rank order of the best Will Ferrell movies, whether blended whisky is ever acceptable, why Finnish rock music sounds like a whale being tortured, and whether we can deduct the cost of our whisky under the tax changes of the COVID relief and omnibus spending bill Congress just passed.

Then we finally get around the the biggest stories of 2020--which turn out to be the stories that were not told, or told so incorrectly that "fake news" hardly begins to describe the malfeasance and incompetence of the media today. What went on behind the scenes in early March to suddenly propel Joe Biden to the Democratic nomination when he was given up for dead? Once upon a time we'd have had Theodore White to explain it to us after the fact, but the substantive decline of the news media includes the decline in political journalism about presidential campaigns. We also discuss how the media's credulous and superficial coverage of the whole COVID pandemic represents perhaps the most egregious media failure since its biased and inaccurate coverage of the Vietnam War.

Finally, are there reasons to think the left has gone too far with its wokery, and will provoke a significant backlash? Lucretia and I divide on this question, but that's what happens when you divide about what kind of single malt to drink. Happy new year everybody! We'll drink to that.


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852617 Power Line 1:14:12 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-2020-in-review/
230. Is “Australian Wine Snob” an Oxymoron? Is “Australian Wine Snob” an Oxymoron? 230 Sat, 19 Dec 2020 04:07:54 +0000 This is without doubt The. Most. Gozno. Episode. Ever.

My sampler for the episode.

This week "Lucretia" ("That's DoctorLucretia to you, kiddo!") and I put down our whisky and take up Australian red wines instead (with brief consideration about whether the banana daiquiri represented the nadir of the West during the Cold War), as we range from Hegel to Snoop Dogg ("That's Mister Dogg to you, kiddo!"), from cyber espionage to cork versus screw-cap wine bottle coverings, from Mark Twain to Kurt Vonnegut, from folky Phil Ochs to punky Jello Biafra, with a side of Wagner and Roger Scruton ("That's Sir Roger Scruton to you, kiddo!"), all overlaid with commentary from Monty Python.

 

Above all, we finally get to our long-promised (or threatened?) seminar on how snobbery is the formal core of modern liberalism, because how could you not after the "Dr. Jill issue" blew up sky high. The metaphysical roots of liberal snobbery is much worse than wine snobbery, for certain.

One avenue into the depths of this is introduced with this astounding proposal from "anti-racist" Ibram Kendi a few months back:

"To fix the original sin of racism, Americans should pass an anti-racist amendment to the U.S. Constitution that enshrines two guiding anti-racist principals: Racial inequity is evidence of racist policy and the different racial groups are equals. The amendment would make unconstitutional racial inequity over a certain threshold, as well as racist ideas by public officials (with "racist ideas" and "public official" clearly defined). It would establish and permanently fund the Department of Anti-racism (DOA) comprised of formally trained experts on racism and no political appointees. The DOA would be responsible for preclearing all local, state and federal public policies to ensure they won't yield racial inequity, monitor those policies, investigate private racist policies when racial inequity surfaces, and monitor public officials for expressions of racist ideas. The DOA would be empowered with disciplinary tools to wield over and against policymakers and public officials who do not voluntarily change their racist policy and ideas."

The presumptions embedded in this statement are breathtaking, and all the more astounding given than it never even occurs to leftists why there might be anything defective about such a presumption. The side of history, and all that.

We may need to stick with Australian red wines for several more episodes, but let is know if you want us to go back to single malt whisky.

 


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847793 Power Line 1:12:09 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/is-australian-wine-snob-an-oxymoron/
229. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Our Pirate Ruling Class The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Our Pirate Ruling Class 229 Sun, 13 Dec 2020 01:14:26 +0000

A suitable whisky for a foggy Saturday evening.

So there we were, armed with a fresh bottle of 10-year-old Ardbeg Islay whisky (not quite as peaty as Laphroaig or Talisker), and all set to plunge back into political philosophy again and escape yet another thrashing at the hands of Lucretia, but then the Supreme Court laid an egg, politicians acted stupidly again about COVID (in other words, as they usually act), and news came out about the further adventures of our favorite fictional professor, the archeologist Indiana Jones, giving rise to speculation about whether a film about the aging academic would include the by now obligatory Title IX complaint.

And there went our game plan, though if Hollywood is going to remake old film franchises forever, how about a sequel to The Princess Bride, only this time with the villain being Dread Chief Justice Roberts? (The Princess Amicus Brief perhaps?)

If I do say so myself, I think we both had our A-game Rants in action in this episode, for which no vaccine has been invented yet. So settle in with a glass of your favorite hootch.


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843268 Power Line 1:04:49 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-our-pirate-ruling-class/
228. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: College Shop Talk The Three Whisky Happy Hour: College Shop Talk 228 Sun, 06 Dec 2020 15:18:07 +0000 "Lucretia" and I had fully intended to work through our long-promised (or is it that threatened?) and now thrice-postponed seminar on the philosophical roots of leftist snobbishness and condescension, but we got diverted--strange that this keeps happening--by some notable campus news stories from last week. Naturally there were several stories of colleges disgracing themselves, capitulating to the student mob in the usual cowardly fashion (Haverford, Smith), but one university (yay Chicago!) showing how to tell the whiny mob to stuff it. So we ended up talking shop about the whole scene.

But wait--there's more! The financial unsustainability of higher education is starting to show up in significant layoffs at last: employment is higher education institutions is down more than 10 percent since COVID hit, taking total college employment to a level not seen since before the housing crisis of 2008. Several universities are now starting to shrink core tenured core faculty positions, and closing down some liberal arts departments. But before you say "good riddance," we note that the politicized departments of "gender studies" and such aren't on the chopping block, and that we risk cutting down the tall trees and leaving the zoo animals unaffected.

We round off the episode with a visit to the local gun store, some fond recollections of Walter Williams, and some of the usual bickering over whisky and stemware preferences, which caused me to debut the first in a series of campaign-style attack ads directed at "Lucretia." Time to drink up!

Meanwhile, here's last night's sunset out here on the Left Coast that unspooled as we were recording this week's episode. (And yes, I did swap out the exit music for this week's episode, because it fit in an obscure way with the originally intended topic. You'll just have to suffer with it.)

Sunset 12-5-20


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839178 Power Line 1:02:04 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-college-shop-talk/
227. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Counting Courts The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Counting Courts 227 Sat, 28 Nov 2020 16:26:49 +0000 At one point during the livecast recording of this week's episode on Zoom, a commenter said the score was "Lucretia 6, Hayward 0," so naturally I thought I was only behind by two field goals, and thus easy to make up in the 4th Quarter. But then the commenter clarified that he was using soccer scoring, which meant that I was getting crushed. "Ask Paul," he added unnecessarily. Oh well.

What led to this ignominious rout? I foolishly tried to make the case that not all statistical anomalies (like the occasional clusters of twins born in small towns from time to time) are proof of something wrong, including voting, but Lucretia wasn't having any of it, and to be sure while statistical anomalies may be just that, when you have several "anomalies" all trending in the same direction, pattern recognition takes over. But what are the legal remedies? It is not clear we can count on the courts to correct the counts.

At least the Supreme Court delivered one clear remedy for religious liberty this week, and our second whisky shot this week went beyond this ruling to talk a bit about the police power generally, and why many legal histories--but also Chief Justice John Roberts, alas--get this wrong.

The new whisky for this week is another Japanese blend, Kisoyama, which can't be said three times fast after you've had a few shots without lapsing into "your momma's so fat" jokes.


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834834 Power Line 1:04:49 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-counting-courts/
226. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: “Snobbish Snobology” Postponed The Three Whisky Happy Hour: “Snobbish Snobology” Postponed 226 Sat, 21 Nov 2020 16:05:14 +0000 After getting a review of new and unpronounceable whiskies out of the way (such as the one posted here) along with the miseries of the week just past that compel several drams of whisky, "Lucretia" and I had planned to talk about an obscure but profound essay from way back in 1973 that explores the serious philosophical roots of how today's progressive left is best explained by the left's formal commitment to snobbery. No really--we were! We had a whole seminar on "snobbish snobology" ready to go (is there a more fitting angle for single-malt whisky fanatics?), but we got diverted to--what else?--the election postgame show.

Among our questions and issues: What needs to be surveyed to make out a prima facia case of election fraud? And what kind of evidence is necessary to prove it? Given the low and continually falling trust in our leaders and institutions, is it any wonder that people (including apparently one-third of Democrats according to one poll) don't think this election was on the up-and-up? We kick around the possibilities, and then ask our listeners: would you like us to do a live taping of the podcast next week? We could have a virtual happy hour under the new lockdown, though of course you'd have to bring your own whisky. Let us know.


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831014 Power Line 56:49 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-snobbish-snobology-edition/
225. Can We Transition? Charles Lipson Says Yes, We Can! Can We Transition? Charles Lipson Says Yes, We Can! 225 Mon, 16 Nov 2020 20:51:10 +0000

Charles Lipson

Can American democracy walk and chew bubble gum at the same time? Charles Lipson thinks so, arguing in the Wall Street Journal today that normal transition activities can and should take place even as President Trump pursues his legal challenges to the election results. Lipson, professor emeritus of Political Science at the University of Chicago, is no shrinking violet when it comes to thrashing the left; he's been arguing for months that the FBI attempted coup against President Trump is the biggest scandal in American history, nonetheless thinks that proceeding with a normal transition process will "show that amid deep political division, we can rely on constitutional norms, procedures and institutions."

From there we ponder the truly mind-boggling aspects of this election (such as the fact that Trump got 10,000 more votes in San Francisco than he did in 2016), and what are the prospects for "Biden-Harris" Administration, as it now being strangely called. Hmmm, what could that nomenclature be about?


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827140 Power Line 44:01 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/can-we-transition-charles-lipson-says-yes-we-can/
224. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Milk The Trump Dividend! The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Milk The Trump Dividend! 224 Sat, 14 Nov 2020 04:35:18 +0000 This week Steve and "Lucretia" survey the dismal scene of uphill recount prospects (and why game theory says Trump should fight on even past January 20), the impending COVID tyranny ("Lockdown II: This Time It's Personal!"), and the latest social science nonsense, and decide the only sensible thing to do is pour another whisky and contemplate whether the long-term "Trump dividend" will offer a better return than the 30-year Treasury, or the "soft power dividend" that looks to be coming back under a prospective Biden Administration.

Among other highlights is Steve's prediction of how and why Trump will haunt the waking dreams of liberals for at least the next 50 years, and Lucretia's skepticism that Republicans have learned the right lessons from the Trump Show. And yes, the prospective change of scene means the Power Line Show may need to adopt a new tag line. Listen to the end to hear why, and what we'll change to.


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825884 Power Line 49:07 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-milk-the-trump-dividend/
223. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Election Metaphysics The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Election Metaphysics 223 Sat, 07 Nov 2020 04:29:05 +0000 Hoo boy! I'm not sure three whiskies are enough this week. Fortunately I procured a relatively cheap Islay single malt--Finlaggan--to get me through the travails of Election Overtime.

The election is still a fast moving scene, so I decided that "Lucretia" and I should take a longer term view of the scene, and ponder the "metaphysics" of the election, which are not comforting to the left. In fact it is likely that "wokery" cost the Democrats badly. Above all, don't count out Trump, both for his chances of yet coming out on top, and more figuratively for the immense and enduring impact he has had on American politics. There are reasons to be happy, even while being outraged at the brazen attempt to steal an election right before our eyes.

As we go live we see the news that the Supreme Court has ordered late ballots in Pennsylvania to be sequestered, which no doubt is giving liberals flashbacks to Florida 2000. Here's John Yoo's article that we mention in our hectic conversation. Meanwhile, I need to refill my glass, and fetch more popcorn for the Democratic Party infighting starting up.


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821382 Power Line 43:34 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-election-metaphysics/
222. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Uhlmann to the Rescue The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Uhlmann to the Rescue 222 Sat, 31 Oct 2020 23:29:32 +0000 If Trump wins the electoral college again on Tuesday while losing the popular vote (perhaps by a bigger margin than he did in 2016), the left will lose its mind. Well that's a given, but they'll really lose their mind about the electoral college. After hoisting a couple of toasts to the passing of Sean Connery and a second sour whisky shot for Britain going back on COVID lockdown, "Lucretia" and I get down to business reviewing the republican case for the electoral college, and why it is a great institution that makes our political system better. Far from being an archaic relic, it is more necessary than ever in a country that the left calls "diverse" but which it actually views through perverse homogeneous lenses.

Michael Uhlmann

In particular we recall the excellent defense of the electoral college from the late Michael Uhlmann, and end with the story of how, as a young Senate staffer in 1970, Uhlmann almost singlehandedly derailed a constitutional amendment to abolish the electoral college that had lots of momentum to pass (a story you can read about in detail here). As Mike ended his famous brief, "Let us, if need be, repair it; but let us not abandon it for the sake of a mathematical abstraction, or because we are angry that the world is not perfect."

Perfect advice for our present moment. By the way, Mike was a man who enjoyed more than his fair share of whisky, and, as we recall at the very end of today's overlong episode, was resolutely against immanentizing the eschaton, which abolishing the electoral college would surely hasten.


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819194 Power Line 1:02:07 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-uhlmann-to-the-rescue/
221. The Three Whisky Happy Hour, with Guest Drinker Henry Olsen The Three Whisky Happy Hour, with Guest Drinker Henry Olsen 221 Tue, 27 Oct 2020 17:48:16 +0000 Better late than never, "Lucretia" and I team up to review what's going on in the news along with drinking to the confirmation of Justice Barrett, but are most interested in thinking a bit about what is "metaphysically" wrong with the election scene, with poll after poll showing a solid Biden lead against lots of sense perception--and several historical examples--that argues for a different outcome. And so this became a crossover episode of the podcast, since I decided to pin down Henry Olsen, who I abuse for starting a competing podcast (ahem), and for his corrupt views about European "football."

We did our best to refrain from too many #MeToobin jokes, but Chelsea Handler's stunning echo of Joe Biden ("if you don't vote for me, you ain't black") that we play right at the beginning is pretty revealing of the bedrock identity assumptions of the left these days. Talk about losing your grip.


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817656 Power Line 47:54 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-with-guest-drinker-henry-olsen/
220. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Weiss-Cracking The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Weiss-Cracking 220 Sun, 18 Oct 2020 14:58:34 +0000 Steve settles in with some Japanese whisky while "Lucretia" abandons her "whisky cougar" ways with a bona fide Glenlivet 18 so we can celebrate Amy Coney Barrett's start turn driving Democrats to embarrass themselves last week. The hearings illustrate what's wrong with the "side of history" liberals, as expressed in an especially lazy column from Nick Kristof in the New York Times, and a series of coordinated tweets from Democrats trying to assail constitutional originalism, but mostly succeeding only in exposing their own invincible ignorance.

The main event of this episode is reviewing our pick for Article of the Week, Bari Weiss's essay "Stop Being Shocked" in The Tablet. It's a great essay, with its bracing warning of the existential threat to Jews from the new illiberalism, but it has two problems: it get Trump wrong (though Lucretia proposes that this may be tactical cleverness), and its focus on the precariousness of Jews under the rising assault from the social justice left may not go far enough in forecasting the menace facing everyone. Guess who foresaw the problem of the Jews a decaying liberal democracy 60 years ago? Yup, that L- S---- guy again.


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813598 Power Line 1:06:42 No History full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-weiss-cracking/
219. Carpe Diem Indeed! Mark Perry Shows How to Fight Back on Campus Carpe Diem Indeed! Mark Perry Shows How to Fight Back on Campus 219 Sat, 17 Oct 2020 15:32:20 +0000 If you aren't following Mark Perry's Carpe Diem blog every day you're missing out on one of the best sources for common sense analysis of current economic and social controversies. Mark, an economist at the University of Michigan and scholar at AEI, specializes in debunking economic fallacies (such as the perennial feminist talking point that women only earn 78 cents for every dollar a man earns), but he also has hit upon a sure fire method to make life miserable for campus diversicrats: file Title IX complaints against college programs that discriminate against men. So far he's filed more than 200 such complaints, and has an excellent track record in making colleges and universities back down from egregiously discriminatory practices.

We also talk about his other specialty--using Venn diagrams to illustrate hypocrisy and inconsistent thinking mostly by liberals--as well as some of the economic mysteries of our time, such as why the relentless money-printing of the Federal Reserve hasn't touched off inflation.


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813390 Power Line 50:38 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/carpe-diem-indeed-mark-perry-shows-how-to-fight-back-on-campus/
218. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: A Victory Lap, a Beatdown, and Still More Liberal Education! The Three Whisky Happy Hour: A Victory Lap, a Beatdown, and Still More Liberal Education! 218 Sat, 10 Oct 2020 19:31:52 +0000

The basics.

This week's recap starts off with a challenge to find the most unpronounceable scotch whisky you've never heard of (like Poit Dhubh, which is unavailable in the U.S.), plus a review of the 10 health benefits of drinking scotch whisky (some of which need a controlled experiment to validate properly, which we're happy to conduct ourselves).

Once suitably lubricated, we take a victory lap for our prescient discussion in last week's episode about the machinations of the 25th Amendment, which Speaker Pelosi vindicated with her proposal for the Promote Kamala Harris to the Presidency Commission.

From there we ponder whether New York Times columnist Bret Stephens wrote his own suicide note at the paper with his long column yesterday blasting the paper's 1619 Project. I can't imagine the Wokerati at the paper will sit still for this thorough exercise in self-criticism, as I've always understood that an unwritten rule at the Times is not criticizing your colleagues in print.

From there we resume our discussion of liberal education in a democracy, winding up with the recommendation that Americans need to read more Dostoyevsky.

By the way, we're completely open to suggestions for good whisky-potato chip pairings.

 


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810954 Power Line 57:50 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-a-victory-lap-a-beatdown-and-still-more-liberal-education/
217. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Liberal Education and Responsibility (With a Side of Biden) The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Liberal Education and Responsibility (With a Side of Biden) 217 Sun, 04 Oct 2020 02:45:35 +0000 Lots of things to pour whisky shots for this week. Before returning to our short course on Leo Strauss's perspectives on liberal education, "Lucretia" and Steve reflect on Joe Biden's long career as a chameleon (if you didn't know better, you'd almost think Biden had read Richard Weaver's famous Ideas Have Consequences, since he thinks Antifa is an "idea," and one that certainly has consequences), and why the 25th Amendment, which leftists have been hoping would be applied to Trump ever since January 20, 2017, is more likely to be applied to a President Biden in 2021 (should such a shudder-inducing possibility come to pass). Did you know that Section 4 of the 25th Amendment essentially gives Congress the power to impeach the President without a trial? We break it all down for you.

Having spent a lot of time on this week's craziness, we only get about halfway through Strauss's essay "Liberal Education and Responsibility." We wrestle with the proposition that the idea of education in American democracy is the attempt to create a universal aristocracy, and understanding the distinction between the civic gentleman and the philosopher. We barely got started on this project before we ran out of whisky in our glasses (and also knowing we needed to take mercy on listeners), so. . . to be continued!

 


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808138 Power Line 1:00:01 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-liberal-education-and-responsibility-with-a-side-of-biden/
216. The Recovery of Family Life, with Scott Yenor The Recovery of Family Life, with Scott Yenor 216 Mon, 28 Sep 2020 19:42:26 +0000 We're delighted to bring Scott Yenor to the show this week to discuss his important new book, The Recovery of Family Life: Exposing the Limits of Modern Ideologies, which is being officially released tomorrow from Baylor University Press. Unlike many other fine books on the family today that rely chiefly on social science, Scott also brings his immense learning in political philosophy to bear on family questions, from Plato and Aristotle through to de Tocqueville--and even Russian novels.

Yenor takes us through a grand tour of the "rolling revolution" wrought by the ideologies of sexual liberation and unlimited individual autonomy over recent decades, which has led to, among other things, the degradation of love, and a civilization-threatening collapse in the birth rate. Scott has some thoughts on what policy makers can do to reinforce strong family life.

Our conversation ranges widely over the controversies Scott has had to weather on campus, and also how the left has attempted to purge him from Idaho's State Advisory Commission on Civil Rights--an episode you can read about here. Also be sure to take in his essays at The American Mind, the new commentary website of the Claremont Institute. And there's even something for college football fans in this episode!


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806493 Power Line 51:18 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-recovery-of-family-life-with-scott-yenor/
215. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Liberal Education and the Court The Three Whisky Happy Hour: Liberal Education and the Court 215 Sat, 26 Sep 2020 23:05:59 +0000 Freshly resupplied with a shipment of Laphraoig, Talisker, and "Murdered Out" dark roast from Black Rifle Coffee, Steve and "Lucretia" drink to the appointment of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court, smack around Biden a little (but only a little because otherwise it would be elder abuse), and then resume our discussion from two weeks about about liberal education and Leo Strauss's famous lecture entitled "What Is Liberal Education?"

Among other things, you'll learn the crucial difference between Socratic skepticism of the classics, and the radical modern skepticism of Descartes, Nietzsche, or Heidegger. And if that doesn't need a few shots of whisky to choke down, nothing will!


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805914 Power Line 53:43 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-liberal-education-and-the-court/
214. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: “The Frigate 93 Election?” The Three Whisky Happy Hour: “The Frigate 93 Election?” 214 Sun, 20 Sep 2020 13:33:59 +0000 I know we promised listeners that last week's episode would be the beginning of a three-part series on liberal education rightly understood, but the passing of Justice Ginsburg has thrown us off our plan. But rather than go in for the usual punditry about confirmation battles and the effect this will have on the election, Lucretia and I decided to step back and take on a truly radical perspective on the controversy. What if the Supreme Court wasn't so important to our political order, and appointment to it were on the level of appointments to the Federal Trade Commission instead? How might that be accomplished?

Lucretia thinks maybe--perhaps--the trouble isn't with "originalism" versus "activism," or certain cases and periods when things went notably wrong (like the so-called "revolution of 1937"), but rather that the sweeping judicial review ushered in by the famous Marbury case in 1803 is the root of the problem. It is very nearly a heresy to regard Chief Justice Marshall as the root of all judicial evil, but maybe we haven't got him, or Marbury, quite right. We go back through the peculiar politics and jurisprudence of the Marbury case, including the striking political parallels between our bitter election right now and the equally bitter contest of 1800, which I suggest could well be considered "the Frigate 93 Election."

We promise to get back to the series on liberal education next week, but for now, pour yourself a whisky and take this one in.


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803891 Power Line 44:57 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-the-frigate-93-election/
213. Trump’s Democrats Trump’s Democrats 213 Sat, 19 Sep 2020 17:08:09 +0000 Is there room for another book on the rural voters who delivered the surprising outcome of the 2016 election? Yes, there is, when the book is Trump's Democrats, by Stephanie Muravchik and Jon A. Shields, just out from the Brookings Institution. Muravchik and Shields do something unusual in this book; rather than do yet another excursion into survey data and statistical mumbo-jumbo, they went out to three diverse areas where Trump flipped a substantial number of Democratic voters, and talked to them.

The result is this compulsively readable and very insightful book that departs from many of the conventional explanations that have taken hold since 2016. (I'll name just one: in the three areas they studied, there is no evidence that the Trump vote can be understood as a culmination of the Ross Perot-Pat Buchanan-Tea Party movements of the last 25 years.)

The book is brimming with judicious perceptions of the place-based politics of these Democratic strongholds, along with searching questions about the immediate and long-term future of the Democratic Party. Trump, many of these Democratic voters perceived, is more like an old-style Democratic boss than a modern Republican, though it is not clear whether they will stick with Republicans after Trump is gone. Much depends on what strategic choices Democrats make, regardless of whether they win or lose in November. The key question: Is the Democratic Party of the New Deal on its way to disappearing for good?


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803747 Power Line 1:02:47 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/trumps-democrats/
212. The Three Whisky Happy Hour: What Is Liberal Education? (Part 1) The Three Whisky Happy Hour: What Is Liberal Education? (Part 1) 212 Sat, 12 Sep 2020 22:16:57 +0000 Well now we've done it! This week Lucretia and I decided to take a break from downing whisky shots over the latest crazy news headlines and drag listeners back into the classroom for a new mini-series. I get lots of emails and comments from listeners and readers about why we surrender the term "liberal" to deep leftists who are profoundly illiberal. It's a great question, and so Lucretia and I decided to take this as an opportunity to offer an extended excursion into how Leo Strauss handled this question in the Preface to his essay collection Liberalism Ancient and Modern.

Strauss wrote the preface to this collection way back in 1968, and while some specific references are obviously dated (such as the Vietnam War), the main arguments are remarkably prescient for our current moment of badly politicized and degraded liberal education in the universities. One of the things Strauss says in this five page preface is, "Liberal education is not the opposite of conservative education, but of illiberal education." And he also says, "Progressivism is indeed a better term than liberalism for the opposite to conservatism."

Our conversation this week is a commentary on the key arguments and insights of the preface, which will set up the sequel for next week, when we'll consider Strauss's short but very rich essay, "What Is Liberal Education?"


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801942 Power Line 52:19 No full https://ricochet.com/podcast/powerline/the-three-whisky-happy-hour-what-is-liberal-education-part-1/