Tag: Culture

On this episode of “The Federalist Radio Hour,” Federalist Publisher Ben Domenech joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to discuss their favorite and least favorite films of 2021 and evaluate whether movies finally made a comeback from a pandemic-induced cinema drought.

Everyone Worships Something: 7 Steps Down the Aisle of Toleration’s Church

 

“Tolerance” is a doctrine. In theology or education or everyday life, “doctrine” is ever present. Everyone has doctrine since everyone has beliefs. We subscribe to a teaching, dogma, or creed to explain what we believe. Our commitment to that set of teachings limits our acceptance of contrary or adversarial claims. It does not matter if you are a feminist, committed to LGBTQ+, a Baptist preacher, or a conservative talk show host; you have doctrine. Everyone everywhere has doctrine. But in our current cultural moment, identity, ethnic, sexual, and gender politics demand our belief in the doctrine of tolerance.

I will use the metaphors of religious ideas and icons to communicate the cultural doctrine of “tolerance.” First, toleration demands “understanding,” then “acceptance,” then “allegiance,” then “obeisance,” then “conformity,” and ultimately “evangelism.” The ordered steps down the cathedral aisle do not matter as much as the baptismal outcome. Hollywood’s hymnal sings both obvious and subtle references to accepted and rejected points of view. Celebrities must bow before the altar of imposed speech codes. News outlets preach from their pulpits against the latest outrage. The plight of those suffering worldwide is reported only if their deaths reinforce the common book of party prayer. Catechismal teaching reinforces the moment-by-moment commitment to membership in the church of toleration. Excommunication is swift for any who would sin against accepted authority. Reputational ruin comes to anyone daring to cross the received cultural commandments. Toleration’s heaven accepts the culturally righteous who are the tolerant saints wearing white robes of social purity. Toleration’s hell awaits anyone who has rejected salvation offered by the cultural gods of the day.

Let me be perfectly clear. I am tolerant, kind, generous, respectful, and gracious to people, no matter who they are or what they believe. But I will always speak out against ideas — the doctrine of tolerance included — that stand against the doctrines of God’s word.

Fracture and Power

 

Bishop Barron argues that totalitarian governments of the past century resulted from lack of unity in truth. To the extent that people lose interest in objective truth and prefer isolated fantasies for their own pleasures or ease, government replaces truth as the unifying authority. Control of government becomes a contest of self-interested wills rather than a contest of arguments.  

A Disillusioned Generation

 

I’m 25 years old.

I arrived on this planet in the midst of a technological revolution. In my lifetime, my generation traveled from VHS to VR.  The generation before me had seen a man land on the moon.  With the internet, the knowledge of the world was now at our fingertips. Disney said “dream big,” our parents said, “aim high.”  The impossible was now possible. “We will do great things!”

Member Post

 

Anyone ever play the game, “Unnecessary Censor”?  It’s where you [bleep] things in phrases or songs that don’t need it.  The mind goes wild with possibilities, particularly if you don’t know it, but for everyone else, it’s just comedy. I won’t add examples here; I’m sure people will glorify the comments or send links for […]

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Member Post

 

In my continuing effort to track cultural weirdness, I had another eye opening exposure I thought I’d drop it in here: The growing use of the term “birthing person.” I didn’t quite get what it was for, and found a counseling practice that explained it. They are willing to use “mother” if that is what […]

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On this episode of “The Federalist Radio Hour,” Assistant Editor Kylee Zempel joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to discuss her recent article “Gwen Stefani Is Right: Cultural Appreciation Is Not Cultural Appropriation” and how the left’s definition of cultural appropriation skews discourse.

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  Thrift is an under-appreciated virtue in the world of startups. The founders of Wistia exemplified this virtue in the the way they built their video streaming startup. They rented a dilapidated house where they lived and ran their business for the first few years. They eschewed venture money and mostly bootstrapped their profitable growth […]

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Great Character Actors: Jack Carson

 

A couple of years ago, I wrote a post here about one of my favorite character actors, Ward Bond. I think it’s time to write a little about another of the great character actors that being Jack Carson. Like Bond, I don’t know much more about Carson’s life than that presented in his Wikipedia biography.

Carson was born in the province of Manitoba in Canada in 1910. His father was a successful insurance executive and the family moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin when he was three or four years old. As such, he always considered Milwaukee his hometown and he was eventually naturalized as a U.S. citizen as an adult. His older brother, Robert, also pursued an acting career although with much less success.

Member Post

 

It’s not about winning. It’s about exposing hypocrisy and partisanship. Those of a certain age will remember the legendary 1976 US Olympic exploits of decathlete Bruce Jenner. I was reminded of them on a recent trip to the new US Olympic and Paralympic Museum in Colorado Springs, a must-visit for anyone visiting that terrific city. […]

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Will Eastern Kentucky Save us from Bad Country Music?

 

“Country” artist Luke Bryan.

I don’t know much, but I do know that “Today’s Hot Country Music” is an abominable soulless mass of bland generic garbage, full of cliches and put-on accents, and so devoid of anything worthy of attention that I can’t even enjoy hating it. All the songs are like little musicalized Facebook posts, a dispiriting pile of vapidity and artistic apathy unrivaled in the history of Western Civilization. My wife will listen to nothing else.

I’ve done everything I can do, from helpfully providing her with the above description of her favorite music, to recommending more pleasant alternatives, such as the ‘80s station, or maybe the sound of an ice pick entering my own ear canal, and these suggestions went over just about as well you would imagine.  She only gave serious consideration to the latter, but ultimately decided against it.

Towards a Restoration Workers’ Return

 

This is my first Member Post, and it started as a quick comment. I soon realized it was getting at something I have wanted to explore a tad deeper, so I have brought it here for your reading pleasure. Thoughts and feedback are highly appreciated. Thank you Ricochet, and thank you dear reader.

Near the end of the most recent Law Talk with Richard Epstein and John Yoo, (#145 The Housewarming Party), Prof. Yoo discussed a recent dissent by Judge Laurence Silberman. Yoo spoke to the change in Silberman’s rulings/philosophy and GOP/Conservatism as one that has become more “populist, anti-institution.” I couldn’t agree more – though perhaps not for the reasons that the culinary savant Yoo may think.

Member Post

 

There is not a clear line between them.  Novels are often considered more intellectually challenging than movies. But many readers prefer what I call “junk fiction” which, though respectable, offers thrills and little else. It’s mind candy to be enjoyed and quickly forgotten. Films can similarly offer shallow but pleasing content, of course.  Preview Open

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Getting in Trouble Over Genders

 

I could teach this. Normally, my “zoom” sessions are on US Senate history or the “art and science” of lobbying, but I am very comfortable with discussing gender pronouns.

There are two. He, she. Or, his, her. When two or more of different genders are present, “they” works really well. That’s five pronouns. Did I miss any?

Member Post

 

The individuals who rise to national prominence here in the U.S. puzzle me with their apparent mediocrity–the lackluster communication skills (or slick speaking ability devoid of content), the lack of clear principles, the absence of fresh ideas. I find it frustrating that we can’t elect strong, principled leaders in a country of more than 300 […]

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Kurt Schlichter, Senior Columnist at Townhall.com and conservative commentator, joins Carol Roth to discuss the current state of free speech, corporatism and deplatforming vis-à-vis America’s political divide. Kurt pulls no punches as he shares the newly named “Schlichter principle” and how it applies to freedom and how things could possibly change- for better or worse.

Plus, a “Now You Know” on how to make the best steak ever.

Member Post

 

Is any of this real?  The things that have happened in the last week, two weeks, two months, the last year, the last four years?  Have these things really happened in America?  I find myself in a weird hybrid state of bafflement and rage, tiptoeing, shell-shocked, through the moral, political and spiritual wreckage of a […]

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