Tag: ideas

“Who Decides What Is Best?”

 

Thomas Sowell’s ideas have taken root in the soil of the next generation. Sowell has written over thirty books over forty years of weekly writings. Hundreds of Sowell’s interviews can be found everywhere on YouTube. Jason Riley, himself a prolific writer, has done the world a service by reviewing the lifetime impact of Thomas Sowell in Maverick: A Biography of Thomas Sowell.

Maverick should be read by everyone everywhere. Everyone in the sciences or the humanities needs exposure to the intellectual history and ideas that Maverick provides. Not only does Riley give an exceptional review of Sowell’s life and thought, but he also shows how the Hoover Institution fellow establishes the basis for how to think. Every person on the planet asks enduring questions about philosophy, knowledge, interpretation, and justice. Sowell always approaches his subjects with our views of human nature in mind. Summarizing Sowell, you either believe in the tension between human depravity and human dignity or you believe that you can make humans perfectible by human rules.

As a matter of full disclosure, I have been reading Thomas Sowell’s books and columns and watching his videos for decades. Sowell’s thinking has been influential to my own intellectual processing for most of my teaching life. As Hebraic-Christian thinkers know, it is important to weave biblical, doctrinal thinking through an explanation of Sowell’s visions. Essential to biblical understanding is the origin of ideas, acknowledging that The Personal Eternal Triune Creator of all things has set the stage for human understanding of everything.

Join Jim and Greg as they explore some of the ideas on China that ought to unite conservatives, moderates, and even some Democrats. They also shudder as Bernie Sanders is about to become chairman of the Senate Budget Committee and plans to use the reconciliation process a lot to avoid Senate filibusters. And they unload on Don Lemon for demonizing all Trump voters because some repulsive figures supported him too.

More year-end awards today!  Jim and Greg embark on the second half of their six-episode saga known as the 2019 Three Martini Lunch Awards. Today, they offer up their selections for the best political idea, worst political idea, and boldest political tactics for the year.

QotD: Power and Marginalization

 

If you want to know who actually has the power in our society and who is actually marginalized, ask which ideas get you sponsorships from Google and Pepsi and which get you fired. – Kevin Williamson

We saw some illustrations of that this week. Whistle-blowing is good if it hurts President Trump or any conservative, but it is bad if it is done against Progressive bastions (the mainstream media). If a Republican refuses to concede a close election this is an indication the Republicans cannot accept defeat. If a Democrat loses a close (or even not-so-close) election, refusal to concede is taking it to the man, or noble resistance. And heaven forbid a doula claim a man cannot give birth.

It was a long night, but we’re here and we’re glad you could join us!  Today, Jim and Greg unpack disappointing election results as Democrats win control of the Virginia legislature and Kentucky GOP Gov. Matt Bevin appears headed to defeat.  But they perk up as they see conservative policy ideas like protecting taxpayers, rejecting sanctuary city status, and tapping the brakes on affirmative action winning in moderate to liberal parts of the country. And they have zero use for a Kamala Harris proposal that would keep create a 10-hour school day (8 a.m.-6 p.m.) so it lines up with the work schedule of parents.

More Tolerance, Please

 

The more significant the disagreement, the more important it is that something as easily settled as the meaning of the words we use not prevent us from having a civil discussion. There are many real and important things about which we differ; our words should not be counted among them.

The word “tolerance” implies disagreement. After all, we are never asked to tolerate something of which we approve. Rather, we’re asked to tolerate things that we don’t necessarily like. Approval and tolerance are two different things, and asking someone to approve of something is not the same as asking them to tolerate it.

Quote of the Day: Ridiculous Ideas

 

Virtually no idea is too ridiculous to be accepted, even by very intelligent and highly educated people, if it provides a way for them to feel special and important. Some confuse that feeling with idealism. – Thomas Sowell

This seems to be the era for that kind of thinking. Some people advocate saving the world by banning straws. Others insist any speech they disagree with is hate speech, unprotected by the Constitution, and prosecutable. Others insist the only way to save the Republican party is vote a straight Democratic ticket this fall. And let’s not get into those who argue the Moon landing was faked or that the collapse of the Twin Towers was due to a government conspiracy rather than Islamofascist terrorists because, truth.

Milt Rosenberg, RIP

 

Media blogger Robert Feder brings the sad news that Milt Rosenberg died Tuesday, and gives the legendary interviewer his due.

“He was a polymath, a perceptive analyst, and a keen questioner,” Morris told friends in an email Wednesday. “These traits, combined with a prodigious memory born of wide reading and experience, made him an outstanding interlocutor of political leaders, business executives, academics, journalists, artists, and others in the long parade of guests whom he welcomed to his studios and to the extraordinary conversations that he then held for the benefit of millions of Americans listening to his program each night in their homes and cars across the nation as streamed by clear-channel radio at 50,000 watts. For four decades his show was the mandatory first stop on the book tour of every author of a serious work of fiction or non-fiction.

“His career was also described by the arc of a moral conversion, carried out in public via his nightly broadcasts, from the ‘soft mindless leftism of an East Coast academic’ to an embrace of free market economics, traditional social values, and an appreciation of the United States as the world’s best hope for the defense of freedom and human decency in global affairs,” Morris wrote.

In this AEI Events Podcast, a panel of academics, hosted by AEI’s Ryan Streeter and Samuel J. Abrams, discusses the experience of conservative professors on campus and the role faculty play in addressing the campus political climate. The panelists touch on a variety of topics, including the prevalence of confirmation bias and the necessity of including all ideas to avoid decline in the quality of research and education, as well as risks of overstating the current campus climate, and they disagree about whether the campus climate will lead to tangible societal change.

The panel features Samuel J. Abrams (AEI), Gerard Alexander (University of Virginia), Eliot Cohen (Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies), James Gimpel (University of Maryland), and Samuel Goldman (The George Washington University). It is moderated by Pete Peterson (Pepperdine School of Public Policy).

Assorted Ideas, Opinions, Musings and Other Drivel II: Come and Get Numb

 

“In the long run we’re all dead.” So said economist John Maynard Keynes. I speak for us all when I say the long run can’t come soon enough. We needn’t go into details. It’s evident humanity is irrevocably screwed-up, civilization was a mistake, and it’s only a matter of time before Hollywood finds your favorite film and remakes, reboots, and prequelizes it. Worst of all is there’s nothing we can do about it. Seppuku never caught on—even the Japanese are too busy fending off demon-possessed schoolgirls to disembowel themselves—and cyanide is too expensive for the poor who deserve death equally as much as the rest of us. Our remaining hope for the world being put out of its misery is if Joe Biden trips and smacks his forehead on the red button which, to be fair, is a distinct possibility.

Until armageddon comes, numb yourself with some of my thoughts. This is a sequel to a post I wrote last year and judging by the film and video game industries, there’s nothing more beloved than sequels. So relax, inject some Cat III directly into your brain for temporary relief from the agony of life.

Ideas for Paul Ryan!

 

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 8.21.55 AMSunday’s WSJ reported that Speaker Paul Ryan is going to spend next weekend setting an ambitious idea-driven platform for the Republican House to use in 2016 to show why the Republicans should win the presidency. In other words, something much like the Contract with America that the presidential candidates can get behind and make part of the national conversation. Wouldn’t that be nice?

Here are my top ideas, in order of priority:

1: Passage of the “American Freedom Act

Assorted Ideas, Opinions, Musings, and Other Drivel

 

shutterstock_259500479With all due apologies to my high school English teachers, I’ve just written a post that has no thesis, no overarching theme, and no signs that its writer has a clue what a thesis is, let alone a theme, and how to overarch it. A lot of thoughts and observations clog up my brain and I just gotta unload.

That the unloading is going to be inelegant is unfortunate, but it’s not like I’m being paid (it’s not too late to start). The only connective tissue between these ideas is my own insanity … I mean inanity. You know what, both words apply. Just read:

• They say it’s illegal to shout, “Fire!” in a crowded theater, but what about a sparsely filled theater? Like if it was five dudes watching a Pauly Shore retrospective, I bet it would be illegal to yell, “Fire!” even if there was one, because those are people we’d rather were dead.

Member Post

 

I have spend quite a while thinking about how we should handle people who cannot take of themselves, along with those who live under the control of the welfare state.  As conservatives, we rightly worry about the government becoming a nanny state, and we are not alone in this.  During my Public Health classes, one of my […]

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Member Post

 

I know Ricochet has a lot of authors. I know we have a lot of computer people of various stripes. I have a problem, and I would like to see if anyone already has a solution or can suggest one. The problem stems from my hobby of writing science fiction as a form of constrained […]

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