Ten Second News

bad analogies

I was out for drinks with friends and Israel came up in the conversation.  A friend of mine said that she’d heard somewhere – Fox maybe? – that if you likened Gaza to a Nazi concentration camp you were an anti-Semite, and isn’t that ridiculous?  Can’t we criticize the Israeli government’s policy without being anti-Semitic?…

Ah, Abortion

~by sidereal When I’m asked for my opinion on abortion (or when I give it unprompted) I have to decide how long a conversation I want to have.  If I want it over with, I use the crude political vernacular and say I’m a ‘progressive pro-lifer’.  If I don’t mind exploring the issue a little…

continuity and the culture of death

1 a: the quality that distinguishes a vital and functional being from a dead body b: a principle or force that is considered to underlie the distinctive quality of animate beings c: an organismic state characterized by capacity for metabolism, growth, reaction to stimuli, and reproduction ~the definition of Life, from the Merriam Webster dictionary…

when wars ended

I was watching The Curious Case of Benjamin Button with my wife this weekend (it always takes us two to three nights to watch a movie, sometimes longer) and I was struck by the celebration toward the beginning of the film.  The streets were filled with happy citizens celebrating the end of World War I. …

Yesterday

I was cold turkey on blogging all weekend for a much needed respite from the internet, and some good quality time with my family – we tried to light a fire when we went day camping yesterday, but it was raining and everything was wet, and the plume of smoke I conjured was not enough…

Get this man a blog

TAP’s Adam Serwer (emphasis mine): I don’t buy this framing. The fact is that there is no middle ground when it comes to due process. With his soaring and sincere rhetoric, the president has done an incredible job of selling his kinder, gentler War on Terror, and ultimately, the American people will likely have his…

around the web on May 20th

Paul Romer envisions Hong Kong like city-states for developing countries. Stephen Walt discusses realism and tolerance, using DODT as a leaping point. Eric Brown and Darwin Catholic discuss bioethics, health care, and Catholic teaching at The American Catholic. Shafeen Chanaria wants kids to be exposed to the real world from a young age.

The Salad Bowl

Jonah Goldberg makes an odd claim in his latest column: The mainstream perception that conservatives are close-minded and dogmatic while liberals are open-minded and free-thinking has it almost exactly backward. Liberal dogma is settled: The government should do good, where it can, whenever it can. That is President Obama’s idea of pragmatism and bipartisanship: He’s…

State of Print

Resting at the heart of  State of Play (2009) is not so much the personal relationships of the characters – who are mostly forgettable save for Crowe’s Cal McAffrey – or the grand (and oddly relevant) political conspiracy involving the Blackwater imitator PointCorp, but rather the struggle facing the newspaper itself.   McAffrey, a rugged, rough-around-the-edges…

Taking Leave of Our Senses

“But the argument isn’t going away. It will be with us as long as the threat of terrorism endures. And where the Bush administration’s interrogation programs are concerned, we’ve heard too much to just “look forward,” as the president would have us do. We need to hear more: What was done and who approved it,…

Intellectual Insecurity

To follow-up briefly on the recent discussion regarding intramural conservative debate, there’s an odd tendency among certain mainstream conservatives to unduly concern themselves with enforcing intellectual orthodoxy. Case in point is this hysterical blog post from National Review’s Cesar Conda, which implores the Hoover Institute to kick Professor Diane Ravitch off the payroll for suggesting…

A Plea for Engagement

Via the American Conservative, I see that Sean Scallon’s challenging article on Jimmy Carter is getting some well-deserved attention. And for that, I’m glad – it’s an interesting take on a fascinating historical figure.  But you know who I’d really like to see respond to Scallon’s piece? How about a National Review symposium, or perhaps…

Correctly Political: Tea and Sympathy for the Devil You Know

“Children’s Tea Party,” Morton H. B. Bly, 1919 by jfxgillis R.S.V.P. Wednesday, April 15th, Tax Day (reminder to self: file tax return or else), is also the day designated by grass-roots conservatives as a day of protest, the “Tea Party” movement. Intriguingly, the Tea Parties have inspired much discussion and debate–but almost none of which…

Fragmentation

Esteemed co-blogger Chris Dierkes has a challenging post on the democratic process. Here’s a decent summary: In our late modern (or postmodern if you like) world, with the proliferation of many interests and sub-interests, causing fragmentation across society (”the long tail” phenomenon), aligning interests becomes nearly impossible. There are too many interests, too many too…

Equal Protection Under the Laws: The Libertarian Ideal

Thanks to John, I am pointed to these two rather strange arguments in favor of the Drug War and against libertarian use of statistics on race against the Drug War from Jonah Goldberg.  John does a pretty good job explaining why Goldberg’s arguments are so strange.  The only thing I’d really add is that the…