…about Doris Day and how she gets the short shrift from cultural morons. In fact, I would argue that she and John Wayne are scapegoats for what the Baby Boomers hate about the 1950s. The column is at CBC Opinion.
This week marks the 71st anniversary of Israeli independence and so, predictably, Hamas has to try to ruin the party. What was also predictable, sadly, was the reaction of so many in the West. Melanie Phillips has written a long blog post about it. Choice quote:
The Jews are often referred to as “the canaries in the mine.” With Western civilization in existential free-fall, the symbiotically linked contagions of Israel-bashing and antisemitism are both the cause and effect of this crisis.
Subscribing to the Arabs’ murderous falsehoods about Israel has destroyed the West’s moral compass – leaving it open to the murderous falsehoods about the people who gave it that moral compass in the first place and further blinding it to the forces threatening its own continued survival.
Read the whole thing here.
You did not have to listen for too long to Julian Assange’s half-educated condemnations of the American “military-industrial complex” to know that he was aching to betray better and braver people than he could ever be.
As soon as WikiLeaks received the State Department cables, Assange announced that the opponents of dictatorial regimes and movements were fair game. That the targets of the Taliban, for instance, were fighting a clerical-fascist force, which threatened every good liberal value, did not concern him. They had spoken to US diplomats. They had collaborated with the great Satan. Their safety was not his concern.
Cannot believe anyone would be sophomoric or morally bankrupt enough to support the guy, and yet, so many do.
…at the Wall Street Journal – it’s about Italy, China and the Belt and Road Initiative.
Andrew Sullivan can really shine, like here.
I’ll admit that I had a strong and immediate reaction to the video clip of the students from Kentucky seemingly confronting and belittling a Native American elder. I was bullied quite viciously by an older brother (when I was seven he was already an adult, so there was a severe power imbalance) when I was growing up and so I have strong reactions to the sight of someone bullying or picking on another. I know the cruelty of that kind of madness.
In this case, though, it appears all might not have been as assumed at first glance. These two stories are from sane sources – first from Reason, the second from The Spectator — and worth a look. I left Twitter a while back and this was one reason – the online mob is just painful to behold. Even if these boys were as nasty as initially suggested, I don’t think their lives should be ruined. This could be a teachable moment for them – they are very young, and I believe most of us can learn.
Update: another good analysis.
Those awful murders, at Charlie Hebdo and at the Hyper Cacher, happened four years ago yesterday. I repost this piece of mine, which I think if one of my better efforts, and this very important analysis from Spiked Online (a website you should be checking on a regular basis).
From the Spiked article:
Free speech is the right to express one’s ideas without fear of retribution, even if others disagree with you – even if they are repulsed. This right leaves people free to dissent and free to persuade others of their ideas. No political, religious or ideological viewpoint should be allowed a special exception from challenge, criticism or ridicule.
But once the moment of ‘Je Suis Charlie’ faded, prominent voices effectively began to blame Charlie Hebdo for the attack.
When PEN America, a writers’ organisation, decided to give its Free Expression Courage Award to Charlie Hebdo, more than 200 well-known writers protested.
I mentioned yesterday how much I miss my brother (scroll down) – well, all the more so when it comes to these issues. Not a chance in heck he would have been blaming the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists and editorialists for their own slaughter.
I’ve long been a fan of the Australian critic and writer Clive James and was extremely saddened to learn that he is ill. But here’s an uplifting conversation — of sorts — between James and Mary Beard (another writer and critic I admire).
There is much negative online reaction to this Ross Douthat piece. I can only assume that this is because the people raving and ranting have not read it. I know from personal experience that too often people only read the headlines. It’s a very good analysis and I recommend that you, my dear readers, actually read the whole thing.
That variety of anti-Semitism — which many in the media ignore — is deadly and dangerous, and it is the kind to which certain relatives of mine subscribe, sadly. I had a “discussion” (those don’t really happen in my family) with someone to whom I am related about these ladies in July – she insisted that no, no, no, these anti-Semites would never be elected. Yeah, well, they have been.