Readers, I’m in awe of this young guy. I am torn between just wanting to read everything he has written but also being madly jealous that a 24-year-old is this smart. Sheesh! When I was 24 I was still learning the alphabet. Here he is in conversation about current affairs, but you can find other clips and also, check out the link above for City Journal contributions. A special thanks to my clever nephew for introducing me to him.
Ross Perot passed away, which – for me – brings to mind Admiral Stockdale. This was a time in my life when I was questioning my previous political views, which had been reflexively leftist, and I think the terrible treatment of Stockdale had a powerful effect on me. Seeing how nasty so many were to, and about, this man, brought to light something I had seen in my own family – that people on the left who think of themselves as kind and empathetic and so forth, are often quite the opposite. The chorus of mockery of which they are capable, especially toward the finest people, is horrifying. Further, I realized that part of what we need to remain free is people like Stockdale (and John McCain) and we need to honour them. This was also when I began to notice Dennis Miller, his wit and intelligence and independence. So rare in entertainers.
Or both? As I have written before, I have at least one relative who is anti-Semitic, possibly more, and several who constantly act as apologists for anti-Semitism. One of them even said to me, after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, that there were “shades of grey” in the story. Dear Lord. The moral bankruptcy.
This is why I am not surprised at the public indifference to AOC’s most recent stupid, bigoted comment. (She makes so many it is hard to keep track.) I am, sadly, accustomed to ahistorical, anti-Western, Chomskybot “thinking,” as I am exposed to it at every family event I attend.
As Daniella Greenbaum-Davis writes:
Ocasio-Cortez is either willfully ignorant, or purposefully anti-Semitic. Ignorant because if her convictions are genuine, she is entirely uneducated about a crucial part of world history, or educated only to the point of knowing the phrase ’Never Again’ without knowing who said it and why. Anti-Semitic because her inability in this, and only this situation, to utter the words ‘I’m sorry’ is highly unusual.
What’s curious — and deeply troubling — is that if a minority expressed discomfort about something, it’s typical progressive etiquette that the politician that caused that discomfort would quickly apologize and embark on a ‘learning journey’, to correct the ignorance that had led them astray. Instead, AOC is doubling and tripling down. She has chosen this as a hill to die on. This compounds historical ignorance with political vanity, and it compounds the insult too.
It’s really not hard to get to the bottom of this: When you say that Jews have magical hypnotic powers to control other people, you’re an anti-Semite. When you say Jews control other people through money, you’re an anti-Semite. When you say Jews have conspired to force you to apologize for saying anti-Semitic things, you’re an anti-Semite. Ilhan Omar is an anti-Semite.
Yeah, she is. As I have written before on this site, I am related to anti-Semites and watching the Democrats twist and turn to avoid calling a bigot a bigot reminds me so much of all of the apologists in my family. Very sad. Yet another area where I miss my oldest brother, who was always clear and true on these matters.
Ilhan Omar’s behaviour in this clip (as with her many anti-Semitic tweets) is a disgrace. She is nasty, bullying and stupid, and displays an extraordinary lack of knowledge about history and American foreign affairs. And she is happily oblivious to her ignorance! In fact, she seems rather confident. (What is really sad about her sophomoric world view is how many relatives of mine share it, along with the same confidence – one reason I avoid numerous family events.) I think it is fair to ask of people who hate the West and Western values — like Omar and like said relatives of mine — “why on earth do you live here?”
Elliott Abrams here shows far more grace than Omar deserves.
Andrew Sullivan can really shine, like here.
Campaigning for LBJ – obvious from the lyrics that this was filmed between the time JFK died and LBJ’s official decision to run in 1964:
Or, barrel o’ links. (Beryl O’Links is an Irish lass, she is!)
As we wind down 2018, a few links of interest: the death of Georges Loinger, may his memory be a blessing; trove of Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poems found; kitties domesticated themselves; and, Hijab in the House, by the brilliant Bruce Bawer. In regards this last story, I mentioned to one of my sisters this summer that I was concerned about the anti-Semitism of some of the rising young “stars” of the Democratic Party, and she insisted that anyone openly espousing contempt for Jews would never be elected. I was like, yeah, we’ll see. Cough.
The wonderful Julie Lenarz (via her Facebook page) sums up what I think about Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.
I can’t think of a convincing reason why it’s smart to withdraw troops from Syria. But I also can’t think of a reason why Obama officials think they have a right to complain. They had 8 years to do good in Syria and they royally screwed up.
And this is all so terrible for the Kurds.
If ever something were going to make me believe Putin has something on Trump, abandoning Syria to Russia, Assad and Turkey is it.
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.