Culture & Entertainment

Some perspective, please…

“Memory Foundations” – from Studio Daniel Liebeskind’s master site plan for the rebuilding of the World Trade Center Site

Posted in Art, Politics, Religion Tagged with: , , , ,

A sounding…

Even a perfectly just man who wants to give advice to a tyrant has to present himself to his pupil as an utterly unscrupulous man. Leo Strauss, On Tyranny Thus, the voice of the Machiavellian – and the Sully-ite, too. 

Posted in Books, Politics Tagged with: , , ,

Does anyone really hold those truths to be self-evident?

The Constitution, our dear Constitution, did not give us our rights. Our rights came from God and they are inalienable rights. The Constitution created the government to protect our God-given and unalienable rights. Thus Sarah Palin in her speech earlier

Posted in Books, Political Philosophy, Politics, US History Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,

NEW OLD IMAGES

Don’t usually say much about my movie poster biz, or about new images as I add them to the site gallery. Don’t plan on making a habit of the former, but think I probably should of the latter. So from

Posted in Art, Movies Tagged with: , , , ,

Forgetting Wilson (Reply to Jonah Goldberg)

Much as I might enjoy debating the comparative progressivism of President Warren “Racial Amalgamation There Cannot Be” Harding; much as, armed by biography, I’m ready to stand up for Professor President Thomas Woodrow Wilson against the dextrosphere’s leading anti-intellectual intellectuals,

Posted in Books, US History Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

raving cluelessly about eugenics…

…makes conservatives look backwards and unscientific, two brandings that conservatism should avoid because that turns off the youth, college-educated, and scientists and academe, all demographics the right is losing badly in. strangelet @ One Cancer Under God: On Defending Woodrow

Posted in Books, Politics

Here’s a quote from the German documentary The Architecture of Doom

“Defining Nazism in traditional political terms is difficult, mainly because its dynamic was fueled by something quite different from what we usually call politics. This driving force was, to a great degree, esthetic; its ambition was to beautify the world

Posted in Books, Politics

One Cancer Under God: On Defending Woodrow Wilson

If you’re going to excise the Wilsonian progressive cancer down to the last cell, as per Glenn Beck, then, when you’re done with your surgery, you may have less of the patient left over on the operating table than you’ve discarded as hazardous bio-waste.

Posted in Books, Featured, US History Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Light posting… some soundings…

…got some new material simmering… but I’ve been hiding in the library shelves the last week, otherwise trying to get some real world work done.  Here’s a useful fragment for later use the next time we feel like discussing constitutionalism,

Posted in Books, US History Tagged with: , , , ,

CONTENTION OF THE DAY – National Poetry Month

Having been alerted by Barbara that April is National Poetry Month, I thank Joe NS  for his extensive offering from T.S. Eliot.  In an e-mail, I criticized him for subjecting us to so much gray space, or functional equivalent thereof,

Posted in Culture & Entertainment

From the Featured Archives

Noted & Quoted

TV pundits and op-ed writers of every major newspaper epitomize how the Democratic establishment has already reached a consensus: the 2020 nominee must be a centrist, a Joe Biden, Cory Booker or Kamala Harris–type, preferably. They say that Joe Biden should "run because [his] populist image fits the Democrats’ most successful political strategy of the past generation" (David Leonhardt, New York Times), and though Biden "would be far from an ideal president," he "looks most like the person who could beat Trump" (David Ignatius, Washington Post). Likewise, the same elite pundit class is working overtime to torpedo left-Democratic candidates like Sanders.

For someone who was not acquainted with Piketty's paper, the argument for a centrist Democrat might sound compelling. If the country has tilted to the right, should we elect a candidate closer to the middle than the fringe? If the electorate resembles a left-to-right line, and each voter has a bracketed range of acceptability in which they vote, this would make perfect sense. The only problem is that it doesn't work like that, as Piketty shows.

The reason is that nominating centrist Democrats who don't speak to class issues will result in a great swathe of voters simply not voting. Conversely, right-wing candidates who speak to class issues, but who do so by harnessing a false consciousness — i.e. blaming immigrants and minorities for capitalism's ills, rather than capitalists — will win those same voters who would have voted for a more class-conscious left candidate. Piketty calls this a "bifurcated" voting situation, meaning many voters will connect either with far-right xenophobic nationalists or left-egalitarian internationalists, but perhaps nothing in-between.

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Understanding Trump’s charisma offers important clues to understanding the problems that the Democrats need to address. Most important, the Democratic candidate must convey a sense that he or she will fulfil the promise of 2008: not piecemeal reform but a genuine, full-scale change in America’s way of thinking. It’s also crucial to recognise that, like Britain, America is at a turning point and must go in one direction or another. Finally, the candidate must speak to Americans’ sense of self-respect linked to social justice and inclusion. While Weber’s analysis of charisma arose from the German situation, it has special relevance to the United States of America, the first mass democracy, whose Constitution invented the institution of the presidency as a recognition of the indispensable role that unique individuals play in history.

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[E]ven Fox didn’t tout Bartiromo’s big scoops on Trump’s legislative agenda, because 10 months into the Trump presidency, nobody is so foolish as to believe that him saying, “We’re doing a big infrastructure bill,” means that the Trump administration is, in fact, doing a big infrastructure bill. The president just mouths off at turns ignorantly and dishonestly, and nobody pays much attention to it unless he says something unusually inflammatory.On some level, it’s a little bit funny. On another level, Puerto Rico is still languishing in the dark without power (and in many cases without safe drinking water) with no end in sight. Trump is less popular at this point in his administration than any previous president despite a generally benign economic climate, and shows no sign of changing course. Perhaps it will all work out for the best, and someday we’ll look back and chuckle about the time when we had a president who didn’t know anything about anything that was happening and could never be counted on to make coherent, factual statements on any subject. But traditionally, we haven’t elected presidents like that — for what have always seemed like pretty good reasons — and the risks of compounding disaster are still very much out there.

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