Your monthly installment, from the print edition.
WHAT A GREAT TOWN THIS IS. It is very roughly two-thirds of the way between Charleston and Columbia. It is near Spartanburg, with which it shares an adorable airport. Spartanburg has become an industrial hub, with big BMW and Michelin plants and many others.
Greenville is a charming, ultra-cute, and friendly white-collar tourist town with a main street of mostly small stores. Alas, it is turning in a bad direction as immense office towers are built where small stores and cafes used to be. How long will it remain charming? Who knows? But the omens are worrisome. I started coming here about seven years ago when our son attended nearby and nearly perfect Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C. Just since then it has gotten extremely built up. I was amazed to see—as I went for an introductory walk through town today—that there are many new buildings and new stores, and I worry about the future.
For right now, though, it is just about perfect. There are oaks and elms over the wide sidewalks and outdoor restaurants and friendly faces all around. Everyone recognizes me and greets me, and we all take pictures, and it’s swell. It endlessly stuns me how much socializing there is between blacks and whites. This country is changing and becoming genuinely integrated. It is a heartwarming sight.
I had a delicious cheeseburger and fries at a fine bistro called Sticky Fingers for its fine ribs. They remembered me from earlier visits, which touched me very much. Then I went straight to a series of receptions for the event I am attending, and speaking at, for the benefit of Goodwill Industries. Every single man and woman I met was delightful and friendly and attractive. Southerners truly are the salt of the earth. There are no more pleasant people to be around than Southerners, and I am married to the best one of all.
I spoke about the glory of work and how unbelievably important it is to create and maintain human dignity. I spoke about how a nation that does not believe in work, but believes in taking advantage of those suckers who do work, will not last long. Goodwill, of course, gives employment to men and women who have had challenges and makes them into new people. It is a great organization and I was extremely happy to speak to them.
It came to me as I was speaking that the real crusade we need in this country is not about fiscal policy or monetary policy but about morals: for life above all, but also about the morality of work. It is just indecent for able-bodied men and women not to work. It hurts them more than it hurts anyone else and is a form of slow suicide. The audience agreed.
I sat next to a man at the dinner who is a municipal court judge and also a successful businessman in the area. He was talking about South Carolina State University, which I gathered was a predominantly black school having some administrative issues. His discussion was extremely insightful and lucid.
When my speech was over, I shook hands and posed for pictures with many nice men and women who had been donors at the event. Then I posed for pictures and signed autographs with the waiters and bus people and cooks and dishwashers. After all, we could not have an event without them. They were very lively and pleasant. I was especially taken by a beautiful Russian woman who was working as a waitress but wanted to be a makeup artist. She was very well made up herself.
I went for a walk down Main Street by myself after the event, got some delicious pizza, and then headed to bed.
My wifey had not felt well and had stayed in bed all day but was super good company when I got back from my walk. I looked at her and wondered how I ever got so blessed as to find her and have her love me. She is the best creation of the universe, as far as I can tell. Most kindhearted, least angry, most generous, least judgmental, most beautiful, best sense of humor, smartest, a genuine gift from God.
A VISIT TO THE CHICK-FIL-A for a fabulous chicken sandwich, then a wait at the Greenville/Spartanburg airport for our plane. This terminal is a revelation.
At most airports, especially in L.A. and New York, the passengers look worried, frightened, dangerous, off the charts crazy. At Spokane they look fine. But here, they look positively great.
The men and women of Greenville are just brimming with good mental health. The people here look the absolutely best, beauty and mental health wise, of any people I have ever seen. Well, maybe the people in Charleston could compete. But these people look the way people should look. Content. Clean featured. Not angry. Happy with their lots in life.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?