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The Most Expensive Day Care in the World

By 11.12.15

This summer, the excellent Michael Walsh delivered to the public an excellent book — The Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the West. In its pages, Walsh discusses the damage the cultural Marxists of the Frankfurt School, a group of radical academics imported to America in the 1930s as they fled persecution from Hitler’s goons, did to post-war American society.

The Devil’s Pleasure Palace is important work and it deserves reading, because it illuminates the perversion of what used to be an American culture that enhanced and strengthened the society it reflected up until the cultural Marxist influence began changing that culture into something else.

And that change emanated from the universities, where the rot began.

Sports Arena

Houston, We’ve Got a Problem

By 11.12.15

The ballots were still being counted on Election Day when leftist advocates began threatening a full court press on the NFL to move the Super Bowl from Houston in 2017. Their snit was due to Proposition 1, better known as bathroom ordinance. Not surprisingly the ballot initiative was crushed by Houston voters 61-39%, as it would have bestowed a whole new set of “civil rights” to transgendered people. The opposition to Prop 1 were effective in illustrating the absurdity of the new “civil rights” the proposition would have granted, by pointing out how grown men, including sexual predators, would have full access to women’s restrooms if the proposition passed.

The Obama Watch

Evaluating the Obama Foreign Policy

By 11.12.15

Now that we are entering the last chapter of President Obama’s foreign policy tale, how might one judge his tenure. Writing in the pages of Foreign Affairs Gideon Rose argues that due to the restrained and clever leadership provided by the president, “the United States today [20150 may be richer, stronger, and safer than it has ever been; if not, it is certainly close to it… And it is at the center of an ever-expanding liberal order that has outwitted, outplayed, and outlasted every rival for three-quarters of a century.”

While Rose is a gifted editor and writer, I find his conclusions mind-boggling. Admirers of President Obama’s foreign policy often refer to the end of U.S participation in the Iraq and Afghan Wars, but no one could argue that peace and stability reign. Nor can one project a single nation anywhere in the Middle East and beyond whose fortunes improved during the Obama years. Needless to say, Mr. Rose will claim I am in the gloom and doom choir, but I think it is important to note that gloom is sometimes an accurate barometer of global conditions. Let me be somewhat more precise in my assessment.

Campaign Crawlers

The Donald By a Hair

By 11.11.15

Democrats tell the American people what they want to hear. At their best, Republicans tell the American people what they need to hear. Tuesday’s GOP presidential debate showcased this divide, with Donald Trump leading the pack as a principled voice for sound positions on minimum wage, illegal immigration, and a sensible foreign policy, free of the naïve neocon nonsense in which Fiorina, Rubio ., and Bush trafficked.

Trump’s performance was enhanced by his restraint. In other debates, he allowed himself some immature antics. Not in this one. For the most part, he remained quiet as others spoke. There was one welcome exception: he shut down Kasich’s holier-than-thou jackassery on illegal immigration by noting that the Ohio governor’s oh-so-compassionate pro-amnesty policy shows no compassion to legal immigrants.

Another Perspective

Another Dopey Week

By 11.11.15

Another dopey week, wherein we learn that the University of Missouri, and the taxpayers who support it, are wholly-owned subsidiaries of the Mizzou football team, which cannot win many football games, but can get university presidents to resign.

Speaking of dopey, an outfit called the World Anti-Doping Agency is alleging that Russian track and field athletes used performance enhancing drugs during previous Olympic Games and that the Russian government was involved in the cheating. Geez, Russian athletes cheating? The Russian government other than straight-arrow? Who would think such a thing? Gambling at Rick’s, maybe, but…

The accusations may, pardon the expression, bear out. Or not. I’m not sure the fact that Russia’s women runners have five o’clock shadows at three o’clock, or that three of four Russian weight-lifters just have one big eye in the middle of their foreheads, is sufficient proof that something is pharmaceutically amiss.

The Nation's Pulse

Veterans Day: Paid Patriotism Is Unpatriotic

By 11.11.15

You could call me an “accidental” Naval Officer who served on active duty during the Vietnam Era.

I wasn’t in ROTC in college. I didn’t aspire to an appointment to the Naval Academy.  I didn’t come from a long line of generation after generation of Navy men tracing family roots back to John Paul Jones or Admiral “Bull Halsey.”

To be sure, my father served proudly in World War II as captain of a “crash boat,” a nimble sister craft of PT boats whose primary mission was to rescue downed flyers and their crews.

He was a so-called “90-day wonder,” college graduates who were given accelerated Naval training at various colleges and universities across the country to ramp up the Navy Officer corps to wartime strength (his program was at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire).

But, back then, volunteers flocked to the armed services with patriotic zeal to fight the spread of Nazism. It was a noble cause and those disqualified from serving for physical reasons were disappointed or angered or both. It was a difficult time, and members of the “greatest generation” answered the call to arms in droves.

The Current Crisis

Ben Carson and the Dan Rathers and Brian Williamses of Our Time

By 11.11.15

Last week I wrote in this column that Dr. Ben Carson, a leading Republican candidate for the presidency, was an “American hero.” I pronounced him thus even as the roof was falling in on his candidacy. Or was it? His numbers in the polls have held up. As the hullabaloo grew in the media, millions of dollars poured into his campaign from supporters all over the country. A week after it all began the Carson campaign still appears formidable. Is his campaign really in trouble or has the crafty neurosurgeon-turned-presidential-candidate hit upon yet another tactic to win the election? Is he turning the maniacal nitpicking of the press to his political advantage?

Culture Vultures

The College Frankenstein

By 11.11.15

Monday morning, the embattled University of Missouri President, Tim Wolfe, resigned after pressure from student groups over a series of “racial incidents” that apparently marred the campus experience to such a degree that no one can effectively name the incidents in question without consulting a timeline that seems to quantify them as “he said/he said” events, without any specific details.

Another Perspective

What Makes the Palestinian Movement Like the American Civil Rights Movement?

By 11.11.15

In recent years, the Palestinian movement has tried to hijack the American civil rights movement by drawing false and historical parallels. Yet, there is a striking similarity between the two movements that has largely been ignored.

In the Jim Crow South, the southern oligarchy maintained its position of oppression and exploitation by setting poor white sharecroppers against poor blacks, both of whose economic deprivation was a consequence of the very same corrupt social, economic, and political system.

As long as poor whites could be socialized to believe that blacks, not an entrenched system of elite oppression, were the cause of their poverty, then all the elite had to do to stay in power was to pit the two groups against each other.

A number of scholarly works delineated the problem, most prominent among them, V. O. Key, Southern Politics in State and Nation and W. J. Cash, The Mind of the South.

The Right Prescription

Obamacare Grant Scandal: Congress Awakes!

By 11.11.15

Last April, the HHS Office of Inspector General issued an alert concerning the misuse of Obamacare start-up grants by certain states. Congress yawned. Later, the Obama administration illegally rewrote the law’s limitations on how these funds could be spent. Our elected representatives remained inert. In August, a few Senators bestirred themselves enough to write to the Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) concerning how he planned to recoup grants from failed exchanges. The House still snored. Even after state skullduggery involving the grants was reported in this space on September 14, and subsequently by other publications, the House slumbered.