Sunday, March 31, 2013
More Second Amendment Madness. By Robert Parry. Consortiumnews.com, March 21, 2013.
Saturday, March 30, 2013
The Peacemakers, By
George P. A. Healy, 1868. On March 28, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln meets
with the Union high command—Generals Ulysses S. Grant and William Tecumseh
Sherman, and Admiral David Porter—aboard the River Queen discuss how the Civil War would end.|
Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era. By James M. McPherson. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988. Part 1, pp. i-489. Part 2, pp. 490-904.
The classic one-volume account of America’s new birth of freedom.
Polarized by Faith. By Michael Gerson. Real Clear Politics, March 29, 2013.
Taking Marriage Private. By Stephanie Coontz. New York Times, November 26, 2007.
Friday, March 29, 2013
Liz Cheney Is Even More Bonkers Than We Suspected. By Jonathan Chait. New York Magazine, March 29, 2013.
Encroaching Control (“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction”). By Ronald Reagan. Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, March 30, 1961. Full Text and Audio. Internet Archive. Audio of full speech on YouTube. Audio excerpt on YouTube.
Our Founding Fathers, here in this country, brought about the only true revolution that has ever taken place in man’s history. Every other revolution simply exchanged one set of rulers for another set of rulers. But only here did that little band of men so advanced beyond their time that the world has never seen their like since, evolve the idea that you and I have within ourselves the God-given right and the ability to determine our own destiny. But freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. The only way they can inherit the freedom we have known is if we fight for it, protect it, defend it and then hand it to them with the well-taught lessons of how they in their lifetime must do the same. And if you and I don’t do this, then you and I may well spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it once was like in America when men were free.
“Roe” Didn’t Incite the Culture Wars, and Neither Would a Supreme Court Ruling for Marriage Equality. By Jill Filipovic. The Nation, March 27, 2013.
Life harder today than it was 40 years ago? Video with Dr. Keith Ablow. America Live with Megyn Kelly. Fox News, March 29, 2013.
Thursday, March 28, 2013
|Charlemagne receiving the submission of the Saxon leader Witikind at Paderborn in 785. By Ary Scheffer (1795-1858). Versailles.|
Popular Revolt, Dynastic Politics, and Aristocratic Factionalism in the Early Middle Ages: The Saxon Stellinga Reconsidered. By Eric J. Goldberg. Speculum, Vol. 70, No. 3 (July 1995).
The Shocking Truth About Inequality. By Matthew C. Klein. Bloomberg, March 28, 2013.
Good news for people who like bad news about inequality. By Ezra Klein. Washington Post, March 22, 2013.
Rising Inequality: Transitory or Permanent? New Evidence from a Panel of U.S. Tax Returns. By Jason DeBacker, Bradley Heim, Vasia Panousi, Shanthi Ramnath, and Ivan Vidnangos. Brookings Institution, March 21, 2013.
Overstating the Costs of Inequality. By Scott Winship. National Affairs, No. 15 (Spring 2013). PDF.
On “Moralistic Therapeutic Deism” as U.S. Teenagers’ Actual, Tacit, De Facto Religious Faith. By Christian Smith.
Amnesty slams Morsy for failing to protect Copts. By Mahmoud Khaled. Egypt Independent, March 27, 2013.
A 21st Century Exodus: IDF Spokeswoman Dina Ovadia Was Raised in Egypt, Taught to Hate Jews. By Zach Pontz. The Algemeiner, March 28, 2013.
What Happens If Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood Fails? By Walter Russell Mead. Via Meadia, March 28, 2013.
News vs. Entertainment: How Increasing Media Choice Widens Gaps in Political Knowledge and Turnout. By Markus Prior. American Journal of Political Science, Vol. 49, No. 3 (July 2005).
Why Fox News is less to blame for polarised politics than you think. The Economist, March 26, 2013. Also find it here.
Fascinating Piece Substantiates My Theory About How Low-Information Voters Get Their News. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 28, 2013.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Obama’s Strategic Denial. By Colin Dueck. The National Interest, March 27, 2013.
Moralism and Realism. By Paul R. Pillar. The National Interest, March 26, 2013.
My Second Thoughts About Gay Marriage. By Rod Dreher. Real Clear Religion, July 12, 2011.
Who Defines Marriage? By Daniel McCarthy. The American Conservative, March 27, 2013.
The Gay Moment. By Andrew Kopkind. The Nation, May 3, 1993.
Gay Marriage: From Sexual Outlaws to Sexual In-Laws. By Walter Russell Mead. Via Meadia, March 26, 2013.
Why Gay Marriage Will Win, and Sexual Freedom Will Lose. By Megan McArdle. The Daily Beast, March 26, 2013.
Gay Marriage: Freedom Should Be Central Issue. By Reed Galen. Real Clear Politics, March 27, 2013.
Megyn Kelly’s Prediction for Supreme Court’s Ruling on Gay Marriage. Fox News Insider, March 26, 2013.
If Same-sex Marriage Is a “Right,” There Are No Rights. By Terry Jeffrey. Townhall.com, March 27, 2013.
How Will GOP Deal With Gay Marriage. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 27, 2013. Audio at DailyRushbo and YouTube.
SCOTUS Questions on Gay Marriage Would’ve Been a Sanity Test in Earlier Eras. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 27, 2013.
We Lost Once We Modified the Definition of the Word “Marriage.” By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 28, 2013.
How Did This Happen? The Left Corruptedthe Language, Undermined Morality – and There was No Pushback. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 29, 2013.
The Christian case for gay marriage. By Mark Osler. CNN, May 19, 2012.
Pastor Oliver White: Jesus was Wrong About Marriage. By Larry O’Connor. Breitbart, March 27, 2013.
Christian Minister: If Jesus were here today he’d support same-sex marriage. The Right Scoop, March 27, 2013. At CNSNews.
St. Paul UCC Church at brink of closing over gay-marriage stand. By Rose French. Minneapolis Star Tribune, May 31, 2012
Church Loses Majority of Members Following Pastor Oliver White’s Support for Gay Marriage. By Billy Hallowell. The Blaze, June 6, 2012.
Pastor Oliver White risks church for his principles. By David Mattingly. CNN, June 10, 2012.
Gay Marriage is the Media’s Vehicle, Destination is to Destroy the Church. By John Nolte. Breitbart, March 26, 2013.
Abortion and Gay Marriage: Separate Issues. By Jonah Goldberg. National Review Online, March 22, 2013.
Alan Dershowtiz: Gay Rights Are “Unstoppable.” By Bill Hoffmann. Newsmax, March 27, 2013.
The Long-Term Future of the Gay Marriage Debate: Stalemate. By David French. National Review Online, May 10, 2012.
Life in the Marriage Stalemate. By David French. National Review Online, March 28, 2013.
I Was Wrong About Marriage. By David French. Speak Up, May 7, 2010.
Gay Marriage and Freedom. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 18, 2013. With related articles.
Egyptian Cleric: U.S. Aid is a Jizya Tax. By Nathaniel Botwinick. National Review Online, March 27, 2013.
Egyptian Cleric Dr. Khaled Said: U.S. Aid to Egypt Constitutes Jizya Tax. Al-Hafez TV (Saudi Arabia/Egypt), March 17, 2013. MEMRI TV Video Clip No. 3779. Transcript. YouTube.
More on Egypt and Morsi here.
Game of Thrones Season 3: Chaos Preview. Video. GameofThrones, February 10, 2013. YouTube.
Dungeons and Dragons: The power politics of George R. R. Martin’s Game of Thrones. By Matthew Continetti. Claremont Review of Books, Vol. 12, No. 2 (Spring 2012). PDF.
Out of This World: George R. R. Martin and His Fantastic Universe. By Cathy Young. The Weekly Standard, April 2, 2012.
Game of Thrones Season 3: Inside The Episode #1. GameofThrones, April 1, 2013. YouTube.
George R. R. Martin: The American Tolkein. By Lev Grossman. Time, November 13, 2005.
George R. R. Martin’s Dance with Dragons: A Masterpiece Worthy of Tolkien. By Lev Grossman. Time, July 7, 2011.
George R. R. Martin Interview, Part 1. By James Poniewozik. Time, April 15, 2011. Part 2, April 18, 2011. Part 3, April 19, 2011.
Game of Thrones Watch: Freedom’s Just Another Word. James Poniewozik. Time, April 1, 2013.
This week, that thing is what I hope will be a big theme of season three: freedom, as an absolute, as a relative term, as an ideal and as a liability.
Dany, when we meet her, is a queen in search of an army, and the way to get one in the part of the world where she comes from is to buy one–literally, in the form of slaves. She’s not keen on the idea, in part, maybe, from the memory of herself being offered up like chattel by her brother Viserys in service of his own royal ambitions. When they get to Astapor, the reailty is even more chilling: the Unsullied are trained efficiently and brutally, proving their detachment and loyalty by killing slave infants.
Dany is repulsed, but I don’t think this is only about morality. It’s also about duty, and her own quest. Dany wants to rule Westeros, which means more than getting an army; it means learning to lead. As her aide Jorah puts it, “You’ll have a true khalesar when you prove yourself strong.” Can you take a shortcut to leadership by buying strength? (A.k.a. the Lannister Way to Make Friends and Influence People.) Does she have any choice? Jorah thinks not; she needs numbers, and soldiers are soldiers, free or slave. (The episode’s title, for what it’s worth, means “All men must serve” in High Valyrian.) “The distinction means something to some people,” she tells him.
It’s a pointed comment if you remember that Jorah was exiled from Westeros for slave-trading. Because Westeros is a free land, right? Well, insofar as a successful soldier can negotiate better terms, maybe. (As Bronn helpfully reminds Tyrion: “I’m a sellsword. I sell my sword.”) But as the episode quickly reminds us, the Kingdoms are full of prostitutes, hostages, and masses of the poor who are little better off than slaves.
Westeros is a free land, in other words, where the extent of your freedom is generally determined at birth. And this combination or freedom (in theory, you can achieve and improve your lot) and privilege (in practice, you won’t), makes relationships transactional, even within families. (Tywin to Tyrion: “Jugglers and singers require applause. You are a Lannister.”)
It also seems to have created a lot of resentment among the have-nots, which we’ve gotten glimpses of as the royal family has ventured outside the Red Keep among their hostile subjects. That Margaery has a different way of dealing with the unwashed makes her not just sympathetic but potentially powerful; when she mingles with the poor and orphans and lives to tell the tale, you’d think she had just performed magic. The episode title notwithstanding, “All must serve” is not exactly a slogan the Lannisters live by.
Meanwhile, Jon Snow—speaking of someone whose lot is determined by birth—has managed to get into Mance Rayder’s wildling camp on his deep-cover mission, and discovers that the “savages” have a much different idea of what constitutes a free society. For starters, the idea of kneeling to anyone—even a king or someone you mistakenly believe a king—gets you laughed at. “Stand, boy,” are Rayder’s first words we hear. “We don’t kneel for anyone beyond the Wall.”
One of the things I’m most looking forward to in season three is how well it explores exactly what that means. We’ve already seen, through Osha and Ygritte, that the barbarism that southerners attribute to wildlings also comes with an extreme philosophy of independence: no man (or woman) is the property of another, not just in literal title but in practice.
That may not make a perfect society–and it raises the question of how, in Rayder’s case, one raises and leads an army of free agents. But it offers an interesting vantage on the rest of the series, whose every action is driven by the lust to sit in a pointy chair, so that others may kneel before it.
to earn Rayder’s trust, Jon first says that he fled the Night’s Watch because
“I want to be free.” Says Mance, “I don’t think so. I think you want to be a
hero.” Implicit in his dismissal is that Jon Snow doesn’t really know what
freedom is. This season could be a great opportunity to learn.
Game of Thrones s02 e09. Sandor Clegane: The world is built by killers. Game of Thrones Best Scenes. YouTube, March 13, 2013.
The Enchanted State. By James Parker. The Atlantic, February 27, 2012.
Sex, violence, politics – Game of Thrones comes of age. By Ed Cumming. The Telegraph, April 2, 2012.
“Game of Thrones” Retains Its Crown. By Christopher Orr. The Atlantic, March 28, 2013.
Game of Thrones, Charles Dance interview: “I treat Peter Dinklage appallingly.” By James Lachno. The Telegraph, March 31, 2013.
20 Minutes Inside Game of Thrones Season 2. Video. TVShowsTrailers, March 23, 2012. YouTube.
Game of Thrones Season 2: Recap. Video. GameofThrones, July 13, 2012. YouTube.
Game of Thrones s01 e07. Petyr Baelish: We only make peace with our enemies. Video. Game of Thrones Best Scenes, July 9, 2011. YouTube.
Game of Thrones Best Scenes YouTube Channel.
Game of Thrones Official YouTube Channel.
Game of Thrones Season 3: Anatomy of a Scene - Daenerys Meets The Unsullied. GameofThrones, April 1, 2013. YouTube.
|Lena Headey as Queen Cersei and Peter Dinklage as her brother Tyrion Lannister|
in Game of Thrones.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Dr. Ben Carson Says Mayme White Miller Poem, “Yourself to Blame,” Had Lasting Impact on Him. Fox News Insider, March 26, 2013.
Conversation with Dr. Ben Carson: The Big Picture. PBS News Hour, September 7, 1999.
Ben Carson: Family breakdown is Detroit’s problem. By Henry Payne. The Detroit News, March 26, 2013.
Gifted Hands: Ben Carson’s Story. By Thomas Sowell. National Review Online, March 19, 2013.
The audacity of Ben Carson. By David Limbaugh. Washington Examiner, February 11, 2013.
Touré: Dr. Ben Carson Is The GOP’s “Black Friend.” Video. Real Clear Politics, March 22, 2013. YouTube.
Dr. Ben Carson Strikes Back at MSNBC’s Toure Neblett: I’m No Uncle Tom. By Noel Sheppard. NewsBusters, March 26, 2013.
Despicable Fool Smears Dr. Ben Carson. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 27, 2013. Audio at Daily Rushbo and YouTube.
Why Dr. Benjamin Carson Scares the Left. By Rush Limbaugh. RushLimbaugh.com, March 21, 2013.
Ben Carson, admirable man with a mistaken philosophy. By Cynthia Tucker. CNN, March 26, 2013.
Ben Carson’s creationist views spark controversy over commencement speech. By Valerie Strauss. Washington Post, May 8, 2012.
Dr. Benjamin Carson Addresses National Prayer Breakfast. Video. Real Clear Politics, February 7, 2013. YouTube.
Dr. Benjamin Carson on YouTube.
College Grads May Be Stuck in Low-Skill Jobs. By Ben Casselman. Wall Street Journal, March 26, 2013.
The Great Reversal in the Demand for Skill and Cognitive Tasks. By Paul Beaudry, David A. Green, and Ben Sand. NBER, March 2013.
“We’re exploring our legal options”: Kardashian sisters blast “vile” Ford advert showing them bound and tied in a car trunk. By Leslie Larson and Leah Simpson. Daily Mail, March 25, 2013.
Ford Really Sorry You Saw Those Violent Kardashian Ads. By Charlotte Cowles. New York Magazine, March 26, 2013.
Kardashian ad creators fired after Ford public-relations scandal. By Cheryl K. Chumley. Washington Times, March 27, 2013.
Who Killed the New Majority? By Patrick J. Buchanan. The American Conservative, March 26, 2013.
The Obama Era, Brought to You by the Iraq War. By Ross Douthat. New York Times, March 23, 2013.
Ross Douthat Is Wrong About the Iraq War and Liberalism’s Rise. By Nate Cohn. The New Republic, March 26, 2013.
America’s roaring twentysomethings: how young voters won the culture wars. Harry J. Enten. The Guardian, November 13, 2012.
Monday, March 25, 2013
Obama to Palestinians: Accept the Jewish State. By Daniel Pipes. Washington Times, March 26, 2013.
Tribalism in the Jerusalem speech. By David Bromwich. Mondoweiss, March 23, 2013.
Why Did President Obama Come to Israel? By Caroline Glick. Real Clear Politics, March 21, 2013. Also find it here.
The Problem of Female Sanctity in Carolingian Europe c. 780-920. By Julia M. H. Smith. Past and Present, No. 146 (February 1995).
|Emperor Lothar I (r. 840-855), grandson of Charlemagne. Wikipedia.|
|Mosaic of Saint Perpetua. Archiepiscopal Chapel, Ravenna, Italy. Sixth Century AD.|
The Passion of Perpetua. By Brent D. Shaw. Past and Present, No. 139 (May 1993).
The Passion of Saints Perpetua and Felicity, 203. Medieval Sourcebook. Fordham University.
The prison diary of Saint Perpetua. SatelliteSaint, June 29, 2012.
Perpetua and Felicity. Wikipedia.
|Statue of St. Perpetua at the National Shrine of the Little Flower Catholic Church,|
Royal Oak, Michigan.
America’s Tory President. By Andrew Sullivan. The Dish, August 24, 2012.
The New Authoritarianism. By Fred Siegel and Joel Kotkin. City Journal, January 6, 2012.
The Liberal Top-Bottom Coalition. By Fred Siegel. City Journal, Winter 2012.
Who Lost the Middle Class? By Fred Siegel. City Journal, August 11, 2011.
Progressives Against Progress. By Fred Siegel. City Journal, Summer 2010.
Obama-as-Tory Revisited. By Jordan Bloom. The American Conservative, March 25, 2013.
The Religious Foundations of Suicide Bombing: Islamist Ideology. By David Bukay. Middle East Quarterly, Vol. 13, No. 4 (Fall 2006).
Why Are Right-Wingers So Crazy in Love with Israel? By Ira Chernus. AlterNet, January 14, 2013.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
Is the Russia Prison System Working Pussy Riot Member to Death? By Steven Hsieh. AlterNet, February 1, 2013.
The GOP’s Strategic Failure. By Michael Gerson. Real Clear Politics, March 22, 2013.
Justice, Politics, and the Poor. By Peter Wehner. NJBR, March 5, 2013.
The Republican Path Ahead. By Peter Wehner. NJBR, March 3, 2013.
The GOP’s Intellectual Unfreezing. By Peter Wehner. NJBR, February 21, 2013.
Saving the Republican Party. By Peter Wehner. NJBR, February 16, 2013.
GOP autopsy report goes bold. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 18, 2013.
Priebus on RNC report. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 18, 2013.
RNC report reaction from right-wingers. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 19, 2013.
Think conservatives have troubles? Look at the left. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 19, 2013.
Don’t conservatives like people? By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 19, 2013.
The GOP should build on success — here’s how. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 20, 2013.
Tough times for the old right. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 20, 2013.
Conservative pols balk at ideological straitjackets. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 21, 2013.
Immigration opponents don’t have public behind them. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 21, 2013.
Plenty of entrepreneurialism on the right. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 22, 2013.
Gay marriage, public opinion and the 14th Amendment. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 22, 2013.
Hillary Clinton’s puny legacy. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, March 22, 2013.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
Manal al-Sharif. Wikipedia.
Manal al-Sharif driving in Saudi Arabia (with English subtitles). Video. amworldtodaypm, May 27, 2011. YouTube.
Manal al-Sharif: Oslo Freedom Forum 2012. Video. OsloFreedomForum, May 10, 2012. YouTube.
Manal al-Sharif: San Francisco Freedom Forum, 2012. Video. OsloFreedomForum, October 11, 2012. YouTube.
Oslo Freedom Forum 2012. Complete website.
The Banality of Evil. By Fouad Ajami. Defining Ideas, March 20, 2013.
Afghan girls practice Taekwondo moves during a martial arts class in Herat in January 2013. Mauricio Lima/AFP/Getty Images.
Leaning Out: How the United States is abandoning Afghanistan’s women. By Amie Ferris-Rotman. Foreign Policy, March 20, 2013.
Liberated in the Hindu Kush. Don’t tell these women nothing’s changed in Afghanistan. Slide Show. Foreign Policy, March 20, 2013.
Both Right and Left May Be Wrong About Obama’s Speech. By Jonathan S. Tobin. Commentary, March 21, 2013.
Obama Channels Clinton, Not Carter. By Jonathan S. Tobin. Commentary, March 22, 2013.
The Most Important Paragraph of Obama’s Entire Israel Trip. By Seth Mandel. Commentary, March 22, 2013.
Nice Speech, Mr. President. Now What? By Daniel Levy. Foreign Policy, March 21, 2013.
Friday, March 22, 2013
Left 3.0. By Tod Lindberg. Policy Review, No. 177 (February/March 2013). Also find it here.
Obama and the emergence of a newer left.
Right-wing journal quietly dies. By Jordan Smith. Salon, February 18, 2013.