Archive for July, 2017
Review: Dunkirk Immerses Viewers in Military Disaster

Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan’s new film about a World War II military disaster that ended up symbolizing the “never give-up spirit” of Britain, may well have established itself as the leading contender for Best Picture at next year’s Academy Awards. But be forewarned: Dunkirk is a survival film, not a typical war film. Viewers will...
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50 Years Ago Today: The Detroit Riot and the Decline of Civil Rights Liberalism (III)

(continued from Part II) After the Watts riot of 1965, bureaucrats in the administrative state (e.g., EEOC, Small Business Administration) created racial preferences in employment and lending programs based on their own administrative authority, not any explicit authorization from the Congress. Indeed, the Democratic majority (and the Republican minority) were adamantly opposed to racial discrimination...
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50 Years Ago Today: The Detroit Riot and the Decline of Civil Rights Liberalism (II)

Throughout American history, government at all levels has used race to categorize, enslave, segregate, regulate human behavior, and limit immigration with “nationality” quotas that served as substitutes for race. Categorizing by race was essential to racist agendas.

In response, classical liberal civil rights activists struggled to eliminate government-mandated racial categories. They were anything but naive: racism was real, categories or no categories, but the government stamp of approval made things worse–and caused constant mischief in the ever increasing addition of group categories in the census or in immigration statutes. The only feasible solution was the most radical one: the complete elimination of government racial categories. Individuals might discriminate but would no longer have the support of the State. With time, classical liberals felt, the irrationality of racism and xenophobia would give way to better human relations.

Socialism Is Dead; Participatory Fascism Has Triumphed

“Socialism with Chinese characteristics” = Chinese fascism “American capitalism” = American fascism “Post-Communism in Russia” = Russian fascism “Scandinavian Third Way” = Scandinavian fascism “Italian fascism” = Italian fascism “German fascism” = German fascism “Spanish fascism” = Spanish fascism “European corporatism” = European fascism Are you starting to see a pattern?

College: Investment in the American Dream or an Escape from Reality?

These days it seems college is about everything but higher learning. Undergraduates enrolled in a Global Politics of Human Rights course at Arizona State University’s Tempe campus, for example, were allowed to stage a protest for their final assignment. “The focus,” according to the initial report by the Arizona Republic, “was opposition to many of...
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50 Years Ago Today: The Detroit Riot and the Decline of Civil Rights Liberalism (I)

Fifty years ago today (July 23, 1967), the largest urban riot of the 1960s rocked Detroit for five days (July 23-28). An encounter with the police (shutting down an illegal after-hours bar), sparked looting and arson on a scale far surpassing the riots that had burned in other American cities. While such riots often started with incidents involving law enforcement, the police were ordered—again and again—to stand down and let a small minority of African Americans loot property of small business owners (both black and white).

The Detroit Riot marked a turning point in how American policymakers dealt with race. The classical liberal tradition of civil rights, with its emphasis on rule of law and equal protection (regardless of race) gave way to policies that purposely treated minorities as “protected categories” deserving of treatment not accorded other citizens.

Public Choice Analysis a Scheme for Imposing Racist Oligarchy on the USA? Preposterous!

Public choice analysis shows, among many other things, that organized political interests will tend to dominate the political process at the expense of the unorganized members of society. This is not a claim that “the rich” will necessarily dominate “the poor” in the political process, although the rich obviously have an advantage in influencing...
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Review: Book of Henry Breaks from Convention to Ask Important Questions

Critics panned The Book of Henry when it opened in June, but this may say more about their ability to step outside their pre-conceived ideas about what a movie “should be” than anything else. The film’s storyline conforms much more to what a reader would expect in a suspense novel than the conventional three-act...
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Writers Who Cannot Swim Should Stay Out of the Deep Water

I am a fan of astrophysicist Alex Filippenko, a famous prof at UC Berkeley. When I was homeschooling my stepson John Allen Hunley, we used a huge set of DVD’s in which Filippenko presents a fascinating intro course on astronomy and astrophysics. He is a wonderful teacher. My point here, however, is that in...
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What Is Kim Jong-un Thinking?

An interior monologue by North Korea’s dictator might go something like this: I can see myself as if I were back at the Liebefeld-Steinholzi school in Bern, Switzerland, with everyone convinced I was crazy because I talked little and was fixated on my PlayStation, keeping quiet for hours on end, observing others. What is...
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