readingaloud_williamverplanckbirney

Reading Aloud (William Verplanck Birney)

I have several challenging articles to suggest this week.  Victor Hanson Davis (my favorite contemporary historian) discusses how the affluent in our society, The Virtue-Mongers, try to make themselves feel and look virtuous despite their privilege.  Rimah Jaber, of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, points out the need for professional standards in Ethics in Online Activism: False Senses of Social Action or Effective Source of Change?  In a related article, Heather MacDonald of the Washington Examiner critiques the Black Lives Matter movement for veracity.  Her essay, Black Lies Matter, measures the claims of BLM against the statistical evidence.  Finally, Jed Babbin, of the American Spectator, looks at the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton’s role in it, and notes All the Lies: They’ve Turned Us Into a Rotting Banana Republic.

gingrichjones

The violence of the past week has shaken the nation.  Multiple shootings across the country have shocked, saddened and angered many.  But former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and author/activist Van Jones (former co-hosts of CrossFire) have released a video both discussing and demonstrating what we need to do when faced with tragedies like these.  It’s hard to imagine two men who are more different in background, belief and perspectives, but they agree that we must come together as a nation.  In the video (of a live feed), they discuss in a caring and intelligent way what we can do to build unity in our communities and in our country.  You can view the discussion via RealPolitics or via Gingrich’s Facebook page.

Those are not Code Pink or Black Lives Matter or Anti-Trump demonstrators on the floor of the US House of Representatives.  Those are US Representatives!  These “ladies and gentlemen” were elected to do the people’s business.  Instead they organize a sit in and try to chant down the Speaker from doing his Constitutional duty.  And the Democrats call the Republicans “obstructionist”?

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Most people want some pretty basic things from the powers-that-be: Safety, freedom of movement and the opportunity to get ahead. Where these things prevail, people tend to be pretty happy. Where they don’t, people tend to be less so — and to vote with their feet when they have the opportunity.

USA Today’s Glenn Harlan Reynolds has a short but spot-on piece explaining why progressive policies usually lead to an exodus of people.  It’s all about results.  Liberal intentions may be good, but the consequences, unintended or not, are usually bad.  You can read his essay here.

… violations of the Bill of Rights, obsessions with race rather than character, inflated and puerile self-regard, adolescent self-indulgence and materialism, along with epidemic factual ignorance, inability to speak and write coherently, and the loss of inductive reasoning may ensure that the early 21st century will be judged as an era of anti-Enlightenment ignorance — with the twist that never have such pampered people so little deserved all that they inherited.

– Victor Hanson Davis

A little historical perspective on the moral hysteria of the current age.  Read Hanson Davis’ full essay “Yesterday’s Giants, Today’s Dwarves“.