While discussing socialism on a talk show recently, I was confronted with the question: If “capitalism” is so great, why has it failed? Of course, ever since our financial crisis hit, this query has become all too common.
Adorning an article in the Guardian is a picture you might think represented a prototypical family: a handsome couple standing behind three healthy, well-grown children. But according to the British paper, the parents — soccer star David Beckham and his wife, Victoria — are to be condemned. The problem is that, with the birth of a fourth child, the Beckhams have become “bad role models and environmentally irresponsible,” writes Guardian scribbler Tracy McVeigh.
When we hear about the implantation of human genes in animals, it may conjure up images right out of the story The Island of Dr. Moreau. Of course, present-day experiments of this kind take a more modest form, such as the Chinese’s introduction of human stem cells into goat fetuses or U.S. scientists’ proposal to create a mouse infused with human brain cells. Yet the possibility that H.G. Wells’ nightmare could one day be made reality is troubling some researchers, prompting them to ask for new regulations governing the humanization of animals. Writes Reuters:
When I hear today’s frequent calls for civility, I’m reminded of Rodney King’s plaintive appeal, “Can we…can we all get along?” After all, King was a thug but, when he made his statement, seemed wholly sincere. This means that most contemporary political figures who call for civility share one certain commonality with King.
Vegetable gardens may be popping on abandoned land in Detroit, Michigan, but nearby Oak Park apparently likes broccoli as much as does George H.W. Bush. At least, that is, when it’s growing in a homeowner’s front yard.
Is constitutionalism akin to blind faith? Some statists certainly think so, as they have called the position “constitution-worship.” In light of this, what should we call those who lack that “faith”? Given that they don’t believe in the Constitution, and that the document is the supreme law of the land, can it be said that they don’t believe in law? Are these people, who are often atheists, also “alegalists”?
If it weren’t so tragic, there really would be something amusing about “progressivism.” New York just legalized the curiosity that many call by an oxymoronic euphemism but that I, in my up-the-down-staircase effort to control the language, more rightly call faux marriage. And the tragically amusing part is this: We effect our much vaunted social change progressively, a smidgeon here, a tad there, a dollop elsewhere – until it is everywhere. But why waste all this time? Just cut to the chase and allow people to civilly unionize, marriage-pretend, tie the nuttiness – or whatever you want to dub it – with … well, whomever. It’s where we’re headed, anyway. And opposite sex or not, sentient or otherwise, animate or room temperature; what’s the difference? We all believe in freedom and choice, right? Everybody is a human being entitled to human rights, right? Let slip the horndogs of culture war.
It was 60 years ago that William F. Buckley published God and Man at Yale, a book critical of the hostility toward religion prevalent at the Ivy League school. But now religion may be poised to make a comeback at the institution — at least, that is, if its god is called Allah.
Once again, a study has show that American students are woefully ignorant of history. Test scores from the National Assessment of Educational Progress demonstrate, writes the Wall Street Journal, that only “20% of U.S. fourth-graders and 17% of eighth-graders who took the 2010 history exam were ‘proficient’ or ‘advanced’…” and only 12 percent of 12th-graders were so. In fact, their knowledge is so lacking that fewer than “a quarter of American 12th-graders knew China was North Korea's ally during the Korean War, and only 35% of fourth-graders knew the purpose of the Declaration of Independence,” the paper continued.
When Nevada Senate contender Sharron Angle led incumbent Harry Reid by three points in polls but lost by six on Election Day 2010, it raised some eyebrows. Yet that is nothing compared to the Russian region of Tambov, where Vladimir Putin’s party, United Russia (UR), polled at 35 percent in April but then cruised to victory with a whopping 65 percent of the vote a month later. Now that’s a get-out-the-dead-vote effort even a Chicago ACORN chapter couldn’t have matched.