Thursday, December 29, 2005


There is an interesting article here by Jeffrey Hart that attempts to summarize and integrate the current themes in American conservative thinking. Most of what Hart says has merit but, as might perhaps be expected from a professor of English, his history is weak. Identifying the founder of the Progressive Party (TR) as a conservative is an easy mistake to make (given the often extreme ways in which pre-WW2 and post-WW2 Leftism differ) but it is quite wrong nonetheless. One wonders if he has ever heard of TR's progressively more strident anti-business policies. See here for a more informed commentary on TR.

Conversions to Islam show failure of mainstream churches: "Mary Fallot looks as unlike a terrorist suspect as one could possibly imagine: a petite and demure white Frenchwoman chatting with friends on a cell-phone, indistinguishable from any other young woman in the caf, where she sits sipping coffee... Ms. Fallot is a recent convert to Islam... Fallot laughs when she is asked whether her love life had anything to do with her decision. "When I told my colleagues at work that I had converted, their first reaction was to ask whether I had a Muslim boyfriend," she recalls. "They couldn't believe I had done it of my own free will." In fact, she explains, she liked the way "Islam demands a closeness to God. Islam is simpler, more rigorous, and it's easier because it is explicit. I was looking for a framework; man needs rules and behavior to follow. Christianity did not give me the same reference points." Those reasons reflect many female converts' thinking, say experts who have studied the phenomenon. "A lot of women are reacting to the moral uncertainties of Western society," says Dr. Jawad. "They like the sense of belonging and caring and sharing that Islam offers."

Discrimination as property rights policy: "My wife and I were waiting to be seated at an airport restaurant when an angry man exclaimed, 'This is America! There's not supposed to be discrimination!' The man had been told that he could not be served since he was traveling with a pet and was asked to leave. I just rolled my eyes and felt sad for this person. The truth is, everyone discriminates. We do so not only on purpose but also with total impunity in most cases. Every decision that we make implies the rejection of other possibilities. Faced with the challenge of choosing from many options, a discriminatory process solves the problem. If we value A over B, we are discriminating against B."

German news magazine highlights Eastern European economic miracle: "The Spiegel is not known as a market-friendly publication, so it is noteworthy that the German news magazine has a lengthy article reviewing the economic revival in former communist nations. Slovakia and Estonia get much of the attention, and rightly so. These nations have implemented the flat tax and many other free market reforms. Too bad Angela Merkel thinks Germany needs more government. She could learn a thing or two by looking to the East:

Wonders never cease. There is actually a whole book called The Dittohead's Guide to Adult Beverages. Limbaugh-style humour is definitely in evidence. For impoverished Limbaugh fans, there are some extracts from it here.

A truth-teller not to be forgotten (Alain Besancon in "Commentary" of 1998) : "In my country [France], it is still possible to provoke a scandal by raising in public the issue of the crimes committed by Communism -- and an even greater scandal by suggesting that not only in the enormity of its crimes but in its very nature, Soviet Communism can be compared with that other great evil of our century, Nazism. This was illustrated once again by a recent French best-seller, The Black Book of Communism, an 846-page compilation by six historians with an introduction that points out a number of commonalities between the two totalitarian systems. The book has raised a storm of controversy in intellectual and political circles, and has even caused an uproar in parliament." (Hat tip to Keith Burgess Jackson)

I have just put up a new recipe on my recipe blog. (Mirror site here). It is a versatile recipe for fresh bernaise sauce.

For more postings, see EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE. Mirror sites here, here, here, here and here. On Social Security see Dick McDonald and for purely Australian news see Australian Politics (mirrored here).


Practically all policies advocated by the Left create poverty. Leftists get the government to waste vast slabs of the country's labour-force on bureaucracy and paperwork and so load the burden of providing most useful goods and services onto fewer and fewer people. So fewer useful goods and services are produced to go around. That is no accident. The Left love the poor. The Left need the poor so that they can feel good by patronizing and "helping" them. So they do their best to create as many poor people as possible.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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