Changing Reality With Words

The reinvention of vocabulary can often be more effective than any social protest movement. Malarial swamps can become healthy “wetlands.” Fetid “dumps” are often rebranded as green “landfills.” Global warming was once a worry about too much heat. It implied that man-made carbon emissions had so warmed the planet that life as we knew it […]

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The Cost of Democratic Socialism

A defining feature of the 20th century was the struggle between capitalism and three major types of socialism: Communism, national socialism, and fascism. All three types of socialisms, as well as Cuba and Venezuela today, failed to duplicate the accomplishments of capitalism in raising the standard of living. Yet, a supposed new brand of socialism, […]

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Explaining the Left, Part VI: Do Leftists Believe What They Say?

Truth is not a left-wing value. I first discovered this as a graduate student studying the Soviet Union and left-wing ideologies at the Russian Institute of Columbia University School of International Affairs. Everything I have learned since has confirmed this view. Individuals on both the left and right lie. Individuals on both the left and […]

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Leftist Arguments Are About Power, Not Truth

In “White Privilege Doesn’t Mean Anything,” Mark Bauerlein notes that accusations of white privilege are made “not to signify a social and historical condition, but to control a situation.” He’s right. But leftists argue this way for a reason. It’s not just that “white privilege” is an ad hoc explanation for more than 50 years […]

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An Independent America

Who are the friends of America? Who are the real enemies who hate America to the core of its being? In trying to answer these questions, the usual distinctions between conservative and liberal don’t apply anymore, especially since Donald Trump has been president. The idea of America is under assault today from those who inhabit […]

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The Indispensable Guide to the Matrix

You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world. You don’t know what it is, but it’s there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad. It is this feeling that has brought you to me. Do you know what I’m talking about? —Morpheus, “The Matrix” Pop culture references go […]

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Is Gavin Newsom California’s Denier-in-Chief?

California’s newly elected governor, Gavin Newsom, gave his first “state of the state” address on February 12, and it was a speech more noteworthy for what he didn’t than for what he did mention. Were Newsom’s sins of omission the conscious choice of a seasoned politician, or is he in denial, like so many of […]

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Leftism Is Like the Cult of Cthulhu

The most merciful thing in the world, I think,” wrote the American horror writer H. P. Lovecraft in the opening to The Call of Cthulhu, “is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents.” In the Lovecraftian mythos, this refers to the occult world of the Great Old Ones, eldritch gods from […]

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A State of the Union 75 Years in the Making: Trump Answers FDR

No mere spectacle, President Trump’s State of the Union address will set the course of his campaign into 2020. The basic divide he sees—whether this is how he would characterize it or not—concerns the meaning of the Declaration of Independence. Does the American Founding celebrate recognizing an equality that calls us to expand and protect […]

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The Mythologies of ‘Joe Being Joe’ Biden

Some polls put 76-year-old Joe Biden as the Democratic front-runner for the 2020 presidential election. There is certainly some logic to that reckoning. Biden has far more experience than any of his likely party rivals—36 years in the Senate, eight years as Barack Obama’s vice president and two past presidential runs. He may be the […]

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