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Hava Nagila, y'all
Spring in Washington would not be complete without the city’s famous cherry blossoms and the annual "Policy Conference" meeting of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). The 15,000 plus participants began arriving on Sunday and will be here at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center until tomorrow morning, at which point many of them... Read More
We are all victims
Many years ago I went through the usual evolution for a young American of my age and class, discovering that there was a great deal of injustice and warmongering in the world and pledging myself to do something about it. That lasted through senior year of high school and for about six months of college.... Read More
And Who is Doing What to Whom?
There are protesters outside as President James Heller is preparing for meetings inside a London office. He wants a new drone base for U.S. operations, but resistance on the street, and in parliament, is high. “The ugly truth is we’re just doing our work,” says Heller, played by William “what’s in your safe?” Devane, exasperated.... Read More
Col. Manners Answers Your Questions on the Etiquette of War, Nuclear Threats, and Surveillance
[Editor’s Note: Many publications have advice columnists, but none has our old friendColonel Manners (ret.), whose experience in military and surveillance matters is evident from his impressive CV (unfortunately, a classified document). His assignment: to answer questions from Americans puzzled by the abstruse intricacies of the American way of war and by the etiquette, manners,... Read More
From Daily Mail Online, September 8th: I’ve been seeking out other movies that I believe will be award-worthy when the Oscar ceremonies come around next March. Here are a few of my favorites, with plot summaries. Afratar. A group of African Americans, weary of groaning under the heel of white privilege and fearful for the... Read More
Given the unprecedented peace and prosperity currently enjoyed by nearly all Americans, it's hardly surprising that a symbolic issue such as Gay Marriage has now moved to the forefront of the public debate, not least among the contributors to my own magazine. Personally, it’s not the sort of issue that keeps me in a state... Read More
Although we hear endless complaints about the overly rich compensation of our corporate elite, the front page of this morning's New York Times Business Section provided a glowing portrait of an obvious exception to this pattern, namely Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman, whose 2010 compensation of $84.5 million had outranked that of every other corporate executive... Read More
With the nation broke, Congress snoozing, and the President dithering, what we need is a little humor. Here are two offerings of different kinds that will, I'd guess, appeal to two different taste cohorts. My own taste — English Lad Crude & Silly — inclines me more towards the first offering, but you can make... Read More
According to an estimate by Bloomberg News released this morning, the sum of the new commitments already made by the federal government in its financial bailout has already reached a total of 8.5 trillion dollars, including loans, investments, guarantees, and other liabilities. Frankly, this is quite a lot more than I'd realized, and I closely... Read More
With all the endless talk of strong Chinese economic growth and implications of high Chinese intelligence, we must thank's perspicacious Brenda Walker for finally providing a very healthy corrective to this MSM nonsense. As she correctly notes, this common picture has almost completely ignored the massive evidence of continuing Chinese supersitions, with vast numbers... Read More
Since another multi-billion-dollar hedge fund announced on Friday that it had lost almost all its money and was liquidating, I suppose it's a little too late for me to start my own Red-and-Black Fund, based on some shrewd investment principles I worked out a few years ago. Therefore, I suppose I'm not losing anything by... Read More
Another year, another Christmas season. And what would the season be without a sing-along among family and friends, while the yule log's a-blazing and the sleigh bells are a-ringing? Here are all your favorites. • It's the Mitt Romneyist Time of the Year (To the tune "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year") It's... Read More
Tibetan Snow Shooting. In their bid for a future Winter Olympics, the communists will demonstrate their skills at picking off Tibetan refugees attempting to cross snow-covered Himalayan passes into Nepal. (This event may be scrapped because of a dispute with the Olympic authorities over the use of telescopic sights and snow goggles.) Synchronized Slimming. Competitors... Read More
[Always on the lookout for innovations in the world of science to bring before my readers, I am of course a subscriber to that indispensable compendium of pharmacological data, The Physicians' Desk Reference. Combing through the pages of the latest edition of this classic, I note the following new products to emerge from the labs... Read More
(Thoughts while watching a debate in the U.S. Senate on S.1639 — the "Comprehensive Immigration Reform" bill of 2007.) ————————— Note: The following actually was published very briefly on National Review Online. The editors pulled it after an hour or so. There's no appreciation for poetic virtuosity any more. The occasion for the poem was... Read More
The Los Angeles Times (Andrew Blankstein and Garrett Therolf, December 27, 2006) recently carried a major year-end news story which has finally forced me to completely admit the error of my ways with regard to immigration matters. We all have personal ideological biases and beliefs, often deeply resistant to change. But facts are stubborn things,... Read More
It's that time of year again when we all gather round the Christmas tree with our loved ones and troll the ancient Christmas carol. Just in case you've forgotten the words, here are the lyrics to some of your favorites. • Jingle Mel Rock (To the tune "Jingle Bell Rock") Jingle Mel, Jingle Mel, Jingle... Read More
————————— College President Lowry: O.K., I don't think we need wait any longer for the stragglers. I call this meeting to order. First off, there were some curriculum issues left hanging at the end of the last meeting. Perhaps the department heads could bring us up to date. Jonah? Anything from Political Science? Goldberg: Yes,... Read More
For some reason my imagination was caught by the news last week that Osama bin Laden has sent his son Sa'ad off to fight with Hezbollah in Lebanon. Having Mozart-ized this little snippet* in last week's Radio Derb, I thought I might as well Kipling-ize it, too. Perhaps Rudyard Kipling's best-known poem, and surely the... Read More
Week One: The Volunteer as Citizen • Day 1: Diversity Awareness • Day 2: Harassment Awareness Volunteers working with FEMA employees come under the scope of federal rules on sexual harassment, as set out in relevant EEOC guidelines. These guidelines will be reviewed and discussed. All volunteers must demonstrate full awareness of sexual harassment issues,... Read More
————————— [Through the kind offices of a
Yes, boys and girls, it's that time of year again! Time to light the Holiday log, gather round the Holiday tree, raise a glass of mulled port, and sing along with Derb as I celebrate the ancient feast of Holiday. Don't hold back, now — I want to hear the rafters ring! • O Dollar,... Read More
Troubled by these opinions from such distinguished, accomplished stars of stage and screen, I went out myself seeking celebrities, to find out how representative Cher and Ms. Diaz are. I couldn't get close to any really big names, but I believe the following is none the less a fair sample of how the popular-arts community... Read More
In Lyndon Johnson's second term, When patriotism no harm meant Some résumé points I had to earn So off to Vietnam went. That country did its sights contrive Onto my heart to sear; In just four months I'd medals five, Kick-starting my career. [Chorus] And this is true, depend on me — Don't bother to... Read More
In that classic compendium of American national security strategy "Get Smart," one of the more amusing episodes concerns the doings of a certain Freddie-the-Forger. Our shrewd espionage agent from CONTROL was at first reluctant to trust the good gentleman in question, given the latter's very long list of criminal convictions. But Agent Smart is finally... Read More
Bananas and Republics by Ron Unz, May 14, 2004 I must grudgingly admit that our Iraqi Adventure seems to have become in some respects a fascinating and invaluable educational experience, nearly on a daily basis. For example, today’s morning papers revealed that one or more of the prison images being shown to our august... Read More
I must grudgingly concede that even those liberal, pinko wimps over at Paul Weyrich's Free Congress Foundation occasionally propose interesting notions, such as in the latest column by William S. Lind. Lind raises a fascinating, though extremely speculative point, namely that if the current trajectory in Iraq continues in linear fashion, political certainties may suddenly... Read More
Lawrence Kaplan, a prominent neocon hawk, published a rather interesting op-ed recently in the Washington Post. The central claim of the piece is Kaplan’s somewhat counter-intuitive conclusion that our citizenry would gladly accept losing 30,000 American dead in Iraq if such losses were required to achieve neocon strategic objectives. Kaplan denounces those arguing otherwise –... Read More
The front page of today's New York Times (Lydia Polgreen, February 16, 2004) carried an interesting story, appended below, about the current goings on in unfortunate Haiti, and the moves afoot by portions of the populace to replace the current leader, a U.S.-installed Jeffersonian Democrat, with a new and improved 2004-model Jeffersonian Democrat. Consider also... Read More
Having been overly preoccupied in recent weeks with some complex software development issues, I must belatedly---but very sincerely---issue a heartfelt Thank You to the Rev. Pat Robertson, whose recent actions appear to have done so much to rescue America, and thereby have permanently established him as one of my greatest personal heroes. Consider that just... Read More
As readers of our print magazine will be aware, Holiday is upon us. A bulletin from the U.S. Congress has announced the arrival and erection of the annual Holiday Tree on Capitol Hill. We are all bustling about doing our Holiday shopping, sending out our Holiday cards, and decorating our own Holiday trees. But what... Read More
The Weekly Standard has had the neat idea of asking readers to send in letters to the editor that they (the readers) have written to publications like The New York Times, but that did not get printed. The Standard's first specimen of this "unfit to print" epistolary sub-genre was from a chap in Texas who... Read More
Back in the 1940s the sci-fi writers Lyon Sprague de Camp and Fletcher Pratt discovered how to travel into alternate universes by reciting the logical axioms that underlie the structure of those universes. They called this mode of transportation the "syllogismobile". After some months' intensive study of the work of these pioneers, I have been... Read More
Back in 1911 the American misanthrope and satirist Ambrose Bierce published his Devil's Dictionary, 140 pages of scathing commentary on the folly, ugliness and cruelty of the human race, laid out in the form of a dictionary, with "definitions" along the lines of (to give an actual sample): "Erudition, n. — Dust shaken out of... Read More
The Prologue Whan that Septembre with his shoures sote Summers droghte hath percéd to the rote, And bathéd Napas vynes with swich licour As makéth Gallo Brothers shayre price soare; Whan al vacacioun tyme is used and gonne And beaches emptye lye beneath the sonne, Whan freeways clogge with workers offys-bounde Whyl scole-buses mak roade... Read More
California newspapers recently reported that Gov. Gray Davis had now reached the lowest approval rating of any governor in the entire history of our state. That is no great surprise, since Davis is almost universally despised as an extremely distasteful lifelong politician whose policy failures are legion and whose only ideology is raising money and... Read More
Mohamed Atta, the apparent ringleader of the 9/11 terrorist squad that destroyed our World Trade Center and killed 3,000 Americans, was clearly a very bad man, at least by American standards. But although his attack automatically placed him beyond the reach of American (as opposed to Divine) justice, we may rest assured that he went... Read More
One of the less widely known truths about political movements is that they are frequently filled with a generous helping of lunatics. Only such individuals possess the fanatic zeal that endows them with the energy and commitment to achieve results. They are the ones still furiously debating the obscure planks of a political platform at... Read More
America's armies, airplanes, and aces Boldly, by bombing, blast Bin-Laden's bases. Carefully Colin corrals coalition— Dogged, determined, deflects dumb derision. Every extraneous enmity ends. Firefighters fall facing flames—freedom's friends! George gathers generals, grimly gives glower— History's handed him heroic hour. Ingenious, insures Islamic inaction; Jolts jeremiahs—joins Jefferson! Jackson! Kipling knew Kabul, knew Kandahar's killers; Longstanding... Read More
While most Americans have been transfixed by the terrifying prospect of massive deaths from anthrax or suicide bombers, a few in our society fear an even greater horror: the fanatic defenders of Spanish-almost-always instruction see their doom in an "English" initiative heading toward the November 2002 Massachusetts ballot. Although the vote on "English" is over... Read More
LITTLE ROCK (AP) 9/1/06 — The $246 billion deal with the movie companies won near-unanimous support Friday as a deadline passed for states to accept the proposal aimed at resolving remaining state claims for the cost of dealing with personal and social problems caused by movie violence. Massachusetts and Maryland, which had been considered potential... Read More
July 4th, 1994. The Clinton-Rodham administration today announced the formation of a trail-blazing military unit planned as the first example of America's new model Army of Peace, following the reorganization produced by the Military Equity Act of 1993. Secretary of Peacekeeping and Defence Patricia Schroder presented the decision in a televised prime-time broadcast replacing the... Read More
The following correspondence was found in the personal papers of a retired U.S. Senator from Arizona after his death in 1998. Dearest H., Almost 30 years have gone by, and nobody suspects a thing! The strength of your determination still astonishes me. I never dreamed that the fiery "Goldwater" girl who visited me in my... Read More
Comrade Wilhelm II East Berlin, East Germany. The government of the German Democratic Republic (DDR) yesterday signalled the political rehabilitation of Wilhelm von Hohenzollern, a leading political figure from Germany's pre-Communist period. Mr. von Hohenzollern, better known under his royal title of Kaiser Wilhelm II of Imperial Germany, was described in an official release as... Read More
Excerpts from "An Outline History of the Holy Communist Empire,'' Section 63 of One Hundred and One Historical Outlines (Junior Academic Books, 2184): Introduction: The Holy Communist Empire (Russia under the Communist dynasty, 1917-1995)...succeeded Romanov dynasty in...quickly moved to reestablish orderly despotism after an eight-month interregnum of democracy and other anarchically unRussian political forms...adopted state... Read More
In a March 1984 Optimist feature article, Julian Lowenfeld performed the valuable service of focusing our attention on the plight of the remaining 2490 American MIAs of the Vietnam War. As Dr. Lowenfeld makes clear, although these brave young Americans are officially listed as "Missing in Action,'' most are actually POWs, still held as human... Read More
An Eye for an Eye?... Jerusalem, Israel. The murdered bodies of three Israeli citizens were found yesterday by sanitation workers. The men had been stabbed repeatedly and stuffed into the trunk of an abandoned car parked along Jaffa Road. All three were identified as ultra-orthodox Hassidic Jews and followers of the Admor of Gur Rabbi... Read More
Dateline: Beijing, China, May 1, 2001. The Chinese government today issued the following important declaration: To the governments of Thailand, United Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, and other East Asian nations: (1) Whereas the People's Republic of China is currently experiencing a severe temporary shortage of the necessary means of reproduction, namely young women... Read More
The office of the Great Man is set close to the catacombs, in the Great Library, and has an enormous door of solid oak. It is this door which gives the first hint of the Great Man's character. There is no name, no title, and no sign of the many awards and honorary degrees collected... Read More