There is exactly one authentically radical social movement of any real significance in the United States, and it is not Occupy, the Tea Party, or the Ron Paul faction. It is homeschoolers, who, by the simple act of instructing their children at home, pose an intellectual, moral, and political challenge to the government-monopoly schools, which are one of our most fundamental institutions and one of our most dysfunctional. Like all radical movements, homeschoolers drive the establishment bats.
I burst with pride when I see my home schooled young friends excel. They are the hope of America just as surely as the elitist marxist east coast is the bane. I wish all could go to Hillsdale College and achieve the greatness that should be theirs. I a grandchild were to beg me to for tuition to harvard or princeton I would disown it on the spot.
Home-schooled reach their preordained level and thereafter mingle in college with students who have had so much more; and therein find themselves trying to catch-up, so their parents ultimately funnel them into tiny colleges with tiny potential.
The inconclusive negotiations over the weekend on Iran’s nuclear program were disappointing, but two critical points have mostly been ignored. First, diplomacy takes work, and agreements rarely flow seamlessly from beginning to end. Second, if all those inveighing against any deal — namely members of Congress, Israel and Saudi Arabia — see the weekend results as a new opportunity to sabotage it, what is the alternative?
The least dispiriting moment of another grim week in Washington was the sight of ornery veterans tearing down the Barrycades around the war memorials on the National Mall, dragging them up the street, and dumping them outside the White House. This was, as Kevin Williamson wrote at National Review, “as excellent a gesture of the American spirit as our increasingly docile nation has seen in years.” Indeed. The wounded vet with two artificial legs balancing the Barrycade on his Segway was especially impressive.
They can drive cars, win Jeopardy and find your soon-to-be favorite song. Machines are also learning to decipher the most human qualities about you -- and help businesses predict your potential to be their next star employee. A handful of technology companies from Knack.it Corp. to Evolv Inc. are doing just that, developing video games and online questionnaires that measure personality attributes in a job applicant. Based on patterns of how a company’s best performers responded in these assessments, the software estimates a candidate’s suitability to be everything from a warehouse worker to an investment bank analyst.
Representative Paul D. Ryan may have temporarily receded into the Capitol shadows after his stinging vice-presidential defeat in November, but he remains a powerful presence among House Republicans, earning the respect of hard-line conservatives for his budget blueprint and the trust of anxious moderates for his pragmatism. Now, the impasse that has shuttered much of the government and steered the nation toward a default has offered the Wisconsin congressman a new opening to reassert himself — and suddenly a man who seemed in danger of being eclipsed as the face of his party has re-emerged as essential to its rescue.
Diplomacy has never witnessed anything like the dizzying and erratic sequence of events relating to Syria that began on Wednesday, August 21, and ended three and a half weeks later, on Saturday, September 14. Who won, who lost? It’s too soon for a definite answer, but Bashar Assad is in the driver’s seat, suggesting that he, Putin, and the mullahs will gain while Obama, Erdogan, and Israel will lose. (snip) Barack Obama’s foreign-policy credibility sinks and that of the United States with him, especially vis-à-vis the Iranian nuclear buildup, at least until 2017.
Secretary of State John Kerry and Russia’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov are meeting in Geneva this week, both accompanied by dozens of arms-control experts. The focus is on the Russian proposal to take custody of, and then eliminate, all chemical weapons in Syria. Initially voiced as an off-the-cuff remark by Kerry — and immediately dismissed by him as unachievable — the proposal has become the subject of world attention. The Obama administration, while cautiously describing the Geneva talks as exploratory, must at some level share the widely held suspicion that the Putin initiative may be only a ruse or distraction
When it comes to reports of civilian deaths from chemical weapons in opposition-occupied Syrian towns, the Obama White House suddenly claims to be as certain of its own intelligence as the Bush White House was about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction in October 2002. But it is much easier to rush into war, without congressional or popular approval, than it is to get out. There was far more humility at the Obama White House the last time similar atrocities led the usual suspects to urge the U.S. to become militarily entangled in Syria.
How serious is John Bolton about potentially running for president? He’s about to start hiring for his political operation. The former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and conservative star is ready to hit the road, play in the 2014 midterm elections, and flesh out his domestic-policy views —including his support for gay marriage — in preparation for throwing his hat in the ring in 2016. For Bolton, the path here — to the cusp of running — has been a winding one. Save for his trademark snow-white mustache, he could be mistaken for just another Washington, D.C., lawyer
A 19th-century Scottish journalist, songwriter, and poet is not an obvious guide to a 21st-century intellectual and political phenomenon, but when it comes to making sense of climate-change zealotry, there are worse choices than Charles Mackay (1812–89), the author of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (1841), an acerbic, often drily amusing study of the frenzies — from witch mania to the tulip bubble — that regularly possess our supposedly sophisticated species. “In reading the history of nations,” wrote Mackay, “we find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit
Barack Obama´s latest act of surrender in the war against terrorism comes in Afghanistan. Administration sources are leaking that Obama is considering withdrawing all American troops before Dec. 31, 2013, one year early, without leaving even a small, residual force in the country. Such a decision would simply accelerate an already badly misguided policy. Faster draw-downs in Afghanistan are bad enough but even worse is Obama´s inability or unwillingness to see the inevitably broader adverse consequences. The inclination toward speedier withdrawal is attributed to Obama´s deteriorating relations with Afghan President Karzai, who is apparently livid about U.S. negotiations
Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Thursday that he will visit Israel in October, a move that signals to the political world that he is seriously considering making another presidential run in 2016. “We will be going to Israel to bring together Arabs, Christian and Jews in an educational forum ,” Mr. Perry told The Washington Times in an interview just three days after he announced he would not seek an unprecedented fourth term as Texas governor. Many analysts interpreted that decision as evidence that he is setting the table for a White House campaign.
It looks increasingly that solving the Egyptian puzzle is going to take us all to Syria. How far the army´s coup in Egypt resets the geopolitics of the Middle East, or, conversely, whether the coup itself forms the commencement of a region-wide tectonic shift that is going to play out over time - this is the big question. The cascading events this week indicate that the latter could well be the case. To be sure, even by the standards of the Middle East, the past week has been an extraordinary one.
Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin are starting to sour on the new pope. In response to Pope Francis’ first Apostolic Exhortation, in which the pontiff denounced “trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world,” these two paragons of the far right – both of whom regularly invoke the teachings of Jesus to bolster their own political views – have suddenly turned their backs on the man whose actual job description is to speak for Jesus. Sarah Palin complained that Pope Francis sounded “kind
President Obama requested Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu take a “breather” from his harsh criticism of the U.S. strategy regarding Iran during a call betwee the two leaders, The Washington Post reported on Thursday. The request came as the administration girds up for a push in the next six months to reach a final settlement on Iran´s nuclear program. The president reportedly urged Netanyahu to tone down his rhetoric for the sake of diplomacy and urged him to dispatch officials to Washington who could help negotiate a resolution agreeable to both countries. The president called Netanyahu last Sunday, promising to
In 1947, Sen. Harley Kilgore (D-W.Va.) condemned a proposed constitutional amendment that would restrict presidents to two terms. “The executive’s effectiveness will be seriously impaired,” Kilgore argued on the Senate floor, “ as no one will obey and respect him if he knows that the executive cannot run again.” I’ve been thinking about Kilgore’s comments as I watch President Obama, whose approval rating has dipped to 37?percent in CBS News polling — the lowest ever for him — during the troubled rollout of his health-care reform. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats have distanced themselves from the reform and from the president.
Cher told her fans on Wednesday that she does not celebrate Thanksgiving. In fact, she appears to deplore the American holiday, calling in the “beginning of a great crime.” Cher said that the American settlers were guilty of taking land from native Americans who had no concept of property ownership and also intentionally infected them with smallpox. “You don’t celebrate the holiday I thought?” a fan asked Cher. “I DON’T,” Cher replied emphatically. She said that, to her, Thanksgiving is a day to see family, eat food together and watch a movie. “Not 2 celebrate the beginning of a GREAT Crime.” When asked
For all the gnashing of teeth over the lack of comity and civility in Washington, the real problem is not etiquette but the breakdown of political norms, legislative and constitutional. Such as the one just spectacularly blown up in the Senate. To get three judges onto a coveted circuit court, frustrated Democrats abolished the filibuster for executive appointments and (non-Supreme Court) judicial nominations. The problem is not the change itself. It’s fine that a president staffing his administration should need 51 votes rather than 60. Doing so for judicial appointments, which are for life, is a bit dicier. Nonetheless, for
Four more years. 10 trillion more dollars in debt. And by the end of it, we’ll have a nuclear war in the Middle East and mandates forcing you to buy everything from electric cars to Michelle Obama’s trademark Soy and Asphalt pie. The motives behind the Washington Post op-ed argument are… revealing. I watch President Obama, whose approval rating has dipped to 37?percent in CBS News polling — the lowest ever for him — during the troubled rollout of his health-care reform. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats have distanced themselves from the reform and from the president. Even former president Bill Clinton
For Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell, enough was enough. The Senate´s top Republican had watched a Tea Party-driven government shutdown sink the GOP´s already-weak brand and jeopardize McConnell´s own chances of ever becoming majority leader. The solution, he concluded, was that the party´s so-called Establishment had to start fighting back against its most conservative wing. McConnell, an ardent Obamacare opponent, and other Republican pragmatists in Congress, supported the conservatives´ mission to defund Obamacare during budget negotiations, which led to the 16-day shutdown. But the pragmatists also accepted that their odds of success were virtually nil. Democrats ruled the Senate and White House, those
The human species began as the hybrid offspring of a male pig and a female chimpanzee, a leading geneticist has suggested. The startling claim has been made by Eugene McCarthy, of the University of Georgia, who is also one of the worlds leading authorities on hybridisation in animals. He points out that while humans have many features in common with chimps, we also have a large number of distinguishing characteristics not found in any other primates. Dr McCarthy says these divergent characteristics are most likely the result of a hybrid origin at some point far back in human evolutionary history. What´s more, he suggests,
The hits to President Obama´s popularity, prompted by the botched HealthCare.gov rollout, are simply a natural fluctuation every commander-in-chief faces, Obama told interviewer Barbara Walters in an interview aired Friday. "If you remember, I´ve gone up and down pretty consistently throughout," Obama said in the ABC interview on Friday. "But the good thing about when you´re down is that usually you´ve got nowhere to go but up." "I got re-elected in part because people did think I was trustworthy and they knew I was working on their behalf," Obama said in the network´s exclusive. A CNN Poll of Polls complied
Progressive talk radio needs a savior. Just a few dozen stations now carry liberal talkers, as key affiliates in cities with active left-wing politics are falling like dominoes, going dark or switching formats. Detroit’s progressive outlet shut down in January, along with Seattle’s liberal talk station, which changed to sports. And after last year’s election, Portland’s progressive talk station ended its political programming. With the political battlegrounds of 2014 and 2016 on the horizon, reducing the whopping imbalance between conservative radio, with its huge fan base, and the left has become more important than ever, according to those in
One day after a new poll showed that only a minority of Americans trust President Barack Obama, the president told an audience that his policies are based on kindness. “Kindness covers all of my political beliefs,” Obama told his audience of wealthy investors, high-tech donors, journalists and fellow Democrats Tuesday, only two months after he slashed at GOP legislators, calling them arsonists, nuclear blackmailers, economic wreckers, hostage-takers, obsessives and irresponsible extremists. “When I think about what I’m fighting for, what gets me up every single day, [kindness] captures it just about as much as anything,” he told his audience at the DreamWorks
The Washington Examiner recently reported on an academic study on the 2008 presidential election entitled "The Palin Effect" that examined the effect of then Gov. Palin on the John McCain campaign. Its conclusions run counter to conventional wisdom. The cliché, advanced by the media and the now infamous HBO TV show "Game Change," was that Palin helped to cost McCain the election because of her "controversial" personality. In fact, typical of most vice presidential running mates, Palin had a marginal but largely positive effect on McCain´s standing with the voters. She certainly did not drive away independents and moderates, who along