URLs du Jour

2020-11-15

Presented without comment…

[Republicans Win]

  • [Amazon Link]
    Kevin D. Williamson explains Why Trump supporters are here for good. Hey, I'm cool with that. Some of my best friends, etc. I do, however, wish that Trump would go away.

    I have spent much of the past decade trying to tell some of the stories of what we now think of as Trump Country. And it’s complicated, because Trump Country is full of both amazing things — from the startling innovation of the energy industry to high-tech farming — and horrifying things: poverty, addiction, dysfunction, despair. I’ve reported from the poorest corners of the country, from homeless camps, from drug-treatment facilities, pornographers’ conventions, eviction court, gun court, casinos, campaign rallies, and everywhere else I could think of. And I’ve encountered things I wouldn’t quite believe if I hadn’t seen them myself: welfare dependents who use cases of soda as an improved currency, the logistical ballet of Amazon fulfillment centers, enormous fracking rigs that walk from place to place on gigantic robot legs. It’s pretty far from Midtown Manhattan — you can’t see it from there, which is one of the reasons I work from Texas.

    Blue America is feeling triumphant at the moment. But vanquishing Donald Trump is not quite the achievement they think it is, because Trump has always been much more a symptom of our Great Divide than a cause of it. That may not be obvious to an intellectual class that knows more about the Uyghurs than it does about Southwestern Oklahoma, but those who are interested in understanding the other America rather than merely sneering at it have a lot of homework to do.

    Kevin has a new book coming out Tuesday, which I ordered back in April. Amazon link up and to your right, you know you need it.


  • As befits a philosopher, Michael Huemer makes a subtle point: Language Police Are Messing with You.

    Social Justice Warriors (who prefer to be called “woke people”, or something like that) are obsessed with policing language. Sometimes, it seems as if the worst sins they can conceive of consist of talking to or about people using the wrong linguistic expressions.

    E.g., when I hear complaints about President Trump, the most common type of complaint I hear is about something the President said. Not a policy he implemented or refused to implement, not an actual crime he committed, but a comment that he posted on Twitter or uttered in a news conference. (Granted, many of these comments are dumb and malicious.)

    But it’s not just stupid and spiteful comments that draw the SJWs’ ire. They’re very concerned about making up new rules for how we’re supposed to refer to people, what we can talk about, what is to be considered “offensive”, etc. — in other words, policing language.

    Recent example: "sexual preference" which used to be an OK thing to say, until, like, a month ago.

    Anyway, Michael presents four functions of SJW's language laws. Number four contains some rough language, but you can handle it.


  • Speaking of language, Paul Mirengoff at Power Line likes a SCOTUS justice's use of it: Justice Alito tells it like it is. We looked at a bit of Sam's speech yesterday, but this is different and just as good:

    Alito was careful to emphasize that he wasn’t diminishing the “severity of the virus’ threat to public health” or even taking a position on whether the restrictions are good public policy. However, he argued that the restrictions on public gatherings and worship services highlighted “trends that were already present before the virus struck,” including a “dominance of lawmaking by executive fiat” rather than by legislators and the relegation of certain rights to second class status.

    Religious rights, for example. Alito homed in on the decision of Nevada to limit church attendance to 50 people, while reopening large casinos to 50 percent capacity. “It pains me to say to it, but in certain quarters religious liberty is fast becoming a disfavored right,” he concluded.

    Take a quick look at the Constitution,” Alito urged. “You will see the free exercise clause of the First Amendment, which protects religious liberty. You will not find a craps clause, or a blackjack clause, or a slot machine clause.”

    Should Mirengoff have said "honed in" instead of "homed in"? If you're interested, check a blissfully politics-free New Yorker article: Don’t Try to Hone In On a Copy Editor.