Below is the link to an article of mine recently published by intellectualtakeout.org. The editors there have published about forty of my articles in the last year. (The photograph above relates to the article, not the site.) I am posting this bit in hopes that you will visit this site. Intellectual Takeout is conservative, but sane, and strives to publish pieces regarding mattes of religion, family, politics, and education that are well-reasoned and without the angry, strident voices that mark so many of today's online dialogues. A particular thanks to Annie Holmquist, one of the editors, for her encouragement.
So shortly after noon today I was clipping up Interstate 81 at 74 mph in my 2007 Honda Accord (four mph above the speed limit, listening to Steeleye Span on CD—no, that’s not Steely Dan—and making plans for all the work facing me on my return to Front Royal, Virginia, when the car shuddered and a doe’s head briefly appeared on the other side of my windshield.
If you're looking for some good narrative history for your winter reading, try The Last Castle. The review is below.
In “Back To Discipline: Disparate Impact Reflects Disparate Reality” (https://www.city-journal.org/disparate-impact-analysis), Heather MacDonald applauds the Federal Commission on School Safety’s repudiation “of disparate-impact analysis.” She writes:
Disparate-impact analysis holds that if a facially-neutral policy negatively affects blacks and Hispanics at a higher rate than whites and Asians, it is discriminatory. Noticing the behavioral differences that lead to those disparate effects is forbidden. In the area of school discipline, disparate-impact analysis results in the conclusion that racially neutral rules must nevertheless contain bias, since black students nationally are suspended at nearly three times the rate of white students. In 2014, the Obama administration relied on this methodology to announce that schools that suspended or expelled black students at higher rates than white students were violating anti-discrimination laws.
I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.
Jorge Luis Borges
Like Borges, Americans have long treasured libraries.
From Benjamin Franklin, who helped put together one of America’s first lending libraries, to Andrew Carnegie, who funded more than 2,500 libraries, to Laura Bush, whose foundation has provided millions of dollars to school libraries for the purchase of books and print material, Americans have honored libraries as vehicles for education and culture. Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Richard Wright, and a host of other American authors have credited the lending library as crucial to their intellectual development. Men and women in fields as varied as business and farming have used libraries as their private R&D department.
I wrote the note to you all on New Year's Day, but am only posting it now. I revised it a little, but the reason for my hesitancy was fear. What if I failed at this project? And why post anything at all? Why not just undertake BACA privately? But then I realized that posting here might, at least in the beginning, offer real motivation, if for no other reason than fear of humiliation. So here goes.
Happy New Year!
Instead of writing an article off-line tonight and then posting it here--I have several pieces in the works--I thought I'd come on and write you a note.
First, thank all of you so much for taking the time to read this blog. Though many of these articles have appeared in various online outlets, magazines, and newspapers, to post them here always gives me great pleasure. I hope you have enjoyed reading them as much as I have enjoyed writing them.
As some of you know, last year I made a New Year's resolution that--for once!--I actually kept. During the past twelve months, I read Will and Ariel Durant's The Story Of Civilization, all 8,945 pages, excluding all the endnotes.
Are we getting dumber?
On June of 2018 Newsweek’s Scottie Andrew reported the following:
A Norwegian study published Monday found a seven-point dip in IQ test scores per generation among men born from 1962 to 1991. The results suggest a reversal in the Flynn effect, an observed increase in IQ scores throughout the 20th century in developed countries.
Researchers Bernt Bratsberg and Ole Rogeberg took test results from Norwegian men entering the country’s military draft born between 1962 and 1991. Boys born in the first observation period, 1962 to 1975, gained almost 0.3 IQ points per year, but those in the cohort born after 1975 saw a steady decline in scores.
A Christmas letter from the ever-feisty Uncle Samuel to his beloved—and often clueless—nephew Hobson
It pleases me to no end that you will attend the Christmas Midnight Mass at the Basilica with Abigail. These last four months since you met my young friend have certainly brought about some remarkable changes in you. By placing Abigail’s happiness ahead of your own selfish concerns, and by respecting her Catholic faith, you are discovering the true meaning of affection, friendship, and love. When I first introduced the two of you, it was my fervent hope that you would see in the lovely Abigail those advantages faith and grace have bestowed on her.
Fierce. Honest. Libertarian.
Author and professor Camille Paglia speaks her own mind, uses logic rather than histrionics to make her arguments, and is unafraid of blowback from her critics. Though a lifelong Democrat and a supporter of Bernie Sanders, she refused to vote for Hilary Clinton, regarding her as a “liar.” She has called into question climate change, despises political correctness, rejects the postmodernism that has wormed its way into our universities, and has taken to task our current obsession with transgender issues. She contends that by their refusal to listen to all women and to allow for dissent in their ranks, radical feminists are killing feminism.