Sunday, 27 January 2008

The Diversity Industry

I leave you this fine evening with a column by George Will.

All Fred, All the Time

I agree.


Somehow, some way, this is President Bush’s fault.


Philosophy professor Stephen Parise coined a term: “Keithism.” I like it.

Addendum: With all due respect, Stephen, your songs are awful. I cannot let them remain unchallenged. Here is a song that makes yours sound like noise. Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith have unbelievable voices. If that doesn’t persuade you, this will. Or this. Or this. Or this.

Addendum 2: Would it destroy my credibility as a headbanger if I said that I like this song? The guitar is quite good, and you have to admit, the band members are easy on the eyes.


One of my Ethics students (Jeff) sent a link to this essay. What are your favorite words, and why? My favorite word is “antidisestablishmentarianism.” Don’t ask why; it just is. I’m also partial to “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.”

Two Bits, Part 2

I asked you to choose the best and worst state quarters. Get your butt over there and do it.

Back? Here, in no particular order, are the best quarters:

Georgia (three of the four cardinal virtues of Greek antiquity—all but courage—are shown)
Maine (I like lighthouses; I grew up in Michigan)
Missouri (Lewis and Clark)
Montana (this is my favorite)
Arizona (my former home)
Alaska (Ursus arctos horribilis)

Here, in no particular order, are the worst quarters:

New Hampshire (just flat-out idiotic)
Vermont (unity? what happened to diversity?)
Ohio (insipid)
Alabama (is this a joke? hey wait, there’s courage!)
Iowa (bor-ing)
Idaho (say what?)

There is no geographical bias. I happen to love Idaho, but its quarter sucks.


I can’t wait until Tuesday, when Florida holds its primaries. On the Republican side, which is of greatest concern to me, Mitt Romney and John McCain are neck and neck in the polls (see here). There are 57 delegates at stake, and the winner takes all. Go Mitt!

Addendum: Here is the current delegate count. Romney leads McCain, 59-36.


There are two ways to look at this. One is that the progressive establishment is turning against Hillary Clinton and will cause her to lose to Barack Obama. The other is that it gives her general-election cover. What better way to prove to the American people that you’re a moderate than to have Ted Kennedy and the Kos kids against you?

A Year Ago


From Today’s New York Times

To the Editor:

Fearing Deportation but Clinging to Life and Homes in U.S.” (news article, Jan. 18) doesn’t mention the negative effects illegal immigration has on Americans and legal immigrants. Despite repeatedly stating that illegal immigrants pay taxes, the article ignores the fact that they are a burden on American taxpayers.

The Heritage Foundation reports that the average low-skilled immigrant household receives $30,160 in government benefits but pays only $10,573 in taxes. So each low-skilled immigrant household costs taxpayers $19,587 per household per year.

Illegal immigrants take jobs away from Americans and legal residents. The Center for Immigration Studies estimates that low-skilled American workers lose an average of $1,800 a year because of competition from low-skilled immigrants for their jobs. And illegal immigration also leads to overcrowded schools and hospitals.

Illegal immigrants are responsible for their own criminal actions and should not blame law enforcement officials for the fact that they are subject to deportation.

Lamar Smith
Ranking Member, House Judiciary Committee
Washington, Jan. 23, 2008

Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) on Animals

[I]t is not Prudence that distinguisheth man from beast. There be beasts, that at a year old observe more, and pursue that which is for their good, more prudently, than a child can do at ten.

(Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan, rev. student ed., ed. Richard Tuck, Cambridge Texts in the History of Political Thought, ed. Raymond Geuss and Quentin Skinner [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996], chap. 3, p. 23 [first published in 1651])

Safire on Language