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Labor Left in the Lurch
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Labor Left in the Lurch

It became clear on Labor Day 2022 that the American left has no use for Americans who make a living with their hands, particularly if those hands are white and masculine.

Winning the War Against War
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Winning the War Against War

One recent morning an opinion piece by Jennifer Rubin of The Washington Post arrived unbidden in my email inbox.   “Should Putin act, it would arguably be the greatest provocation since the end of the Cold War,” Rubin claimed. “Like the Berlin Wall and the blockade of Berlin before that, movement into Ukraine would be...

A Moviegoer Reflects
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A Moviegoer Reflects

I had the good fortune to talk regularly about movies with my good friend and conservative thinker Sam Francis. With intellectual heft, he generously shared what he had learned from his own moviegoing. What follows is offered in the same spirit: a list of 10 movies I have repeatedly enjoyed and unhesitatingly recommend. The Searchers (1956):...

Defaming the Dead
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Defaming the Dead

Two years ago, Matthew Rose wrote a lengthy article about Sam Francis in First Things (“The Outsider,” October 2019) that I responded to in these pages (“A Giant Beset by Pygmies,” December 2019 Chronicles). I had hoped that Rose would consider the information I presented and use it to paint a more accurate picture of...

Hungarian Rhapsody
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Hungarian Rhapsody

I have come to see myself as a morale officer for the Deplorables. When a fellow conservative writer recently asked what I hoped to accomplish by writing about ideas the left would either ignore or demonize, I said my hope was to give support to those otherwise inclined to view the left’s ideas as irrefutable...

Equity or Bust
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Equity or Bust

Lyndon B. Johnson issued Executive Order 11246 on Sept. 24, 1965, directing federal agencies and contractors to not only avoid discrimination but to also “take affirmative action to ensure … equal employment opportunity based on race.” Despite the promises of various Republican politicians, affirmative action remains firmly entrenched in government, higher education, and even in...

The House I Hide In
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The House I Hide In

In 1945, liberal Democrat Frank Sinatra recorded a song about the meaning of America, “The House I Live In.” It was a perfect match for the honeyed voice of the young Sinatra, one that Sinatra continued to sing as his voice matured and his politics moved rightward. I have been vaguely familiar with the song since...

Disenfranchising the Deplorables
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Disenfranchising the Deplorables

If not for the COVID-19 pandemic, it is likely that Donald Trump would have won reelection. He achieved a growing economy that was seeing more wage gains at the bottom than the top, he refused to start another foreign war, and he appointed three Supreme Court justices and nearly a third of all active federal...

Our Recessional Culture
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Our Recessional Culture

I was born in 1964, in a country that most people, inside America and out, regarded as the greatest on the planet. Indeed, many felt that America in the early 1960s was the greatest country there had ever been. There was little reason at the time to question this consensus. Americans enjoyed a standard of living...

Don’t Know Much About History
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Don’t Know Much About History

A few years ago, I was fortunate enough to be included in a group meeting with a former adviser to President Trump. At one point, this former adviser asked me what I thought conservatives needed to do to win over younger Americans. I replied that the most important step conservatives could take was to make sure...

Go Big or Go Home
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Go Big or Go Home

Before the coronavirus slammed into the United States in a way that few foresaw, it seemed Donald Trump was heading to reelection based on a record of genuine, though modest, accomplishments. Despite being treated as an usurper by the media, the Democratic Party, and many of those who work in the federal government—particularly in the...

Tariffs Work
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Tariffs Work

For decades, American political discourse has largely operated within the spectrum of opinions voiced by the editorial pages of The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. Opinions not embraced by one of these newspapers were unlikely to advance very far, and those voicing such unapproved opinions were, sooner or later,...

A Giant Beset by Pygmies
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A Giant Beset by Pygmies

Most newspaper and magazine articles are forgotten not long after they appear. Does anyone read the 25-year-old columns of Norman Podhoretz, William F. Buckley, or Richard John Neuhaus for insight into current events? It therefore tells us something when First Things prints a 20-page essay about a political journalist who has been dead for almost...

Time for an Immigration Pause
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Time for an Immigration Pause

The postwar American conservative movement had many factions, but most at least feigned to revere British statesman Edmund Burke. Those who read the movement’s books and magazines were told Burke abhorred radical change, and so should we. In practice, however, most movement conservatives proved powerless to stop the many radical changes America has seen since...

Deplorable Duke
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Deplorable Duke

In 1979, as John Wayne was dying, his friend and costar in five movies, Maureen O’Hara, went to Capitol Hill to urge Congress to issue a medal honoring Wayne.  She told Congress that, “To the people of the world, John Wayne is not just an actor—and a very fine actor—John Wayne is the United States...

Winter of Our Discontent
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Winter of Our Discontent

As fall turned into winter, there were unmistakable signs of paleoconservative dissatisfaction with President Trump.  In various forums, several paleoconservatives expressed displeasure that Trump had surrounded himself with unrepentant Bush Republicans and neoconservatives; that he was listening too much to his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, who may be even further to the...

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The Essential Sector

One of Donald Trump’s signature issues during the presidential campaign was his assertion that bad trade deals had cost millions of American manufacturing jobs, and his promise to do something to reverse that doleful trend.  As with many of Trump’s assertions, these claims brought only scorn from the purveyors of respectable opinion, who insisted either...

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Taking a Stand in Warsaw

With a monument to the 1944 Warsaw Uprising as his backdrop, President Trump delivered a forceful speech on the eve of the G20 Summit, sounding themes that would not be welcome by most other leaders of the world’s most economically powerful countries.  Trump identified “the fundamental question of our time” as whether “the West has...

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The Inevitability of National Politics

Many conservatives have become disenchanted with national politics.  This disenchantment is understandable.  Strong support for Republicans seeking the White House and seats in Congress has done little to conserve the type of society most of those voting Republican wanted to conserve.  By almost any measure, American society has moved steadily leftward in recent decades.  Social...

If the Center Cannot Hold
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If the Center Cannot Hold

The surprising triumph of Donald Trump has produced what can only be described as an extended temper tantrum by much of the American left, which fully expected a victory by Hillary Clinton to be followed by unending political dominance, as the white, Christian parts of America that generally vote Republican are gradually eclipsed demographically by...

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Middle American Revolution Begins

Donald Trump’s victory in the presidential election was greeted with shock and disbelief in many quarters.  My favorite example of this occurred at my law-school alma mater, where students traumatized by the thought that ideas regularly denounced by the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the Washington Post had triumphed in a national...

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A Question of Identity

Most people have multiple identities, and contemporary America is tolerant of almost all of them, including men who think they are women and women who think they are men.  There is one notable exception, though, to this general tolerance: people who attach any importance to the fact that they are white.  The left, of course,...

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Falling In (and Out of) Line

As I write, we have reached the stage of the Republican primary cycle that, since at least 1988, requires a pronouncement from the highest levels of the GOP: Now is the time for other candidates to back out and for all Republicans to support the frontrunner.  Continuing the battle for the nomination will serve no...

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Disenchanted With Globalism

The political story this year was supposed to be a familiar one: A member of the Bush family was going to begin a successful march to the Republican nomination, and a member of the Clinton family was going to do the same thing on the Democratic side.  Through June 30, Jeb Bush had raised $114.1...

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A Fast Track to Oblivion

On April 25, the Cleveland Plain Dealer ran a story with the sort of headline we have come to expect in recent decades: “Goodyear chooses Mexico, not Akron.”  The story went on to report that Goodyear had chosen to build a $500 million plant to make premium tires in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, even though...

The Battle for the Middle
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The Battle for the Middle

American politicians love to pretend that they care about the middle class, because they know that the middle class generally determines who gets elected.  But once elected, politicians tend to serve those who finance their campaigns, and the interests of large donors seldom align with those of middle-class Americans.  This game has been played for...

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The Limits of Russophilia

Despite all the media attention devoted to it, Russia’s incursion into Ukraine poses no threat to the United States.  Soviet Russia was a mortal threat to the United States because she embodied a communist ideology with aspirations of global hegemony.  The threat died with that ideology, which is why Americans who believe that the goal...

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The Technology Mirage

For years, Americans worried about the disappearance of manufacturing jobs were told that their loss would be more than offset by all the new jobs technology would create in the United States.  What’s more, the jobs created by technology would stay in the United States, because they required skills that the Chinese and Mexicans­—those now...

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The Academic Industrial Complex

In his farewell address, Dwight Eisenhower warned against a military-industrial complex that would seek to enrich itself through false appeals to the common good.  Today, it is higher education that is growing rich by convincing the public that its actions are for their good. The costs that universities and colleges are charging students range from...

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The Culture War Crosses the Atlantic

The course of 2013 in France, Ireland, and Britain provides important lessons for those resisting the left’s attempt to remove Christian influence from public life in America. On April 23, the Socialist government of François Hollande succeeded in making France the 14th country to legalize gay marriage, something he had promised to do during his...

Liberal Culture
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Liberal Culture

… And Now Something Completely Different   Husbands, who of late have been invaded by an indomitable feeling of limitless partnership with their wives, have become a routine fixture in the delivery rooms across the country. Some Lamaze instructors regularly speak of “the pregnant couple. “This unnatural exaggeration of equal participation must have resulted from...

Journalism
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Journalism

From Russia with Love   During the 1920’s and 30’s, restless American progressives — “political pilgrims” in Paul Hollander’s phrase — returned from their obligatory hajj to Moscow lauding the Soviet regime and indicting the hopelessly inferior American order. After the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, the Berlin Wall, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Solzhenitsyn, Afghanistan, and KAL 007, almost no...

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Fleeting Truths

Cyndi Lauper, current clown princess of the new (or, given its nature, is that gnu?) rock scene, recently squeaked: It was all traditional: The church, the family, the government. Any you know what I learned? Those are the biggest oppressors of women that will ever come along. And girls just wanna have fun, right, Cyndi? ...

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Liberal Culture

The End Nears . . . “The end nears when fools are hailed and the sages ignored —.” This bit of ancient wisdom came to our minds when we were going through Time magazine’s cover story on one Shirley MacLaine, a successful actress and a quasicultural emblem of the liberal America. The gist of Time‘s...

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Fleeting truths

A gentleman with impeccable leftist credentials, Mr. Todd Gitlin: Journalism is; memory hole. In the perpetual present of the press, nothing is older than old news. We agree. What’s even worse is that both American liberals and conservatives have a pernicious tendency to confuse history  (life’s  teacher) with  old news (most often valueless trivia). Add...

Liberal Culture
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Liberal Culture

CBS versus Law & People A little doubt likely invades anyone who listened to a recent CBS Evening News story about the U.S. government’s war on drugs. The network’s “legal” correspondent, one Fred Graham, informed his audience (people’s right to know) that the government was singling out so-called celebrities for investigation. At a certain point...