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Woes of both the public and the private sectors

Conservatives are skeptical about the government and look to the private sector to solve our problems.  Liberals are skeptical about the private sector and look to the government for solutions.  Former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers says that our problem is that BOTH the public sector AND the private sector are dysfunctional. [Read more...]

The all-Lutheran music channel

The multi-talented Lori Lewis has launched an internet radio channel devoted to Lutheran music.  That is to say, to 16th and 17th century sacred music with lots of hymns, chorales, and Bach.  The channel is called Wittenberg Nightingale, after an epithet for Luther from the poet Hans Sachs, and is a spinoff of Lori’s Katie Luther project, the opera about Luther’s wife. [Read more...]

A holiday for adults

Folklorist Jack Santino observes that Thanksgiving is pretty much the only national holiday that hasn’t shifted its focus to children.  In fact, they are often shunted off to the “kids’ table.”  The emphasis instead is on grandparents, patriarchs and matriarchs, family traditions going back for generations, and blessings that adults are in the best position to savor. [Read more...]

Amnesty by decree

President Obama has issued an executive order protecting some 5 million illegal immigrants from deportation.

On what authority, you may ask?  He is invoking the principle of “prosecutor discretion,” under which a law enforcement officer may choose, for example, which speeders to chase down.  So here the Executive Branch, charged with carrying out the laws passed by the Legislative Branch, is just choosing not to enforce the law against illegal immigrants unless they have committed other crimes.  (But in forbidding immigration officials from enforcing the law, isn’t he taking away their “prosecutor discretion”?) [Read more...]

Military strategy in the new Iraq war

Gen. Robert H. Scales (ret.),  former commandant of the U.S. Army War College, explains the strategic situation in Iraq and what the administration hopes to accomplish with the nine 150-person training units of American troops that have been sent there. [Read more...]

Ebola self-destruction?

Parasites that kill their hosts are basically committing suicide.  More successful parasites keep their hosts alive.  Tapeworms, for example, can hunker down in someone’s intestines and grow to obscene lengths before the host even notices.  The most successful parasites, such as the microorganisms that live in our stomachs, actually benefit their hosts, making infestation a win-win situation.

Liberia has been horribly stricken by Ebola, but, all of a sudden, the number of cases is plummeting.  This, even though the American troops and other foreign help haven’t got started yet. [Read more...]


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