August 24, 2019

Amy Wax is Whack (12:16 pm) Is idiot con-savantism a thing? The New Yorker’s contentious interview with conservative University of Pennsylvania law professor Amy Wax (entitled A Penn Law Professor Wants to Make America White Again) is so weird. I sensed some of this weirdness in my own analysis of Amy Wax’s (much-maligned) address to the (much-maligned) July conference on National Conservatism in Washington, DC. But she ratchets up the strangeness in her Q&A with Isaac Chotiner. Wax is both bright and obtuse… Read more

August 23, 2019

Previously in Calvin’s Ghost – 2 / Giant Beast Eli. A Pinocchio real-boy with spindly, tinker-toy legs. Using these legs, he plied the vaulted heights of McCosh Hall, collegiate gothic classroom exemplar on the west side of the Princeton campus, but showing its age. It was an Indian summer afternoon several weeks into October of this same 4th-grade year. Eli tested the wooden stairs at the back of the building. He planted his feet carefully, each step a singularity, the… Read more

August 23, 2019

Previously in Calvin’s Ghost – Chapter 1 / No Man’s Land   In these early years of wide-eyed expectancy, Eli hugely anticipated Sunday excursions with his father to Princeton University’s mammoth, labyrinthine library, not least because these jaunts typically ended with breakfast at the pancake house directly across Nassau Street (or Lincoln Highway, the archaic name still used only by Tobias), with Eli sprinting around the corner of the library, accelerating to the row of elm trees lining the street,… Read more

August 22, 2019

The selections below illustrate the broad scope and application of natural law philosophy to Christian conservative perspectives on the issues that most divide the United States (and European nations) in this historical moment: a) how we think about and interpret history; b) the legacy and meaning of slavery and racism for national identity; c) migration, borders, empathy, and identity; d) Christianity, capitalism, and socialism; e) free will, self-ownership, and suicide; g) Western civilization as the mirror of God; h) tradition… Read more

August 19, 2019

Misdirection. A form of deception in which the attention of an audience is focused on one thing in order to distract its attention from another. Managing the audience’s attention is the aim of all theater, it is the foremost requirement of theatrical magic. – Wikipedia On November 6, 2018, in a much-anticipated game on the first day of the NCAA men’s basketball season, the preseason 4th-ranked Duke Blue Devils, led by the incomparable South Carolina freshman Zion Williamson, thrashed the… Read more

August 18, 2019

Previously in Calvin’s Ghost – The Spin Here is Eli Wheeler in September 1969, a 9-year old, freshly commissioned 4rd-grader, all innocence and watchful awareness. Was he happy? Certainly not. But Eli was expectant. At recess, sprinting with his mates, out the back door of the classroom to the playfield. The stately elms filtering sunlight. The blue asphalt warming. Eli loved school, especially his short, attentive teacher, Mrs. Greenberry, with her Jackie Onassis bouffant and perfume smelling of earth and… Read more

August 18, 2019

This is a guest post from journalist Andrew Schwartz, who spoke with Andrew Yang in October 2018, shortly after Yang declared his improbable candidacy for the presidency as a Democrat. This article originally appeared in the online journal of popular culture, Mangoprism. Last fall, I interviewed the presidential candidate Andrew Yang for half an hour before he held a rally in Chicago. His candidacy was relatively unknown at the time, so he was (and I believe still is) taking all… Read more

August 17, 2019

For those inclined to take a weekend break from the tedium of Catholic natural law moral philosophy, right-wing ethno-racio-sexuo-politics, and the existential counterspin of climate change, please consider Calvin’s Ghost, an old-fashioned and virtuous Protestant novel, set in bucolic campus settings in the latter decades of the 20th century.  I’ll post 2 new chapters each weekend. Please click here for more information. Synopsis Calvin’s Ghost is an American tragedy about grief and brokenness that leads us ever more deeply into the… Read more

August 16, 2019

The Max Boot Chronicles (Continued) This post continues my account of the internecine dust-up between post-conservative military historian and Washington Post columnist, Max Boot, and his former colleagues and allies at stalward Catholic conservative magazine, The National Review (think Raylan Givens/Boyd Crowder in Justified). For purposes of continuity, I include below the final paragraph of the previous post. Sixth, but matters really get jiggity when Charles Cooke, National Review editor Rich Lowry, and various fellow travelers such as Ricochet editor and Jewish… Read more

August 15, 2019

The Max Boot Chronicles When I was taking a second spin through Berkeley in the early 1990s, Max Boot was an undergraduate writing pissant columns for The Daily Cal student newspaper. Max Boot stood out – to everyone. He was really smart. He was really conservative. And he had a fantastically authoritarian name. I disagreed with nearly everything he wrote, but loved reading it all. There was no doubt in my mind he would make his mark in the world…. Read more




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