Happy Mother's Day

"Where would any of us be, without a woman? Why, even Father Lonergan had a mother."

Two on Ben Carson

Ben Carson, running for President, has decided to break with the rest of the Republican field and endorse a minimum wage increase. Meanwhile, he is chided for taking his claim to be 'politically incorrect' too far.
Political correctness is dangerous when it discourages thought or expression. But simply declaring oneself "politically incorrect" — as Carson pridefully does — is not a license to throw off the shackles of protocol and politeness and say crazy, offensive things.
That's right. He should say "With all due respect" instead.

A Quiz for Eric Blair

On Roman History.

While you're there, read this article on the Fall of Rome.
Roman historians recognized what they considered to be a decay in the traditional Roman character from the late Republic onwards. Symptoms included a falling birth-rate, a growing gap between rich and poor, and declining attachment to ancient traditions. Modern historians have tended to focus on economic and political changes, but this new theory suggests that the root cause was, in fact, a mass change in temperament driven by prosperity.
Sounds familiar.

The UK Goes Right

Sorry to see Farage go, but George Galloway will not be missed. I like that a wave of nationalism swept the UK in response to the Labour attempt to flood the country with immigrants who would permanently change the face of the electorate. That augurs well for a similar (and even more deserved) wave election here.

The Scottish National Party swept the Old Country.

Patience is a Virtue

A US Army colonel goes on C-SPAN, with hilarious very sad results. Kudos to Col. Petkosek for putting up with the callers.

Voice of the Mighty 9th

My Representative, Doug Collins, on religious freedom and the void that used to be the Constitution.

Return From the Wild

I have returned from five days in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. During this time I crossed Clingman's Dome on the Appalachian Trail, which is the highest point of the trail from Georgia to Maine and which is attained by first surmounting Mount Love or Mount Baldwin and then crossing a ridge to the next summit. I also hiked the aptly named Death Ridge, and then descended into the lower regions of the park to enjoy the water features. Saw every species of big game native the the park, including elk and a bear I had to stand off of his kill (of a wild boar) in order to make a narrow and precipitous trail clear for passage.

Google's auto-editing program did this with one of my photos:

Overall, fifty miles or so of backpacking through some credibly difficult terrain. It was a beautiful place, just as you'd imagine.


If the Garland shooting of two would-be jihadists in the parking lot of a Mohammed-cartoon-drawing contest was a mousetrap, then it was a carelessly designed one.  I'd have at least armed the security guard.  As Ace says, the left is trying to force at least two contradictory claims on us in this context:
1. To speak of Islamist violence, or to suggest there is a problem in Islam, is racist, and hateful, and irrational, and "islamophobic."
2. It is so predictable that Islamists will kill you if you say something "anti-Islamic" that victims of murder attempts can be said to have brought their attacks on themselves.
Two other hard-to-reconcile claims:
1. Islam is compatible with Western values.
2. We're going to have to change some core Western values to avoid violence from our new Muslim friends.
Luckily the unarmed security guard was not the only spring-loaded lethal device included in this mousetrap. Bearing Arms has up a useful summary of what we know about the attack and the prompt, successful defense by a police officer:
No matter how you break down the details, this was an incredible display of bravery and marksmanship by this 30+ year veteran of the Garland Police Department, who not only resisted the natural urge to create distance between yourself and rifle-armed assailants, but who appears to have done precisely the opposite, and who advanced while firing accurately, bringing the attack to a swift conclusion without a single additional casualty once he brought his weapon to bear.


I'm a big fan of "The Great Courses." Naturally, I enjoy writing reviews on their website and appreciate the helpful reviews that other TGC customers leave. TGC ranks reviewers according to some metric that includes the number of their reviews and the positive feedback from readers. Recently I stumbled on a review by the top-ranked contributor, then clicked on her name in order to read all of her reviews. Phenomenal. I quote here from a review of a course about the neuroscience of everyday life:
My father died of Alzheimer's. To stay in his beloved house and present a good front whenever I visited, he kept all his vital necessities (his peanut butter, bread and various clothing items) in a single location — the dishwater.
Eventually I was forced to use trickery. We "visited" an assisted-care facility. For a day or two he begged me to go back home. He cried like a child. I was overwhelmed with guilt.
Then it abruptly stopped. The house he shared with my mother for 40 years until she died, his castle and refuge, disappeared like everything else down a memory hole. He was serene again within a week of entering the facility. Perhaps drugs had something to do with it.
That was years ago. He now rests in peace.