The Cycle

Michael Anton on why the Founding was corrupted.


Blogger is annoyingly not working right now. Here’s the link:


From the Federalist's excerpt of the DoJ FBI report, a couple of charts of leak paths (at the link), and this finding by the IG:

Second, although FBI policy strictly limits the employees who are authorized to speak to the media, we found that this policy appeared to be widely ignored during the period we reviewed. We identified numerous FBI employees, at all levels of the organization and with no official reason to be in contact with the media, who were nevertheless in frequent contact with reporters. The large number of FBI employees who were in contact with journalists during this time period impacted our ability to identify the sources of leaks.

The USAF has PAOs—Public Affairs Officers—who are the only persons authorized to speak to the public, not just the press, about USAF official business.  There are sever penalties for violating the regulations laying out that authority.  USAF members are, of course, allowed to speak to the public, including the press, but those members must be at pains to be clear that they're speaking only for themselves, and they cannot under any circumstance speak of official business—those questions are to be explicitly referred to the PAO.  I think the other services have similar requirements.
And this:

FBI employees received tickets to sporting events from journalists, went on golfing outings with media representatives, were treated to drinks and meals after work by reporters, and were the guests of journalists at nonpublic social events[.]

While the IG team acknowledged that the difficulty of identifying the leakers, as I've commented once or twice, "difficult" means "possible."  The only way the FBI and the DoJ can regain credibility is for the effort to be expended, the leakers identified promptly and publicly, the leakers fired for cause, and where appropriate (the bribe receptions of the second cite), the leakers brought to criminal trial.

It's especially important to do this promptly because the large majority of line agents and DoJ personnel are honest and above board, but their reputations are badly smeared by these…miscreants'…misbehaviors.

Eric Hines

The wild surmise

Project Gutenberg has had a spate of old histories of the New World, which I can't get enough of.  Every time I read a reference to Darien I hear this Keats sonnet in my head:
On First Looking into Chapman's Homer
Much have I travell'd in the realms of gold,
And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
Round many western islands have I been
Which bards in fealty to Apollo hold.
Oft of one wide expanse had I been told
That deep-brow'd Homer ruled as his demesne;
Yet did I never breathe its pure serene
Till I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold:
Then felt I like some watcher of the skies
When a new planet swims into his ken;
Or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes
He star'd at the Pacific—and all his men
Look'd at each other with a wild surmise—
Silent, upon a peak in Darien.
The poem refers to an exciting translation of Homer by George Chapman.  The last few lines stick in a lot of heads, it seems; the literary world is stuffed with references to them.  G.K. Chesterton worked them into a drinking song, The Logical Vegetarian:
I am silent in the club,
I am silent in the pub.,
I am silent on a bally peak in Darien;
For I stuff away for life
Shoving peas in with a knife,
Because I am a rigid Vegetarian.

No more the milk of cows
Shall pollute my private house
Than the milk of the wild mares of the Barbarian
I will stick to port and sherry,
For they are so very, very,
So very, very, very, Vegetarian.
Clovis Sangrail freezes out a fellow trying to cadge a favor in Saki's "The Talking-Out of Tarrington":
The next moment the overtures of an affably disposed gentleman were being received by Clovis with a "silent-upon-a-peak-in-Darien" stare which denoted an absence of all previous acquaintance with the object scrutinized.
Vladimir Nabakov famously incorporated a baseball-themed pun on the sonnet's title into Pale Fire:  "Red Sox Beat Yanks 5–4 On Chapman's Homer."

Ted Davis explained that baseball has been around forever, since God made the whole world in the big inning, then Eve stole first, and Adam second, after which they were both thrown out.  He then wrote "On First, Looking into Chapman's Homer":
Or like stout Mantle, when with eagle eyes
He star’d out at the distant fence — and then
Watch’d his ball just rise and rise and rise —
Silent, above a park in Washington.
A Punch sketch from 1922 recounts a student's attempt to recite the poem.  He gives "coffee-colored" for "deep-brow'd Homer," and ends with "Or like fat Cortez, when with staring eyes/He swims in the Pacific. . . " to the disgust of his professor, who predicts his enormous success as a Philistine in public life.

Jordan Peterson Says We Should Make Ourselves Dangerous

James Morganelli talks about this at the Federalist.

But the interview takes a turn after Peterson says, “It’s very helpful for people to hear that they should make themselves competent and dangerous and take their proper place in the world.”

Stossel scoffs, “Competent and dangerous? Why dangerous?”

“There’s nothing to you otherwise,” Peterson replies. “If you’re not a formidable force, there’s no morality in your self-control. If you’re incapable of violence, not being violent isn’t a virtue.
Morganelli agrees and reflects on this idea and draws out the ethical principles at play in deciding to use violence. I'm not sure we would all agree with his conclusions, but the discussion is interesting.