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Jewish Zeal

 

It has been widely acknowledged that the three people who had the most profound cultural and political influence over the last hundred years were Jews: Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, and Albert Einstein.

The zeal of Marx was centered around his theory that the ultimate motivation of human beings was economics (money!). The zeal of Freud derived from his theory that the all-encompassing driving force behind human behavior was the desire for pleasure. These self-centered theories were disproved by Victor Frankl, a Jewish psychologist who survived imprisonment in a concentration camp during the Holocaust. In “Man’s Search for Meaning,” Frankl reported that those who survived the camps were typically the ones who would share their last crust of bread with another starving prisoner. Frankl said it was a search for meaning, not pleasure or materialistic concerns, that was the ultimate motivator of human behavior. (Check out this amazing video from 1972.)

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TV History Thursday: Getting In on the Ground Floor Cheaply, 70 Years Ago

 

It’s 1948. After the war, it seemed like everyone was impatient for television to reach them, but incredible as it seems now, radio station owners had a hard time deciding whether or not going into television was worth the financial risk. There were two competing, less expensive prewar experiments ready to be big time postwar realities: FM and facsimile. FM got shafted almost immediately, when the FM frequency bands were abruptly shifted upwards, making every existing prewar FM radio in the country useless. It would take until the mid-to-late Sixties before the superior quality of FM gave it most of the music audience, by then a rock audience. AM went from being “radio,” period, to something you listened to in your car.

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The Old Man with the Cane

 

The swirl of media around the meeting of Kanye West and President Trump spent most of its energy on personality images of the those two men and not the real issues represented concerning minorities and their actual benefit in a growing economy operating more and more on our intended liberty and less and less on the centralized power of the state. That was to be expected from a media committed to the defense of an expanding “progressive” state.

Those issues involving all American citizens, not just those considered minorities, should be the final focus of that meeting. But it was impossible for me not to look more toward the third man in the meeting. To some, he has always been a hard one to assign to any single box. In many ways, his presence there was what added the most credibility to the meeting.

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End Affirmative Action Now

 

It is tearing our country apart. Affirmative Action causes whatever it is that binds US citizens together to break down. For whatever reason I no longer feel any bind to places such as Portland and San Francisco. Key West was heading in that direction last time I visited but was a blast and I want to keep it (for now).

I worked for a black dentist whose father had been a dentist and one of my jobs was to bid on “minority medical supply contracts” for one of his companies.

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Finding Identity in My DNA

 

This just in: I am 0.00% Cherokee! According to Ancestry.com DNA I am 96% Irish and Scottish, 4% English, Welsh and NW European.

My Irish last name originates from a Norman guy who fought in the battle of Hastings in 1066 and was awarded lands somewhere in Devonshire, England. Three or four generations later, one of his descendants (probably a second or third son with no shot at inheriting the family estate) joined the Norman invasion of Ireland around 1170 and secured land for himself somewhere in County Tipperary after which my Norman invader ancestor went native.

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Stacking the Deck: How Ballot Access Laws Are Written to Disadvantage Minor Parties

 

If the 2016 election was good for anything, it reminded us that controlled markets produce garbage products. In 2016, we saw the two most disliked presidential candidates in American history go head to head. That might explain why nearly nine million people voted for third-party candidates and another 5 million (or more) stayed home.

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Sam Harris Didn’t Understand Ford/Kavanaugh Either

 

Sam Harris has been a high priest of leftist culture for a while now. But I think he’s solidified his position with his recent “analysis” of the Ford/Kavanaugh debacle. He essentially he broke it down like this:

1. Kavanaugh lied about stuff under oath. Harris’ evidence for this was that he knows what “boof” meant in the ’80s. Unfortunately “boof” has at least four meanings and one of them is the one Kavanaugh used. In other words, Harris’ claim is unconvincing.

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Elizabeth Warren Highlights the Danger of Racial Identity

 

She was mocked as “Fauxcahontas” long before President Trump began referring to her as “Pocahontas,” and frankly, Sen. Elizabeth Warren invited the ridicule. She is a poster child for the pitfalls of basing identity on race and reminds us of the many furies such self-definition unleashes.

What people choose to call themselves shouldn’t matter to outsiders. If I want to call myself a post-Jerseyite dog lover, no one will care, unless there is affirmative action for former Jersey residents who can’t skip dog videos on Twitter.

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ACF Critic Series #8: Teachout, In a Lonely Place

 

Back to noir: Terry Teachout and I talk about In A Lonely Place, Bogart’s most amazing performance, Nicholas Ray’s most elegant film, and a rare romance between adults who know their minds and speak them–the lovely Gloria Grahame is at her best playing opposite Bogie. The film feels as modern as it gets because of that, but also because it’s tragic–it suggests your choices aren’t the most important things in your life and, if the movie grabs you, it’s because you know that to be partly true.

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Khashoggi and the Saudi Flag

 

View original artwork here.

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Zealots of Masada

 

In 66 AD, a group of 960 Jewish Zealots decided they would prefer to commit suicide rather than yield to Roman conquest at Masada:

Masada (‘Metsada’ in Hebrew) is the name of the mountain on which the Masada fortress was built. It is more like a plateau or a table mountain, and quite isolated from its surroundings, as there is only one narrow, winding pathway leading up, fittingly called “the Snake.” According to Josephus Flavius, an ancient historian and the only one to record what happened on Masada, Masada was first built by the Hasmoneans, a Jewish dynasty who ruled Judaea in the years between 140-37 BC. Then, between 37-31 BC, King Herod the Great built two palaces there and further fortified the place as a refuge for himself in case of a revolt. However, it proved to be a refuge for Jewish rebels about 90 years later.

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Retired Marine Sergeant Major John Canley: Our Latest Medal of Honor Recipient

 

Wednesday afternoon, retired Sergeant Major John Canley became the 300th Marine to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. President Trump presented the award to the 80-year-old Marine, who is still straight of back and clear-voiced, standing tall in his sharp dress uniform. Sergeant Major Canley was belatedly recognized for one especially noteworthy episode in a long career.

Canley, who spent 28 years in the service, left El Dorado, Arkansas, at the age of 15 to join the Marines. [He used his brother’s documents to enlist two years below the youngest recruiting age!]

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On Castles and Storms

 

This morning I had a conversation with a 15-year-old boy and heroin user who told me that inpatient treatment really wasn’t necessary, or, that he didn’t really want to do it, at any rate. Heroin and various opiate derivatives; old football injury, of course. “Old” being a somewhat relative term when you’re a decade out from the quarter-century mark. It wasn’t really an explanation, it was more of an example, an example of the sort of mindset that can only be trained.

Well, Bud, I said, Here’s the thing about that…

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Searching … for Truth

 

It is not an original thought to view man’s time on earth as a constant journey in search of something; meaning, understanding, justice … truth. I suspect that this was the case well even before man had the means to write about it. I suspect that we all spend some part of our lives internally wandering in search of our definition of those things, often in the mental darkness. I am not sure if there was ever the truly honest (mortal) man that Diogenes wandered the world searching for. But I do believe there is truth. And I believe that there is a path to it. I also believe that we might not ever completely know it in this world but that the honest search of it is vital to the human race.

There are a number of observations that can be drawn from the circus that was the Kavanaugh hearings. Only one of them is that so many people are not interested in even taking the most basic steps necessary to have the most fundamental information needed to decide guilt or innocence, the truth of a matter.

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Coming Out of the Closet

 

I just took a pretty big step, did something I’ve never done before. I clicked “like” on a YouTube video.

Yeah, I know. But that’s not all. Then I clicked on the Subscribe button. I know, I know… but I didn’t stop there. I even clicked the notification bell.

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Quote of the Day: That NPC Meme

 

“If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.” – George S. Patton

A new meme has appeared on the Internet mocking the lockstep thinking of leftists and social justice warriors: the NPC meme. It casts these people as non-player characters (NPCs), analogizing them to computer AI characters which appear in role-playing games.

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Kanye West and Donald Trump: Eccentric Maybe But Not “Mentally Ill”

 

The Left thrives on its condemnation and demonizing of the Right, including slurs like homophobic, racist, Islamaphobic, Nazis, fascists and other insults too numerous to list. Now they’ve begun to use other attacks to try to get the Right to line up with its agenda: just call the person mentally ill.

These attacks were and are especially prevalent against Donald Trump. But the most public attacks recently have been against Kanye West, a rapper and superfan of Donald Trump. I confess I don’t know much about Mr. West or his music, but he is one more celebrity in a long list of celebrities who have endorsed Presidents of the United States.

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Zeal Is Easy, Facts Are Hard

 

Tuesday was my father’s 80th birthday. You wouldn’t believe that, by the way, if you could meet him. I don’t believe it. I always thought “eighty” was pretty darn old but my father has me rethinking that now.

A few weeks ago, my little sister asked the whole family to email in our contributions for a birthday surprise she was putting together — a custom-made book full of favorite family photos accompanied by personal quotes about all the things we love and have learned from our “Pop.”

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October Surprises Breaking Republicans’ Way?

 

It is axiomatic that, each October, the media will unveil embarrassing, negative, damaging things about Republican candidates. The timing is intended to hurt Republicans and help Democrats at the ballot box. If the media doesn’t do it, a Republican self-sabotages. 2018 is different.

Media Revelations 

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Donnelly’s Latest Ad Looks Desperate

 

Sen. Joe Donnelly’s latest TV ad is a strange turn that may signal desperation from the Indiana Democrat incumbent. In the ad, Donnelly says he supports “the Wall” and ICE, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, as well as invoking President Ronald Reagan’s famous line of “peace through strength.” But the ad starts off with his disavowal of socialists and government-run healthcare, which Hoosiers know doesn’t pass the smell test … or the honesty test.

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Elizabeth Warren and the One-Drop Rule for Honesty

 

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