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In Search of Villains for Rising Food and Oil Prices

In searching for villains for rising food and oil prices, some commentators have turned to speculators, namely people trading on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and similar exchanges around the world. A sample of the claims: “Biofuels and droughts can’t fully explain the recent food crisis — hedge funds and small investors bear some responsibility for […]

Investigate Bad Congress, Not Big Oil: How The American Government’s Anti-Capitalist Policies Increase Gas Prices

With gasoline prices exceeding $4 a gallon in some states, politicians are responding as usual: Blame Big Oil First. Several prominent senators have once again summoned industry leaders to Capitol Hill, subjecting them to yet another barrage of rhetorical questions, interruptions, accusations, and sermons. The lawmakers’ goal, claims Sen. Patrick Leahy, is to identify “causes […]

Waging the War of Non-Ideas

“It wasn’t real, was it?” – “We seem to have heard it.” – “We couldn’t help it.” – “We don’t have to believe it, do we? Do we?” – “Tell them to go on as if nothing had happened.” [1] Ayn Rand was always there first. She articulated the fundamentals of metaphysics and epistemology that […]

Heroism: A Memorial Day Comment

In his tribute to Ferdinand Magellan, William Manchester, in A World Lit Only by Fire, wrote, in the concluding chapter, “One Man Alone”: “He was not the wisest man of his time. Erasmus was. Neither was he the most gifted. That, surely, was Leonardo. But Magellan became what, as a child, he had yearned to […]

On The Rise of Islamic Rule in Turkey

According to a recent article in the Jerusalem Post (“Is Turkey’s Government Starting a Muslim Reformation?” Daniel Pipes, May 22, 2008), a government ministry in Turkey, the so-called “Presidency of Religious Affairs and the Religious Charitable Foundation,” has undertaken a three year project to study and condense thousands of pages of material associated with Islam. […]

The Purpose of Memorial Day: Honoring Virtue

Memorial Day is a solemn and sad occasion honoring the American soldiers who gave their lives in war. But it is also a hallowed day–because the values those men fought to defend form the essence of our country: freedom and the rights of the individual. The United States has never fought a war of conquest. […]

Mascot Politics

Years ago, when Jack Greenberg left the NAACP Legal Defense Fund to become a professor at Columbia University, he announced that he was going to make it a point to hire a black secretary at Columbia. This would of course make whomever he hired be seen as a token black, rather than as someone selected […]

Random Thoughts for May 2008

Random thoughts on the passing scene: Seeing the Pope driven around in a bullet-proof vehicle reminds me of how much times have changed over the years. I can remember when President Franklin D. Roosevelt rode through Harlem in an open car. A reader’s response to my column about the mandated change from incandescent light bulbs […]

Control Criminals Not Guns

Every time there’s a highly publicized shooting, out go the cries for stricter gun control laws, and it was no different with the recent murder of Philadelphia Police Sgt. Stephen Liczbinski. Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, in a letter to the state congressional delegation demanding reenactment of the federal assault weapon […]

Waging the War of Words

To the photo album of the two Bush administrations can be added a recent picture that accompanied an Associated Press article of May 16, “Saudi Arabia rebuffs Bush on oil production,” about the President’s one-day visit to the medieval kingdom. George W. Bush is seated next to King Abdullah. In a dark business suit, his […]

Thomas Sowell’s 2008 Summer Reading Recommendations

Some parents who are concerned about their children receiving a steady diet of liberal-left indoctrination in schools and colleges regard the summer vacation as a time to show these young people a different way of looking at things, with readings presenting viewpoints that are unlikely to be heard in classrooms that have become indoctrination centers. […]