Tag Archives: National Review

Overwrought Analogy Of-The-Day: Did New York Kill Socrates?

Late last Friday, the New York Senate finally voted, by a margin that’s still surprisingly slim for those who know New York state, to permit gay couples to use the appellation “marriage.” Why did it take so long? Because the New York Senate is not a representative body, and when political reapportionment fails, I expect […]

The Agreed-Upon Evil of Targeted Abortion

One of the National Review’s writers goes apoplectic over a television episode where the characters — though avowedly pro-choice — blanche at the prospect of targeted abortion, used to eliminate undesirable traits rather than in general family planning. Apparently there’s some contradiction between supporting “abortion on demand,” but posing moral limits to its application. In […]

Misleading the Misled on Anti-Terror “Tools”

Every now and again, it seems, the National Review trots out a new reason to comfort their base on the USA PATRIOT Act, typically by downplaying every little thing about it, and its new surveillance regime. Presumably this is part of the delicate dance of holding together a conservative coalition premised on using the rhetoric […]

The National Review Still Hates Muslims — All of Them

With a bizarre little column last Friday, the National Review did what Barack Obama would not, and thoroughly and nastily “spiked the football,” not against jihadism, but against Islam itself. The aggressive closing assertion — “the Mahdi is not coming” — caps a confused essay that attempts to leverage Bin Laden’s death to assert our […]

The Culture Wars’ New Front: Comics

It’s a sad and fragile ideology so narrow that it has to take offense at every cultural change in every cultural document, nation- and indeed world-wide. But that’s where we are with conservatism today, when Superman’s decision to renounce U.S. citizenship, apparently, can provoke serious concern about Those Liberals. Why do they hate America so […]

The Role of Romantic Love in Defining Marriage

Credit where it’s due to the National Review, for mounting what is, at least to me, the most cogent and rational defense of the restrictivist vision of marriage I’ve seen in some time, accomplished without referencing religion even once. That said, it’s typical National Review writing — lots of big words to hide small ideas […]

The Price and Command of Exceptionalism

At issue in debates over our conduct with foreign nations, and our commitment to the rule of law despite the war on terror, is the critical question of whether “American exceptionalism,” a term the right wields like a sword to argue that our chief executive shortchanges our future everytime he so much as speaks with […]

Liberal Fascism: Part 1 of a Serial Book Review

Introduction A few weeks back, I was forced to answer “no” to the question, “have you even read Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism?” Of course I hadn’t. Why would I? It seems like the kind of book that really can be judged on its cover, whose smarmy design proves that the book either is, or is marketed […]

War Powers

I’m baffled by a conservatism that proudly proclaims the righteousness of Bush’s war of impulse, yet denounces the current Libya adventure as “illegal.” Granted, the Iraq War was duly authorized — albeit on knowingly incomplete information, recklessly relied on — but this is the conservative movement that trumpeted Congress’ 9/11 authorization of the use of […]

Subtlety in Storytelling: Red Dawn?

The National Review goes near apoplectic over a remake of B-movie quasipolitical thriller Red Dawn that excludes China, the remake’s originally included villain, substituting North Korea. [Red Dawn] was an overwrought action flick/melodrama, to be sure, but it was also a cultural marker: the age of détente was over, and the age of Reagan had arrived in full. […]


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