Pain & Gain
(Reviewed May 3, 2013)
An often funny movie which will nearly as often make you feel at least a little ashamed for laughing at it
(Reviewed April 22, 2013)
A heart-warming but rather self-congratulatory look backward at the people of 1947, few of whom could be said to come up to our high standards
(Reviewed April 12, 2013)
A lovely film from the author of Gomorrah that explores, with humor but little hope, the God-shaped hole in the life of our culture
(Reviewed April 12, 2013)
The eighth in the series which has become an unprecedented achievement of the documentarian’s art
Teach English with a Degree in Elementary Education.
President Obama, in the midst of scandal to the right of him (the IRS) and scandal to the left of him (the AP wiretaps), scandal behind him (Benghazi) and scandal ahead of him (Obamacare implementation) is outraged about — sexual assaults in the military, which has apparently reached "crisis" proportions. And who can doubt it when Sally Quinn is, in her own words, "sputtering with outrage" about it — always an infallible indication of crisis. Yet she also professes to think that "sexual assault is part of the military culture." Well which is it? If it’s a crisis, it can hardly be part of the military culture, which has been around for a very long time, and if it’s part of the military culture, it can hardly be a crisis.
Perhaps the problem lies with Ms Quinn’s very odd idea of what constitutes the "sexual violence" she, along with her heroine, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), believes can and should be utterly eradicated from the military culture. However, she writes,
ENTRY from May 17, 2013
that is not going to be a cakewalk. Take the Cadets for Christ, a religious group at the Air Force Academy. According to Mikey Weinstein, head of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, they espouse the idea of "the shepherding movement for female cadets. [The women] must be shepherded by males, even lower-ranking males. They are told that their value is that they have eggs. They are asked, ‘What are you doing here? This is not want Jesus wants.’" . . . If this is a tolerated group at the Air Force Academy (and the other military academies are not much better), how on earth can anybody, even the president, demand zero tolerance overnight? The fact is he can try. But nobody is going to pay attention. Not until people actually start going to jail.
My new book Media Madness, is now published and available for order from Encounter Books. Less a polemic than an attempt to understand the origins of the mass media’s folie de grandeur, the book is a warning even to those who are deserting the big networks, newsweeklies and large-circulation dailies not to carry with them into the more attractive world of niche media the undisciplined habits of thought that the old media culture has given rise to. To order this book, click here.
Also available, now in paperback, is Honor, A History, which was first published in 2006. A study of Western cultural artifacts, from the epics of Homer to the movies and TV shows of today, it is focused on explaining why Western ideas of honor developed so differently from those elsewhere — and especially from the savage honor cultures of the Islamic world. The book then goes on to trace the collapse and ultimate rejection of the old Western honor culture from World War I until the present day and to suggest the conditions that would have to prevail for its revival.
Oh, the Irony!.
April 30, 2013.
On the uses of irony for purposes of political manipulation — From The New Criterion of April, 2013 ...
As She Likes It.
April 29, 2013.
Fun with Dick and Jane gets way too serious — From The American Spectator of April, 2013 ...
The Naked and the Famous.
March 31, 2013.
How vulgarity, which used to be something to avoid, became something to aspire to — From The New Criterion of March, 2013 ...