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I can recommend a few days in Ireland to reset your clock: geographically, politically, economically and culturally. For those hazy about geography, Ireland is on the northwest edge of Europe. Clouds traversing the ocean from America absorb Atlantic moisture, dumping it at first landfall; hence Ireland’s rainy climate and its reputation as The Emerald Isle. I’m here for two weeks holiday, flying Dulles to Dublin with the son I live near in Virginia. He’s bound for England on business. Arriving at Dublin’s beautiful modern airport (built just before the financial collapse of 2008) one appreciates how the 1990’s engendered a sense of boom and Read on →
In this day of anonymous email trashings, un-informed blog posts, and you tube mistakes that last forever, we rarely see political second chances. But last week a disgraced public servant rose like a Phoenix from the ashes to reclaim former glory in the political arena. Mark Sanford has been elected to represent Charleston, and South Carolina, in the United States Congress. In a room where everyone is addressed as “honorable” Sanford will have an opportunity to regain the revered glow that accompanied him during his magical time as governor of one of the self-proclaimed great states in this country, and finally bec Read on →
Modern mankind may be too clean, that is, not dirty enough. That may surprise you. Today we take personal hygiene to be a standard in the developed world, not only healthy, but also a state which gracious people routinely adopt. It hasn't always been so. As close back as 100-200 years ago, cleansing yourself on a regular basis might mean a semi-annual or monthly bath. Royalty of the days of old thought that the long-hanging germs on your body fought off disease, and kept you healthy. Hence, few baths. From the year 1075, one monk living in Cluny, wrote: "As to our baths, Read on →
For some reason, a letter from the lobbying arm of the Heritage Foundation was characterized as having been received by NBC News, as if it were some sort of privileged communication. In fact, the thing was a press release and rather obviously designed to change the conversation about the Heritage Foundation from trying to defend the indefensible "study" of Hispanic intellectual insufficiency to food stamps, a real two-fer issue. Two-fer in the sense of being offensive on two fronts since the dollars doled out represent a subsidy to industrial agriculture, even as they serve to remind the indigent that, if they're Read on →