Many of us, including those who are now shocked, said years ago that if Obamacare passed, it would radically, and perhaps permanently, change the relationship between the individual and the state. Now, many of the same people are gobsmacked that Paul Ryan says the fix has to happen over time and in three stages.
.. I could also bepop and scat about how if you nominate and elect a man of Nixonian domestic-policy instincts, you shouldn’t be stunned when he pursues Nixonian policies. Blaming Ryan for proposing a plan that could pass the requirements of the White House strikes me as more than a bit cowardly.
.. While I disagree with Trump ideologically, politically I find myself in the uncomfortable place of being more sympathetic to his predicament than some of his longtime boosters who have suddenly discovered the Rorschach test they’ve been staring at isn’t a window on the real world;
.. Again, I don’t much like the House health-care plan as proposed. But when you are in a crappy situation, you shouldn’t be too haughty about the fact that the solutions are pretty crappy too.
.. Trump came into office promising everything would be easy. A lot of people chose to believe him. That was foolish. It also wasn’t Paul Ryan’s fault.
.. The Danes, you see, have set out to make Down syndrome a memory in their society by weeding out the Lebensunwertes Leben (life unworthy of life).
.. One of the most brilliant aspects of the mutant storyline in Marvel comics (now ripped off everywhere) is its political and cultural adaptability. Mutants are Jews fleeing a Holocaust. Mutants are blacks facing bigotry and segregation. Mutants are immigrants with no rights or, again, Jews with no homeland.
.. Mutants are such malleable cultural props for several reasons. First, they tap into the modern cult of identity politics: that our political or cultural self-conception is a hardwired fact of nature
.. Mutants are also definitionally non-conformists, and non-conformity is the new conformity. (The mutants who choose to “pass” as human are considered to be living in a state of self-denial, the second greatest sin after bigotry itself).
.. Last, mutants are victims “just for being different,” which is a form of saintliness in our secular culture. Even the mutant supremacists claim the mantle of victimology and resentment
.. But if the old orthodoxy holds that most gay people are simply “born that way” (which I think is true), that means homosexuality is rooted in biology and/or genetics. And that means science can get to it. I am in no way condoning that. But it will be interesting to watch when being pro-life becomes a staple of the gay Left.
.. I’m a big subscriber to the view that science and technology drive culture and politics far more than we appreciate and, quite often, far more than ideas
.. A Slovakian Horatio Alger — who looks like a member of the Ukrainian politburo circa 1974, who swam the Danube to escape the Communists, and got a degree from Milton Friedman — is easy to talk about in an entertaining way, which is what I did.
.. Intellectually, I’ve always had at least a vague understanding of the Christian idea of “God is love.”
.. I often talk about the importance of family and marriage to civil society. The decline of volunteerism and social trust is, in my view, most attributable to the decline of the family in America. (As Charles Murray likes to note, single men rarely coach Little League — we do that kind of thing because our wives make us.) When I look at how much good work — better work than the state could ever do — was done by Donna, it reminds me how even the best government programs are a poor substitute for the organic work of communities.
.. Pedants like to say there’s no such thing as “very unique.” I don’t think that’s true. For instance, we say that each snowflake is unique. That’s true. No two snowflakes are alike. But that doesn’t mean that pretty much all snowflakes aren’t very similar. But, imagine if you found a snowflake that was ten feet in diameter and hot to the touch, I think it’d be fair to say it was very unique.