About Robert Tracinski

Author Archive | Robert Tracinski

Jim Kirk Was Many Things, But He Was Never a Social Justice Warrior

It has become commonplace these days to lament that we don’t have a common culture anymore—a repertoire of art that we can all enjoy regardless of our political loyalties. Well, maybe it’s because we have a lot of people trying to mark off parts of the culture as their tribal territory, off limits to partisan […]

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Art for Whose Sake?

I’ve been tracking the growing PC didacticism of contemporary culture and some of its more extravagant recent manifestations. (That was about a music video whose status as PC propaganda has been cemented by the narrow restrictions placed on how others can reference it or comment on it.) What strikes me the most is how mainstream […]

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Weaponized Classical Music

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. I’m Sorry, Dave, I’m Afraid I Can’t Let You Do That A while back, I warned that big Silicon Valley companies like Google depend on an implicit social contract in which we agree to let them have access to a bunch of our data, but with the […]

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Laurel and Yanny and Manny and Ayn

Every once in a while a new puzzle or paradox sweeps the Internet. A while ago it was the optical illusion of a dress that was either blue and black or gold and white, depending on who you asked. Now it’s the auditory illusion of Laurel Versus Yanny. This is a sound clip that originated […]

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The Enlightenment Is Not the Enemy

Jonah Goldberg has a new book out defending the “liberal”—i.e., pro-freedom—legacy of the Enlightenment, the philosophical awakening of the 18th Century. Such a defense is certainly needed in light of the Enlightenment’s wholesale rejection by today’s mainstream intellectuals. Yet this has required many others on the right to come to terms with their views of […]

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America’s Carnival Barker

Tom Wolfe died yesterday at age 88, after a long and colorful career as America’s carnival barker. I don’t mean that in a pejorative sense. The carnival barker has a certain reputation for brazen dishonesty in overselling his product. (We’ll get to that in a moment.) But he is also our enthusiastic guide to a […]

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A Giant Effigy of Marx

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. Jaw-Jaw Is Better Than War-War I recently responded to a claim, reflecting the conventional wisdom of the Trump-era right, that “ideas and persuasion are insufficient” for the pitched culture war we are currently in. This is often expressed in the conviction that scribblers like me are useless […]

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The Art of Balkanization

I argued a while back that the increasingly dominant character of the art championed by our cultural elites is didacticism: “an absence of substantial or profound artistic content, compensated for by loud, didactic political messaging. We know what we’re supposed to feel, whether or not the work of art actually makes us feel it.” By […]

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Workingmen and Reformers

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. Fighting the Last Election The Republican Party just got through a difficult party primary day in which there were several local candidates who seemed like they might win by adopting a Trumpian style, but who had severe weaknesses as general election candidates. The chief of these was […]

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The Cold War with Iran Is Back

The Cold War with Iran is back. I don’t say this as a criticism of President Trump’s decision to cancel the Iran deal. That decision did not restart the conflict. Iran’s Cold War against the US never stopped. This decision just recognizes that fact and gets America back in to fight our side of it. […]

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