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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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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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The Virtual Civil War

Donald Trump has a unique ability to get people on the right to fight with each other. The latest internecine battle is an article by a pseudonymous writer, “John Ericsson,” in The Federalist, arguing that we should all get behind Donald Trump in order to fight the Politically Correct left—followed by a long, impassioned response […]

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Communism Is Idealist

I’ve been puzzling for some time over the continuing hold of Communism on the minds of America’s intellectuals. How could a system fail so completely for so long, in so many different variations, leaving a trail of death and suffering in its wake—and still be regarded as “idealistic”? The answer is that Communism is “idealist” […]

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Green Tulip Mania

Elon Musk may finally be running out of other people’s money. That’s the upshot of a report on how Tesla is burning so much cash it may run out by the end of the year. This is a company that has raised more than $5 billion from its investors so far, and it is still […]

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Marco Rubio Blows with the Trumpian Wind

The big question since Donald Trump captured the Republican presidential nomination is: will he capture the party, too? Will his unique ideological combination—such as it is—change the outlook of the party as a whole? And for how long? One good measure of this is Senator Marco Rubio. Why Rubio? Because he really, really wants to […]

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