The Fleming Foundation Cultural Commentary

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Guns ’n’ Liberals

How do liberals expect to grab our guns? That’s one thing they never explain when, after an incident like the shooting at the Texas church, they start calling for gun control. They’ll advance things like Dianne Feinstein’s 1994-2004 ban on “assault weapons” – which aren’t a real category, just a cosmetic description of mean-looking rifles. Her ban didn’t work anyway. Or they’ll call for a ban on gun sales at gun shows. Or registering all weapons. But the only thing that really would have an effect is something the gun controllers really want, but almost never mention: full confiscation. Liberals...

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Conservatism: Traditionalism

Conservatism is a very elastic term, so big that it was stretched, by rent-seeking leaders of Conservative organizations in the 1990’s, into a big tent.  There are liberal Conservatives who care only about the illusion of free markets and freedom of choice, Neoconservatives who are democratist Jacobins and soft-core Marxists, and even “traditionalist” Conservatives, who do not entirely reject the classical tradition, the works of Shakespeare and Milton, and the wisdom of the past. If the word “conservative” were to mean anything—these days, it really doesn’t—it would have to include a healthy respect for tradition. Otherwise, the accusation that Conservatives...

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Why Not Repeat Reagan’s Tax Cuts? (FREE)

Why doesn’t the Trump Administration just repeat Ronald Reagan’s 1981 tax cuts? The Gipper proposed a 33% tax cut on practically all taxes. He negotiated with Tip O’Neill, the Democratic speaker of the House of Representatives, and settled for 29%. The top rate dropped to 50% from 70% of income, with lower incomes given similar cuts. Reagan made one mistake: Most of the tax cuts were delayed until 1983, supposedly to grab more from taxpayers for a year to “pay” for the tax cuts. But all that did was delay economic investment for a year, as companies and persons waited...

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Wednesday’s Child: Moral Borderlands

I was under the weather last week, and besides I thought the gentle reader might use a week’s rest from my compulsive ratiocination, so I did not post.  Weather is a big factor the closer one gets to Africa.  The sirocco arrives here bearing a fine sand dust from the Sahara that gets in everywhere, but worse than that, it makes one feel like a lemon squeezed dry, moscio, as the locals say, meaning flaccid, limp, flabby.  After a day or two, one finds oneself yearning for Siberia and the bracing touch of the bora. Sirocco makes people grumpy, irritable,...

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Times Out of Joint

Europe went off daylight savings time this morning, and America follows suit next week.  I suppose this means we are still trying to catch up with Old Europe. The twice a year time change inevitably unleashes a pack of feral economists snapping at the heels and howling criticisms of the inefficiency of savings times and all the hours of work lost to the plantations of international capitalism.  Being economists—or, what is almost worse, business writers—they enjoy the high privilege of always missing the point.  If  it is true that “the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the...

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Mea Culpa

I have not intentionally abandoned our readers these past few weeks, but I made the unwise decision to leave my laptop at home and rely on my wife’s iPad with a Bluetooth keyboard plus my iPhone.  The keyboard never worked, my iPhone fell to a hard floor and is worthless, and access even to the iPad has been a bit limited. We have enjoyed our week on a farm outside Spello and with Mark Beesley and our son Garret we have visited—in addition to Spello—Gubbio, Bevagna, Montefalco, Lago Trasimeno, and Spoleto.  Mark has done all the driving, which has made...

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Book Review: Confederaphobia: An American Epidemic

Confederaphobia: An American Epidemic is a recent publication of Shotwell Publishing, LLC, co-founded by the author, Paul C. Graham, and Dr. Clyde N. Wilson, Professor emeritus of history at the University of South Carolina.   Mr. Graham holds an M.A. in philosophy from the University of South Carolina.  He is also an experienced editor, research scholar and writer of numerous articles which have appeared in publications such as the Simms Review and The Palmetto Partisan.   Confederaphobia appropriates the weapons of the enemy – cultural Marxists, leftists, liberals, their fellow travelers and useful idiots such as those masquerading as “conservatives,” and...

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Wednesday’s Child: Chinsoc

“Ingsoc,” as the gentle reader may recall, was Newspeak for “English Socialism,” the ruling ideology in Orwell’s nightmare.  A modern version of that nightmare is already up and running in real time throughout mainland China under the official name of “System of Social Credit.”  Before long all mankind is expected to see the advantages of such a system, with most developed countries following China in implementing their own national versions of digital totalitarianism.  As I have written here on several occasions in the past, Russia, while behind China in this area of technology, is scheduled to launch a homespun analogue...

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End of the McCain Doctrine

Call it the McCain Doctrine. It’s the foreign policy the U.S. government pursued from the 1999 attack on Serbia to pry away Kosovo, until President Trump’s 2017 occupation of the oval office. Through three presidents – Clinton, Bush II and Obama – the McCain Doctrine has meant constant, pointless intervention around the world. In 1999, McCain was the major force in Congress behind the attack on Serbia, which killed 5,000 Christian Serbs to put the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army in charge. The KLA then drove most Serbs out of their ancient homeland in Kosovo, blowing up their churches, and turning...

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Wednesday’s Child: A Man of the Future

Last week a 51-year-old man was briefly in police custody in the northwest of England for passing leaflets to shoppers of the fair sex in a town square. “No offence intended,” read the culprit’s appeal. “You are simply a female that caught my eye, and I don’t have the time to talk right now.” “I am not looking for a girlfriend or relationship,” ran his argument. “I am looking for a possible private arrangement.” This was followed, in case any of his readers might mistake his intentions in some unexpected way – for instance, spitefully misconstruing them as honorable –...