James Downie

[Guest post by James Downie] The Bell Curve author Charles Murray has a bone to pick with the meritocracy: That a New Elite has emerged over the past 30 years is not really controversial. That its members differ from former elites is not controversial.

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[Guest post by James Downie] The Wall Street Journal's Daniel Henninger would like to interrupt your viewing of the Chilean miner rescue with a declaration: It needs to be said. The rescue of the Chilean miners is a smashing victory for free-market capitalism. Hoo boy.

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She Cannot Tell A Lie

[Guest post by James Downie] Since winning a Senate nomination in Delaware, Christine O'Donnell has been assaulted by one embarassing old TV clip after another, from her anti-masturbation campaign to one where she admits to dabbling in witchcraft as a teenager. (When asked on Saturday about the latter, she responded, “How many of you did not hang out with questionable folks in high school?”) The following clip, though, from an August 1998 episode of "Politically Incorrect" is the scariest.

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How does the class of 2010 stack up against its lunatic predecessor, of 1994? There are the well-known data points—Rand Paul’s alleged kidnapping of a college classmate; Sharron Angle’s assertion that there are “domestic enemies” in Congress—that suggest we’ve reached a new zenith of crazy, making Newt Gingrich’s bunch look like sensible establishmentarians by comparison. But Paul and Angle only begin to capture the strangeness of candidates out there who may soon be occupying your Capitol and governor’s mansion.

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Hysteria at Heritage

[Guest post by James Downie] Cully Stimson, one of the Heritage Foundation's "leading" legal experts, wants to educate the internet about "The Real Impact of Sharia Law in America." I think there are some problems with his opening example, though: Does Sharia law allow a husband to rape his wife, even in America? A New Jersey trial judge thought so.

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How does the class of 2010 stack up against its lunatic predecessor, of 1994? There are the well-known data points—Rand Paul’s alleged kidnapping of a college classmate; Sharron Angle’s assertion that there are “domestic enemies” in Congress—that suggest we’ve reached a new zenith of crazy, making Newt Gingrich’s bunch look like sensible establishmentarians by comparison. But Paul and Angle only begin to capture the strangeness of candidates out there who may soon be occupying your Capitol and governor’s mansion.

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[Guest post by James Downie] The Heritage Foundation's Ted Bromund adds to Heritage's continuing "First Principles" series, outlining the conservative think tank's views on foreign policy: "One common way of thinking about foreign policy is that it exists in its own world, separate from domestic policy or the first principles on which a nation is founded.

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&c

-- Ed Kilgore is skeptical about Haley "Boss Hogg" Barbour's chances in 2012. -- Ezra Klein puts Obama's polls into historical perspective, and later asks, "Is Obama Hoover or FDR?" -- Tim Fernholz responds to Mike Allen's "mind-mis-meld."

In the gay marriage debate, President Obama says that he supports civil unions for same-sex couples. But has this always been his view?

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&c

-- Bennet Ramberg asks, "Should Israel come out of the nuclear closet?" -- Joshua Prager remembers Bobby Thomson. -- Romanian punter discovers the American dream. -- Marc Tracy answers the "Why Cordoba?" question.  

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