May 31, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/31/2015 (Weekend Edition)

To wisdom belongs the intellectual apprehension of things eternal; to knowledge, the rational apprehension of things temporal. - St. Augustine of Hippo

Quotes Suitable for Framing: Saint Augustine - Donald McClarey, American Catholic

American Architecture’s Classical Revival - Greenberg & Arredondo, City Journal

Candida Moss’s Unintentional Gift to Christians - Glenn Moots, Public Discourse

From American Atheistic Materialism … - Dwight Longenecker, Imaginative Conservative

Hurt Most by Los Angeles’ $15 Minimum Wage? - Salim Furth, Daily Signal

One Man, One Vote in Texas - Derek Muller, Liberty Law Blog

Gay Marriage Debate Shouldn't Be Winner Take All - Robin Fretwell Wilson, USA Today

Paul Prepares to Shut Down...Surveillance Programs - John McCormack, Weekly Standard

Redeeming the Time of Morality and Order - A.W.R. Hopkins, The Imaginative Conservative

Don’t Tweak the Biofuels Mandate, End It - Nicolas Loris, Daily Signal

Are Catholics Afraid to Question? - Randall Smith, The Catholic Thing

The Folly of Classical Liberalism - Peter Rieth, The Imaginative Conservative

Administration Was Handed a Huge Immigration Defeat - Hans von Spakovsky, Daily Signal

The Big Alternative to Cars - Wendell Cox, New Geography

Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” - Bradley Birzer, Imaginative Conservative


May 29, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/29/2015

As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy. - Christopher Dawson

Shantytown Sweden - John Wennstrom, City Journal

Fragility of the Republic - Joseph Bottum, Liberty Law Blog

The Left’s #WarOnNerds Shows They’re Getting Desperate - Mytheos Holt, The Federalist

France’s Food Laws, Creativity, and Combat - Tyler Miller, Intercollegiate Review

Parenting in America - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

NC Protects Religious Rights In Same-Sex Marriage Debate - D.C. McAllister, The Federalist

The Futility of Stimulus - Gerald P. O'Driscoll, Jr.

Religion...Key to Christopher Dawson’s Culture - Robert M. Woods, The Imaginative Conservative

The Wrong Way to Respond to Critics - Stefano Gennarini, First Things

Universities Have Grown Bloated and Dysfunctional - Michael Barone, Human Events

Decline and Schism in Religion - Ross Douthat, New York Times

Why American Allies Won’t Fight - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

Blood Lust & Why Most Historians Get it Wrong - Stephen Masty, The Imaginative Conservative

Gorgeous 19th-Century Illustrations of Owls and Ospreys - Maria Popova, Brain Pickings

Talking Benedict Option - Rod Dreher, American Conservative


May 28, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/28/2015

To be conservative, then, is to prefer the familiar to the unknown, to prefer the tried to the untried, fact to mystery, the actual to the possible, the limited to the unbounded, the near to the distant, the sufficient to the superabundant, the convenient to the perfect, present laughter to utopian bliss. - Michael Oakeshott

Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder - Theodore Dalrymple, City Journal

We’re Paying More Than Ever for Government to Regulate Us - James Quarles, Daily Signal

The Real Immigration Challenge - Pete Spiliakos, First Things

Harold Bloom’s American Sublime - Allen Mendenhall, American Conservative

In Praise of Shadows - Maria Popova, Brain Pickings

Why the Birth Rate Is Down and What That Means - Madaline Donnelly, Daily Signal

Science-Gilding the Marriage Debate - Jason Richwine, Public Discourse


May 27, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/27/2015

The progress of an artist is a continual self-sacrifice, a continual extinction of personality. - T.S. Eliot

Nash and His Challenge to Homo Economicus - Dominic Burbidge, Public Discourse

David McCullough's 'Wright Brothers' - Susan Whitall, Detroit News

Feds Blackmail Virginia...School District Into Transgender Policy - Dustin Siggins, The Federalist

The Natural, the Necessary, and the Monarchical - Bruce Frohnen, Nomocracy in Politics

William Zinsser on How to Write Well About Science - Maria Popova, Brain Pickings

Best Cities for Minorities - Mark Schill, New Geography

Diversity as Ideology - Bruce Frohnen, Imaginative Conservative

Meanwhile, in Switzerland - Fr. Gerald Murray, The Catholic Thing

Is Amending the Constitution...So Difficult? - Darren Patrick Guerra, First Things

Katha Pollitt's Intuition - Erika Bachiochi, Mirror of Justice

A Culture of Authenticity versus a Jurisprudence of Principle - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

The Audible Artistry of “The Hobbit” - Daniel Hannan, Imaginative Conservative

$15 Minimum Wage Hurts Businesses - Mark Perry, AEI

No, Video Games Are Not Subsidized - Matt McCaffrey, Mises

The ‘Income Inequality’ Warriors - Richard Epstein, The Federalist

Adjunct Professors’ Rodney Dangerfield Problem - Mary Grabar, The Federalist

The Advanced Placement Scam - Georgi Boorman, The Federalist

Cronyism...It Infects Culture - Needham & Anderson, The Federalist


May 26, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/26/2015

Men seek retreats for themselves, houses in the country, sea-shores, and mountains; and thou too art wont to desire such things very much. But this is altogether a mark of the most common sort of men, for it is in thy power whenever thou shalt choose to retire into thyself. For nowhere either with more quiet or more freedom from trouble does a man retire than into his own soul. - Marcus Aurelius

A Father’s Final Gift to His Same-Sex Attracted Son - Richard G. Evans, Public Discourse

On the Nature of the Self - Maria Popova, Brain Pickings

Data to Prove School Choice Is Working - Patrick Wolf, Daily Signal

How Christian America Dies - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

I Don’t Think Transgender Parents Should Be Able to Adopt - Denise Shick, Daily Signal

How Washington Bribes the States - Carl Bogus, American Conservative

Government’s Push to Regulate Short-Term Rental Industry - Jamie Jackson, Daily Signal

At Sea in an Alien Culture, Where ‘Normal’ Is Defined as ‘Deviant’ - Quin Hillyer, NRO

On Falsity - James V. Schall, The Catholic Thing

Italy Pushed to Follow Ireland - Thomas D. Williams, Breitbart

Is Vice More Interesting than Virtue? - Kathleen Hull, First Things

The Bait-and-Switch Behind Economic Populism - Nicol├ís Cachanosky, Mises

The Civil Disobedience Charles Murray Wants Has Already Arrived - Joy Pullmann, The Federalist

Warming the Cold Imagination - Max Douglas, Intercollegiate Review

A Flying Leap at Vitiating the First Amendment - Greg Weiner, Liberty Law Blog

What Nick Loeb’s New Action Against Sophia Vergara Means - Rich Cromwell, The Federalist


May 25, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/25/2015

On balancing the account of such wars, ten thousand hogsheads of sugar are purchased at ten thousand times their price. The blood of man should never be shed but to redeem the blood of man. It is well shed for our family, for our friends, for our God, for our country, for our kind. The rest is vanity; the rest is crime. - Edmund Burke

The Gay Rights Revolution in Ireland - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Aer Lingus - David Warren, Essays in Idleness

Land scarred by 'Mental Civil War' - John Waters, The News Referendum

Ireland's "Tolerant" Elite - Brendan O'Neill, The Spectator

Ireland's 40-Percent Solution - Robert Royal, The Catholic Thing

The False God of Economic Growth - Ralph Ancil, The Imaginative Conservative

Staging Scalia - John McGinnis, City Journal

End a Program That Actually Works? - Ed Feulner, The Daily Signal

Accidentally Disobey Judge’s Order on Immigration? - Hans von Spakovsky, The Daily Signal

The Holiness of Hobbitry - Adam Schwartz, The University Bookman

For-Profit and Non-profit Organizations...Same Civic Rights - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

The Modernism of (Some) Religious Conservatism - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Meditations on Memorial Day - David Boaz, Cato

The Tyrannical Declaration of Independence - Ted McAllister, Nomocracy in Politics

In Defense of the American Military - Stephen Klugewicz, The Imaginative Conservative

With the Old Breed - Richard Reinsch, Liberty Law Blog


May 23, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/23/2015 (Weekend)

Otis v. Will on the Death Penalty - Paul Cassell, Volokh

Should Cars Be Recalled Over Peeling Labels? - Ed Feulner, Daily Signal

The Idyllic Torn Asunder: Hitchcock’s “The Birds” - Bradley Birzer, Imaginative Conservative

Low Fertility Is Just the Half of It - Fr. Mark Pilon, The Catholic Thing

Divine Comedy is Among Mankind's Essentials - Ian Thomson, The Independent

The Culture of Criticism - Jacob Soll, New Republic

Leo Strauss: The Right’s False Prophet - Kenneth B. McIntyre, Imaginative Conservative

The Case Against Modern Science - Michaels & Knappenberger, Cato

Social Liberalism in the U.S. on the Rise - Emily Ekins, Cato

Don’t Believe Voter Fraud Happens? - Hans von Spakovsky, Daily Signal

The Trials of Hannah Arendt - Corey Robin, The Nation

Texas Pastors Are Wrong about School Choice - Jason Bedrick, Cato

Mad Men and the American Consciousness - Lawler and Spiro, Liberty Law Blog

Stop Surrogacy Now: Why We Must Unite - Kathleen Sloan, Public Discourse


May 22, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/22/2015

Experience has repeatedly confirmed that well-known maxim of Bacon's that "a little philosophy inclineth a man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion." At the same time, when Bacon penned that sage epigram... he forgot to add that the God to whom depth in philosophy brings back men's minds is far from being the same from whom a little philosophy estranges them. - George Santayana

Candidates Republican and Socialist - Peter Lawler, NRO

Mental Health’s LGBT Blind Spot - Joseph Turner, The Federalist

Taking Impeachment Seriously - Michael Paulsen, Volokh

Pretending to Protect Vital Interests - Angelo Codevilla, Liberty Law Blog

Forgiveness Transcends Mistakes - Mark Hemingway, The Federalist

Originalists Need a Distinctive Theory of Precedent - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

Two Allegories for the Marriage Question - Tyler Miller, Intercollegiate Review

Cruz: Personal Animosity Against Christians? - Daniel Halper, Weekly Standard

Noah & the Benedict Option - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Heads Christians Win, Tails Christians Lose - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Senator Calls for Ending Operation Choke Point - Kelsey Harkness, The Daily Signal

$100 Billion on 18 Food Programs Last Year - Joe Carter, Acton

The Realities of "Nightmare City" - Robert Woods, Imaginative Conservative

What the Fall of Ramadi Means - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

Another Op'nin, Another Show - Daniel McInerny, The Catholic Thing

A Few Words on The Flat Tax, FairTax, etc - Pete Spiliakos, NRO

Your Government-Approved Diet May Kill You - Aaron Tao, Mises



May 21, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/21/2015

Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon  their own appetites; in proportion as they are disposed to listen to the counsels of the wise and good in preference to the flattery of knaves. - Edmund Burke

Three Perspectives on the Human Person - Steven Rummelsburg, Imaginative Conservative

‘Gosnell’ Movie Producer Confronts the Convicted Killer - Kate Scanlon, The Federalist

Choosing to Opt Out of Standardized Tests - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

Advice to Inactive Christians - Russell Saltzman, First Things

Why Minimum Wage Advocates Want a Gradual Phase-In - Mark Perry, AEI

Railway Socialism and Safety - Louis Rouanet, Mises

Universities and Trades - James V. Schall, CWR

St. Anthony, Pray for Us - Francis Beckwith, The Catholic Thing

A Response to David Bentley Hart - Edward Feser, Public Discourse


May 20, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/20/2015 (Extra)

The Aftermath of the Great Recession - James Pethokoukis, AEI

New TX Bill on Judicial Process for Minors and Abortions - Kate Scanlon, The Federalist

Jindal's Religious Liberty Cynicism - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

LA Taking Unnecessary Gamble with Minimum Wage - James Pethokoukis, AEI

Benedict Option Fundamentalism - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

The Moral Limits of Psychology - Rev. Gregory Jensen, Acton

WI Bill Limits Food Which Can Be Purchased with Food Stamps - Kate Scanlon, Daily Signal

Comforting Fables About the Iraq War - Damon Linker, The Week

Internet Music Streaming on Trial - Brian McNicoll, Human Events

LGBT Activists Arm For Further War On Free Speech - Stella Morabito, The Federalist

The Enduring Tension That Is Modern Conservatism - Donald Devine, Liberty Law Blog

Part Two of Your Constitutional Primer - Michael Paulsen, Public Discourse

Wilson’s Guru and the Centralization of Power - Bruce Frohnen, Nomocracy in Politics



CathCon Daily - 5/20/2015

An intellectual is a person knowledgeable in one field who speaks out only in others. Starting in the early twentieth century, for the first time an ordinary storyteller, a novelist, a short story writer, a poet, a playwright, in certain cases a composer, an artist, or even an opera singer could achieve a tremendous eminence by becoming morally indignant about some public issue. - Tom Wolfe

Pope v. Paganism - William Doino, Jr., First Things

Reforming the Highway Trust Fund - Chris Edwards, Cato

The Myth of Judicial Supremacy - Michael Paulsen, Volokh

Same-Sex Unions and the European Court of Human Rights - Gregor Puppinck, Public Discourse

The Politically Correct Should Not Own Graduation - Jason Stevens, Liberty Law Blog

A Bit of Pessimism on the New Pessimism - Marc DeGirolami, Mirror of Justice

Put Harriet Tubman on the $20 Bill - Doug Bandow, Cato

A Wynne For “Judicial Fraud” - Michael Greve, Liberty Law Blog

Serious...Questions About the Benedict Option - Noah Millman, American Conservative

$5.7 Million Government Program Prompts Bipartisan Disdain - Kate Scanlon, The Federalist

Maglite’s Tony Maglica - Michelle Malkin, Human Events

Dr. Capitalism - John Stossel, Human Events

The Catholic Church's German Crisis - George Weigel, First Things

Beware the Rise of the Pseudo-Intellectual - Maria Popova, Brain Pickings


May 19, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/19/2015

The case of the Baconians is not won until it has been proved that the substitution of covetousness for wantlessness, or an ascending spiral of desires for a stable requirement of necessities, leads to a happier condition. - Richard Weaver

Journalists Should Be Openly Biased - David Harsanyi, The Federalist

Achieving Democracy with Technological Change - Bradley Smith, Nomocracy in Politics

Everything...About Constitutional Law - Michael Stokes Paulsen, Public Discourse

Wine Alarmists Should Stick a Cork in It - Julie Gunlock, The Federalist

Letters in Defense of State RFRAs - Thomas Berg, Mirror of Justice

Don't Hold a Funeral for Marriage Yet - W. Bradford Wilcox, The Federalist

Who Really Lost America? - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

Do Persons Matter? - Scott Walter, Philanthropy Daily

‘Just Asking’ - Thomas Sowell, Human Events

Millennials, Christianity, and Covenant - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

Charles Murray and Civil Disobedience - Clark Neily, The Federalist

The Capital Punishment Debate, Yet Again - Hadley Arkes, The Catholic Thing

Clinton Wants to Create Two Classes of Citizens - John O. McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

The Adolescent Brain Defense and Tsarnaev - Satel & Lilienfeld, Volokh

Florida Judge Dismisses Lawsuit against School Choice - Jason Bedrick, Cato

Give Me Guidance - Michael Greve, Liberty Law Blog

A Child’s Memory Of White Flight From Baltimore - Dana R. Casey, The Federalist

Daredevil and the Devil - Brad Miner, The Catholic Thing

Autonomy, Recognition, and the Illusion of Diversity - Bruce Frohnen, Imaginative Conservative


May 18, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/18/2015

These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed except his own. - G.K. Chesterton

The Kickback Kids - Nicole Gelinas, City Journal

Dreams Belong to the Now: Time to Commence - Eva Brann, Imaginative Conservative

More Problems with AFL-CIO Report - Mark Perry, AEI

A Thicker Kind of Mere - Timothy George, First Things

Why Soldiers Lie - William Lind, American Conservative

Poor Little Rich Women - Wednesday Martin, NYT

Why Moms and Dads Both Matter in Marriage - Jenet Erickson, Public Discourse

Daredevil: The Catholic Avenger - Anthony Sacramone, Intercollegiate Review


May 16, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/16/2015 (Weekend Edition)

The golden mean, the truth, is no longer recognized or valued. To win applause one must write stuff so simple that a coachman might sing it, or so incomprehensible that it pleases simply because no sensible man can comprehend it. - Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart

Letterman's Farewell - Stefan Kanfer, City Journal

Nobody Wants to Raise the Parents - Elizabeth Scalia, First Things

Maybe Christianity...Is Boring Everyone to Death - Matt Walsh, The Blaze

Barack Obama’s Yalta - David Forte, Liberty Law Blog

Why Liberal Intelligentsia Hate Charter Schools - Tait Jensen, Intercollegiate Review

The ‘Least of These’ Is Not The Poor - Joe Carter, Acton

Money Didn't Change This Man’s Life. But a Mentor Did - Collette Caprara, Daily Signal

The Lax Kw’alaams and Why Property Rights Matter - Peter van Doren, Cato

The Happiness Industry by William Davies - Vicky Pryce, The Independent

The Government’s New Power Grab - Daren Bakst, The Daily Signal

Alan Hurst on Marriage, Etc. - Rick Garnett, Mirror of Justice

Problems with the AFL-CIO's Worker Pay Analysis - Mark Perry, AEI

Our Homophobic Pope - R.R. Reno, First Things


May 15, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/15/2015

Natural inclinations are present in things from God, who moves all things. So it is impossible for the natural inclinations of a species to be toward evil in itself. But there is in all perfect animals a natural inclination toward carnal union. Therefore it is impossible for carnal union to be evil in itself. - St. Thomas Aquinas

The Virtue of Being a Dad - Melissa Braunstein, The Federalist

The Charms of a Conservative Disposition - Peter Rieth, The Imaginative Conservative


Why Attack Syria? - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

Euthanasia's...Corruption of Medical Morality - Wesley J. Smith, First Things

Pamela Geller’s Free-Speech Hypocrisy - Kelly Vlahos, American Conservative

Only Children’s Selfishness Isn’t Their Fault - Leslie Loftis, The Federalist


Maryland Passes Tesla Bill - Peter van Doren, Cato

Can We Fight Big Ag Cronyism? - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

The King v. Burwell Bogeyman - Joel Zinberg, City Journal

What Creative Fiction Can (and Cannot) Do - Patrick Brown, The Public Discourse

Creating a Unitary Supreme Court - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog


May 14, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/14/2015 (Extra)

The spread-the-work schemes rest also, as we began by pointing out, on the false assumption that there is just a fixed amount of work to be done. There could be no greater fallacy. There is no limit to the amount of work to be done as long as any human need or wish that work could fill remains unsatisfied. In a modern exchange economy, the most work will be done when prices, costs, and wages are in the best relations to each other. - Henry Hazlitt

Mr. President, Don’t Scapegoat Private Schools - Neal McCluskey, Cato

How Capitalism Humanized the Family - Joseph Sunde, Acton

Amtrak’s Budget - Chris Edwards, Cato

Too Much Money Going to the Wrong Places - Randal O'Toole, Cato

Iris Murdoch’s Moral Vision and Modern Television - Matthew Murphy, Intercollegiate Review

President Obama’s Support For Parenting Equality - Jayme Metzger, The Federalist

Columbia Students Feel ‘Triggered’ By Ovid - Ethan Epstein, Weekly Standard

And We Must Avert Another - Mark L. Movsesian, Liberty Law Blog

Which “Common Law” Does the Seventh Amendment Protect? - Mike Rappaport, Liberty Law Blog

Obama Gets Names of Saudi Royals Wrong - Daniel Halper, Weekly Standard


CathCon Daily - 5/14/2015

Great power often corrupts virtue; it invariably renders vice more malignant. In proportion as the powers of government increase, both its own character and that of the people becomes worse. - John Taylor of Caroline

Why the Case for the Liberal Arts is Stronger than Ever - Wilfred McClay, Imaginative Conservative

The Sacred Tradition of Offending People - Robert Oscar Lopez, Public Discourse

The Power Elite - Patrick Deneen, First Things

First Things First - Alan Jacobs, More than 95 Theses

A Gateway to the Working World - Judah Bellin, City Journal

What is Marriage to Evangelical Millennials? - Abigail Rine, First Things

Against Kant and Consumerism - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

Navigating the Coming Water Crisis - Jonathan Adler, Nomocracy in Politics

Excessive Regulation Hurts America’s Entrepreneurs - Anthony Kim, Daily Signal

How to Fight the Bureaucratic State - Donald Devine, American Conservative

Middle Class Better Off Now or in the 1980s? - James Pethokoukis, AEI

‘When Pigs Fly’, and Other Lies - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Obama's Sexism and the Democrats' Dead Dogma - Mark Hemingway, Weekly Standard

The Failure of Originalism to Preserve the Civil Jury Trial - Mike Rappaport, Liberty Law Blog

Changing the Church from Within - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Central Bank of Switzerland Announces a Huge Loss - Alex J. Pollock, Liberty Law Blog

Why Are Conservatives Soft On Police Brutality? - Rachel Lu, The Federalist

Modest Conscience Protections in Louisiana - Adam J. MacLeod, Public Discourse

The Foreign Policy Effects Of ‘Educating A Generation Of Morons’ - Editors, The Federalist

Paul Ryan’s Not Playing Dirty With The Poverty Rate - Charles Hughes, The Federalist

Democracy and the Problem of Forms - Bruce Frohnen, Nomocracy in Politics

Financial Warfare and the Declining Dollar - Ryan McMaken, Mises


May 13, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/13/2015

The Problem with Government Prosecutors - Michael Giuliano, Mises

Jumping the Inequality Shark - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

Disobey! - John Stossel, Human Events

Catholicism v. Materialism - Randall Smith, The Catholic Thing

Catholicism’s Man-Sized Crisis - Joseph Hanneman, Catholic World Report

The Myth of the Inevitable War - Philip Jenkins, American Conservative

An Interview on Spirituality and Prayer with Fr. Raymond Shore, OP - Jan Vallone, Patheos

Good Work and Good Works - Steven Jonathan Rummelsburg, Imaginative Conservative


May 12, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/12/2015

The Radical Roepke - Ralph Ancil, Imaginative Conservative

Bastiat and the Minimum Wage - Mark Perry, AEI

Christian Share of Population Declines - Joe Carter, Acton

Christianity in Collapse - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Appealing President Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration - Ilya Shapiro, Cato

Athenians and Visigoths - Joe Carter, Acton

Administration Violated Judge's Order on Immigration - Hans von Spakovsky, Daily Signal

Our Postmodern Bill of Rights - Michael Greve, Liberty Law Blog

The Evolution of Science on Same-Sex Households - Mark Regnerus, Public Discourse

Krugman's...Economic Knowledge - Kevin D. Williamson, NRO

Baltimore’s Real Police Problem: Unions - Richard Epstein, The Federalist

Charles Murray’s Call For Civil Disobedience - Ben Domenech, The Federalist

How Liberals Ruined College - Kirsten Powers, Daily Beast

The First - and a Half - Amendment - VD Hanson, NRO

On "Puppies in Paradise" - James V. Schall, The Catholic Thing

Marriage and Dignity - Joshua Schulz, First Things

Polyamory Isn’t Good for Children: My Story - James Lopez, Public Discourse

Is the Keynesian Multiplier a Real Thing? - Frank Shostak, Mises


May 11, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/11/2015 (Extra)

The only foundation of a free Constitution is pure Virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People in a greater Measure than they have it now, They may change their Rulers and the forms of Government, but they will not obtain a lasting Liberty. They will only exchange Tyrants and Tyrannies. - John Adams

Faith for Another Lenten Age - Adam White, Weekly Standard

Competing Theories for Source of Bias in Scientific Research - Michaels & Knappenberger, Cato

Mani, Pedi, Human Slavery - Elise Hilton, Acton

5 US Companies Sitting on Billions in Overseas Cash - James Pethokoukis, AEI

GOP Needs Sensible Immigration Reform - Lawrence Kudlow, Human Events

Nike, Trade, and the Left’s “Race to the Bottom” Canard - Daniel Ikenson, Cato

Candidates Republican and Socialist - Peter Augustine Lawler, NRO

For the "Changing Religion" Files - Richard Garnett, Mirror of Justice

Christian Radicals, Seeing to the Roots - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

New Pension Trouble for Illinois - James Pethokoukis, AEI

Q&A with Charles Murray - Natalie Scholl, AEI

Gay Rights & Religious Liberty: A Zero-Sum Game - Rod Dreher, American Conservative


CathCon Daily - 5/11/2015

The majority of mankind is lazy-minded, incurious, absorbed in vanities, and tepid in emotion, and is therefore incapable of either much doubt or much faith; and when the ordinary man calls himself a sceptic or an unbeliever, that is ordinarily a simple pose, cloaking a disinclination to think anything out to a conclusion. - T.S.Eliot

A Still More Excellent Way - Robert Royal, The Catholic Thing

L’Engle’s Conservatism - Jordan J. Ballor, University Bookman

A Pathology of Democracy - Dario Fernandez-Morera, Nomocracy in Politics

How the Illiberal Left Uses Silencing Tactics - Kirsten Powers, Daily Signal

The Culture and Politics of Economic Growth - Theodore Dalrymple, Liberty Law Blog

A Muted Conversation on Traditional Marriage - Andrew Cuff, First Things

Hilary's Purposes and God's - Molly Oshatz, First Things

Why Secular Liberalism Isn’t Liberal - Forfare Davis, University Bookman

On the Depths of Villainy - J.V. Schall, Imaginative Conservative

Extorting Low-Income Individuals to Help "the Poor" - Gary Galles, Mises

Libertarians of Convenience - Aaron M. Renn, City Journal

A British Victory for Liberty - John O. McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

Sixteen Foreign Policy Books ’16 Contenders Must Read, Part 2 - Stanton S. Coerr, The Federalist


May 10, 2015

Well-Written Revenge by Roache

One Rebecca Roache, writing on the blog "Practical Ethics," (please note, this is not "Roach," but "Roache") has penned what amounts to an autobiographical revenge drama, wherein she holds forth on the topic "If you’re a Conservative, I’m not your friend." If any conservative were confused about her stance prior to this splenetic writing, let none be mistaken henceforth. She is definitely...defiantly...not your friend, and wants nothing to do with you, and will not engage with you, and may not acknowledge your existence.

What Ms. Roache has done, and the reason she has done it, is summed up in one line: "One of the first things I did after seeing the depressing election news this morning was check to see which of my Facebook friends ‘like’ the pages of the Conservatives or David Cameron, and unfriend them." So, without any doubt, this is revenge; revenge on those who are conservative or, at least, profess to like David Cameron, for daring to win an election, and to do so in what was apparently (to this U.S. observer) a surprising landslide.

Ms. Roache notes that this has "This marked a change of heart" for her, as heretofore she had tried to "remain engaged with such people in the hope that I might be able to change their views through debate." Without having to read more than the first two paragraphs, we are instantly made aware that there is no action or statement or debate or argument (memoir, blog post, tweet, etc.) by any individual friend that has caused a change of heart - rather, Ms. Roache is depressed by her preferred party's loss, and is taking it out on her electronic "friends," by "unfriending" them. She does not even mention if anyone of them said anything about the election, or even actually supported the "wrong" party - it is enough that they have Cameron among their likes.

These conservatives should count themselves lucky to be rid of a megalomaniac of Ms. Roache's status among their Facebook friends. Ms. Roache shows herself to be a progressive goddess of the first order. For instance, she has firsthand knowledge that her own Facebook feed "today is full of posts and debates by compassionate, liberal people," but, even having plunged her conservative Facebook "friends" into the outer darkness of lacking her friendship, she knows "[t]he rest of the country isn’t." The rest of the country, after all, is under the sway of the "Murdoch-owned, pro-Tory press" which is "much louder than the voice of reason." That there may be people who are independently-informed, reasonable, conservative thinkers, is so far afield for her that she bothers not to engage them in any way, but simply dismisses them in a series of logical fallacies that runs the gamut from ad hominem to strawman. Reasonable conservatives, you see, simply do not exist.

Ms. Roache closes with:
For these reasons, I’m tired of reasoned debate about politics—at least for a day or two. I don’t want to be friends with racists, sexists, or homophobes. And I don’t want to be friends with Conservatives either.
(There is some sort of other fallacy at work there - perhaps "guilt by association," a form of association fallacy...)

Ms. Roche's conservative (former) friends, if they have an ounce of reason, are now rejoicing that this "friend" is no longer. Any person who changes her feelings about debate with you due to nothing you have said, or perhaps even done, without attempt to discuss your own reasoning, is not a person with whom one could have a civil debate. In reading over Ms. Roache's screed, one cannot help but be struck by the feeling that her attempts to change a conservative's mind about any given position would simply be emotional non sequiturs, punctuated by her assumptions that, whatever one's conservative belief, it is automatically without logical support and akin to racism, sexism, or homophobia in its provenance.

May 8, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/8/2015

We cannot absolutely prove that those are in error who tell us that society has reached a turning point—that we have seen our best days. But so said all who came before us, and with just as much apparent reason. - Lord Macaulay

Make Marriage Sexy - Daniel McInerny, The Catholic Thing

Do Libertarians Have A Political Future? - David Harsanyi, The Federalist

Battling Current Events Fatigue - Gracy Olmstead, American Conservative

Religious Freedom and Sexual Identity: A Proposal for Peace - Adam MacLeod, Public Discourse

‘Unfriended’ Indicts Googleized Knowledge - Daniel Payne, The Federalist

Inaccurate Blogger Shouldn’t Have Power Over Mac ‘N Cheese - Bethany Mandel, The Federalist

On a Fast Track to National Ruin - Patrick Buchanan, Human Events

Mosby Seeking Justice? - David Limbaugh, Human Events

On Retreat - Michael Hanby, First Things

Second Circuit Treats Data as Property - Jim Harper, Cato

Immature Teen Brain Defense - Satel & Lilienfeld, Volokh

Epstein on Fathers and "Parenting" - Marc DeGirolami, Mirror of Justice

The Common Core Conundrum - Jason Bedrick, Cato

Free the Nurse Practitioners! - Feyman and Hartley, City Journal

The Privilege of Freedom - Daniel Hannan, Imaginative Conservative

Seven Changes Needed in Baltimore and Ferguson Right Now - Mark Thornton, Mises

Understanding the World’s Energy Needs - Editors, Cato




May 7, 2015

A Reply to P-E Gobry - Why Abolish Prison?

Today, the excellent writer Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry writes in "The Week" an article opening:
Prison is just about the most astonishingly stupid and inhuman way to punish crime. It is inexplicable that it is the main crime punishment tool we use. 
He engages in a variety of interesting arguments on behalf of abolishing prison, which I shall sum up as the following:
  1. Impossibility of rehabilitation - Mr. Gobry notes that prisoners often learn more criminal ways in prison than outside. He calls it "graduate school for crime."
  2. Prison Rape Epidemic - Mr. Gobry says that this is a natural result of locking "up a bunch of men in tight quarters, without access to females..[who are] violent, over-testosteroned, and dysfunctional."
  3. Impossibility of reform - None of the above two will change because prisoners do not command the sympathy of enough of the democracy to receive funding or (so to speak) due process.
  4. Problems of liberty and control - Citing Foucault, prison is a development of the modern state's desire to control it's citizens' lives more fully; this is an enemy of liberty.
Alternatively, Mr. Gobry suggests the following:
  1. For petty crime, community service of some sort. Graffiti artists clean graffiti, for example, in a reparations-based regime.
  2. For more serious crimes, ankle bracelets. Mr. Gobry states: "you should spend six years working minimum wage in a tedious job, your wages garnished, stuck at home with no internet or TV, with only a single night out allowed once in a while."
  3. For the most serious, Mr. Gobry allows: "I tend to think that prison might be acceptable for a very small percentage of crimes. If we have five percent the number of prisoners we currently have, I would be very happy."
I think Mr. Gobry's argument needs unpacking; I think needs a great deal more support.

First, I doubt that Foucault is correct that prisons developed in modern times alone. Wikipedia (not always the most reliable source of information, granted) finds evidence for the use  of prisons among the Greeks and Romans, and established in medieval castles, etc. (Perhaps the anecdotes of being thrown in the dungeon were not quite simply anecdotal?) Occasionally, prisons apparently replaced the lex talionis and other more hideous punishments in operation - perhaps an improvement, perhaps not. (See, for example, Cultures of Confinement, A History of the Prison in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, Dikotter & Brown, Cornell, 2007.) But this is an aside and quibble, really.

More seriously, Mr. Gobry suggests that, were we to impose the type of sentences he suggests (community service and ankle bracelets) would drop the numbers of prisoners we currently have to 5% of the current population. I think that claim needs to be substantiated, and more carefully than Mr. Gobry has done so here.

Going forward, let's use this website, admittedly not an "official site" so to speak, but apparently well-supported for statistics in the 2012 range. The statistics for 2012 population (just using state jurisdiction here) of inmates overall stand as follows:

Offense                   2012
Violent                   707,500 (53.8%)
Property                 247,100 (18.8%)
Drug                       210,200 (16.0%)
Public-order           140,200 (10.7%)
Other/unspecified   10,000 (0.8%)

Each of these is defined as such:
  • Violent -          Includes murder, manslaughter, non-negligent manslaughter, rape, other sexual assault, robbery, assault, and other violent crimes.
  • Property -        Includes burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, fraud, and other property crimes.
  • Public-Order - Includes weapons, drunk driving, court offenses, commercialized vice, morals and decency offenses, liquor law violations, and other public-order offenses.
  • Other -             Includes juvenile and other unspecified offense categories.
I am going to assume, perhaps without warrant, that Mr. Gobry's sole justification for use of prison is not based in any way upon retribution, but a combination of retribution (used as a measurement of time) and public order. So, therefore, we can assume that ankle bracelets and fines would be usable for most property offenses and at least some drug offenses, and many public order offenses and other offenses.

So, let us say that any drug offenses not related to trafficking and distribution. I exclude the latter two because ankle bracelets and fines simply will not stop distribution, and high-level traffickers can continue to be cogs in the wheel for trafficking. Perhaps Mr. Gobry can suggest alternatives to imprisonment,  but let us say that we eliminate drug-related imprisonment entirely (and classify prisoners with violent drug habits as deranged and place them in treatment), though I would argue that those who are active dealers and traffickers should be separated from the population via imprisonment. This reduces the total number by 210,000, or about 20%.

Of the 80% remaining, let us say we we can deal similarly with property, public-order, and other crimes, dropping us to about 54%, comprising violent crimes. I would argue that there are still some who should be imprisoned, but we're at decent point of agreement here.

Now, this is a decent reduction, and I concede some of Mr. Gobry's point so far. And in fact, Texas and other states are taking these steps already. However, we're still at nearly 55% of the population - the violent ones.  And, borrowing from the Bureau of Justice Statistics report on violent crime, the breakdown of these inmates is as follows:

Crime                                    2012 Total
Violent                                  707,500

Murder                                   166,800
Manslaughter                         17,700
Rape/sexual assault                160,900
Robbery                                 179,500
Assault                                   140,100
Other violent                          42,500

I think Mr. Gobry has more work to do, and more alternatives to suggest. I would not go out on a limb and suggest there are no alternatives to imprisonment, although California recently tried experiments with paroling more prisoners convicted of violent crimes, with nearly predictable results. Rather, I am interested in Mr. Grobry's thoughts as to what one does with the rapists and murderers, with those for whom house arrest will not work (because they have no house), and for whom a minimum-wage job would present danger to the other workers. It seems to me that 55% is still a great number of people, even taking the bipartisan issues of drug-inmate reform and other similar reforms and putting them on the table, as is already happening in many places.

I think more could be said for questions about prison, liberty, and the modern state, but that is perhaps for another post.

CathCon Daily - 5/7/2015


In short, enjoy the blessing of strength while you have it and do not bewail it when it is gone, unless, forsooth, you believe that youth must lament the loss of infancy, or early manhood the passing of youth. Life's race-course is fixed. - Cicero


Friendship with a Future Tense - Eve Tushnet, American Conservative

The Dollars and Sense of Intellectual Property - Adam Mossoff, Nomocracy in Politics

Obama’s Unaccountable Drone War - Philip Giraldi, American Conservative

This isn’t 1968 - Radley Balko, Washington Post

Against Progressivism: Whatever the Label - Bradley Birzer, Imaginative Conservative

Six Mistakes from the Same-Sex Marriage...Arguments - James Phillips, Public Discourse

The Government...Back in the ‘Affordable Housing’ Game - John Ligon, Daily Signal

Mayweather's Magnificent Fight - Lee Smith, TWS

Faith, Fatalism, and Freddie Gray - Matthew Loftus, First Things

The Opening of the Catholic Mind - Robert Royal, The Catholic Thing

Repeal Welfare, Not Reform - Doug Bandow, Cato

Our Two Supreme Courts - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

Assisted Suicide Laws - Elizabeth Schiltz, Mirror of Justice

Montana Reins in Civil Asset Forfeiture - Adam Bates, Cato

The Differences Between the Political Parties - Mike Rappaport, Liberty Law Blog

Biopolitical Tyranny & the Nominalist Family - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Democratic Shepherds are Calling - Theodore Dalrymple, Liberty Law Blog

The Left Brings The Culture War To Boxing - Peter Cook, The Federalist

Rule by Law or Quasi-Law? - Bruce Frohnen, Nomocracy in Politics

Just Plain Wrong - Mark Pilon, The Catholic Thing

Professor Tribe’s Transgression - Myron Magnet, City Journal

Marriage and the Court - Hadley Arkes, The Catholic Thing

There Is No Right To Same-Sex Marriage - John Safranek, The Federalist


May 6, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/6/2015

Whenever a single definite object is made the supreme end of the State, be it the advantage of a class, the safety of the power of the country, the greatest happiness of the greatest number, or the support of any speculative idea, the State becomes for the time inevitably absolute. - Lord Acton

Daddy Issues and Anger Management - Peter Augustine Lawler, NRO

Why Red States Are Getting Richer and Blue States Poorer - Moore, et. al., Heritage

Breastmilk, Formula, and WIC - Chris Edwards, Cato

David Simon on Baltimore’s Policing Nightmare - Walter Olson, Cato

The Dystopian Vision of Aldous Huxley - Bradley J. Birzer, Imaginative Conservative

Towards a Better Conservative Rhetoric - Carl Eric Scott, NRO

ISIS Claim of Responsibility for Texas Shootings - Jennifer Guthrie, Daily Signal

John Paul II and 'America' - George Weigel, First Things

The Failure of Winsomeness - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

The Hero of Hungary - Philip Mazurczak, First Things

Civil Rights, Civil Liberties, and the Price of Progress - Carson Holloway, Public Discourse


May 5, 2015

Disturbing and Predicted

In a Public Discourse article today, Jean Lloyd, a teacher, discusses her experiences at a conference she attended years ago as a sexuality researcher. Much of the article leaves one at the edge of the shudders. At one point, Mrs. Lloyd recounts another attendees comment:
To further the discussion, another researcher mentioned a situation where an entire school sports team of teenaged boys received fellatio from a group of twelve-year-old schoolgirls. According to the speakers, this was perfectly good and healthy, as long as neither the girls nor the boys were coerced but rather were exercising their own rights to sexual agency and fulfilling their sexual desires. The only real problem was how a buttoned-down society reacted to it.
Is this not all of it? The entirety of the modern view of sex? Of emotion? The only important impediment is consent (expressed as lack of coercion), the only critical component is sexual desire, the only problem is prudishness. Surely, others may dress it up more carefully to conceal and mollify; as Chesterton noted when dealing with eugenicists:
Say to them "The persuasive and even coercive powers of the citizen should enable him to make sure that the burden of longevity in the previous generation does not become disproportionate and intolerable, especially to the females"; say this to them and they will sway slightly to and fro like babies sent to sleep in cradles. Say to them "Murder your mother," and they sit up quite suddenly.
Can one not be struck by the parallels with Alduous Huxley's world?
He let out the amazing truth. For a very long period before the time of Our Ford, and even for some generations afterwards, erotic play between children had been regarded as abnormal (there was a roar of laughter); and not only abnormal, actually immoral (no!): and had therefore been rigorously suppressed. (Chapter 3).
And so, in a way, the religious and secular prophecies of Humanae Vitae and Brave New World continue to show us the effects of the attempt to separate sex from reproduction, and reproduction from marriage.

CathCon Daily - 5/5/2015

True law is right reason in agreement with nature; it is of universal application, unchanging and everlasting; it summons to duty by its commands, and averts from wrong-doing by its prohibitions. - Cicero

Power and Piety - David Nirenberg, The Nation

Ten Reasons NOT to be a Conservative - Stephen Masty, Imaginative Conservative

A Fix for California Water Policy - Fienup & Watkins, New Geography

Black Lives Matter - Walter Williams, Human Events

Battle Lines Are Drawn in the War on Cops - Patrick Buchanan, American Conservative

Race, Politics and Lies - Thomas Sowell, Human Events

Economics For The Everyman - Jered Meyer, The Federalist

Conservative Goblins Everywhere - David Limbaugh, Human Events

How Same-Sex Marriage Makes Orphans of Us All - Jeff Shafer, The Federalist

Tokyo’s...Guidelines Leave U.S. Defending Japan - Doug Bandow, Cato

Communitarianism and the Federal Idea - Wilfred McClay, Imaginative Conservative

The Wrong Kind of Rights - Jean Lloyd, Public Discourse




May 4, 2015

CathCon Daily - 5/4/2015

In the midst of the disguises and artifices that reign among men, it is only attention and vigilance that can save us from surprises. - Jacques-Benigne Bossuet

Same-Sex Unions; the European Court of Human Rights - Gregor Puppinck, Public Discourse

Christians Could Acquiesce On Abortion - A.D.P. Efferson, The Federalist

America's Cities Mirror Baltimore's Woes - Joel Kotkin, Daily Beast

Why Can't We Read Anymore? - Hugh McGuire, Medium

Gay Exceptionalism: The Disco On A Hill - Roberto Oscar Lopez, The Federalist

Downey, Jr. and the Problem of Political Intolerance - Bruce Frohnen, Imaginative Conservative

‘Come, Hangman. Come Vulture’ - Rod Dreher, American Conservative

Sixteen Foreign Policy Books ’16 Contenders Must Read (I) - Stanton Coerr, The Federalist

The Academy's Lack of Political Diversity - John McGinnis, Liberty Law Blog

Catholic Principles, American Law - Michael Toth, University Bookman

News IQ Quiz - Editors, Pew Research

Debunking a Misleading School-Choice Report - Jason Bedrick, Cato

Baltimore's Real Police Problem - Richard Epstein, Hoover