Public Art and Freedom of Speech…

… such as they are, in these distressing days. It’s come to be a standout exception in the last half-century when a piece of public art is actually attractive, engaging, relatable to the place and the audience, and exhibits moderate to advanced skills and aesthetic sense on the part of the artist. Noted in Tom Wolfe’s book-long evisceration of modern architecture, altogether too many post-WWII public buildings got finished off with installing a barren plaza in front, a plaza featuring a water feature with an enormous concrete turd dropped into it. There are exceptions to this bleak and ugly trend, of course – but the monumental MLK/Coretta Scott King statue unveiled last weekend in Boston is, alas, not one of them.

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Quote of the Day

“E.g it would help America/Britain far more to close 99% of ‘conservative’ think tank activity in DC/London and put the energy and money into expanding school choice and breaking the state’s grip on education by creating new institutions, given how much of politics is downstream of education and how ineffectual most conservative thinking/activity is.”

Dominic Cummings

Casting the Oracle Stones

So the voters go to the polls tomorrow – well, those who haven’t done early voting or mailed in their ballot – and possibly by Wednesday, we will know the results from those places which have it together in tallying up the ballots. (It might take days and weeks longer, for results from places that don’t have all their ducks neatly lined up.) I see two possible outcomes, both grounds for considerable foreboding.

Number one: Organized, systematic, blatant ballot fraud on the part of Democrat party operatives in precincts and cities most particularly open to it; fraud that is so naked, open and in-your-face that it can’t be hidden, disguised or explained away – fraud which allows the Democrats to claim an overwhelming victory, aided and abetted by a tame national media.

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Midterms and Mayhem

Abstract: A “red wave” midterm election seems about to occur. Notwithstanding the apparent (relatively) recent precedent of the 1994 midterms, the eight weeks from Tuesday 8 November 2022 to Tuesday 3 January 2023 may become the most challenging period to date in the entire history of the American constitutional order, not excepting the “Secession Winter” following Tuesday 6 November 1860. A broadly similar situation would almost certainly exist if the relative positions of the major political parties in the US were reversed. Even with alarming possibilities in view, this post is intended to promote constructive apprehension, not mere fearfulness.

Like all good students at our eponymous institution, you get the theoretical elements first, then more practical aspects, and falsifiable predictions at the end.

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What is the Purpose of a Senator

Dr. Oz is a bit weird, and I’m bothered by his apparent mixed loyalties.  Still, I’m pulling for him.   I assume a good heart surgeon learns, processes, acts.  And apparently he did very well.   Secondly, I only watched one of his shows but he listened closely to his guest (with a certain modesty, as in his response to Oprah).  I like patents – we need people who  analyze, define, and solve problems.  We are less sure of what he will be than we are of more conventional candidates.  Still, a life time of work done well make it less of a gamble.

Then there’s Fetterman – with remarkably few accomplishments, he would fight crime and increase energy with flailing, contradictory slogans.  His party praised his “performances”.  But senators reason, and it is the reasoning before the vote, the give and take with opponents, that defines a Senator’s value.   A Senator is, after all,  joining one of the great, if not the greatest, of deliberative bodies.  Some, we hear in their ads, still see that role.  But is that even a majority?  And how much do the parties differ?

His party wanted to own his vote.  Their job is to elect sufficient pawns to give a majority.  Then, they give up the power of their vote to the leaders who give up theirs to the swamp, leading to a populace more and more restless and less and less able to fight free of the octopus.  And so it matters little that Fetterman can not deliberate.  In his stabs at making an argument for his candidacy, he says he’ll be the 51st vote.  Of course.   Not as a representative of Pennsylvanians.  That vote and not that voice is what made him worth millions.   And so he is elected by the party, not the people.

We can’t possibly know what Oz will be like as senator; however, we all know what Fetterman will be.

And is his role as cipher all that different from Biden’s?  Or even the without-the-excuse of a stroke or senility, Kamala Harris?  How much applies to other members of Congress, some even more visibly impaired (Diane Feinstein, for instance).