Category Archives: Ideas

Not a joking matter

In his 1980s comedy routine, Yakov Smirnoff celebrated America’s free society and equality before the law, joking, “In America, you can always find a party. In Russia, party always finds you! In America, you break law. In Soviet Russia, law breaks you!”

In the wake of scandals involving the abuse of governmental power, Americans must Think Again about Smirnoff’s ironic wordplays. As we’re learning, the ruling party can find and break you — despite constitutional protections. Continue reading

Head On TV: Obama Messiah is no more

A leftist agenda playing loose with the law has cost Obama his messianic aura, says John Andrews in the May round of Head On TV debates. Susan Barnes-Gelt disagrees, blaming the welter of scandals on arrogance at the top and incompetence of underlings. John on the right, Susan on the left, also go at it this month over immigration, school taxes, recall of legislators, and Hickenlooper’s record. Head On has been a daily feature on Colorado Public Television since 1997 and a presentation of Centennial Institute since 2009. Here are all five scripts for May: Continue reading

Question gains force: Is college worth it?

Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life,” counseled Faber College’s Dean Wormer in “Animal House.” For the collegiate class of 2013 — until next year the most indebted ever — add “in hock” to that immortal list.

Compared with their parents, current graduates are paying four times more in inflation-adjusted terms for their diplomas while suffering substantially inferior job and income prospects. Like “Animal House’s” witless frat brothers, those who believe college is a last hurrah before plunging into adult reality must Think Again. Continue reading

Prioritize national security in immigration debate

(Centennial Fellow) Roger Kimball’s exceptional new book, The Fortunes of Permanence, touches on many important topics concerning culture, education, society, and our intellectual inheritance, centering heavily on the concept of cultural relativism. It includes a chapter entitled: “Institutionalizing Our Demise: America vs. Multiculturalism,” and I thought while reading of how well that applied to many of our current immigration contentions.

Immigration reform is, once again, front and center on the nation’s public consciousness. And, once again, the debate seems to skirt the most important questions posed by immigration. For years, American immigration policy has been more about more emotional, tertiary concerns, than the pressing ones; namely how much immigration does the society need, how much can the existing culture handle, and what are the security implications for the nation? Continue reading

Meditating on the murky meaning of 2012

(Eagle Bay, N.Y.) “See the U.S.A. in your Chevrolet …America’s the Greatest Land of All!” Thus did Dinah Shore- an appealing songstress of the 40’s and 50’s- close her immensely popular weekly television show. In doing so she evoked one of our nation’s most powerful images: The Lure of the Open Road. Much like Jack Kerouac’s manic novel On The Road or Willie Nelson’s mournful classic “On the Road, Again” this simple lyric conveyed compelling notions of Freedom and Limitless American Horizons. Continue reading

Ethicist: World doesn’t need more Americans

“The last thing the world needs is more Americans,” asserted population-control advocate and global-warming worrier Phillip Cafaro in an Issue Monday debate at CCU on May 13.

“No, the best thing the world could have is more Americans,” rejoined his opponent, energy expert and space scientist Robert Zubrin.

The exchange went hot (with heavy CO2 emissions from both debaters) and heavy from there for 90 minutes. Continue reading

The media: What difference does it make?

(’76 Contributor) Stretching Oscar Wilde’s adage “I never put off til tomorrow what I can do the day after,” some in the mainstream media have finally started to Think Again about the Benghazi attack launched last year on the anniversary of 9/11 — thanks to new revelations by high-ranking State Department whistle-blowers including experts in security, counterterrorism, and the No. 2-ranking diplomat in Libya under slain Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

Contrary to the “spin” that the U.S. Consulate assault was a spontaneous response to an anti-Islam YouTube video, the truth is that American officials knew “from the get-go” that it was a premeditated terrorist attack by al-Qaida-linked terrorists. Continue reading

300 take the dare at Conservative Persuasion Bootcamp

A couple of hundred people, 100 each from the Weekly Standard‘s May 2-4 policy conference and the Colorado Front Range, had signed up for a half-day interactive training session on May 3 called Conservative Persuason Bootcamp, jointly hosted by Centennial Institute and the magazine.

But when the day came, bootcamp organizers John Andrews, Krista Kafer, Melanie Sturm, and Rich Sokol were surprised to have more than 300 show up at the Colorado Springs event. Continue reading

Graduates, heed Jefferson, not Obama

Thomas Jefferson said to keep a close eye on government and others chimed in that the price of liberty is eternal vigilance. Phooey, says President Barack Obama. He recently told graduating college students in Columbus, Ohio, to ignore those thus intervening in their snooze time.

“Unfortunately,” he said in a commencement address at Ohio State University, “you’ve grown up hearing voices that incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some separate, sinister entity that’s at the root of all our problems,” and maybe he’s right. Maybe some of those students did study the founders who told us government is necessary — but watch out. Continue reading