Category Archives: People

Contrasting Rand Paul & Jack Kemp on GOP minority outreach

(‘76 Contributor) Rand Paul must still be licking his wounds after his recent foray into the halls of Howard University. When I read about Sen. Paul’s devastation as his prepared remarks unraveled, revealing a series of factual errors, misnomers, temporal confusions and a failed attempt to equate the post–1968 Republicans with the party of Lincoln, I couldn’t help but draw a comparison with another white conservative who had spoken numerous times to cheering, supportive crowds at Howard University: the late Jack Kemp—congressman, cabinet secretary, and 1996 GOP vice–presidential nominee. Continue reading

Paying tribute to an America hero: Gen. Jim Hall

(’76 Contributor) Little did I know that, years after being in a parachuting accident during a year at Oxford, I would meet Gen. James C. “Jim” Hall, USAF (Ret.), one of the greatest parachutists of all time, and then plan a recent celebration of his many professional and personal achievements.

Gen. Hall is an American hero who has played a significant role in the history of aviation. Continue reading

Randstanding renews an important argument

(Centennial Fellow) U.S. Sen. Rand Paul’s filibuster was not only enormously fun to watch, but demonstrated a piece of political genius to boot. If nothing else, the filibuster was a symbolic victory for conservatives sorely in need of a public show of resistance against an increasingly engorged leviathan.

On the merits of Sen. Paul’s arguments, we enter more muddled territory, which made the episode all the more fascinating to watch. It recalls one of the historically central arguments in American politics—that of the ontological role of the state in general and the limits of executive power specifically. Continue reading

Zealots endanger our freedom

(Denver Post, Mar. 25) To get at the devil, says the young zealot Will Roper in “A Man for All Seasons,” Robert Bolt’s play, “I’d cut down every law in England.”

Thomas More, the wise old churchman, comes back at him: “When the last law was down, and the devil turned round on you—where would you hide, the laws all being flat? Do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then?” Continue reading

Head On TV: Scalia’s Inconvenient Truth

In blaming the Voting Rights Act for “racial entitlements,” Justice Antonin Scalia sounded like Archie Bunker, says Susan Barnes–Gelt in the March round of Head On TV debates. Not so, says John Andrews; the VRA does in fact insult blacks and Hispanics with favoritism. John on the right, Susan on the left, also go at it this month over school vouchers, the federal budget sequester, municipal tracking bans, and the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. 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 March: Continue reading

Poll: Religious freedom increasingly threatened

(Centennial Fellow) Some 60% of Coloradans now feel their religious freedom is being threatened by the prevailing political and cultural forces in America over the past 20 years, according to a new survey done by the Centennial Institute.

These fears have intensified with recent events, including the federal government mandate for many religious organizations (who provide health insurance plans) to include contraception, abortion–inducing drugs, and sterilization coverage for their employees. Hobby Lobby, a Christian–based arts and crafts company, faces a daily $1.2 million fine for non–compliance with the same requirement. Labor unions have been disproportionately granted Obamacare waivers arousing concerns about fairness and religious freedom in the minds of the American public. Continue reading

Mayor Michael Bloomberg rivals Carrie Nation

(Centennial Fellow) New York City’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg is the new Carrie Nation, and that’s no small thing because she was no small thing. Says one biographer, she was the “prime dragoness on a field strewn with the bones of sinners,” a hatchet–wielding, epithet–spouting, hymn–singing crusader who broke whatever was breakable and threw bricks at whatever moved. Her purpose was to stymie booze consumption through bar destruction. Continue reading

Not even Tarantino would touch gory story of sequester

This year, Hollywood hit award pay dirt for political dramas inspired by American history. Unlike “The Avengers” — the top-grossing superhero movie — best-picture nominees “Argo,” “Lincoln” and “Zero Dark Thirty” featured authentic, determined and courageous Americans who endured adversity and mortal danger to overcome morally inferior antagonists. Continue reading

Sequestration Obama’s fault, but GOP will pay

“Spit in the ocean” — it’s a phrase that’s well-worn, and for a reason, namely that it sums up so splendidly the idea of something that is itsy-bitsy relative to something very, very big.

“Sequestration” — it’s a four-syllable word referring to across-the-board spending cuts of $85 billion scheduled for automatic implementation with the purpose of reducing deficits and better controlling the federal debt. However large it sounds, the amount is spit next to the oceanic gobs of owed money that could easily drown the American economy. Continue reading

Reagan’s relevance for my generation

(CCU Student) On Feb. 18, Presidents’ Day, the Centennial Institute gave a fascinating presentation on the presidency of our 40th president Ronald Reagan. Special guest speakers included Donald Hodel, former U.S. Secretary of Energy and Secretary of the Interior, and David Crouse, producer of the recently released documentary “The Reagan Presidency”.

Donald Hodel spoke on his encounters with the famed President and his impressions of who Reagan really was. He saw that Reagan was a great man because of his abiding faith in God, his fundamental commitment to human freedom everywhere in the world, and his intense love for his country; and to further his recognition, he spoke of how Reagan was not in the mercy of his advisors when it came to economics like most Presidents are. Continue reading