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A Spring Miscellany
Random thoughts on the passing scene.


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Thomas Sowell

All sorts of “global warming” advocates have all sorts of ideas for cooling the planet. I would be happy if they would just cool the rhetoric.

A newspaper headline said: “U.S. Growing Impatient with Iran.” Boy, won’t that scare them to death? If they keep going, and make enough nuclear bombs to blast us to smithereens, we will go to the United Nations and get a resolution passed, condemning their actions — or, if the U.N. won’t go that far, deploring their lack of cooperation.

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Contrary to what has been widely believed, scholars say that Neanderthals had bigger brains than we have. Why did they become extinct, then? Maybe they got too smart for their own good.

When someone in New York City says, “Excuse me, sir,” you know that you are really old.

Umpire Jim Joyce, who publicly admitted that his wrong call cost pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game, and Galarraga himself both exhibited grace in the way they reacted to the situation. How long has it been since anyone has done anything that called for the word “grace”?

When you consider what an enormous windfall gain it is to be born in America, it is painful to hear some people complain bitterly that someone else got a bigger windfall than they did.

After North Korea torpedoed a South Korean ship, killing 46 sailors, was there even one-tenth the outrage that is ringing out loudly around the world because of nine deaths that resulted from Israeli commandos intercepting a ship headed for the Gaza strip?

In political rhetoric, “comprehensive immigration reform” means amnesty up front and promises of border control later — promises that have not been kept in the past and are unlikely to be kept in the future. Anyone who is serious, as distinguished from political, knows that you have to control your own borders before you can have an immigration policy that means anything in practice.

Even though some people say we are living in a “knowledge economy,” we are living in a political atmosphere in which ignorance has more power than ever. Washington politicians who have never run any business are telling all kinds of businesses — from automobile companies and banks to hospitals and insurance companies — how they have to run their businesses. This is the golden age of ignorance in power.

Electrical cords seem to be very sociable. Whenever there are two that are near each other, they almost always seem to get intertwined.

It is one of the signs of our times when people in the media ask how some of our home-grown terrorists could “turn against their own country.”

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Even experienced politicians would have a hard time coming up with a more grossly misleading phrase than “the Middle East peace process.”

We cannot recapture the past, but sometimes it can recapture us — if we are not careful.

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Just as the American Left has adopted blacks as mascots, so the international Left has adopted Palestinians as mascots. In both cases, the actual well-being of the mascots is not the point.

Mascots exist to be symbols for others. In all the years when the Arab states controlled the area that Israel took over after the 1967 war, nobody cared what happened to the Palestinians, much less offered them a homeland.

Whether Barack Obama is simply incompetent as president or has some hidden agenda to undermine this country, at home and abroad, he has nearly everything he needs to ruin America, including a fool for a vice president.

We have now reached the truly dangerous point where we cannot even be warned about the lethal, fanatical, and suicidal hatred of our Islamic extremist enemies in our midst, because to do so here would be politically incorrect — and in some European countries, would be a violation of laws against inciting hostility to groups.

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. © 2010 Creators Syndicate, Inc.



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