I’m very sorry to see that Ken Burns’ new film series is to be entitled The National Parks: America’s Best Idea. As I detail extensively in my book, The Really Inconvenient Truths, the nationalization of so much wonderful scenery has led to appalling mismanagement and environmental degradation. When the Parks Service and Forest Service spent hours in 1988 debating whether or not a fire counted as “natural” because it started from a lighning bolt striking a telegraph pole, large areas of Yellowstone National Park burned to ashes. Another park-service biologist, Don Despain, saw the flames raging towards his research area and urged them on with the words, “Burn, baby, burn.” These are the tales I can’t imagine you’ll see in Burns undoubtedly beautiful film, but they’re as much a part of the National Park story as the scenery.
Vox may still be keeping up its risible just-the-facts posturing, but it is tendentious to the point of dishonesty: “Colorado baker who refused to serve gay couple now wants to refuse to serve transgender person,” it says. That is not true, of course. (But everybody knows that.) Phillips serves ... Read More
I do not share my friend David French’s theoretical constitutional concerns about the president’s revocation of security clearances -- at least when it comes to former government officials who become media commentators and have no demonstrable need for a security clearance. Like David and many other ... Read More
Eric Sevareid (1912–1992), the author and broadcaster, said he was a pessimist about tomorrow but an optimist about the day after tomorrow. Regarding America's economy, prudent people should reverse that. This Wednesday, according to the Financial Times' Robin Wigglesworth and Nicole Bullock, "the U.S. stock ... Read More
Oxford, England — After five months of ferocious and futile slaughter in “the Great War,” an Oxford undergraduate — knowing his deployment to the Western Front was inevitable — used his Christmas break in 1914 to cultivate his imagination. Twenty-two-year-old J. R. R. Tolkien began writing “The Story ... Read More
The Democrats have decided that agendas are overrated. Back in May, the party unveiled its "Better Deal" program, calling for expanded broadband access, an increase in the minimum wage, and paid family and sick leave. Voters didn't bite. So last month the Democrats came up with "For the People," which simplifies ... Read More
Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has one-upped socialists Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: She proposes to nationalize every major business in the United States of America. If successful, it would constitute the largest seizure of private property in human history. Warren’s proposal is ... Read More