Magazine | June 17, 2013, Issue


Light Shines from New Haven

I would like to thank Eliana Johnson for her tribute to Donald Kagan as he announced his retirement (“Donald Kagan’s Last Lecture,” May 20). His departure might seem an irreparable loss to Yale and our entire nation, but, thanks to the generosity of Open Yale Courses, Professor Kagan’s incomparable “Introduction to Ancient Greek History” lives on(line) and is available to anyone, anywhere, anytime. Et lux in tenebris lucet!

Mark Allen

Hopkinton, N.H.


Understanding the Nanny State

In her review of The Food Police (“Big Brother at Your Table,” May 20), Julie Gunlock discusses many of the problems with progressive attempts to control what everyone eats. But I have two important points to add:

1. The drug wars, including Prohibition, set a precedent for controlling what people put in their bodies. From marijuana to tobacco to sugar is a perfectly natural and consistent progressive progression.

2. Even if every person’s health is the business of progressive government, whatever progressive harassment occurs will probably be Procrustean: the same dietary rules for everyone. This obliviousness to individuality (e.g., some people benefit from alcohol, others are hurt) is no way to approach the problem.

Ralph deLaubenfels

Via e-mail


More Equal Than Thou

I believe the perfect epigraph to Mark Steyn’s “Michael Poppins” (May 6) would be these lines from a poem by Boris Slutsky, though I am afraid my amateur translation does not give it the strength of the original Russian:

We won’t point fingers,

But how many remember nowadays:

One who wants to preach to people

Shouldn’t live in more luxury than they.

Actually, these lines could refer to most liberal masterminds.

Alexandre Peshansky

Via e-mail



Two details regarding the 2009 Pittsburgh police shootings were misreported in The Week (May 20). Robert Andrew Poplawski murdered three officers, not two, and he did not murder his mother.

Members of the National Review editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

In This Issue


Politics & Policy

Hard to Fire

Lois Lerner, who is at the center of the IRS targeting scandal, is clearly not a model federal employee. But it is very difficult to fire her or anyone else ...


Politics & Policy

Defending Lincoln

Decades ago, the distinguished Lincoln biographer David Herbert Donald coined the phrase “getting right with Lincoln” to describe the impulse people feel to appropriate Lincoln for their own political agendas. ...
Politics & Policy

UKIP Shakes Up Westminster

It’s all but impossible to launch a new political party under America’s electoral arrangements, and extremely easy to do so under Continental proportional representation. The Westminster first-past-the-post system puts the ...
Politics & Policy

A Chronic Disease

Conservatives and Republicans in Washington — activists, strategists, politicians — are increasingly embracing a theory about Obamacare: It’s going to collapse of its own weight, and its failure could yield ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Leviathan Fail

In Our Enemy, the State, Albert Jay Nock distinguished between the government and the State. Sadly, these terms have become interchangeable in everyday parlance: “Statism” is simply a more euphonious ...


Politics & Policy


Light Shines from New Haven I would like to thank Eliana Johnson for her tribute to Donald Kagan as he announced his retirement (“Donald Kagan’s Last Lecture,” May 20). His departure might ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ The IRS is targeting people who make Obama look bad. Eric Holder, call your accountant. ‐ President Obama’s sprawling and frequently tedious National Defense University speech was long on hope ...
Politics & Policy


THE GREEN SWARD That green sward I used to walk above A baseball-diamond Mother remembered Near Penn, under a bridge, a field always Surprising her when she happened to recall It, a petal on a ...
The Long View

Investigation into the AP/James Rosen Matter

Department of Justice OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT Investigation into the AP/James Rosen Matter   Interview with Subject conducted 5/29/13 in Conference Room H-0889, Department of Justice. Present: Investigator and Person of Interest [Name Redacted] Interview begins 11:03 a.m.   INTERVIEWER: ...

Moving Performances

Fine art these days is rarely either. Go to the sculpture wing of a contemporary museum, and you won’t find a painstakingly chiseled block of marble whose astonishing frozen drapery ...

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

The Real Reason for That Kavanaugh Smear

The New York Times on Saturday joined The New Yorker and many other media outlets in upending a dumpster full of garbage on its own reputation in an effort to smear Brett Kavanaugh. After more than a year of digging, the Democrats and their media allies still have no supported allegations of sexual misconduct by ... Read More
Politics & Policy

CNN: Everything but the News

For a while, we thought MSNBC had temporarily usurped CNN as the font of fake news — although both networks had tied for the most negative coverage (93 percent of all their news reports) of President Trump’s first 100 days in office. A cynic would argue that CNN had deliberately given Trump undue coverage ... Read More