Magazine | November 11, 2013, Issue


NR on the Prairie

Yesterday, my wife, a fan since childhood of the Little House on the Prairie series, visited the home of its author, Laura Ingalls Wilder, in rural Mansfield in the Missouri Ozarks. The home is preserved exactly as it was the day Mrs. Wilder died in 1957, right down to the books on the bookshelves and the magazines on the chairside lamp table beside the easy chair next to the fireplace. The most prominently displayed magazine was National Review, which looked to be from the 1950s.

Being a reader of National Review since 1980 or so, I found this interesting, and thought you might also.

Charles O’Farrell

Springfield, Mo.


The Din of Dinner

I enjoyed Richard Brookhiser’s article,“The Rest Is Silence,” in the October 14 issue. It reminded me of a conversation a friend and I had after trying to find a restaurant where we could not only eat but hold a conversation — something that is becoming more and more difficult to find. She mentioned reading recently that the loud music levels and the lack of sound insulation were part of a plan to keep patrons moving through the establishment — the less conversation, the more quickly people finish eating and the next group can be seated. I have no idea if it is really part of a plan, but it makes sense for the restaurant owners. I continue to watch for nice places in the mid-price range where a group of friends can enjoy a meal together while visiting.

Marlene Rowland

Jefferson City, Mo.



“The Cuccinelli Comeback” (Jim Geraghty, September 30) asserted that E. W. Jackson won Virginia’s lieutenant-governor nomination in a six-way race. In fact, there were seven candidates in the primary: Jackson, Jeannemarie Devolites Davis, Scott Lingamfelter, Steve Martin, Corey Stewart, Susan Stimpson, and Pete Snyder.

In the Letters section of the October 14 issue, Ras Smith wrote in response to Jim Talent’s “The Army You Haven’t” (September 16) that there are four, not three, military services in the U.S. “The United States Coast Guard is considered a military service only in times of combat,” Smith wrote. Actually, 14 USC § 1 establishes the Coast Guard as a “military service and a branch of the armed forces of the United States at all times.” The other four military services — the Army, the Marine Corps, the Navy, and the Air Force — fall under the Department of Defense at all times, whereas the United States Coast Guard falls under the Department of Homeland Security during peacetime and under the Department of Navy during wartime or at the president’s discretion. Let it be known that there are five active-duty military services, and we’re grateful for all of them.

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

In This Issue


Politics & Policy


In his recent address at the U.N., President Obama referred to Ali Khamenei, the head ayatollah in Iran. Each time, he referred to him as “the Supreme Leader.” He did ...
Politics & Policy

Games with Orson

Almost halfway through Ender’s Game, the 1985 science-fiction novel by Orson Scott Card, a pair of siblings try to manipulate global opinion by posting polemics “on the nets” — Card’s ...


Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

A Lesser God

Despite the impressive bulk of this new book about the author of The Catcher in the Rye and several of the past century’s most enduring short stories, there is an ...
Politics & Policy

Making Republics

Pierre Manent is today the leading political philosopher in France. As a young scholar and teacher, while working in Paris as an assistant to Raymond Aron, he read with attention ...
Politics & Policy

Film: Miles Above

I am in the minority among film critics in coming away a little disappointed from the movies of Alfonso Cuarón. Before his new one, Gravity, the Mexican-born director made only ...


Politics & Policy


NR on the Prairie Yesterday, my wife, a fan since childhood of the Little House on the Prairie series, visited the home of its author, Laura Ingalls Wilder, in rural Mansfield ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ “You misheard us. We said we were going to cover tens of people.” ‐ The budget shutdown marked a turning point in intra-Republican politics. Heretofore the leaders in both rancor ...
Politics & Policy

System Failure

The rolling fiasco that is the launch of the health-insurance “exchanges” — the government-run online marketplaces at the heart of the Affordable Care Act — is something the Obama administration ...

Born Under a Bad Site

To fix the problems of the Obamacare website, the administration has promised a “tech surge.” We’re supposed to think of the surge strategy employed by President Bush to push back ...
The Long View


Casting-Call Bulletin Board for the Washington, D.C., Area Note to all background atmosphere: Please DO NOT contact vendors directly. ALL CASTING is to go through listed casting agents. CALLS FOR OCTOBER-NOVEMBER:  Older ...
Politics & Policy


PRAYER Tenderness does not arise from the beauty and motion of the dark clouds, of the rain, or its passing, or the air, purged in a breeze, slight but apparent, drifting from the direction of the ...
Happy Warrior

Sex at Sunset

To Western eyes, contemporary Japan has a kind of earnest childlike wackiness, all karaoke machines and manga cartoons and nuttily sadistic game shows. But, to us demography bores, it’s a ...

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More