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National Review / Digital
Shovel Ready
John Derbyshire fills a hole


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One of our township’s very few claims to fame, perhaps the only one, arises from its cesspools. The Wikipedia article headed “cesspool” devotes an entire paragraph to Huntington. In numbers of people sucked down into collapsing old cesspools, we lead the nation. There were three deaths just this past decade.

The Straggler family avoided this misfortune by sheer good luck. There is a wooden deck at the back of our house, a few inches above the lawn. One night in mid-December a large hole suddenly appeared in the lawn just beyond the deck, at a spot we must have walked over a thousand times. The hole was deep and cylindrical, though narrowing at the top, like the bottle dungeons found in medieval Scottish castles. The interior diameter was seven feet, depth about eight. There was some water at the bottom, and some fragments of rusted-away pipework jutting from the walls.


Contents
January 24, 2011    |     Volume LXIII, No. 1

Articles
  • Evicting the president in 2012 will not be easy.
  • Strategy and tactics for the new House majority.
  • Our economy and culture would benefit from its remembrance.
  • The Khodorkovsky trial exposes the ugly truth of Putin’s Russia.
  • In memoriam.
Features
Books, Arts & Manners
  • Glenn Harlan Reynolds reviews Gray Lady Down: What the Decline and Fall of the New York Times Means for America, by William McGowan.
  • Claire Berlinski reviews The Arab Lobby: The Invisible Alliance that Undermines America’s Interests in the Middle East, by Mitchell Bard.
  • Helen Rittelmeyer reviews Pathology of the Elites: How the Arrogant Classes Plan to Run Your Life, by Michael Knox Beran.
  • Ryan T. Anderson reviews Origins: How the Nine Months Before Birth Shape the Rest of Our Lives, by Annie Murphy Paul.
  • Ross Douthat reviews The King's Speech and True Grit.
  • John Derbyshire fills a hole.
Sections
The Long View  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Athwart  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Poetry  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Editorial  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .