2018-01-22

Neo on Jordan Peterson interview: "Complicated, thoughtful, and strategic."

Veteran blogger Neo-Neocon brings a professional's insights to the recent interview of Jordan Peterson by Cathy Newman.

What Peterson does in that interview isn’t just on the order of what someone like Thomas Sowell (whom I also admire greatly) habitually does in argument, which is to counter the adversary on the cognitive and logical points, and to apply the results of research to the discussion. Peterson certainly does do that, and that’s what most people see when they watch that interview. But he adds certain techniques of the therapist and particularly of the family therapist (although I really don’t know if he’s done any family therapy; Peterson’s a psychologist and used to have a private practice as a therapist, however).

If you’re mostly familiar with the supportive touchy-feely type of therapy, that’s not what I’m talking about here. I can’t give you a crash course in therapeutic techniques or in particular in the way family therapists work, but I can tell you that it’s complicated, thoughtful, and strategic. ...

Go to the link for the whole thing, with the interview video.

'Liberty: God's Gift to Humanity' by Chana Cox

Liberty: God's Gift to Humanity is an introduction to classical liberalism, from its origins in the English Civil War and the Enlightenment to the present day. If, like me, you have an interest in the subject, but your formal education failed to provide you with a a solid grounding in the basics, this is a great place to start. I'm reading it now, and plan to write a full review when I'm done. Highly recommended.

Melanie Phillips: Silence on the scandal targeting Trump.

Melanie Phillips:

If you are in Britain and relying on the BBC and mainstream media for your information, you probably won’t know that a political scandal has been developing in the Washington swamp which has the potential to make Watergate look positively puny by comparison. You probably won’t know that what passes for the accepted wisdom about President Trump may be in the process of being turned on its head.

The reason there’s been no news coverage is that it suggests Trump has been not the instigator but the target of collusion – between the FBI, the Justice Department, the Democratic party and the Russians, first to prevent him from being elected US President and then to lever him out of office.

Last Thursday, some Republicans in Congress who had seen a secret memo, apparently compiled by House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes and fellow Republicans on the panel and which involved the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), were so disturbed by what it contained that they called for it to be made public immediately. They were not at liberty to divulge what it said, merely to express their concerns. But the assumption is that it supposedly contains evidence that the Obama administration made illegal use of FISA warrants to spy on both the Trump campaign and transition teams. ...

Read the rest at the link.

2018-01-02

Michael J. Totten on the two Oregons.

My friend Michael J. Totten at City Journal:
Yes, rural Oregonians are more culturally conservative than urban Oregonians. Rural people are more culturally conservative than their urban counterparts everywhere in the world. Oregon, though, is not fighting a cultural civil war. Rather, people on the inland eastern side of the state have an entirely different set of priorities. Rural voters are being micromanaged by Democratic politicians elected in Portland, whose land-use and water-rights policies are inflicting at times devastating economic hardship on the other side of the mountains. Contrary to Frank, they prefer the Republican Party not despite their economic interests but because of them. If the Democrats want to win back these votes in the upcoming midterms, the first thing they need to do is stop kidding themselves. Understanding Oregon is a good place to start.

Oregon is divided geographically, culturally, and politically by the Cascade Mountains, a spectacular range of volcanoes roughly 100 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean that pick up where the Sierra Nevadas leave off, stretching from Lassen County in northern California to the international border with British Columbia. Those mountains are invisible on non-topographical maps. No political boundary takes them into account. The state line between Oregon and Washington mostly follows the Columbia River, and the international border between the United States and Canada follows the 49th parallel. The Cascade Mountains are natural borders, however. Instead of dividing the Pacific Northwest into northern and southern halves along the Columbia River, it might have made more sense to place Portland and Seattle in one state and everything between the Cascades and the Rockies in another. Coming from Portland, I feel more at home in Seattle and even in Vancouver, British Columbia, than I do just an hour east of my house. ...

Read the rest at the link. Michael is well known for his dispatches from Beirut and elsewhere, but he is very knowledgeable about his native Northwest and it's a pleasure to see him address issues close to home. (Michael and I went on a short road trip together back in 2005 and I wrote about it here.)

2018-01-01

World Today: 2018-01-01 Monday

Iran: Anti-regime protests continue. Fox:
A leaked report provided to Fox News shows how Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei met with political leaders and heads of the country's security forces to discuss how to tamp down on the deadly nationwide protests.

The report covered several meetings up to December 31 and was provided to the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) from what it said were high level sources from within the regime.

The meeting notes, which have been translated into English from Farsi, said the unrest has hurt every sector of the country's economy and “threatens the regime’s security. The first step, therefore, is to find a way out of this situation.” ...
Full article with video at the link.

Trump: Pakistan has given us lies and deceit. Arutz Sheva:
U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday threatened to cut off aid to Pakistan due to what he termed as its “deceit” in the fight against terrorism.

“The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!” he tweeted.

Nigeria: Text of Buhari speech. AllAfrica:
Unfortunately, I am saddened to acknowledge that for many this Christmas and New Year holidays have been anything but merry and happy. Instead of showing love, companionship and charity, some of our compatriots chose this period to inflict severe hardship on us all by creating unnecessary fuel scarcity across the country.

The consequence was that not many could travel and the few who did had to pay exorbitant transport fares. This is unacceptable given that NNPC had taken measures to ensure availability at all depots. I am determined to get to the root of this collective blackmail of all Nigerians and ensure that whichever groups are behind this manipulated hardship will be prevented from doing so again.

Such unpatriotism will not divert the Administration from the course we have set ourselves. Our government's watch word and policy thrust is CHANGE. We must change our way of doing things or we will stagnate and be left behind in the race to lift our people out of poverty and into prosperity.

My address to fellow Nigerians this morning is devoted mainly to informing you about the intense efforts this Administration is putting to address our country's huge infrastructural deficit. ...

Kenya: Uhuru Kenyatta to unveil new cabinet. AllAfrica: 'President Uhuru Kenyatta has said he will unveil his new Cabinet in a few weeks.'

Israel: Knesset approves United Jerusalem bill. Arutz Sheva:
64 MKs voted in favor of the bill, 51 voted against and one abstained.

The bill was authored by Jewish Home chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett and was submitted by MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli (Jewish Home).

The law stipulates that a majority of 80 Knesset members will be required to change the status of Jerusalem or for any transfer of territories from the capital within the framework of a future diplomatic agreement. ...

Israel / Jewish world: Yehuda Glick's wife Yaffa Glick passes. Arutz Sheva:
Yaffa Glick, the wife of Likud MK Yehuda Glick, passed away on Monday morning.

Yaffa was hospitalized at Jerusalem's Shaare Zedek Medical Center in June after she suffered a massive stroke.

"A few minutes ago, the love of my life returned her soul to her Creator," Yehuda Glick wrote Monday morning on Facebook. "Blessed be the true Judge."