Sunday, November 23, 2014

KW On Language And Politics

Another video, this one featuring Kevin Williamson. KW is a (self-described) radical libertarian from Lubbock who shatters the Mary Cooper* stereotype of a right wing Texan; that is, fundamentalist Christian, provincial, intolerant, credulous, ignorant, racist. Rather, Williamson is scientific, brilliant, learned, and worldly with eclectic interests. And, of course, as a libertarian, he's strongly anti-racist. One of Williamson's objectives is to get people to reconsider their assumptions about government and politics. You say you want a revolution - here it is.

It's apparent that Jonah Goldberg gets some of his libertarian ideas from Williamson. KW returns the favor, mentioning Goldberg's book in his talk. (Note that Williamson doesn't actually begin speaking until around the 14:00 minute mark).

*Sheldon Cooper's mom in The Big Bang Theory. In manner and intellect, Williamson seems much more like Sheldon (without the Asperger traits) than Mary. 
Williamson writes about his mother in his latest column. The main gist of the column however is best described by its title, Small Man in a Big Office.

In an elected official, patriotism means, among other things, elevating the interests of the country above the interests of party and career. President Obama has failed to do that, seems personally incapable of doing that, and in fact has done the opposite. He might be reminded, at the very least, that his presidential duty is to the citizens of the United States, not to citizens of other countries, regardless of where they happen to be located at any given moment. But the very idea of taking that seriously seems foreign to him.
We already knew that Barack Obama is a coward – a man who, to take one obvious example, pronounced himself opposed to gay marriage right up until the millisecond that political calculation demanded he do otherwise, and who now believes that it is mandated by the Constitution. His putting off his amnesty announcement until after the election – and his dishonest refusal to acknowledge that it is an amnesty – is another example. We already knew that he is a liar (“If you like your coverage . . . ”) and have some reason to suspect that he is a fool. But the fundamental problem is that he is a lawyer, one without the intellectual or moral equipment to be anything more than a litigator of the picayune. For President Obama and his enablers, the law is a species of magic: He is entitled to do whatever he pleases, even when it plainly violates both the national interest and our longstanding habits of government, if he can simply think of a way to say the right words in the right order as he acts. That isn’t governance – that’s alchemical hokum, transforming the dross of Democratic political ambition into pure gold.

Other recent KW columns.

Swearing in Latin at his favorite target, the IRS.

On the morality of assisted suicide. Williamson does not shirk from tackling difficult moral issues as he did here with rape and abortion.

Capitalism and the environment.

Justice Ginsburg and the eugenics instinct of the left.

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