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The Truth About Facts

Search TagX on Google View all posts tagged as Tagx Find TagX related info in WikiPedia The Boston Globe‘s Joe Keohane raises some interesting–dare I call them–facts about facts. In short, he says, researchers have found that our brains are a threat to democracy: It’s one of the great assumptions underlying modern democracy that an […]

The First Principle, Lincoln and the Apple of Gold

Hadley Arkes at the Catholic Thing writes— post Independence Day–that the Declaration of Independence, not the Constitution that followed it–is the real basis for American democracy. His starting point is a speech made by Michael Mukasey, Attorney General under George W. Bush. Arkes says: And so, in a moving speech on Memorial Day, that remarkable […]

Free Will Under Attack

Dr. Helen asks: Have you noticed an uptick in studies that seem to say you have no or little free will? There does seem to be some evidence that there is. A July article in Time, for instance, featured the work of psychologists Ruud Custers of Utrecht University in the Netherlands and John Bargh of […]

You Can’t Teach What You Don’t Know

I couldn’t bring myself to post this yesterday. Here’s Jay Leno asking the man-woman-child-and-college-professor on the street exactly what it is that we celebrate on the 4th of July. It’s pretty depressing stuff. And where does that college professor teach? A few observations: The narrowing of the curriculum under No Child Left Behind (an unintended […]

Happy Birthday to the Boy Scouts of America!

Adam Brodsky at the New York Post reminds us why we celebrate the Boy Scouts. It’s an organization that teaches boys qualities that are not only valuable in themselves but are essential for American citizens: …self-reliance, leadership, a sense of duty toward others — that is, a personal obligation to act with integrity and treat […]

DeTocqueville Quote of the Day

Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and […]

When a Parent Complains

In the tug-of-war of education decision-making, it’s instructive to see the effect of parents’ complaints. Sometimes one complaint is enough to change a school’s policy. Sometimes the voices of many parents don’t have much of an effect. Here one parent’s complaint was enough to remove “in the year of our Lord” from high school diplomas. […]

Education, the Oil Spill and Subsidiarity

Reading the David Brooks op ed description of the oil clean-up fiasco in the Gulf, I couldn’t help thinking about education. Apply this quote about the clean up to the growing federal role in education, whether it’s Race to the Top, a national curriculum or No Child Left Behind (though I still think NCLB had […]

Can the Moral Life Survive Democracy?

Kenneth Minogue, Australian political theorist and Emeritus Professor of Political Science at the London School of Economics, asks whether our current understanding of the meaning of democracy leads to servility and to the diminishment of our moral life. In the June issue of The New Criterion, Minogue talks about our relationship to those we’ve elected […]

A New Nation, a New Idea: Personal Responsibility

Mark Riebling at City Journal has an amazing piece about the uniqueness of American thought. As he explains, the word “responsibility” and the phrase “personal responsibility” did not enter written English until the Constitutional Convention in 1787. Of course, the Framers did not pioneer the concept of man as a personally responsible agent. That notion, […]