I had read and enjoyed both The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings (LOTR) trilogy as a young adult in the 1980s, but I could not get through The Silmarillion, which I imagine is a minimum requirement of true Tolkien fandom.
I know I supposedly summed up my thoughts on Ken Burns’s and Lynn Novick’s The Vietnam War, but I realized I had neglected to lodge one final complaint. While I don’t remember if the narrator (whom I took to be the voice of Burns & Novick) makes this claim, many interviewees act as if United States citizens had never opposed their government’s wars until Vietnam. The problem with this is that, in our moment of cultural backlash against the 1960s and 1970s, people may attribute opposition to today’s wars to be rooted in cultural developments of the 1960s and 1970s and hence dismiss it.
Everybody should watch the Public Broadcasting Service Independent Lens documentary Newtown. The appropriate responses should then be a determination to reduce violence. Is gun control part of that? Probably, but it can’t be the only part. Is widening access to quality mental health care essential? Yes, but that’s not what I’m talking about either. Continue reading
You can read Stanley McChrystal’s op-ed online.
Fred Kaplan writes for Slate that President Obama has called it quits in Afghanistan, to which I say darn right and about time.
But how many dead and wounded soldiers ago did he realize it was hopeless?
In the spring of 2009, Obama announced his decision to send what turned out to…
This is an excerpt from a question and answer session Senator Graham gave at the end of a talk in North Augusta, South Carolina on October 1, 2012. In the entire audio recording, this excerpt begins at 5:46 and ends at 12:17.
Congressman Joe Wilson added a few remarks after Senator Graham finished.