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Friday Ephemera

Elsewhere (156)

Daniel Hannan on poverty and its alternatives: 

“Like slavery and apartheid,” Nelson Mandela told 20,000 people in Trafalgar Square ten years ago, “poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings.” They were inspiring words, and the crowd duly went wild. But the old man was talking utter, unadulterated bilge. Poverty is not “man-made”: it is the primordial condition of all living organisms, including humans. It is wealth that is “man-made.”

John Leo on the latest campus fundamentalism: 

The National Association of Scholars released a 260-page report on how far the new [definition] of “sustainability” has spread, particularly on campuses. Credentials can be earned in 1,438 distinct college programmes and its message now extends to such unlikely subjects as English composition, mathematics, art history and psychology… Under the argument that true sustainability requires an end to social oppression, the report says, the movement embraces identity politics, calls for the overthrow of patriarchal systems and misogynist bias, the virtual elimination of extraction of energy from fossil fuels, an end to industrial development in the underdeveloped world and a return to subsistence or near subsistence standards of living. The need to overthrow capitalism, though not supported by all, is a common and much discussed theme in the movement.

And Bill Whittle on 16-year-olds and voting: 

Teen voters, the younger the better, are exactly what the left is looking for. They know no history; they base all of their decisions on emotion; they have no real world experience in terms of what works and what does not. They haven’t the slightest idea of discipline or delayed gratification. They live in a world of fantasy and wish fulfilment; they make demands that cannot be met but they’re willing to settle for an ice-cream cone. They are utterly dependent on others; they’re desperate to conform to the cultural norm, and in general they are the perfect, pliable, ignorant, utterly emotional, reason-free, easily-manipulated vote farm that the progressives need for their power grab.

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