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Recent articles of note

"Liberals are killing art: How the left became obsessed with ideology over beauty," The New Republic, by Jed Perl

"Seeds of doubt: An activist's controversial crusade against genetically modified crops," The New Yorker, by Michael Specter [Profile of Vandana Shiva]

"Revved up: How Al Sharpton became Obama's go-to man on race," Politico, by Glenn Thrush

"America in decay: The sources of political dysfunction," Foreign Affairs, by Francis Fukuyama

"How plagues really work," Aeon, by Wendy Orent

"'It's only a matter of time': Scientists consider geoengineering a cooler planet," Motherboard, by Brian Merchant

"Poll: Most Americans want to criminalize pre-teens playing unsupervised," Reason, by Lenore Skenazy


Washington Post joins campaign to de-legitimize Redskins name

redskins logo

This week the Washington Post editorial board decided that it will no longer use the word “Redskins” when referring to the Washington football team that has used the name for the past 80 years. The team name is a “slur” and offends many, the editors say. The new policy will apply to editorials only, not the news and sports sections of the newspaper.

In doing so, the Washington Post joins a small number of campaigners that seek to force the Redskins owner, Daniel Snyder, and the National Football League (NFL), to change the team’s name. The campaign mainly consists of some Native American groups, Democratic Party politicians, certain sports commentators and assorted liberals. President Obama has also weighed in, saying the team ought to "think about changing" its name. Although small in number, they are influential and very prominent in the media.

However, the vast majority of Americans – about eight in 10, according to polls - are opposed to changing the team's name. It even appears that most Native Americans, perhaps up to 90 percent, are either not bothered by the name or see it as a compliment. A number of Native American high school teams call themselves the Redskins.

There's a good reason why most people are against changing the name: it is common sense. The anti-Redskins campaigners are cut off from the real world. Everyone but a small minority recognize that there is no racist intent or malice behind the name. Fans of the team have used the name with pride since it was introduced in the 1930s.

There is also something really odd and worrying about trying to claim the name is offensive: it seeks to re-write history. A team name that has had entirely positive connotations for decades, which is part of NFL tradition and lore, is now deemed offensive. That means that every time thousands of fans sing the fight song "Hail to the Redskins" after a touchdown, they are supposedly engaging in a racist act. We are all now meant to feel guilty about uttering the innocuous name. Continue reading→

Sorting fact from fiction in Ferguson


Same old racism? Actually the riots show how much has changed in the US.

Read my spiked article in full here.

Recent articles of note

"When the left turned against free speech," Reason, by Matt Welch

"The new regressives," PJ Media, by Victor Hansen Davis

"The case for reparations," The Atlantic, by Ta-Nehisi Coates

"The good of government: American conservatives need a positive view of government," First Things, by Roger Scruton

"Inequality in America: fact or fiction?" Real Clear Markets, by Diana Furchtgott-Roth

"How Jurgen Klinsmann plans to make U.S. soccer better (and less American)," The New York Times Magazine, by Sam Borden

Pikettymania: Thou shalt not doubt St Thomas


Why does any criticism of Thomas Piketty really rattle liberal observers?

Read my spiked article in full here.

Pricking the Piketty bubble


Capital in the Twenty-First Century is a thoroughly uninspiring, data-heavy dirge.

Read my review of Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty, in the spiked review of books, here.

A not-so Sterling attack on free speech

Clippers Sterling Basketball

The LA Clippers owner has been hounded out of the NBA for a speech crime.

Read my spiked article in full here.

The purge of gay-marriage heretics begins


The ousting of Brendan Eich from Mozilla because of his views on gay marriage sets a dangerous precedent.

Read my spiked article in full here.

Recent articles of note

"Al-Qa'ida, the second act: Why the global 'war on terror' went wrong," The Independent, by Patrick Cockburn

"How finance gutted manufacturing," Boston Review, by Suzanne Berger

"Why are so many traders (literally) killing themselves?" Bloomberg, by Barry Ritholtz

"Those nonsensical 'Google bus' attacks," Wall Street Journal, by Malchow

"Put the sex back in sex ed," Time, by Camille Paglia

"The seven most ridiculous things about the new ban bossy campaign," The Federalist, by Mollie Hemingway

"The ghost at the atheist feast: Was Nietzsche right about religion?" New Statesman, by John Gray [Review of The Age of Nothing, by Peter Watson; and Culture and the Death of God, by Terry Eagleton]

"The philosopher and the thief: Trespassing in the library of a dead genius," Harper's Magazine, by John Kaag

Who are the real bigots in the St. Pat’s spat?

Thumbnail : Who are the real bigots in the St. Pat’s spat?

Gay-rights groups are becoming the enforcers of social conformism.

Read my spiked article in full here.

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