Seattle Under Siege by Christopher Rufo
Clearly and logically argued, Rufo explains the problem of homelessness in Seattle. Bad logic abounds as leaders misidentify the causes of homelessness, misdefine the meaning of homelessness, and misevaluate proposed solutions for homelessness. All this somehow benefits the groups responsible for implementation, either in the form of money, power, or influence. Even if one doesn't necessarily take much interest in this issue, the article does a great job in illustrating how various interest groups profit from societal ills and how some problems cannot be solved but only contained.
President Trump Is Right About Syria ... Even if He's Wrong by Joseph Mussomeli
Everyone has weighed in on this issue, and there have been not a few shameless instances of hypocrisy. For those wanting a relatively quick and comprehensive overview and assessment of the matter, I recommend this article. Mussomeli, who worked as a diplomat for thirty years, generally approves the decision to pull out of Syria, but explains how mistakes were made in announcing this--which probably pushed Gen. Mattis to quit more than the idea of discontinuing intervention.
Abortion Lead Cause of Death in 2018 With 41 Million Killed by Thomas Williams
A short yet devastating report on the global magnitude of abortion. Unfortunately, most advocates of abortion will probably only see a large number, and not a whole population of human beings murdered. As Stalin said, "A single death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic." In recent news, Democrats have held to their promise to support the culture of death on their first day in office by attempting to restore funding to international nonprofit organizations that perform abortions and sterilizations in other countries.
Dave Barry's Year in Review 2018 by Dave Barry
For anyone who misses most of the news throughout the year, this is a good summary that happens to be humorous as well. Barry takes care to make his criticism bipartisan, with some justified jabs at Trump along with particularly obnoxious Democrats (though I still think he was pulling the punches on this group) and concluding that Americans are all idiots. Fair enough.
Mass in Extraordinary Form Draws Refugees From Church Turmoil by Judy Roberts
Great news for traditional Catholics (or bad news, depending on just how "traditional" the Catholic may be): more people are attending the traditional Latin Mass. Obviously, the scandals and fecklessness of Church leaders play a part in this, but there has also been a growing hunger for serious devotion and beauty in the Mass. I anticipate growing pains from both the new people participating in the Latin Mass as well as those who have been doing this for many years now. Meeting the higher standards will be a challenge, as will learning to welcome new people in a community that has largely been pushed to the margins for so many years.
'Socialist' Is the New Libertarian by Kevin Williamson
Somehow this Williamson article passed me by until this week. It is a long and glorious analysis of the rhetoric behind economic systems. What people on the Left mean by 'socialism' is 'all the good stuff the government does' while people on the Right tend to define socialism as 'all the ways government enslaves the people.' I tend to agree with the latter definition, but Williamson correctly points out how people want a little more protection/support since capitalism necessarily involves more risk and change which will inevitably result in leaving certain people behind. Vox writer Will Wilkinson actually seemed to agree with Williamson, but then stupidly endorses leftist candidates (it's Vox, after all), particularly Elizabeth Warren, treating the economy as a golden goose who works for the good of all and doesn't need to be fed. Williamson responds that the welfare state Wilkinson and Warren want will cost a ton of money and probably not work because the American government is especially bad at providing public goods.