culture – Fragments Against Ruin http://tonywoodlief.com Wed, 11 Oct 2017 02:11:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 Yes, you’ve come to the right place http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/03/30/yes-youve-come-right-place/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/03/30/yes-youve-come-right-place/#comments Thu, 30 Mar 2017 18:38:23 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=5416 Redesigning my blog was not a rational decision. I mean, consider the facts. Fact One: Nobody reads any more. The data are pretty conclusive. We’re all eye-glued to our apps, or gaming, or enjoying the golden age of television. Sometimes all three at once. Nobody wastes time on long sentences stacked like shelves in a musty …

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How we talk about good and evil http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/08/28/how-we-talk-about-good-and-evil/ Wed, 28 Aug 2013 14:17:37 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3711 Those of you who caught my first essay, in which I argued that the layman no longer has adequate language to discuss good and evil, and who did not subsequently spit out your coffee while sputtering with outrage, might appreciate the second essay, in which I suggest how we might return to a language of …

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The lost conservative mind http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/08/19/the-lost-conservative-mind/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/08/19/the-lost-conservative-mind/#comments Mon, 19 Aug 2013 12:21:21 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3703 I recently read Russell Kirk’s The Conservative Mind, and composed a thought about it in relation to the state of this country, which perhaps more than ever before mirrors the state of man today—outwardly self-reliant, inwardly flailing. My thought is that we are yanking free the anchors, worrying loose the cables, and where once this …

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White ashes http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/03/21/white-ashes/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/03/21/white-ashes/#comments Thu, 21 Mar 2013 12:41:21 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3653 Last I checked there were 36,000 mentions of Jimmy Fallon in the news, and 8,820 of Kermit Gosnell. It’s understandable if you haven’t heard of Gosnell. He’s a Philadelphia abortionist on trial for, among other things, murdering newborns by snipping their spines with scissors. He did this after failing to murder them while some portion …

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Sodas and guns and minimum virtue http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/03/20/sodas-and-guns/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/03/20/sodas-and-guns/#comments Wed, 20 Mar 2013 15:02:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3649 On the radio I heard a shill for some agglomeration of sugary drink manufacturers inveigh against NYC mayor Bloomberg’s attempted regulation of soda sizes. “We believe New Yorkers are smart enough to make these decisions for themselves,” he said. If you’ve been to New York, if you’ve been to America, then you might be tempted …

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Cheaper by the dozen http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/02/13/cheaper-by-the-dozen/ Wed, 13 Feb 2013 14:06:48 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3622 There is a difference between being anti-intellectual and being anti-intellect, and this is where Russell Jacoby foundered, in his essay last year about the lack of intellectualism among conservatives. As Peter Lawler notes, it’s shoddily done for want of defining terms, which is a frequent flaw in Chronicle of Higher Ed essays about conservatism. There …

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On the Tweedledumbing of America http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/11/01/on-the-tweedledumbing-of-america/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/11/01/on-the-tweedledumbing-of-america/#comments Tue, 02 Nov 2010 02:24:39 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=2979 In the closing hours the advertisements are redoubled; we see the candidates peddling their functional families, juxtaposed with a grim gallery of closed factories and soup lines and dead children, for which the fresh-faced candidates’ grainy-faced opponents are responsible, either in the past or the future or both. We are urged to vote, because this …

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There’s no program for fixing rotten http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/04/30/theres-no-program-for-fixing-rotten/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/04/30/theres-no-program-for-fixing-rotten/#comments Fri, 30 Apr 2010 14:21:07 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=2363 The thing you run into, when you are in the business of saving the world from itself, is that there is no lever marked: “PULL HERE TO SAVE WORLD.” It fascinates me to see intelligent thinkers reason out top-down solutions to symptoms caused by a soul-sickness that will not be fixed with federal programs or …

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The new Conservatism http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/02/21/the-new-conservatism/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/02/21/the-new-conservatism/#comments Sun, 21 Feb 2010 14:33:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=2161 Mickey Edwards explains why he didn’t go to CPAC, the annual Conservative self-lovefest, arguing that the traditional conservatism of America has been supplanted by a state-aggrandizing European-style conservatism. I’m not sure if the shift is even that intellectual, or if it’s simply that Conservatives — like members of any tribe facing an enemy tribe — …

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Christian America? http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/02/14/christian-america/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2010/02/14/christian-america/#comments Mon, 15 Feb 2010 03:26:13 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=2124 Maybe instead of pouring all this energy into haggling over claims in watered-down, non-primary source, lowest-common-denominator, utterly de-contextualized, ponderous textbooks, we ought to try harder to get kids to read more, and read more of what matters. Does anyone really think that one sentence about Cesar Chavez or Samuel Gompers is going to be the clincher between …

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