Dignity Panel

From First Thoughts

On Morning Joe a few minutes ago, Pat Buchanan described the fear behind the death panel debate as the fear that old people without anyone around who loves them will be steered in their final years toward elective euthanasia. Surely the steering power of a government authorized to command and . . . . Continue Reading »

Rise of the Techno-Rubes

From First Thoughts

Every big idea that works is marked by simplicity, by clarity. You can understand it when you hear it, and you can explain it to people. Social Security: Retired workers receive a public pension to help them through old age. Medicare: People over 65 can receive taxpayer-funded health care. Welfare: . . . . Continue Reading »

Aesthetic Politics

From First Thoughts

The New York Times reports: guys have gone wild with their hair! Now it’s well nigh impossible to tell what a man (okay, lad) does or who he is just by assessing his do. It’s like Renaissance Italy — freaks prowling proudly everywhere, completely outside the envelope of fashion . . . . Continue Reading »

Politics and Nature

From First Thoughts

Pardon me for writing a linkless post. This is the world that we live in, at least for the time being. Apropos of recent Lawlerian and Kenneallian comments on the allure of History and the trouble with health care, has anyone else been struck dumb walking across their living rooms by footage of . . . . Continue Reading »

This Day In Irony

From First Thoughts

I’ve alluded elsewhere to the fascinating way in which Obama parlayed his mixed African American (as opposed to African-American) heritage so as to occupy a space in American cultural and political life just ever-so-different from that occupied by black Americans generally and other black . . . . Continue Reading »

IKEA and the Disposable Economy

From First Thoughts

Megan , who’s started a dialogue with Ellen Ruppel Shell (author of the new book Cheap ), has some ruminations on the infamous maker of shelves with short shelf lives. Lots to digest, including some deee-lightful ancedotes from the bad old days of furniture so durable you seemed to be stuck . . . . Continue Reading »

Youth, Technology, Modernity, Time

From First Thoughts

Thanks to Alan Jacobs , I have read the latest excerpt from The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs . “I will restore your sense of childlike wonder,” he vows. “There is nothing you can do to stop me.” Hold that thought. The excerpt in question reads thus: Did you know that now, . . . . Continue Reading »