The Locker Room

October 2, 2009

Boycott Nike

Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 3:30 PM

I never thought I'd be saying this but the anti-globalization kooks have gotten it right--albeit for the wrong reasons--it's time to boycott Nike. The company has decided to relinquish its position on the US Chamber of Commerce board because of the position that the Chamber has taken against the Waxman-Markey takeover of the American energy industry bill--aka cap and trade. Of course Nike manufactures most of its shoes in China, a country that has no intention of imposing these silly anti-global warming taxes and regulations on its industries. So let's see, the US passes Waxman-Markey driving up the costs of shoes, and everything else, made in the US giving Nike a competitive advantage over its American made competition. But of course, Nike's position is all about saving the planet. It's just a coincidence that their bottom line will be enhanced. (Talk about Baptists and Bootleggers)

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Everyone needs to laugh on Friday afternoon

Posted by Dr. Michael Sanera at 2:22 PM

The Ig Nobel Awards were awarded yesterday. The winners are here. I especially like:

ECONOMICS: Executives of four Icelandic banks for showing how tiny banks can become huge banks, and then become tiny banks again.

PHYSICS: Katherine Whitcome, Liza Shapiro and Daniel Lieberman for figuring out why pregnant women don't tip over.

LITERATURE: The Irish national police for issuing 50 tickets to one Prawo Jazdy, which in Polish means "driver's license."

PUBLIC HEALTH: Elena Bodnar, Raphael Lee and Sandra Marijan for inventing a brassiere than can be converted into a pair of gas masks.

MATHEMATICS: Gideon Gono and the Zimbabwean Reserve Bank for printing bank notes in denominations from 1 cent, to $100 trillion.

 

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Military History: Dead or Alive

Posted by David J. Koon at 11:59 AM

Dr. Kickler-

A cut-and-dry definition of military history certainly isn't easy to nail down. Sure, military history involves strategy and tactics but at the margins, the line begins to blur. Because the new form of military history has invited scholars outside the discipline to explore topics related to warfare, we saw a great deal of cross-pollination with other subjects but also confusion and concern as to its direction.

As you noted, the social history of war won't completely supplant the study of the hard, practice of war because the former will always require the latter. But to what extent the social history of warfare will overshadow traditional military history--I argue, not much. The Society for Military History's 2009 Distinguished Book Awards:

  • Ingo Trauschweizer, The Cold War U.S. Army: Building Deterrence for Limited War.
  • Jamel Ostwald, Vauban Under Siege: Engineering Efficiency and Martial Vigor in the War of the Spanish Succession.
  • Andy Wiest, Vietnam's Forgotten Army: Heroism and Betrayal in the ARVN.
  • Philip Sabin, Hans van Wees, and Michael Whitby, ed. The Cambridge History of Greek and Roman Warfare.

All of these books deal heavily in the conduct of war, even Trauschweizer's book which is about armed operations of the Cold War. And as Eastern Michigan University professor Robert Citino said "The truth is, as deeply as [military historians] probe the culture of war, they will still want to ground themselves in the event itself, as opposed to to its later interpretation, its memory, or its instrumentalization."

The bottom line: military history will still be primarily concerned with the conduct of war, as it should.  Though today's military history is not your grandfathers' military history, the inclusion of subjects formerly outside the scope of the discipline, and with international conflict continuing to intensify, military history's stock in academia will continue to rise.

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Health care reform: cut out the regulatory middlemen

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 11:27 AM

Over at the new-and-improved StateHouseCall.org, I look at a study of RomneyCare's impact on employer-provided insurance. It seems to be a lot of regulations that make insurance more expensive for employers and employees and more people opting for flexible spending accounts to deal with higher out-of-pocket costs.

Maybe at the national level, they should just cut out the additional regulations and focus on improving health savings accounts, which already account for 20 percent of the market.

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Re: Is conservatism brain-dead?

Posted by Paul Chesser at 10:55 AM

Rick, thanks for the heads-up that the article is in the Sunday Post. Now I know where I can plunk down $6 at Borders after church for the privilege of reading it on actual newsprint!

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Is Conservatism Brain-Dead?

Posted by Rick Henderson at 10:24 AM

That's the provocative title of an op-ed published in today's Washington Post by Steve Hayward, who'll be speaking Monday at the Shaftesbury Society lunch here at JLF.

Hayward sees a lot of positive ferment on the populist right, from talk-show hosts to best-selling authors of red-meat books by the likes of Michelle Malkin and Ann Coulter, but wonders, where are the intellectuals? Who's developing the ideas that can move America past its often-furious reaction against the Obama agenda toward policies that enhance freedom and limited government -- and more important, who's transmitting that message in popular venues like talk radio?

Of course, it's hard to say whether conservative intellectuals are simply out of interesting ideas, or if the reading public simply finds their ideas boring. Both possibilities (and they are not mutually exclusive) should prompt some self-criticism on the right. Conservatism has prospered most when its attacks on liberalism have combined serious alternative ideas with populist enthusiasm. When the ideas are absent, the movement has nothing to offer -- except opposition. That doesn't work for long in American politics.


Hayward offers recommendations, but it does offer some genuine challenges to those who think that channeling the outrage expressed at tea parties and town halls is sufficient to restore conservative self-government.

Read the whole thing.

(Update: The op-ed is dated Sunday, so it's online now but won't be available in print for a couple of days.)

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Gandhi but not Mises

Posted by Dr. Michael Sanera at 09:13 AM

Google is highlighting Gandhi's birthday today with this on its homepage.  Somehow they forgot to take note of Ludwig von Mises birthday last Tuesday.  Many would argue that Mises' ideas benefited humanity more than Gandhi's.
 

 

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Watch out for the garbage police

Posted by Dr. Michael Sanera at 08:11 AM

A new state law implemented yesterday makes it illegal for landfills to accept plastic bottles. Thus, if you throw them in your trash, instead of recycling them, you will be aiding and abetting criminal activity.

The N&O story here contains a photo of plastic bottles in a recycling bin. The caption is priceless: "Starting today, plastic bottles will be banned from state landfills, but the state has no enforcement plan." (emphasis added)  Now let's keep it that way.

The legislators who passed this crazy law better start thinking about their political future.  There is a huge and vocal backlash against the garbage police, the lawn watering police, the improper tree trimming police, and, the latest, the better cut your lawn properly police.
 

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Wake County Public School System rejects proposed study of "diversity" policy

Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 06:59 AM

In a September 11, 2009 memo from Assistant Superintendent David Holdzkom to Superintendent Del Burns, Holdzkom lists external research projects approved and not approved by his Evaluation and Research office.

Holdzkom's office did not approve a project on race, class, and student assignment proposed by Sheneka Williams of the University of Georgia. It is possible that it was a poorly conceived study, so why not work with the researcher to get the study into shape? If that is not possible, why not approve (or conduct) a study that examines these factors?

If the Wake County Public School System is proud of its busing policy, then what is the problem?

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In case you missed it ...

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 05:52 AM

WNCN asked the John Locke Foundation for reaction to Gov. Perdue's new executive order regarding state employees and gifts from private contractors.

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This weekend on Carolina Journal Radio

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 05:43 AM

Thousands of high school seniors across North Carolina will turn their attention soon to college decisions. As they do, they’ll want to avoid pitfalls that could set them up for major problems later in life. That’s the message Jenna Ashley Robinson delivers in a new Pope Center report and in the latest edition of Carolina Journal Radio.

Now that a new state law has taken effect banning plastic bottles from North Carolina landfills, Roy Cordato will join us to discuss the pros and cons of recycling.

Plus we’ll add more fuel to the health-care debate. You’ll hear N.C. Medical Society CEO Bob Seligson and Joe Coletti offer different perspectives on health-care reform from a recent panel discussion. And Tim Phillips of Americans for Prosperity will raise questions about President Obama’s health-care claims.

We’ve all heard that the pen is mightier than the sword. American Spectator publisher and former Regnery Publishing head Alfred Regnery offered some evidence to support that old saying during his recent Civitas Conservative Leadership Conference speech. Regnery highlighted books that shaped both the conservative movement and world history. You’ll hear highlights from that presentation and a one-on-one discussion about the future of the conservative movement.

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Today's Carolina Journal Online features

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 05:15 AM

This week's Carolina Journal Online Friday interview features a conversation with Mark McNeilly about his book, Sun Tzu and the Art of Business.

Terry Stoops' guest Daily Journal pokes holes in the arguments for a longer school day and longer school year in North Carolina schools.

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