Greg Gutfeld: Something funny is happening to the Democrats right now

By Greg Gutfeld Last year I got pretty emotional about what I saw coming. Especially in my city. Fewer cops on the street, while releasing violent felons onto the same street – meant more violence, more victims. You didn’t have to be miss Cleo to see that coming. …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

The Human Brain and Building for Human Beings

By James Howard Kunstler

The New Urbanists (Nurbs) were always reluctant to get into the nitty-gritty of aesthetics because they knew that their adversaries, especially the mandarins of architecture entrenched in the elite grad schools, were eager to use that as a truncheon to beat them up. The elites endorsed only one style, Modernism, which was not actually so much a style as a method of applied sadomasochism on the grand scale, seeking to punish and purify Western Civ for the traumas of two world wars, capitalism, and cultural hegemony. Thus, all previous architectural history that led to that carnage was consigned to a garbage barge floated out of sight of land and scuttled.

The Nurbs, however, were very market-driven, meaning they cared about what, in the way of townscape and houses, actually appealed to people, that is, to human neurology and cognition. They wanted to please people where they lived, rather than punish and purify them. That tended to mean traditional design, the very thing that elites had anathemized. But the Nurbs stopped short of endorsing outright the systems of antiquity that actually specified the methods for organizing buildings so as to please the brain—say, the books of Vitruvius from classical Rome, or the update of that by the Florentine, Alberti, or even Asher Benjamin’s early 1800s pattern book, The American Builder’s Companion, which showed common carpenters how to build houses like Greek Temples. Instead, the Nurbs came up with some simple, practical codes for their projects, like the rule that porches had to be a minimum of six feet deep—because that’s what’s necessary to allow human bodies to move around porch furniture.

So, by and by, along came the lonely figure of Nikos Salingaros, a mathematician down at the University of Texas, San Antonio, who was obsessed with the hideousness of the American built-scape and wanted desperately to help correct it. Salingaros latched onto Christopher Alexander, a precursor of, and godfather to, the New Urbanism movement, who had produced the highly influential book A Pattern Language back in the 1960s, which sought to explain to a bamboozled public how to make their daily environments more rewarding. Salingaros collaborated with Alexander in several book projects and eventually sought to compose an aesthetic code for building based on unlocking the mathematical secrets behind human cognition.

His work over many decades produced a concise book, modestly titled A Theory of Architecture (second edition from Vajra Books), in which he explains the fundamental proportioning relationships and hierarchies that will make buildings appear comprehensibly consistent with the laws of nature—and therefore let us feel better living among them. Take, for example, the matter of ornament. Ornament is one of the primary taboos of Modernism, which is to say it is absent from most of the buildings of our time. Its banishment derives partly from a stupid dogma that associates ornament with the great crimes of history (c.f., Adolf Loos, 1870-1933), and partly from the development of modern materials such as reinforced concrete, plate glass, and silicon gaskets that make …read more

Via:: American Conservative

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Kat Timpf: Dems blaming Republicans for ‘defund the police’ is sure sign of bigger problem

By Kat Timpf There has been much talk throughout conservative media regarding the claim from some Democrats that Republicans are behind the movement to “defund the police.” …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Germany’s Greens Are in Trouble. That is a Good Thing.

By James W. Carden

Recent polling out of Germany indicates that the race to succeed Angela Merkel is looking better and better for the incumbent Christian Democrats, who were thought to be in serious danger of being overtaken by the German Green Party only a couple of months ago. As recently as late April, the Green Party leader, 40-year-old former trampolinist Anna Baerbock, was being touted as a breath of fresh air after 16 years of the stodgy Merkel.

That was then.

By mid-June, a poll released by the Allensbach Institute showed the Christian Democratic Union ahead of the Greens by 8 percentage points: 29.5 percent to 21.5 percent. Over this past weekend, a new poll saw the Christian Democrats holding steady, while the Greens slipped another percentage point.

So with just about three months to go before German voters head to the polls, the Greens look like they’re on their back foot.

And a good thing too, because the Greens, in the person of Baerbock, represent some of the worst tendencies in Western liberalism, especially in her support of foreign intervention in the name of human rights. Indeed, Baerbock has made it a point to take a more hawkish stance than the conservative Laschet on Ukraine, which she supports for full NATO and E.U. membership. Baerbock has also called for sending military aid to Kiev, a policy that Merkel has long (and wisely) resisted. For this, Baerbock has drawn fire from one of the few remaining left, anti-imperialist outlets in the U.S., which has characterized her foreign policy as a combination of “aloof complacency, ignorance and aggressiveness.”

In an interview with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, Baerbock sounded like a German version of our own Samantha Power, asserting that she would consider deploying the Bundeswehr abroad even in the absence U.N. sanction, and noting that in some cases “action and inaction is sometimes a choice between plague and cholera…There are moments when military action can prevent the worst taking place.”

To no one’s surprise, Baerbock’s promise to support Kyiv come-what-may and her promise to scrap the Nord Stream 2 pipeline has won her praise from American neoconservatives. The NATO-funded Atlantic Council confidently predicts that “the Greens [sic] party would be aligned with the Biden administration on a slew of issues—despite its anti-establishment past. And that includes a tough line on Russia and China.”

Indeed, Baerbock has, consciously or not, adopted a number of the latest neocon talking points as her own, describing a world now divided between a “competition of systems: authoritarian powers versus liberal democracy.”

This is in stark contrast to the rhetoric of CDU front-runner Armin Laschet, who in a recent interview with the Financial Times expressed misgivings about waging liberal culture wars abroad. “I’m not sure,” said Laschet, “that always speaking out, loudly and aggressively, in public about a country’s human rights situation really leads to improvements on the ground.”

“Often you can reach more in …read more

Via:: American Conservative

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Jason Chaffetz: Biden’s ‘free money’ policies have loaded US with debt. Will interest rates take a hit next?

By Jason Chaffetz While Washington, D.C., continually talks about new, additional spending, the question we should be asking is, how do we even pay for old spending? …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Greg Gutfeld: The media’s many mistakes helps them, because they are impossible to track

By Greg Gutfeld A story that doesn’t have a villain, does not rate. A story that doesn’t unfold like a movie plot holds no interest for the reporter. A story that doesn’t make the reporter feel important always gets rewritten. …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Tucker Carlson: Only Texas has the ability to stop Biden’s disaster at the southern border

By Tucker Carlson ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight’ host slams the Biden administration’s handling of the crisis at the southern border, and says only Texas Gov. Abbott can stop the influx of migrants. …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

You Still Have to Bake the Cake, Bigot

By Jonathon Van Maren

The Cost of My Faith: How a Decision in My Cake Shop Took Me to the Supreme Court by Jack Phillips (Salem Books: 2021), 256 pages.

Three years after securing a landmark victory for religious liberty at the U.S. Supreme Court, on June 15 baker Jack Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop was ordered to pay a fine by a Denver County Court for declining to bake a cake celebrating a customer’s sex change. It did not matter that the plaintiff, Autumn Scardina, was targeting Phillips for his religious beliefs, or that Phillips has spent nearly a decade fighting the LGBT activists trying to destroy his life. Once again, Phillips found that his faith was a flashpoint in the fight between conscience rights and so-called sexual freedom.

Scardina, who identifies as transgender, called Phillips to ask for the cake the very same day in June 2018 that the Supreme Court ruled that Phillips had been discriminated against because of his faith in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. “The plaintiff said that the goal of the lawsuit was to ‘correct the errors of Jack’s thinking,” Phillips’s lawyer, Ryan Bangert of Alliance Defending Freedom, told me. “That if the case were dismissed, he would simply request another cake the following day and start the process all over again.” Scardina had previously requested a cake that featured Satan smoking a joint.

Jack Phillips released his memoir The Cost of My Faith: How a Decision in My Cake Shop Took Me to the Supreme Court in May this year, only a month before this latest Denver County Court order. The Cost of My Faith is a story of our times and for our times, a summation of the price Christians will increasingly pay for their beliefs in the decades ahead—and a road map for resistance. The book is the story of how a Colorado cakeshop became a culture war battleground; of how a private citizen found himself forced into the public spotlight; of how Christian faith has put not only bakers, but florists, wedding photographers, videographers, publishers, and t-shirt designers on a collision course with the forces of the sexual revolution.

When Phillips opened his shop on September 3, 1993—22 years before same-sex marriage would be legalized by the Supreme Court and decades before a cultural sea change made that possible—he and his wife had ground rules for the messages they would create at Masterpiece Cakeshop. Nothing “cruel or unkind or belittling,” nothing that “mocked or contradicted my faith,” no promotion of Halloween. He wouldn’t use alcohol in his baking, and at one point he declined to bake weed-shaped cookies for a marijuana shop. Phillips would serve anyone, but he wouldn’t say just anything. God, he writes, was the master of Masterpiece Cakeshop.

Customers became friends, Phillips writes, and he became part of the community. He made cakes of all sorts—quarterbacks, snowmen, teddy bears, Billy Graham, 43 countries and 49 states (he’s still waiting for Rhode Island). And then came the fateful day in 2012 when Charlie …read more

Via:: American Conservative

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.

Janice Dean: Cuomo hosts pricey fundraiser – does he really think he can avoid COVID answers, investigations?

By Janice Dean On Tuesday, June 29, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is hosting a $10,000 a plate fundraiser for his upcoming re-election campaign. …read more

Via:: Fox Opines

      

Invalid XML: 410 Gone Gone The requested resource/onca/xml is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.