Just some links

January 25, 2021

It's been a hard time, though this past week brought a restoration of sanity in the US Federal government--that's a big thing for the US, and really for the world.  But there's lots more insanity and grief yet to get through, before in the summer--we can hope?--we begin to glimpse a world that can recover from the multiple crazinesses of right now.

Till then, there's links, anyway.


Some good very visionary proposals for the challenges that the United States, and the world, faces going forward.


An unbelievable, yet really all-too-believable, story of a culture or cult of silence among France’s intellectuals.  


I worry that what we see here, peeking out under the corners of a disdain (not entirely unwarranted, perhaps) at people really freaked out by Trump and the GOP, is a romantic suspicion of liberalism, and a weird and vague hostility to the rule of law as a regulative ideal. Also, it is true that (as he himself points out here) Moyn’s popular essays are badly timed. But I think that, even if they weren’t given so immediate a contradiction by reality, they would still be mistaken.  I just don’t think his judgments are anchored in a clear-eyed picture of what is going on, but are skewed by his priors.


This is not shocking at all. So what exactly counts as “religion“ will of course be a matter of some discussion.


More than a bit hagiographical, this article on Robert Cato nonetheless underscores the fact that most of the research you will ever do for a book does not appear in that book.


Amazing.  “Over the period from July 1, 2019 to July 1, 2020, the nation grew by just 0.35%. This is the lowest annual growth rate since at least 1900. The new data also shows that when the 2020 census numbers are announced, the 2010-to-2020 decade growth rate could be the lowest in any decade since the first census was conducted in 1790.”


I missed this when it came out, but it’s typically great—Zadie Smith on Jordan Peele’s terrific Get Out: exploring whether it is not, as it were, claustrophobic enough.


Hmm: “restoring hope is an unusual topic for economists,” but this issue is too important to ignore, the authors of this piece say.  They are right.


Be well everyone.  Have hope.