Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes and Politics
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From America’s preeminent columnist, named by the Financial Times the most influential commentator in the nation, the long-awaited collection of Charles Krauthammer’s essential, timeless writings.
A brilliant stylist known for an uncompromising honesty that challenges conventional wisdom at every turn, Krauthammer has for decades dazzled readers with his keen insight into politics and government. His weekly column is a must-read in Washington and across the country. Now, finally, the best of Krauthammer’s intelligence, erudition and wit are collected in one volume.
Readers will find here not only the country’s leading conservative thinker offering a passionate defense of limited government, but also a highly independent mind whose views—on feminism, evolution and the death penalty, for example—defy ideological convention. Things That Matter also features several of Krauthammer’s major path-breaking essays—on bioethics, on Jewish destiny and on America’s role as the world’s superpower—that have profoundly influenced the nation’s thoughts and policies. And finally, the collection presents a trove of always penetrating, often bemused reflections on everything from border collies to Halley’s Comet, from Woody Allen to Winston Churchill, from the punishing pleasures of speed chess to the elegance of the perfectly thrown outfield assist.
With a special, highly autobiographical introduction in which Krauthammer reflects on the events that shaped his career and political philosophy, this indispensible chronicle takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the fashions and follies, the tragedies and triumphs, of the last three decades of American life.
Arts because, the terse NEA memo explained, ‘teaching students to draw the human figure is revisionist and stifles creativity.’ ” Add some dung, though, and you’ve got yourself a show. The role of the artist has changed radically in the last century and a half. It was once the function of the artist to represent beauty and transcendence and possibly introduce it into the life of the beholder. With the advent of photography and film, the perfect media for both representation and narration, art
paper revealing the structure of DNA, they noted drily: “It has not escaped our notice that the specific pairing [i.e., zipper-like structure of DNA] we have postulated immediately suggests a possible copying mechanism for the replication of the genetic material.” For hundreds of years humans had known that hereditary traits are transmitted from parent to child. But they hadn’t a clue as to how. Watson and Crick had just provided the clue. Wiles, however, is due homage not just for his genius
has tempered. This circumspection stems from two decades of revisionist scholarship that stresses the reformist impulses of the ancien régime and the murderous impulses of the revolutionary regime that followed. Simon Schama’s Citizens is but the culmination of this trend. But the receptivity to such revisionism stems from something deeper: the death of doctrinaire socialism, which in France had long claimed direct descent from the revolution. Disillusion at the savage failure of the revolutions
neighborhood, church, Rotary club, PTA, the voluntary associations that Tocqueville understood to be the genius of America and source of its energy and freedom. Moreover, the greatest threat to a robust, autonomous civil society is the ever-growing Leviathan state and those like Obama who see it as the ultimate expression of the collective. Obama compounds the fallacy by declaring the state to be the font of entrepreneurial success. How so? It created the infrastructure—roads, bridges, schools,
forever respectful of the work carried on by my colleagues and grateful for my own seven years there. Medicine—and particularly hospital medicine, which lives in a sea of human suffering—has a way of beating callowness out of even the most self-possessed youth. Its other invaluable residue is best described by Arthur Conan Doyle, himself a physician: “The moral training to keep a confidence inviolate, to act promptly on a sudden call, to keep your head in critical moments, to be kind yet