Refugees, Leadership, Sexual Equality, Cowardice, Free Speech, Trial Marriage


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In Defense Of Refugees

Benjamin Wittes | Lawfare | 17th November 2015

American politicians are "strategically stupid" to call for the exclusion of Syrian refugees on the grounds that terrorists may slip through. If national security requires a perfect screening system, then America should stop issuing visas to anyone at all. To claim that refugees fleeing ISIS present a singular danger is "a backhanded way of saying we should make a different set of security presumptions about Arabs" — and invites a backlash (900 words)

The State Of Insecurity

Janan Ganesh | Financial Times | 16th November 2015 | | Read with 1Pass

After the Cold War ended the main job of democratic government was to enable economic growth. Politics became a branch of economics. What if the absolute priority now shifts back towards hard security? One consequence will be a change in the sort of leaders that we want. Clever young technocrats will go out of fashion. Older leaders with military and life experience will be more in demand (767 words)

Sexual Liberty And Its Discontents

Patricia Marino | The Kramer Is Now | 16th November 2015

Liberals generally favour sexual liberty — but what about sexual equality (as distinct from gender equality)? "There are going to be sexual winners and losers. There may be a sexual 1% and a sexual 99% ... It seems especially egregious if people who are good, kind, and sexually generous turn out to be the ones not getting any sex and people who are unreciprocating assholes do great. It doesn't seem fair" (980 words)

Cowardice And Bravery

Theodore Dalrymple | City Journal | 15th November 2015

"François Hollande called the attacks cowardly, but if there was one thing the attackers were not (alas, if only they had been), it was cowardly. A man who knows that he is going to die in committing an act, no matter how atrocious, is not a coward. This establishes that bravery is not by itself a virtue, that in order for it to be a virtue it has to be exercised in pursuit of a worthwhile goal" (535 words)

Why Can’t I Shout At Brian?

R. Lackner | Yale Record | 16th November 2015

Contains multiple uses of the F- word, but in a good cause. "On November 10, 2015, I had my voice silenced. On that day, I was told that I was not allowed to yell 'F**K BRIAN' at the top of my lungs simply because it was 'disruptive' and 'making everyone in the class, especially Brian, feel very uncomfortable.' As I sat, stunned, I wondered if I had misinterpreted the values of the university" (588 words)

A Temporary Marriage

Vicki Larson | Aeon | 16th November 2015

In praise of trial marriage, or marriage limited by contract, for couples without children. Margaret Mead favoured easily dissolved marriages for young people, with the option of a more binding commitment for childbearing. "Our current contract – ‘until death’ – might have worked when people didn’t live all that long". A renewable contract would require partners to say "I choose you again" every five or ten years (868 words)

Video of the day: Syria's War

What to expect: Vox explainer. How Syria collapsed into civil war. The warring parties and their supporters (5'30")

Thought for the day

Lack of money is the root of all evil
George Bernard Shaw

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