Dynamist Blog

What Does 200 Calories Look Like

calories-in-kiwi-fruit-s.jpg A pictorial essay. I can't agree with the opening statement that "When you consider that an entire plate of broccoli contains the same number of Calories as a small spoonful of peanut butter, you might think twice the next time you decide what to eat." Broccoli and peanut butter aren't substitutes. The doughnut-bagel tradeoff is interesting, though. (Via Design Observer.)

Some Useful Links for Alan Wolfe

Alan Wolfe concluded his Sunday NYTBR review of Dinesh D'Souza's latest hackwork with the following sentence: "I look forward to the reaction from decent conservatives and Republicans who will, if they have any sense of honor, distance themselves, quickly and cleanly, from the Rishwain research scholar at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University." I realize that the Book Review can have long lead times--I have a review coming out next Sunday that I submitted in late October--but the lag is shorter for topical books. So I have to wonder whether Wolfe has willfully overlooked the strong negative reaction to the book that has, in fact, come from "decent conservatives." He can find that reaction conveniently catalogued by Eric Scheie here and here (via InstaPundit, whom Wolfe would almost certainly consider a conservative.) Wolfe reviewed The Future and Its Enemies, along with a number of conservative works, here.

I look forward to the attention the NYTBR will lavish on such intellectually serious books as Brink Lindsey's The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed American Politics and Culture and Brian Doherty's Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement. Remember the definitive review they ran of Ryan Sager's The Elephant in the Room: Evangelicals, Libertarians and the Battle to Control the Republican Party? Neither do I.

UPDATE: Alan Wolfe emails, "There was indeed a longish lead time on the review, as you suggest. I am extremely pleased to see so many on the right expressing hostility to DD's book."

That's Why They Call It the Nanny State

California legislators are never without new ideas for regulations and bans. The latest proposal is to make spanking children under 3 a crime, punishable by a $1,000 fine or up to a year in jail. Debra Saunders makes the basic case against the bill. Though I don't have kids, I'm not as opposed to spanking as other enlightened folk; my brothers and I were spanked occasionally (not terribly hard), with some good and no ill effects. Smacking a 2-year-old's hand as she reaches toward, say, the flame on the kitchen stove seems to me a lot more persuasive than trying to explain the dangers of fire. And, on a purely anecdotal basis, psychological punishment seems to create much more long-term resentment.

All you spanking foes and child-rearing experts don't need to write to explain what a terrible parent I'd be. Even if I had kids, my Pennsylvania-reared husband would never countenance such punishment. Spanking, like gun ownership, is one of the characteristics of southern culture that non-southerners find barbaric. It persists in diaspora, especially among those who don't assimilate into the dominant culture of, say, California. A spanking ban would therefore have a wildly disproportionate effect on conservative Christians and on blacks. With zealous enforcement, California could get the incarceration rates of black mothers up there with those of young, black men.

Straw Poll

Pajamas Media has launched a straw poll of presidential contencers. You can vote once a week, on the reasonable assumption that people change their minds as the campaign progresses. Early results are from the network's bloggers, including me. I can only assume--or hope--that the strong showing by Dennis Kucinich reflects strategic voting by Republicans. (I voted for Bill Richardson and Mark Sanford, though I don't consider Sanford a serious contender.)


I love these UPS commercials. Not nuts about the website, though. Would it be too much to provide a direct link to the TV spots?

UPDATE: Thanks to reader James Rait who sent this direct link to the ads and a background article. Reader John Holton, however, has a complaint about the online edition: "These UPS ads are entertaining enough, but not when they take over your computer in the form of a rollover ad and start voicing over whatever you're playing as background music...." What an obnoxious way to undercut a brilliant campaign.

Who Reads This Junk?

I wondered who might actually buy Dinesh D'Souza's new book, which looks to be a crassly commercial attempt to pander to the worst instincts of conservative culture warriors. Then I got Lou Sheldon's latest mass email, plugging the book, with three links to Amazon and copy that looks to be straight off the jacket. So if you're wondering who out there finds the Islamist response to American "decadence" reasonable, Lou Sheldon is your man. (I suspect, though cannot prove, that D'Souza is mostly in it for the money.) I wonder what he thinks of the 1949 church dance that so shocked Sayyid Qutb.

UPDATE: Greetings Andrew Sullivan readers. I have another D'Souza-related post at the top of the main page.

UPDATE2: Here's a link to a more-restrained plug on the TVC website.

ArchivedDeep Glamour Blog ›

Blog Feed

Articles Feed