In Literature as in life, lawyers are swarming like locusts. The hit movie made from John Grisham's novel "The Firm" (Tom Cruise's first movie since he played a lawyer in 'A Few Good Men") is about nasty lawyers working for the mob and portrays the government (run by and for lawyers) as not much nicer.
Lani Guinier deserves some sympathy. She is an academic and a liberal Democratic activist, so she probably cannot understand what the fuss was about. She probably rarely associates with people who think her ideas are strange. (After McGovern lost 49 states in 1972, a member of Manhattan's liberal literati exclaimed in bewilderment, "But everyone I know voted for him!") Many of Guinier's ideas are extreme, undemocratic and anticonstitutional.
One of them lied. Anita Hill's charges were as detailed as Clarence Thomas's denials were categorical. Now comes a book, "The Real Anita Hill" by David Brock, that dismantles the myth that Hill is a conservative Republican who was driven from Washington by sexual harassment.
Herewith an understated introduction to the practice of pediatrics in the inner city: "The young child's attempts to master the age-appropriate fears of monsters under the bed are severely undermined when the child needs to sleep under the bed to dodge real bullets or attempt to screen out the violent fights of his or her caregivers." That is from a recent article in The Journal of the American Medical Association, which reported a survey of elementary school-age children in New Orleans: 90...
Clinton's Washington is awash with "the fatal conceit." The phrase is from the late Friedrich von Hayek, Nobel Prize-winning economist. The conceit is the belief that governing elites can make the future conform to their plans, and should do so because the alternative-allowing markets to allocate resources and opportunities-makes the preferences of the untutored many superior to the planning of the expert few.
On Oct. 29 The New York Times reported that Gen. Dmitri Volkogonov, in charge of oversight of Russia's intelligence archives, had declared the espionage accusation against Alger Hiss "completely groundless." He said, "Not a single document, and a great amount of materials has been studied, substantiates the allegation." He made this declaration at the behest of Hiss, and of John Lowenthal, who traveled to Moscow and whom the Times described as "a historian and filmmaker who has long studied the...
Like Lenin and Trotsky returning from Swiss and Siberian exiles, the American left, at long last a winner of a presidential election, has, as it were, surged forth from the Finland station and stormed the Winter Palace, so now America's propertied classes are at the mercy of ...
Publishing poetry has been likened to tossing rose petals into the Grand Canyon and waiting for echoes. You might think that would also describe publishing (when the public thinks politicians are valuable only as a source of protein) a biography of an unglamorous president who was deeply unpopular most of his time in office, who left office not merely disliked but disdained-and before most of today's readers were politically awake.
Is Bill Clinton our Henry of Navarre (1553-1610)? Henry, King of France, was raised a Protestant but twice embraced Catholicism for political reasons, once with words that could be the credo of many a politician: "Paris is well worth a mass."Is Clinton a chastened, converted liberal?
The more thoughtful half of the Bush-Quayle team has recently been brimming over with thoughts, two of which merit more amplification than he gave them. Quayle says Perot "has contempt for the Constitution." And Quayle says the election of Perot would deepen the problem of "the deadlock between the elected branches" of the government. "So let us return to the tried and true.
Who, besides Bill Clinton and George Bush, is responsible for Ross Perot's remarkable political rise? Owen Wister is. Ninety years ago this week he published a novel, "The Virginian." It pioneered a literary genre, the Western; it invented the cowboy of popular imagination, and it defined a region, the West, as a repository of American yearnings and regrets.