One-Way Cosmopolitanism

A major theme—perhaps clumsily conveyed—of yesterday’s post was that Americans should be able to keep their culture and local identity without shame.  As I noted, struggling rural communities are particularly susceptible to being swept away by large-scale immigration, legal or otherwise.  Thus, we see small South Carolina towns gradually hispanicize, turning into little replicas of various Latin American cultures, rather than the old Southern culture that predominated.

One often hears that Americans should be tolerant and open-minded to other cultures, and to extend maximum understanding and patience.  That is a generous and worthy view:  I don’t expect the Chinese foreign exchange students at our school to speak accent-less English and understand liberty their first day off the plane.  In that instance, we go out of our way to attempt to understand the cultural background from which those students came.

It’s another matter, though, when it involves the permanent or long-term relocation of foreign aliens to our land.  Remember the expression, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do?”  That rule always seems to apply to Americans—who are routinely criticized for being uncouth abroad—but never to any other ethnic group, and especially not to cultures outside of the West.

It’s an enduring frustration of mine:  one-way cosmopolitanism.

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Happy Columbus Day!

Today is Columbus Day in the United States, the day that commemorates Columbus’s voyage to the Americas in 1492.  It’s one of the most significant events in human history—as I tell my American History students, “we wouldn’t be here if Columbus hadn’t made his voyages”—yet the social justice, Cultural Marxist revisionist scolds want to do away with the holiday entirely, replacing it instead with “Indigenous People’s Day.”

The thrust of the proposed (or, as is the way with SJWs, demanded) name change is that Columbus was a genocidal, white male meanie who defrauded and murdered peace-loving Native Americans (who had the gall to mislabel Indians!), so instead we should celebrate the contributions of Stone Age cannibals.

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Lazy Sunday XXX: Trump, Part I

It’s hard to believe we’ve reached thirty Lazy Sundays.  I’ve found these posts are an excellent way to link to multiple posts simultaneously; I’ve written so many now that I occasionally forget that I’ve written some of them, but Lazy Sunday is always there to curate and aggregate those forgotten posts.

Indeed, today’s post marks 280 days of consecutive posting.  That’s forty weeks of at least one post per day.  Noah would be getting off the Ark right about now.

So, to celebrate the thirtieth week of posts—and to honor our amazing, if embattled, President—today’s edition of Lazy Sunday is dedicated to the God-Emperor himself, Donald J. Trump.

  • Indian Man Worships Trump as a God” – This little piece was a bit of a throwaway novelty, but I still find it amusing:  an Indian gentleman devoted himself to GEOTUS so intensely, his parents moved out of the house.  I was hoping some Twitter-savvy user would get this piece to Trump or Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and President Trump could use it as an opportunity to witness to this well-intentioned-but-misguided man.
  • Mueller Probe Complete, Trump Vindicated” – The subject of a recent TBT feature, I wrote this piece when the Mueller Report first broke and all indicators were that “Russian collusion” was, at best, way overblown.  Yes, yes—Mueller insisted that Trump wasn’t “exonerated,” but he and the Democrats had to admit sheepishly that the drum they’d been beating for nearly three years was busted (not that they actually did admit that).  Of course, now they’ve just changed from one scary Eastern European country to another with tales of “Ukrainian collusion” to bolster a bogus impeachment inquiry.  Sigh.
  • Symbolism and Trumpism” – An unfortunate side effect of Protestant efficiency and pragmatism is the lack of attention to symbols, which we tend to view with suspicion—“it might be an idol!”  But symbols matter immensely to uniting a people.  That’s the key insight this piece explores, care of an American Greatness essay about Trump’s ability to understand the need for and use of unifying symbols like the National Anthem, the American Flag, and so on.
  • Trump’s Economy and 2020” – President Trump can boast a hugely successful economy, almost directly as a result of his tax cuts and regulatory reforms.  After Trump’s election, I could almost physically sense a weight lifting off my shoulders, and those of millions of Americans—and I was doing okay even in President Obama’s moribund economy.  Even in 2016, with things gradually improving from the low-point of the Great Recession in 2009, the job market seemed tight.  By the time Trump was inaugurated in January 2017, phenomenal economic growth was well underway.  Here’s hoping that buoyant economy continues to roar through 2020.
  • “#MAGAWeek2019: President Trump’s Independence Day Speech“:  This post was a Subscribe Star exclusive, so you’ll have to pay a buck to read the full thing, but it’s about how great President Trump’s Independence Day speech was.  After all the hand-wringing from the Left and the noodle-wristed Right about Trump hosting a yuge military display on the Fourth of July (see also:  “Symbolism and Trumpism“), Trump delivered a speech that reminded us of why we can be proud to be a part of this incredible, unprecedented nation.  I didn’t hear the whole “airport at Yorktown” comment, but I’m also not attuned to picking up Trump’s every minor error and calling it treason the way Leftists are.

That’ll do it for this “big league” Lazy Sunday.  Enjoy your day off, and Keep America Great!

God Bless,

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

World Space Week Starts Today

It’s been a long but productive week for yours portly.  Readers will notice that, other than my recent #TBT features (yesterday and last Thursday’s posts), I’ve been mostly silent on the impeachment circus.  My general policy in this age of media perfidy is to withhold comment until the real facts have been reported.

The way everything is shaping up, my gut instincts—that there is nothing to claims that President Trump has committed impeachable offenses, defined constitutionally as “high crimes and misdemeanors”—seem validated.  Of course, that won’t stop the Democrats from expending months of energy, treasure, and rhetoric on banging the drum of impeachment.

In general, I’ve been trying to expand the focus of the blog, moving away from strictly writing about politics and politics-adjacent issues to more general interest topics.  My little piece on Saturn from a few weeks ago was enjoyable to write, and seemed to garner some positive feedback.

As such, I was excited to see that today marks the beginning of World Space Week.

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Lazy Sunday XXVIII: World History

Most of my pieces here at The Portly Politico focus on American politics and culture, with some occasional dabbling in British and European affairs.  But contrary to Ron Swanson’s historiographical claim, history did not begin in 1776 (though everything that came before may have been a mistake).

As such, I’ve written a few pieces about events, current and historical, that take place in more exotic locales.  While I am a parochial homebody, I appreciate travel and the contributions of other cultures (I still wish I’d seen London and Paris before they became part of the Caliphate).  I wish I had the time to do more of it (on that note, stay tuned for details of my trip to the Yemassee Shrimp Festival).

So, here’s some worldly pieces for your Lazy Sunday:

  • North Korea Reflections” – I wrote this little piece on the occasion of President Trump’s historic summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un in Singapore.  My interpretation of the summit was cautiously optimistic.  It’s still unclear what the future holds for US-Nork relations, but the gambit seemed to work—North Korea is a still a bloodthirsty, repressive, totalitarian regime, but they aren’t lobbing missiles around constantly anymore.
  • The Impermanence of Knowledge and Culture:  The Great Library and Notre Dame” – this post was a synthesis of two events—the destruction of the Great Library at Alexandria, and the burning of a substantial portion of the Notre Dame Cathedral.  The fire at the latter riled up conservatives and traditionalists because the structure had endured for so long as a symbol of Christianity and of France’s faithfulness.  France is not a very faithful country now, but Notre Dame remains a powerful symbol of man’s capacity for focusing on the greatness of God.  The major point of this piece was to drive home how even great edifices eventually crumble, and that knowledge and culture must be preserved actively if they are to endure.
  • Sri Lankan Church Bombings” – coming on the heels of the catastrophic Notre Dame fire, the island nation of Sri Lanka was shaken on Easter Sunday of this year with Islamic terrorist attacks on churches.  Democrats referred to the slain Christians as “Easter worshippers” in what appeared to be a concerted effort to appear politically-correct.  Yeesh.
  • America’s Roman Roots” – I wrote this piece earlier in the week, based on an excellent op-ed a colleague sent my way.  Commentators often fixate on the similarities between the United States today and the Roman Empire, but often miss the parallels to the Roman Republic.  Those parallels exist because the Framers of the Constitution pulled heavily from Roman tradition, even naming key institutions like the Senate after their Roman counterparts.  The Roman Republic holds valuable lessons for Americans for how to craft a robust society that enables citizens to live worthwhile lives.

That wraps up this little tour around the globe.  Rome, France, Sri Lanka and North Korea—not a bad start, though I’d better get Africa and Latin America into the mix soon, lest I catch flack from the SJWs for lack of inclusion.

Happy Sunday!

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

Lazy Sunday XXVII: Bric-a-Brac

It’s been a pretty crazy week, and the weekend has only eased up slightly.  Last week’s Lazy Sunday was all about small town living, and about how valuable social peace is to maintaining a healthy society.

I’ve been harping on this idea a great deal lately.  Politics is an abyss, and staring into it for too long and too often starts to distort and twist one’s perspective.  In some ways, avoiding the topic twists the perspective of those who are not staring into the abyss, as I wrote about yesterday.  Nevertheless, it gets tiring—indeed, soul-sucking—to focus on politics constantly.

Additionally, I am increasingly in a state of despair about the ultimate direction of our nation and culture.  President Trump has been a welcome, God-given reprieve, but even his efforts have been repeatedly stymied, even by those within the party he remolded into his own image.  Even normal ideas are increasingly considered “radical,” and we can’t even discuss problems openly anymore in a polite setting.  I am a declinist by nature, but this is just ridiculous.

So, in the midst of this deepening despair—and this sense that, in abandoning God, He’s abandoned us to our fate—I’ve been trying to write more about lighter topics.  Perhaps it’s a bit of buoyant distraction as the ship slowly descends into the murky depths of irreversible darkness, or maybe it’s the recognition that there’s more to life than petty political squabbles (although most of those squabbles are increasingly theological battles for the soul of the West), but I’ve found that writing about Saturn is more enjoyable.

With that in mind, here’s a grab-bag of portly bric-a-brac:

  • The Bull on the Roof” – I wrote this post on my phone—never an enjoyable endeavor—while watching my little niece and nephew one evening (they lived, so I guess I wasn’t too negligent).  It’s about a delightful little piece of classical music from 1920, before modern classical music turned into atonal trash and killed the genre.  I wish music composition schools were still churning out composers who could write stuff like this piece.
  • Funcling” – I love being an uncle.  My little niece and two nephews are fun (and exhausting) to watch and to play with, and their imaginations are amazing.  This piece was about their obsession with pretending to be various Nintendo characters, mostly Kirby and sundry Pokemon.
  • Summer Reading: The Story of Yankee Whaling” – I read this little book over the summer, and loved it.  Written for children in the late 1950s, the book is an historical overview of the defunct whaling industry, an industry that built and fueled New England and America.  They don’t write history like this anymore; now, the book would be full of hand-wringing about whales being endangered species due to overhunting.  None of that in this book:  whales are powerful creatures, and men need to make a living.  Adventure ensues.
  • Saturn: The Creepiest Planet?” – Other than Earth, Saturn is the best planet (and, next to Earth, the creepiest, it seems).  I dream of being able to visit other planets.  In fact, I get perturbed when talking to scientists because they’re such buzzkills about space exploration.  “You would be crushed instantly, TPP, if you tried to fly into Saturn’s gaseous core” (even that sentence mocking them is probably riddled with errors to which they would object)—yeah, I know!  Let me suspend disbelief for a minute.  Better yet, come up with some solutions.  I’m sick of nerds telling me that putting plants and potting soil on the moon won’t terraform it.  Figure it out!  Aren’t we paying you to make science-fiction a reality?

That’s it for this week.  Don’t let politics suck your soul away.  Maybe God will hear our cries for help and do something; maybe not.  Regardless, spend time with family, read good books, and listen to good music—and try to enjoy yourself as the ship goes down.

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

May We Never Forget

Today’s Number of the Day from pollster Scott Rasmussen is a poignant 9/11 memorial:  204 New York City firefighters have died due to illnesses from that fateful day.  That’s in addition to the 343 NYFD firefighters who gave their lives on September 11, 2001 (the NYFD maintains a list of “line of duty deaths” dating back to 1865; deaths 809 through 1151 were the result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks).  Rasmussen also notes that 2977 people died in the attacks.

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Sanford Announces Presidential Bid

Former South Carolina Governor and Congressman for SC-1, Mark Sanford, announced Sunday that he is seeking the Republican presidential nomination in 2020 against incumbent President Donald Trump.  When Fox News host Chris Wallace asked Sanford why, he said that “We need to have a conversation on what it means to be a Republican.”

Sanford’s ostensible desire is to draw attention to America’s massive national debt, and our political unwillingness to address the ever-expanding, elephantine gorilla in the room.  But as local radio personality and former Lieutenant Governor Ken Ard said on his show this morning, Sanford is shining a bright light on himself as much as he is on the national debt.

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Americans Oppose Illegal Immigration

Today’s Number of the Day from pollster Scott Rasmussen notes that 76% of American voters believe that illegal immigration is bad for the country.  That is a substantial majority (and it makes you wonder about the other 24%).

When breaking that number down by partisan affiliation, it’s not surprising that 90% of Republicans believe that illegal immigration is bad.  What is somewhat surprising is that 63% of Democrats believe that illegal immigration is bad.  That suggests that opposing illegal immigration and border control continue to be winning issues.

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