September 11, 2011 -- The first decade of the twenty-first century was defined by Islamists, who used planes as weapons against the World Trade Center and Pentagon, and who would have done the same to the Capitol or White House if not for the brave passengers who died in the process of stopping them. There is much being said about the lessons the past ten years have taught us—about war, about national security, about Middle East policy. But the most important, which is too often ignored, is that ideas have consequences.
A record number of Americans are renouncing their U.S. citizenship in order to avoid confiscatory taxes.
And 100,000 individuals have signed up with Mars One, a company seeking volunteers for a one-way trip to be permanent settlers on the Red Planet.
Both of these facts indicate that the best in the human spirit is still alive.
Indoctrinate U. Featuring Ahmad al-Qoloushi, Jay Bergman, Michael Berube, Kelly Coyne, Laura Freberg, Steve Hinkle, Noel Ignatiev, Robert Jervis, K.C. Johnson, Sukhmani Singh Khalsa, Evan Coyne Maloney, John McWhorter, Michael Munger, Daniel Pipes, Glenn Reynolds, Stanley Rothman, Carol Swain, Mason Weaver, Vanessa Wiseman, and Mary Yoder. Camerawork by Oleg Atbashian, Alexandra Barker, Stuart Browning, Jill Butterfield, Laura Cauley, Jared Lapidus, Evan Coyne Maloney, and Mark Xue. Designed and edited by Chandler Tuttle.
Like any story relying on the fantastic, the superhero film has a test: does the fantastic sharpen and enhance the theme and the conflicts, or is it an escape from rational reality? Is this about a man who can control fire, or about how he chooses to control fire? So many superhero films are boring because they’re nothing more than escapism, with human characters as puppets of the elemental forces they’re supposed to be commanding.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. Last year at this season, I posted in praise and gratitude to “the virtually omnipresent, almost omniscient entity who is glad to help you with your questions,” and I warned that Google might be less helpful within a year.