The American Spectator

American Spectator is a monthly trade magazine published by the American Spectator Foundation. Founded in 1967, the magazine covers politics, culture and current events.

Articles from Vol. 41, No. 3, April

All Taxpayers Left Alone
All Taxpayers Left Alone Leave Us Alone: Getting the Government's Hands Off Our Money, Our Guns, Our Lives by G rover G. Norquist (HARPERCOLLINS. 338 PAGES, $26.95)Reviewed by W. James Antle IIIIN THE COURSE OF A LONG New Yorker profile of John McCain,...
Better Than a White House Pass
Want to know a secret? Well, my friend, then today is your lucky day. Because today Fm going to share with you a little-known, but vital source of the world's most valuable commodity-useful information.I'm going to tell you where true insiders turn when...
Civility and Freedom
AS WE MOURN THE PASSING of Bill Buckley, it is interesting to note the contrast between the universal praise now being accorded him by even his old enemies, and the positively nasty reaction that he generated when he first leapt into the national spotlight...
Current Wisdom
The Great Books SeriesSomeone by the name of Greg Anrig concludes yet another book-length obituary to America's long and apparently boring expanse of economic growth, relative social harmony, and continued national security from foreign menaces by revealing...
Freedom in the East
DURING THE 1980S IT WAS INCREASINGLY easy to travel to Eastern Europe, to make contact with the dissident underclass, and to observe the extraordinary contortions of the peaceniks and the fellow travelers as they endeavored to explain away the militarized...
Is It Really Over?
Big-shot trial lawyers fall on hard times as tort reformers learn to win at federal and state levels.IT'S OVER," proclaimed the lead story that-American Lawyer editor Alison Frankel wrote a little more than a year ago:[T]he bonanza-the Wild West era...
No, the Stem Cell Debate Is Not Over
"THE EMBRYONIC STEM CELL DEBATE IS OVER." So stated Charles Krauthammer in his column and perhaps it is the beginning of the end. The reason is the late November publication of two separate studies in which human skin cells appeared to have been reprogrammed...
Outraged Sadness
TUESDAYTHIS IS PROBABLY THE SADDEST COLUMN I have ever written for the Spectator. It takes some explaining, but I can summarize it for you briefly in a few words. Freedom of speech is not going away in the United States of America. It's gone. Rights...
Quite a Love Letter
Quite a Love Letter For Love and Liberty: The Untold Civil War Story of Major Sullivan Ballou and His Famous Love Letter by Robin Young (THUNDER'S MOUTH PRESS, 830 PAGES, $35)Reviewed by Mark TooleyMAJOR SULLIVAN BALLOU became a national celebrity three...
Remember to Laugh
LAST MONTH IN THIS SPACE, we had occasion to notice that heroism is now treated as a matter for comedy (see "No Room for the Gentleman Amateur," TAS, March 2008), but we might have added that the same is true of villainy. On the cover of Entertainment...
Strange New Disrespect
SOMETIMES I THINK THAT MY SOLE contribution to political discourse will be the phrase Strange New Respect. I first used it-in 1981, in this magazine-to describe those who come to Washington with a conservative reputation but then move to the left. They...
The Continuing Crisis
One of the calendar's rare 29-day Februaries passed into the history books, and with it went one of this column's most illustrious fans, Mr. William F. Buckley Jr., who passed away on the morning of February 27. How we shall miss him! In fact, Bill is...
The Culture Ploy
THOUGH I HAVE NEVER HAD THE GALL to try it, France is the only country I know where a writer could officially list his profession as "Man of Letters." And the only place where certain members of the Culture Establishment are honored with a higher place...
The Eccentric Dancer
MIKE ALWAYS WORE HIS WHITE HAT, but his hat wasn't always white. It started out khaki colored, but as it deteriorated over time, rather than purchasing a new one, he refurbished it by periodically painting the surface white. "If I don't wear this hat,...
The Fate of Individual Liberty in Post-Communist Europe
Civil society has returned to Poland.Russia, alas, remains in a league of its own.Among many other things, the year 1945 marked one of the most extraordinary population movements in Polish history. Hundreds of thousands of people were returning home...
The GOP's Evangelical Dilemma
If the Republican Party is to remain competitive, its unhappy alliance with the Religious Right remains indispensable.IN LECTURING AROUND THE COUNTRY over the past decade, I have been asked this question-usually by a well-dressed gentleman in his middle...
The Great Paul Johnson
The Great Paul Johnson Heroes: From Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar to Churchill and De Gaulle by Paul Johnson (HARPERCOLLINS, 299 PAGES, $25.95)Reviewed by Taki Theodoracopulos"NANCY MITFORD TOLD ME THAT the only way she had been able to obtain...
The Party of Race
BILL CLINTON WAS FURIOUS.Campaigning in the South Carolina Democratic primary for his wife's presidential campaign, the former president fumed that Hillary Clinton's opponent, Illinois Senator Barack Obama was "getting votes because of race...."Smooth,...
The Ultimate Jackie Mason
America's most beloved comedian is alive and well on Broadway."COMEDY, IN GENERAL, is a great escape for anyone who wants to complain," Jackie Mason mused in his lilting staccato accent one recent morning. The titles of the septuagenarian comedian's...
Tinsel Strike
THE HOLLYWOOD STRIKE THAT consumed the entertainment industry for three months as writers and producers battled it out is over. Ostensibly, the fight was over how much of the revenue from New Media sources like the Internet would go to the writers instead...
Trying to Catch Its Breath
China struggles to keep up with Olympian expectations.FROM THE 20TH-FLOOR WINDOW of a new apartment block in the Wangjing district of Beijing, overlooking Beijing's Fifth Ring Road, a cold, winter's afternoon looks especially bleak. The city's smog hangs...
Utopia Road
Utopia Road Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion by Jeffrey J. Kripal (UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO PRESS, 594 PAGES. $30)Reviewed by Shawn MacomberFOR SOME, UTOPIA IS A LAND with corporate taxes high enough to make the social safety net look more...
We Stand Behind Our Stereotype
THERE IS A SCHOOL OF THOUGHT IN JOURNALISM where it is bad form to mention the race or ethnicity of a criminal suspect or defendant unless there is a compelling reason to do so. The idea is that such references gratuitously perpetuate stereotypes while...
William F. Buckley, RIP
WASHINGTONWilliam F. Buckley, Jr. who died Wednesday, appropriately enough in his study, was one of the most stupendous educated Americans of the 20th century. He was among the founders of the American conservative movement that crept out of the New...