Featuring: Salman Rushdie, Civil Rights law, and advice from Dominic Cummings
This week saw an intensifying global supply chain crisis, the downfall of populists across central Europe, and culture war flare ups around Sally Rooney and Dave Chapelle. What was going on in the ‘stacks, away from the headlines?
Salman Rushdie’s new Substack was announced a few weeks ago to great fanfare. So far it has lived up to expectations. This account of meeting, then remembering, Italo Calvino is a straightforward delight.
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Richard Hanania wrote about US Civil Rights Law as a form of class warfare, “in which elites take their preoccupations and hangups about race and enlist powerful institutions to force these standards on everyone else.” Robert Wright x-rayed the ‘Blob’ — the people, the think tanks, the media outlets, and government bodies that shape US foreign policy. Antonio García Martínez wrote about his conversion to Judaism, and why human beings are usually religious, whether they’re aware of it or not:
Dominic Cummings had some new advice this week. And not the usual “do not trust the PM” advice either. Winter is coming and the government isn’t making any statements about… Vitamin D supplements. Cummings writes that most public health officials he encountered in government took Vitamin D, but “don’t tell you to do this.” Here’s his public health message:
In the Sight of the Unwise wondered why the US military keeps making the same mistakes over and over again when it goes to war. Why didn’t the US learn from its failures in Vietnam? Perhaps the problem is that America does not fully grasp its role in the world:
Abigail Shrier was exasperated by conservatives failure to take the ‘Gender War’ seriously stateside. Wesley Yang continued to outline the contours of a new ‘disciplinary society’ in the United States:
And a sceptical Dan Hitchens asked is it really possible, as we are so often told, that people can achieve anything?