TOC Ready Room 8 Feb 2022: Domestic terror alert results “changing quickly,” says Google

What’s wrong and right with the world.

Just a short update for Tuesday, as sites across the Web take note of a new National Terrorism Advisory System Bulletin published on 7 February 2022.

The bulletin is not hard to interpret.  It says the following in the first paragraph:  “The United States remains in a heightened threat environment fueled by several factors, including an online environment filled with false or misleading narratives and conspiracy theories, and other forms of mis- dis- and mal-information (MDM) introduced and/or amplified by foreign and domestic threat actors. These threat actors seek to exacerbate societal friction to sow discord and undermine public trust in government institutions to encourage unrest, which could potentially inspire acts of violence.”

The bulletin goes on to say, Continue reading “TOC Ready Room 8 Feb 2022: Domestic terror alert results “changing quickly,” says Google”

People who want to ‘tweak’ the First Amendment don’t want free speech

Now and then it’s good to have a brief check-in on premises, as in the basic assumptions of our thinking.

The topic was brought home to me Tuesday by an article at Breitbart, by Pam Key, recounting Joy Behar’s dictum during a discussion of free speech at The View that the First and Second Amendments need “tweaking.”

Key quotes Behar:  “When the Founding Fathers were busy with the amendments — the 1st and 2nd Amendments — they did not have AR-15s in there, weapons of war, and they didn’t have Twitter. So both amendments, I think, need to be tweaked a little bit.” Continue reading “People who want to ‘tweak’ the First Amendment don’t want free speech”

DO we have the right to disobey Islamic law?

Congress shall make no law.

My Green Room colleague Laura Curtis asked yesterday whether we should have the right to disobey Islamic law, and her post understandably got a lot of interest.

I would like to suggest that we need to pose the question a different way, because how we answer it will depend on how it is asked.  I believe the correct question is: Do we have the right to disobey Islamic law?

That’s how the philosophers of America’s founding would have put the question. Continue reading “DO we have the right to disobey Islamic law?”

Twenty-eight years later, it’s finally 1984

War is peace.

In 1975, there were political billboards around America proclaiming portentously that 1984 was only nine years away.  The reference, of course, was to George Orwell’s Nineteen-Eighty-Four, the novel of a collectivized, indoctrinated human future, which high-school students had been reading since it was published in 1949.

The year 1984, by Gregorian reckoning, came and went, and Americans seemed to have dodged the Nineteen-Eighty-Four bullet. Continue reading “Twenty-eight years later, it’s finally 1984”

Ceramic pig watch: Offensive speech in Britain

Ever since the case of the offensive ceramic pigs in 1998, the British have been assiduously refining their methods for dealing with offenses to Islam.  Earlier this year, Bruce Bawer at Frontpage recounted the tale of David Jones, who was going through security at Gatwick Airport when he made a stray comment that brought down the full force of the Speech Police on his head (emphasis added):

[A]ccording to the Telegraph, “he spotted a Muslim woman in hijab pass through the area without showing her face” and, in a “light-hearted aside to a security official who had been assisting him,” said: “If I was wearing this scarf over my face, I wonder what would happen.”

Kapow! Continue reading “Ceramic pig watch: Offensive speech in Britain”