Editor & Publisher of the St. Croix Review.
The winding St. Croix River valley is
Perfect for hot air balloons and they are
Up in the afternoon and the early
Evening on the clearest of days and I
Often don’t see them until the whoosh of
Burners firing alerts me they are
There — and they look so odd hanging in the
Air floating who knows where — and the festive
Yellows and reds and greens complement the
Sky like the Christmas ornaments do for
The trees but of course the balloons are the
Epitome of a care free summer day —
Seeing the balloons floating I wonder
How the valley looks and sounds from that view.
It is one of those
things I intend to
do — take a ride in
a balloon — when
there is time.
I didn’t feel the heat of the morning
Until the little black fly with green eyes
Landed on my arm and walked about with
Little legs over the fine hair on my
Arm — and I discovered not wanting to
Expend the energy necessary
To flick it away so I just watched it
Instead and noticed the slightest tickle —
And a little while later a tiny
Black ant proceeded to explore my arm
Too and I noticed the tickle again —
And the ants and the flies have as much right
As I do to enjoy the summer air
But I won’t give the mosquitoes a pass.
As the air becomes
hotter even in the shade
of a tree I start
to feel a little dizzy
and warmer inside and out.
There is a video available
On the Internet of a couple of
Little rascals and a bicycle — with
One of them putting on swimming goggles
And kneeling on the muddy ground by the
Back tire — and with a face full of joy and
Expectation he exclaims to the friend
On the bike and gripping the brakes — "let-er
Rip" — a spray of mud spatters the laughing
Boy — which is quite an improvement of the
Jackson Pollack style because Jackson was
Dripping paint on a canvas by himself
And he could not escape depression but
The urchins together were jubilant.
It is a shame that
This is not the time for cherry blossoms
And the cherry trees already produced
Their cherries for the season — so I do
Not know why I am thinking about the
Cherry blossoms — while we are entering
The mild and lazy ending of summer
Except that the beautiful flowering
Of spring is so beautiful because it
Marks the release from the cold of winter —
And we are on the verge of colder days
And grey clouds moving precipitously
Are dominating the sky and the wind
Is tossing about the leaves and I am
Remembering and anticipating.
The apples on my
apple tree are almost ripe
and this is the first
year I sprayed the apples to
keep the insects away.
We uphold American liberty, prosperity, constitutional law, and humble government.
The American Spirit
Barry MacDonald — Editorial
My Dad, Angus MacDonald, published the first issue of The St. Croix Review in February, 1968. In 2018, The St. Croix Review is continuing to express his vision.
America was turbulent in 1968. Through many long years the Left in America was sowing seeds of revolution, and in the 1960s, in the midst of racial tension, riots, assassinations, and the Vietnam War, it emerged as a formidable foe.
Angus MacDonald was moved to defend America from the power craving, rapacious, unrelenting forces of the Left. The St. Croix Review and the foundation, Religion and Society, are the continuing expression of my Dad’s character. After 50 years of publication, the St. Croix Review and Religion and Society are fighting the same battle and are following in the original tradition of the Americans who wrote the Constitution.
Too much of the Republican Party and too many conservative intellectuals have lost their moorings. The bitter struggle against emerging tyranny in America is exhausting. When the Republican Party temporizes on basic issues the effect is terrible: the Left is emboldened and we are diminished.
Too often, intelligent conservatives become policy wonks, writing sophisticated and profound papers, of minutest detail, that will have little influence on the culture. A retreat into sophistication and minuteness isn’t enough. We should be clear and bold, and we should use intelligence to advance basic issues.
Americans who want to preserve liberty should boldly promote the free economy, property rights, the sanctity of contracts, Constitutional protections, the rule of law, the separation of powers, federalism, and orderly immigration. We should be promoting a rich civic life that is separate from government control. And we should be unashamed to be people of religious faith. These are the basic issues from which we gain independence and strength. These are the foundations that support healthy families.
We need to hold up the ideal of humble government. The assertion that America is a nation of free individuals, and that government is a necessary evil, is what distinguishes America from every other nation. The fruits of humble government are entrepreneurial innovation, broad-based prosperity, and an economy that fosters upward mobility. We should be promoting the importance of a growing economy.
Angus MacDonald arrived in San Francisco on the steamer S.S. Marine Lynx in 1946. He came from Australia, where he was born. He came to America because he wanted a better education than he could achieve in Australia. A few years after he arrived he became an American citizen. But, in a sense, he was already American before he arrived, because he embodied a free spirit seeking adventure and betterment.
The following is the foreword written by my mother, Rema MacDonald, to Angus MacDonald’s autobiography, A Straight Line. Rema described her husband five years ago, after he passed away.
* * * * *
Angus MacDonald, at age 23, was a one-of-a-kind personality. He graduated from the College of the Bible in Melbourne, Australia in May, 1946, right after World War II.
Because he saw greater opportunity in the United States, and thought he would fit in better in America, and wanted a higher education, he decided to emigrate to America. There was no intercontinental air travel, and he decided to come by troop ship with a three-week crossing. In those days America seemed far, far away. All his family came to the dock to see him off. He didn’t know if he would ever see them again. His three-year-old nephew clung to his legs and cried, “I don’t want you to go, Uncle Angus!” With a little money from his father and a box of favorite books he boarded the ship, as did others. His family waved until the ship was out of sight. It was a heart-wrenching leave taking.
That was the kind of person Angus was. If he wanted to do something he did it. To him nothing was impossible. As he traveled by train across this country he was surprised by how large the country was. He had a strange feeling as he looked around: he knew no one. His aim was to go to Butler University in Indianapolis. He enrolled and managed to complete his requirements for a bachelor’s degree in one year.
Angus had an insatiable appetite for knowledge, and taking classes in philosophy at Butler helped him form his beliefs. He decided to apply to the Graduate Department in Philosophy at Columbia University in New York. After being accepted he spent several years studying and living in the New York City area, a special time in his life. His parents also visited him at this time from Australia.
He completed all his work for his degree, except making corrections on his lengthy dissertation. He eventually did this and received a Doctorate in Philosophy degree. He could now become a university teacher, but he thought he might tire to teaching the same subject year after year as a professor. He was a natural born pastor. He loved interacting with people, giving sermons, visiting the sick and the church members, so he decided to continue as a minister.
After coming to a Minnesota church, some years later, he felt he could extend his ministry to a wider “audience” by starting up a journal. His vision would be called The St. Croix Review, because he lived on the St. Croix (rhymes with “boy”) River, and would be published six times a year. By subscription only, it would consist of submitted articles of interest in the conservative view — which he thought was lacking in the country. He would write only the editorial himself.
Angus started an incredible task. Angus had one employee, himself. Amazing! Computers were not in common use. He began with five hundred subscriptions and a typewriter. There wasn’t money to have the journal printed so he bought a printing press for the basement, and printed the pages himself. He had no knowledge of printing, he taught himself. The retyping of submitted articles, printing, folding, stapling, collating, labeling, mailing, and all the other publishing chores he did himself for years. Later on he hired a secretary to type for three hours a day. The advent of computers was a great breakthrough, but the journal still was more than a one-man job. He also wrote an editorial each issue. He had a way with words — his style was clear and concise. “Never use a big word when a small one will do” was his motto. Of the authors he never asked about their sex, race, religion, or background. “If they say something sensible that is simple and constructive, I shall publish them,” he said.
And he did — for forty-four years! This is a remarkable record considering there is no advertising in the journal. Subscriptions and contributions from individuals and several foundations are the journal’s life-blood. A pool of wonderful authors has been built up, but submitted articles are always welcomed for review. Angus’ son, Barry, has worked with him twenty years and is carrying on his legacy.
His autobiography, A Straight Line, was written twenty-five years ago. Its title refers to his lifelong quest for the truth. This is the fourth printing. The wording is the same, but we have enhanced this edition with pictures as a fitting memorial to Angus. We believe his ability to carry difficult tasks to completion is a noteworthy achievement and an inspiration to others. He was one-of-kind.
(Angus’ wife) *
The following is a summary of the August/September 2018 issue of The St. Croix Review:
Thomas Drake, in a “Letter to the Editor,” provides an example of political dysfunction in Chicago.
Barry MacDonald in, “The American Spirit,” reviews the founding of The St. Croix Review, and presents Angus MacDonald, the founder, as the embodiment of the genuine American Spirit.
Michael S. Swisher, in “Animadversions — Bugaboos of the Chattering Class — Nativism,” presents the arguments of those Americans who favor unlimited immigration into America. He answers their arguments and exposes their motives.
Allan C. Brownfeld, in “Remembering Our Long History of Misunderstanding Russia’s Goals in the World,” compares President Trump’s mistaken attitude with historical follies; in “Fueled by an Army of Lobbyists — Crony Capitalism Is Alive and Well in Washington” he explains the virtues of a free economy, and he shows how politicians are purchased; in “‘Charm City’: A Gripping Film about Violence in Baltimore and the Response of the Police and the Community,” he presents Baltimore as an example of American ingenuity coming to grips with difficult circumstances; in “New York’s Specialized High Schools Are Under Attack by Identity Politics; Asian-Americans Are the Victims,” he makes the case for returning to a goal of a “color-blind” society.
Paul Kengor, in “Today’s Progressives Have Completed the Takeover and Destruction Communists First Started Calling for More Than a Century Ago,” cites one hundred years of Communist assaults on the Boy Scouts of America; in “Fifty Years Ago: An Assassination That Shook America,” he provides overlooked details of the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy; in “A Victory for Freedom and the Pro-Life Movement,” he reviews a recent Supreme Court decision that struck down a California law that forced pro-life pregnancy centers to advertise for abortion; in “With God and Richard Pipes,” he celebrates the life of Cold War warrior who opposed Soviet Communism.
Herbert London, in “The U.S.-North Korea Summit: The Devil Is in the Details,” explains the critical issues involved in the transformation of North Korea; in “Decertifying the Iran Deal,” he reveals that President Obama’s faith that Iran would limit its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of sanctions was mistaken; in “Traditional Liberalism Under Unprecedented Pressure,” he asks questions about whether Western democracy can adapt to present-day challenges from a historical perspective.
Mark Hendrickson, in “Trump on Trade: The Latest on the Tariff Strategy,” considers President Trump’s crazy-like-a-fox trade strategy; in “‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor,’ A Review of the Mr. Rogers Documentary,” he places emphasis on the kindness and decency of Fred Rogers.
Earl H. Tilford, in “Summit Asymmetries,” looks at three summits between American Presidents and Soviet and Russian leaders.
Judy Appel, in “Five Nights and Eighty Thousand Steps in Paris, France — Day One,” shares a letter from Red Cross nurse, written in 1918, who treated her great uncle after he was wounded in W.W. I.
Jigs Gardner, in “Letters from a Conservative Farmer: Maids,” relates childhood memories of a long-vanished America.
Jigs Gardner, in Writers for Conservatives, 71: The Wolf by the Ears — Thomas Jefferson and Slavery by J. C. Miller,” uncovers startling facts and attitudes of early American history.
Jigs Gardner, in “My Harvey Weinstein Moment,” conveys a humorous story.
I am awash in waves this morning with
The windows of my car open with the
Warmth coming in and I am bombarded
With the vibrant blue and white of the sky
And I am absorbing an explosion
Of tiny green leaves on the browns of the
Trees and an exhibitionist in a
Purple shirt is walking with his dog and
There is a sprinkling of dandelions
Already and a red wing blackbird is
Flying and when I get to the office
To play with words a yellow and a red
Tulip by the garage are reminding
Me cresting waves of light are everywhere.
Waves of light rippling
in the air enveloping
me separating me
from winter are exactly
what I wanted.
It is deplorable that a straw was
Discovered in the Marianas Trench
And perhaps to rescue the earth from the
Dispersal of disposable items
It may be helpful where possible to
Turn our implements of convenience
Into fashion accessories and I
Imagine a boutique establishment
Selling remarkable straws with perhaps
Titanium for a military
Gentleman with a tortoise shell case or
Elongated simulated ivory
Or tastefully bejeweled silver or gold
For a status conscious mademoiselle.
We would favor the
planet and engage
The blue sky is exceptional and the
Earth appears blue from the vantage of the
Moon and there is not another planet
With breathable blue air in the cosmos
We are aware of and we are searching
The fourteen billion light years of space and
Set among the brilliance of stars planets
Are almost impossible to find so
Given the impersonal and immense
Nature of reality there is no
Reason why the sound of the wind in the
Leaves should be reassuring and peaceful
And inspiring but year after year
There is the resurrection of sighing.
The breath of
life is visible
in the wind
in the trees.
From the vantage of today the Pueblo
People who lived in the hollows of the
Cliffs who built adobe homes and worshiped
The sun seem simple and innocent as
The sun was determinate of so much
Drenching their lives with light and imagine
The contrast of the day with the night filled
With stars and the comfort of a small fire
But perhaps they shared our frailties and
Were as prone to anger and fear as we
Are and they needed to ascribe meaning
To what happened by considering the
Constellations and by retelling their
Ancestral stories about courage.
Even with our
knowledge of the
cosmos have we
stories about courage?
A black hole that can whirl a trillion stars
About itself is not something that can
Be safely ignored and where do the stars
Go that disappear into the hole — and
It is said that vanished stars are compiled
On themselves to a point of infinite
Density inside the hole and said that
Millions of light years is not far enough
To escape the vortex of the hole and
It is speculated even space/time
Collapses inside the hole and time is
Instantaneous and so a word is
Used to describe the inconceivable —
The black hole is a singularity.
The hole where things
go to vanish is an
Our Mission is to reawaken the genuine American Spirit of living in a good, great, and growing nation as free individuals.
We Uphold American Liberty, Prosperity, Constitutional Law, and Humble Government
Barry MacDonald — Editorial
The “we” above refers to you: the readers and writers of The St. Croix Review. Good-hearted Americans don’t believe we are better than the peoples of the world. We are lucky to have been born where it is possible to prosper through effort and industry. We are grateful to have a Constitution and Bill of Rights, the first in history, guaranteeing America liberty — if they are followed.
“The Left” indicated below means those Americans who want the Constitution and Bill of Rights undone. They want America to be fundamentally transformed. They are revolutionary in spirit, and are employing techniques that come from overseas. They are hardcore and want to benefit from the polarization of society they are busy fomenting. They are uncompromising and cannot be appeased.
They include independent groups like Media Matters and Black Lives Matter. The leadership of the Democratic Party is Leftist. There are many fellow travelers who are caught up with the fervor of the movement who are not leaders — they don’t comprehend the motives of the leaders.
The leadership understands that the effort is in furious motion, and that any single issue is only a means to an end, and the end is revolution.
The America we grew up in is not the America of today. We receive dispiriting and disparaging messages. We are presented with insoluble problems, and we are informed, subtly and boldly, that America is a guilty nation. We are told American history is a recitation of oppression, injustice, and tyranny.
The onslaught against America is overwhelming. The Statue of Liberty has fallen into disrepute. More often than not, people in positions of power today, those who have formidable platforms from which to dispense their opinions, are Leftists who are disparaging America. And they are furiously energetic.
The educational system, from elementary schools to the university, is converted. The news media, including sports news, is taken over. High art and daily entertainment are perverted. Corporate America is anti-American. Historians, philosophers, and officers of law believe the worst about America, and they want you to despise America, too. Those wearing religious garb are sometimes unreliable. Even science is tainted.
The Left has made the long march through American institutions, and is sowing devastation.
The following is a listing of where the Left is on offence, and where we are defensive. This is not a complete list. Some of the assertions are established, and more people are being converted. Twenty years ago these points would have been ridiculous, but today they are serious points of contention.
The above assertions are arrogant and deceitful and yet their insidiousness is not recognized.
There is no coherent vision of an ideal society the Left wishes to create — they have no idea where they are rushing too. Hollywood movie studios produce various shades of dystopia.
The Left is marshalling furious energy and assaulting American institutions. The people of the Left — the bureaucrats, the media, business executives receiving subsidies, congressional staffers, politicians, lawyers, etc., — benefit from the spoils of political victory, but society as a whole suffers.
Working class Americans are struggling, and the middle class is burdened. The regulations imposed by bureaucracies, and the taxation of private enterprise to finance excessive government spending, are crushing the economy and frustrating the creation of new businesses and jobs.
America should have busy entrepreneurs and a thriving economy. The glory of America is that a person born poor may, through hard work and enterprise, rise to prosperity — this is the American dream. But in present-day America people are becoming discouraged as the costs of education, housing, and healthcare are rising, and fewer businesses are starting. There is less opportunity to rise. It is harder to be upwardly mobile in America — because the Left is tightening its grip and rigging the economy for its own benefit.
We who believe in the goodness of America, and who want to preserve American liberty, should recognize that there are natural disadvantages in our way. We are asking people to take on the burdens of responsibility, and to work harder than necessary just to get by. Not everyone is capable of creating a vision of the good life, and of striving to make a dream reality. It is the mission of The St. Croix Review to present our readers with inspiration for the good life. We aim to motivate those capable of inspiration, and we hope that their industry will engender a broad enough base of prosperity to lift the spirits and aspirations of less amenable Americans.
In the history of nations American ingenuity and prosperity are unique. We have been freed from the common shackles imposed by the usual forms of tyrannies. Our traditional prosperity arises because a much larger proportion of our people, regardless of class, have been free to be productive, and thereby we are prosperous. It is the mission of The St. Croix Review to perpetuate American liberty.
The Left is asking people to give up responsibility. It is inculcating the idea that politicians and bureaucrats are more informed and better able than average people. It wants people to give up the duties that come along with freedom. The Left is willing to subsidize and maintain Americans who are dispirited in a subsistent and subservient lifestyle. In the Leftist scheme of management, the productive are compelled by taxation to carry the burdens of society.
The telltale nature of the Left is obvious. It discourages enterprise with regulation. It divides people based on race and ethnicity and gender, and uses the animosity created to undermine the family, religious faith, and the rule of law.
The St. Croix Review recognizes the enormous challenge of reawakening the “genuine American spirit,” but we believe the effort is worthy. We believe that ordinary American people throughout America are energetic and capable, and will act to preserve their God-given independence. *
The following is a summary of the June/July 2018 issue of The St. Croix Review:
Barry MacDonald, in “We Uphold American Liberty, Prosperity, Constitutional Law, and Humble Government,” describes the rapacious and unrelenting nature of leftist politics, and he points to America’s uniqueness.
Paul G. Kengor, in “Marx at 200: Classical Marxism vs. Cultural Marxism,” reveals the source of the revolutionary fervor that is roiling American culture today; in “Marx’s Apologists Should Be Red in the Face,” he puts the lie to those who assert that Marx didn’t advocate force and violence; in “Remembering Barbara Bush — and Robin,” he shares a poignant story about the Bush family; in “John Kerry: Reporting for Duty . . . From Vietnam to Iran,” he exposes John Kerry’s long trail of betrayal.
Allan C. Brownfeld, in “Fifty Years Ago, Washington Was Burning; Despite Continuing Problems, Advances in Race Relations Have Been Dramatic,” provides a large and hopeful perspective on a persisting concern; in “The Strange Criticism of the Movie ‘Chappaquiddick’ — A Seeming Defense of Ted’s Kennedy’s Admittedly Bad Behavior,” he reviews an important event in American history; in “Whatever Happened to American Conservatism: Remembering Russell Kirk,” he presents the insights of a gentleman and scholar.
Herbert London, in “America Can Meet the Challenge of China with Education and Innovation,” asserts that America needs a “Sputnik moment”; in “Israel and Saudi Arabia — A Secret Middle East Alliance,” he describes an emerging strategy to oppose Iran; in “Due Process Circa 2018 Is in Dire Trouble,” he makes the case for the rule of law for those accused of sexual misconduct; in “The Russian Chessboard,” he considers the role Russia is playing in the Middle East.
Mark W. Hendrickson, in “The Passing of Two Great Americans,” marks the passing of the “greatest generation” with faithful memories; in “High-Priced College Textbooks: Uncle Sam to the Rescue,” he uses a new government program to teach an economics lesson; in “Memorial Day Reflections, 2018,” he explains the meaning of “mast-and-a-half”; in “The Big Picture: The Science, Politics, and Economics of Climate Change,” he details the crippling costs and small benefits of political solutions to climate change; in “1968: A Year of Lost Innocence,” he recalls the shattering events of a historical turning point.
Mike Swisher, in “Bugaboos of the Chattering Class — Nationalism,” presents a broader historical interpretation of nationalism to demonstrate how misguided our present views are.
Francis P. DeStefano, in “Battle of Midway,” describes the sudden change of fortune that turned the battle in America’s favor.
David Ayers, in “Advice to Orthodox Protestants and Catholics: ‘Just Stand,’” supports Christian orthodoxy.
Jigs Gardner, in “Letters from a Conservative Farmer: An Explosive Issue,” addresses an newly discovered victim group in America.
Jigs Gardner, in “Writers for Conservatives, 71: Medieval Technology and Social Change by Lynn White,” presents a writer who identifies the forgotten innovations that transformed Medieval society.
It’s convenient to parcel out my life
In days and weeks because the rising and
The setting sun is easy to go by —
And if there weren’t day interspersed with night
It would be much harder to remember
What I did last week — and I am really
Grateful for my eyes to see bare branches
In a blue sky and grateful for my skin
And body so I can know what the cold
Of winter is — and also there is my
Marvelous mind that reminds me while a
Chill is rising from the snow on the ground
In several month the roses bloom again
And in summer I may wear a t-shirt.
I see the moon in
the morning and in
the afternoon too —
It’s an everyday
Presence to go by.
When I understand nothing moves faster
Than light and that the light from distant stars
Traveled billions of years to reach the earth
Then I appreciate immensity
And when I understand that during the
Passage of the light the stars radiating
The light have imploded and no longer
Exist then I encounter mystery —
And when I consider that the forces
Of gravity are whirling galaxies
And everything that exists is moving
In relation to every other thing
Then I have to put my life and efforts
In context with a sobering cosmos.
I have questions
and would like
also I love
a rising sun.
The light a star generates radiates
In all directions and on earth we see
The cosmos from a limited point of
View and I believe it’s necessary
To question where we are going and to
Grasp purposes worthy of our living
Because we have the curiosity
And the wherewithal to comprehend so
Many of the facts about us and we
Know immensity and minuteness and
We understand our tininess within
The universe but no one can explain
How our molecules and electrical
Impulses create thought and emotion.
of the cosmos is nothing
compared with the
everyday miracle of
The iron in my body came from an
Exploding star billions of years ago
And my body is composed of atoms
And molecules and strands of DNA
That testify to an origin I
Share with every living being on Earth
And within my body there are layers
Of organization where cells behave
Independently and for the good of
The whole also so that I can sit at
My table and cut an orange into
Pieces and taste the taste of an orange
And I can speculate from this table this
Moment is moving to infinity.
There are billions
and billions of stars
in space and atoms
in my body — there is
Scientists uphold a prism of glass to
Separate the light into colors and
They aim spectroscopes to see the colors
Of starlight and thereby they deduce the
The age and chemical composition
Of the most distant stars and in a few
Thousand years by working together they
Have exposed the swirling cosmos and the
Inescapable fragility of
Humanity too and yet our human
Comprehension resembles a super
Nova bursting and seeding the empty
Spaces with a consciousness that will not
Be satisfied with lingering questions.
Even before the
questions could be
formulated there was
cooperation — there were
Our mission is to reawaken the Genuine American Spirit of living in a good, great, and growing nation as free individuals.
Remembering What Made Us Good
Barry MacDonald — Editorial
Please look above and read the mission statement of The St. Croix Review. Usually it is presented in a shorter version: Our mission is to reawaken the Genuine American Spirit. . . .
Progressives would read the above sentence and scoff, or become sarcastic and scornful. Let them. We have work to do — to assert ourselves productively.
The Left has taken over our education system. After the Parkland shooting in Florida, how did the students so quickly organize themselves into a protest movement with a narrow focus on gun control? See the encouragement teachers and administrators gave them, allowing them a day off from schoolwork to mount a ’60s style march. Notice the full-time attention the news media gave the students. The students are children. It appears they have been trained beforehand to think and behave in a scripted direction.
Thinking gun control is the only solution to school shootings is like looking at the problem through a straw.
Suzanne Venker, of the Fox News Channel, presented a wonderful report “Missing Fathers and America’s Broken Boys — the Vast Majority of Mass Shooters Come From Broken Homes.” She based her report on a study published by Family Studies on Dec. 16, 2013, titled “Sons of Divorce, School Shooters.”
Suzanne writes that boys and girls react differently to the dissolution of their families, with girls being more likely to hurt themselves or behave promiscuously. But the girls do have the more frequent advantage of staying with mothers, while the boys are often separated from their fathers. Suzanne makes the point that boys need their fathers for nurturance and role models.
In America today, fatherhood is neglected and pundits use the term “toxic masculinity” to scorn and condemn men.
Divorce is commonplace. The ideal of a mother, and father, each of whom has an irreplaceable role in raising children, is devalued.
Apart from the few boys who become shooters, who can guess how many boys are harmed because they don’t learn healthy masculinity from their fathers? How do we promote the importance of fatherhood? Perhaps we should begin talking about the importance of fatherhood.
America is suffering because we have absorbed too many toxic progressive falsehoods. One of the most pernicious narratives is that a prosperous American economy is poisoning the earth. It speaks well of Americans that we want our economy to be as harmless as possible, and it should be noted that American emissions of CO2 have been declining year after year — more greatly than many signatories of the Paris Accord. Americans are big-hearted people and we want to live in a clean environment.
Yet Leftist politicians and intellectuals have implanted the idea that broad-based prosperity and growth is self-centered and evil. We are told that the “profit motive” is evil. We are being directed to aim for a “sustainable” economy instead of a growing economy. We are being regulated to death under the assumption that free enterprise is destructive. We are advised that living in single-family homes in the suburbs is selfish, as we are creating “sprawl.” Instead, we are told, we should be renting high-rise apartments in large cities. And it would be nice if we gave up our cars and took a train to the office.
Modern life has become difficult because the costs of higher education, housing, and healthcare are rising dramatically, while wages have stagnated or declined. Blue-collar men are losing jobs to technical innovation and are facing daunting and dispiriting challenges. The middle class is shrinking and the working class is struggling to survive.
College students are graduating with burdensome debt; they can’t find well-paying jobs, and often they settle for part-time work. Many graduates are living with their parents instead of getting married, buying homes, and starting families. And conditions are even worse for high school graduates, as their jobs are taken by frustrated college graduates.
America must be allowed to grow again. We must not heed the Leftist pressure to limit our economy. We must break the unaccountable power of bureaucrats who are strangling free enterprise. Any politician who speaks of sustainability in preference to growth should be voted out of office.
Donald Trump is absolutely correct in wanting to “make America great again.” It is remarkable how such a simple, laudable, statement sets him apart from every other politician. Any American politician who wants a hobbled America should be ashamed of her- or himself.
We must have faith that the return of broad-based prosperity, that promotes upward mobility again, will lift America up and out of the doldrums — and many of our social pathologies will dissipate.
And we should notice that the billionaires and millionaires (Tom Steyer, Leo DiCaprio, and Al Gore) who say that Americans should settle for humble circumstances, have no intention of living humbly themselves — they are already living large.
This latest $1.3 trillion spending bill, which the President mistakenly signed, takes as much money from the American people as President Obama took when the Democrats controlled the House. Shame on the Congress and President Trump! The President should have vetoed the bill.
The Republican leadership played the same trick the Democrats got away with: dumping a 2,200-page bill at the last minute, and leaving no time for the public to discover what’s in it. Who knows how many secret payoffs are in it?
Every dollar seized by a crony is unavailable to an entrepreneur who could have used it to create wealth. Every dollar borrowed and spent today is an extra burden of debt heaped on the shoulders of our children and grandchildren. How can people in the middle and lower classes become upwardly mobile if the seed money they need is given to cronies? This is the first time in American history when the young face a diminished future because their parents have been dissolute.
Our mission statement asserts that we are a “good” and “great” nation. “Good” comes before “great.” Napoleon Bonaparte was great, but was he good? We could have a lively debate about the supposed “good” he did.
America is a great nation. Among other things, we put astronauts on the moon. But more importantly the American people are good people, because our freedoms allow us to blossom into enterprise and independence, which, in turn, affords us the opportunity to be compassionate.
We are also good because of our religious faith. We know that are born not only for ourselves, but also for the benefit of our families and communities. We were not born to be selfish.
We should remember what makes us good. And we should remove every selfish politician. Republicans need to primary out a good number elected Republicans. *
The following is a summary of the April//May 2018 issue of The St. Croix Review:
Barry MacDonald, in “Remembering What Made Us Good” introduces the mission of The St. Croix Review: to reawaken the Genuine American Spirit of living in a good, great, and growing nation as free individuals.
Allan C. Brownfeld, in “With Its Swift Embrace of Massive Deficits, the Republican Party We Once Knew Is Gone,” cites the differences in behavior and attitude of Republican politicians when they were not in leadership, and now that they are; in “Donald Trump Thinks “Trade Wars Are Good and Easy to Win” — He Should Think Again,” he demonstrates the risky game President Trump is playing; in “Russia Will Surely Interfere with Our 2018 Election — Will We Be Ready?” he reports on Russia’s international meddling, and questions whether the Trump administration is prepared.
Paul Kengor, in “Imagine if Stormy Daniels Were Bill Clinton’s Friend Gennifer Flowers,” writes about the double standards the media apply to friends and enemies; in “Obama’s CIA Director Would Sooner Vacation in North Korea Than at Mar-a-Lago,” he presents John Brennan’s commitment to Communism; in “Let’s Not Forget Bernardine Dohrn, Bill Ayers, and the Four-Finger Salute,” he uses the occasion of the death of Charles Manson to highlight a miscarriage of justice; in “Remembering Fidel Castro’s Death,” he details the Communist oppression of Cuba — an island without privately owned boats.
Mark Hendrickson, in “Another Budget Deal Bites the Dust,” recites the history of presidential and congressional failure to curb deficit spending, and concludes that the pressure for increasing federal spending on both parties is irresistible; in “Proposed Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum: President Trump’s First Major Economic Mistake,” he demonstrates why tariffs are counterproductive.
Herbert London, in “Reliving the Lessons of the Free Market in the Trump Era,” credits President Trump’s use of unhindered markets for America’s revival; in “Due Process Circa 2018 Is in Dire Trouble,” in the wake of multiple accusations of sexual harassment and assault, he defends the due process of law.
Michael S. Swisher, in “Bugaboos of the Chattering Class — Populism,” redeems the word “populism” by putting it within a modern contex.
Philip Vander Elst, in “Capitalist Technology Sustained the Failed Economic Experiment of Soviet Communism,” imparts the lesson that Communism and all the various forms of socialism create poverty and misery.
Thomas S. Martin, in “The Amazoning of the University,” shows “a good teacher breathes life into a student.”
Stanley Keehlwetter, in “Billy Graham: My Personal Reflections,” shares memories of the great evangelist.
Gary S. Smith, in “A Tribute to Billy Graham,” highlights Billy Graham’s life and influnce.
David Hein, in “Reinhold Niebuhr’s Irony of American History: Still Vital at 66,” examines a perceptive and enduring message from a giant American intellectual.
Gary Scott Smith, in “Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.” reminds Americans of the passage of a great civil rights leader.
Jigs Gardner, in “Letters from a Conservative Farmer: The Consequences of Class,” remarks on the ways we misunderstand each other.
Jigs Gardner, in “Writers for Conservatives, 70: Tales of Adventure,” reviews the successes and failures of several writers.
It comes in the windows and even through
The walls the second the furnace takes a
Break from heating the home as we have drawn
The curtains and locked the doors but there is
No mitigation of the weight of the
Cold on a winter night in December
In Minnesota even though we passed
The solstice and daylight will get longer
Gradually we face the coldest days
Of the year so it not just tonight that
Is bearing down it’s the burden of our
Knowledge of the months coming and there is
No use in grumbling so I put on my
Thick socks and pile up the heavy blankets.
While walking around
during the daylight only
a little oval
including my mouth eyes and
nose is exposed to the cold.
When I think about the people who were
Airbrushed from the photographs of Joseph
Stalin because they fell in disfavor
With the Soviet Union I wonder
Whether the brush dispersed a very fine
Spray of paint or whether in fact color
Was brushed over the person erasing
His personage and I am sure that the
Work was meticulous and demanded
Dexterity — and then I think about
The millions of people who disappeared
Who were airbrushed from the earth in brutal
Fashion erasing their existence in
The service of an ideology.
is people are capable
of such monstrous
evil while professing the
I was driving through Stillwater doing
A chore turning on familiar streets and
I noticed the sun appearing with a
Right turn and with a left turn there was
The early morning moon — and I was in my
Working mind following the streets and the
Turns of the city but the sun and moon
Kept popping up around a corner and
Seemed to follow me — the moon was looming
White but yesterday it was yellow in
The dark — and there in a window was the
Lively reflection of the sun shining
Gold and my eyes didn’t hurt in lingering
Over the sight — and then I was driving.
The sun and moon are
everyone can see —
they enliven the
As winter is dragging on and darkness
Is dominating morning and evening
I became frustrated being stuck in
The little rooms within my little house
So I was blasé this morning in the
Bathroom when I opened the cabinet
And the trimmer fell out into the sink
And I didn’t care and I didn’t think
Until I trimmed off half my beard and I
Realized the fall had changed the settings
And then what could I do but shave the rest
Even though I was watching the daily
Progression of my winter beard and now
I have to begin all over again.
Or maybe not but
I will certainly
go to a barber
to get a haircut
and restore balance.
I gaze at the perpetrator in the
Mirror every morning and start with the
Left side of my chin with downward strokes and
Then I go under my nose and it does
Become apparent when it’s time to change
The razor because a dull blade will drag
Above my lip were I am sensitive —
I could be thinking about politics
Or the Academy Awards — while on
My right side next to my ear I begin
Stroking down against the grain to my neck
Until I reach my chin and when finished
I like to put the razor down and with
My fingers I like to feel smoothiness.
I’ve just discovered
an oddity that’s
to notice — my right
side is hairier.