Thomas Sowell

Random thoughts on the passing scene:

 The very people who were telling us to "get over it" and "move on" during the Clinton scandals of the 1990s have been completely unable to get over the 2004 elections -- and some of them haven't even gotten over the 2000 elections yet.

 A church in Monterrey, Mexico, has installed equipment that jams cell phone calls, so that church services will not be disturbed by phones ringing. This equipment should be installed in every school, restaurant, auditorium, etc. Incidentally, the equipment used by this church was manufactured in Israel. Let's hear it for interfaith cooperation and the Judaeo-Christian tradition.

 Anyone who grew up in the South is bound to have heard the phrase "poor white trash." Teresa Heinz Kerry has given us a new category -- rich white trash.

 During his long tenure as NBC News anchorman, Tom Brokaw took that program from last place among the big three broadcast networks to first place. But he had more viewers when he was in last place, more than 20 years ago, than he had in first place this year. That is because fewer people now watch NBC, ABC, or CBS News. Good!

 Imagine that everyone in the older age brackets had to write two books -- "Smart Things I Have Done in My Life" and "Dumb Things I Have Done in My Life." Be frank. Which book do you think would be bigger? Even some of the smart things we did were a result of having done dumb things before and suffered the consequences.

 If the next time a President of the United States sees a mortal danger to this country looming on the horizon, he decides to wait for iron-clad proof in order to avoid political critics, we can be in truly big trouble.

 A couple of readers in Michigan ask: Since death is defined by the cessation of brain waves, why shouldn't life be defined by the beginning of brain waves?

 I am so old that I can remember when we called illegal aliens illegal aliens, when people paid their own medical bills, and when New Yorker cartoons were funny.

 It is fascinating to watch politicians come up with "solutions" to problems that are a direct result of their previous solutions. In many cases, the most efficient thing to do would be to repeal their previous solution and stop being so gung-ho for creating new solutions in the future. But, politically, that is the last thing they will do.

 If people are free to do as they wish, they are almost certain not to do as we wish. That is why Utopian planners end up as despots, whether at the national level or at the level of the local "redevelopment" agency.

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

Creators Syndicate