Thomas Sowell
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Random thoughts on the passing scene:

Even squirrels know enough to store nuts, so that they will have something to eat when food gets scarce. But the welfare state has spawned a whole class of people who spend everything they get when times are good, and look to others to provide for their food and other basic needs when times turn bad.

The 14th Amendment to the Constitution prescribes "equal protection of the laws" to all Americans. But what does that mean, if the President of the United States can arbitrarily grant waivers, so that A, B and C have to obey the laws but X, Y and Z do not -- as with both ObamaCare and the immigration laws?

Two reports came out in the same week. One was from the Pentagon, saying that, in just a few years, Iran will be able to produce not only a nuclear bomb but a missile capable of carrying it to the United States. The other report said that the American Olympic team has uniforms made in China. This latter report received far more attention, both in Congress and in the media.

People who lament gridlock in Washington, and express the pious hope that Democrats and Republicans would put aside their partisan conflicts, and cooperate to help the economy recover, implicitly assume that what the economy needs is more meddling by politicians, which is what brought on economic disaster in the first place. (Skeptics can read "The Housing Boom and Bust.")

Racism is not dead, but it is on life support -- kept alive by politicians, race hustlers and people who get a sense of superiority by denouncing others as "racists."

One of the arguments for Medicare is that the elderly don't want to be a burden to their children. Apparently it is all right to be a burden to other people's children, who are paying taxes.

Those who talk as if more people going to college is automatically a Good Thing seldom show much interest in what actually goes on at college -- including far less time spent by students studying than in the past, and a proliferation of courses promoting a sense of grievance, entitlement or advanced navel-gazing and breast-beating.

One of the most dangerous trends of our times is making the truth socially unacceptable, or even illegal, with "hate speech" laws. It is supposed to be terrible, for example, to call an illegal alien an "illegal alien" or to call an Islamic terrorist an "Islamic terrorist." When the media refer to "undocumented" workers or to violence committed by "militants," who is kidding whom -- and why?

After the charismatic -- and disastrous -- Woodrow Wilson presidency, the voters did not elect another president in the next decade who could be considered the least bit charismatic. Let us hope that history repeats itself.

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Thomas Sowell

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

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