Every schoolchild used to know that the four cardinal virtues are prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude.  These aren’t the only virtues, or even the only important ones, but rather those on which all the ordinary human virtues depend, for each of them can be viewed as one of the “parts” or aspects of one of the Four Big Ones.


Our problem is not political, but moral.

We are offended only by those who are boorish in the way that working class people are boorish, not by those who are boorish in the way that our powerful classes are boorish.

Worse -- much worse -- while complaining about boors, we are undisturbed by tyrants.



I write about one of your presidents, Abraham Lincoln.  Since I studied the man in the United States, he has become my favorite historical character, barring Christ and some of the saints.


“The Argument to a First Cause is very logical,” said the fellow on the bench, “but maybe God is exempt from logic.”  I hear this often.


I thrived on the hymns of my Baptist church when I was small.  My family was musical, and it seemed natural to listen to the counterpoint and sing in harmony.  Thinking that I would love it, my mother put me in the children’s choir.  To her great dismay, I rebelled and dropped out.  It was unspeakably humiliating to me.


** Spoiler Alert **

I recently read Upgrade, a Michael Crichton-style technothriller by Blake Crouch, in which humanity almost comes to an end because someone decides to play God, trying to implement an involuntary, virally transmitted polygenetic hack in order to make the whole human race smarter.  What could go wrong?


Roe may have been overturned, but abortion is still with us, and language is endlessly manipulable.  In homage to George Orwell, here are a few more words, phrases, and idioms for the Newspeak Dictionary.  The long-delayed Eleventh Edition is still in preparation.