Given the narrow range of left to far left views of the world on most college campuses, and the vast ignorance of other views, even among graduates of elite academic institutions, one valuable gift might be a book giving a different perspective on the world.
In a recent panel discussion on poverty at Georgetown University, President Barack Obama gave another demonstration of his mastery of rhetoric — and disregard of reality. One of the ways of fighting poverty, he proposed, was to "ask from society's lottery winners" that they make a "modest investment" in government programs to help the poor.
You cannot take any people, of any color, and exempt them from the requirements of civilization — including work, behavioral standards, personal responsibility and all the other basic things that the clever intelligentsia disdain — without ruinous consequences to them and to society at large.
Some of us think laws should be clear-cut statements of what you can and cannot do. Indicting people under laws that can lead to fines in the billions of dollars over what "we believe" or what international bureaucrats have "doubts" about is not really law. It is an exercise of arbitrary power, based on whatever subjective notions are in vogue among government bureaucrats.
Even if we cannot predict the outcomes of the primaries this far in advance, we can at least start trying to understand the candidates, the almost candidates and the people who are running just for the publicity.
Attempts to shut down people whose free speech interferes with other people's political agendas go on, with remarkably little notice, much less outrage. The Internal Revenue Service's targeting the tax-exempt status of conservative groups is just one of these attempts to fight political battles by shutting up the opposition, rather than answering them. Another insidious attempt to silence voices that dissent from current politically correct crusades is targeting scientists who do not agree with the "global warming" scenario.
An op-ed piece titled "Conservatives, Please Stop Trashing the Liberal Arts" appeared last week in the Wall Street Journal. But it is not conservatives who trashed the liberal arts.
It is not often that the leader of a small city-state — in this case, Singapore — gets an international reputation. But no one deserved it more than Lee Kuan Yew, the founder of Singapore as an independent country in 1959.
Some restaurants and grocery stores in Oakland's Chinatown have closed after the city's minimum wage was raised. Other small businesses there are not sure they are going to survive, since many depend on a thin profit margin and a high volume of sales.
The U.S. Department of Justice issued two reports last week, both growing out of the Ferguson, Missouri shooting of Michael Brown. Both are worth reading — but for different reasons.