American journalist, syndicated columnist

Reference

Charley Reese - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Charley Reese (19 January 1937 - 21 May 2013) was an American syndicated columnist known for his conservative views. He was associated with the Orlando Sentinel from 1971 to 2001, both as a writer and in various editorial capacities. King Features Syndicate distributed his column, which was published three times per week. ..."

Born

19 Jan 1937, in Washington, Georgia

Died

21 May 2013, in Orlando, Florida

Articles

Rings of War, 1 Jan 2007
Reflects on war as concentric rings with soldiers in the center and the general public in the outer circle, criticising George W. Bush and Congress for not ending the 2003 Iraq War and suggesting a general tax for future wars as incentive to end them
"Think of a war as a violent center of a circle with concentric rings of people surrounding it. At the center are the soldiers who have to fight the war. In the next ring are the people whose loved ones are doing the fighting. ... The fourth ring includes journalists, to whom the war is just another story. They get paid to write and talk about something, and a war is a long-lasting topic. ... The seventh and final ring of people includes the majority of Americans, who have no direct interest in the war."

Writings

A Magic Day, 21 Oct 2006
"Before a foreigner can become an American citizen, he has to pass a test about the country's history and its form of government. We should require passing that same test before anyone is issued a voter-registration card. Any native-born American who can't pass a test routinely passed by people from foreign countries doesn't deserve to be allowed the privilege of voting."
Related Topic: Voting
Americans Are No Imperialists, 18 Dec 2006
"I've always argued that the American people are not cut out to be imperialists. We lack the sophistication, the language skills and, to our credit, the ruthlessness that running a global empire requires. Furthermore, our main interests are in our own country. ... For most Americans, there is no place on earth they'd rather be than right here in the U.S."
Related Topic: Imperialism
Boogey Bull, 28 Nov 2006
"... since there is no conceivable circumstance where all the terrorists in the world would collect in one convenient killing ground, you will never eliminate terrorists by military means. Terrorism is a product of politics and of injustice, real or perceived. Since human beings have no choice but to act on their perceptions, whether the injustice is real or perceived doesn't matter."
Related Topic: Terrorism
Bush Broke the Law, 31 Jan 2006
"What the Bush administration is saying is, to hell with the Bill of Rights. We are changing the standard. No probable cause and no oaths or affirmations are needed. All that is needed is if we personally decide that search and seizure is reasonable. By that standard, no police department in the U.S. would need to bother with search warrants."
Childhood Ends at Puberty, 15 Apr 2006
Recounts the early life of Benjamin Franklin and argues for ending formal basic education by 13
"... we do young people a grave injustice by branding them as children until they are 18. ... Basic education should be finished by the age of 12 or 13. After that, young people should be apprenticed, enrolled in commercial or vocational schools, freed to work or, if they have the IQ for college, enrolled in the university system."
Clichés, 24 Oct 2007
Discusses how politicians' clichés are usually the opposite of what they say, in particular with the current situation in Iran
"Russian President Vladimir Putin's recent and successful visit to Iran seems to have so rattled Mr. Bush that he is prattling on about World War III. If he would read the joint statement issued at the end of the meeting, he would see that the meeting was mostly about doing business. ... Putin, who also doesn't want Iran to develop nuclear weapons, said making threats is counterproductive."
Related Topic: Iran
Expensive Ignorance, 25 Nov 2006
Examines results from a survey of college students on U.S. history, economics and its place in the world
"Maybe 100 years ago, ignorance didn't matter so much, but our margin of safety is gone, and we absolutely cannot expect to maintain this country with yahoos who get their education from television and the movies and those college graduates who are close to being the most expensive functional illiterates in the world."
Related Topic: Learning
First Principles, 24 Mar 2007
"Thomas Jefferson, in his first inaugural speech, listed what he called 'the essential principles of our government and consequently those which ought to shape its administration.' ... Jefferson said that should we wander from these principles in error or alarm, we should retrace our steps to regain the road that leads to peace, liberty and safety."
Related Topic: Thomas Jefferson
How It All Began, 15 Jan 2007
"It all began with one faulty premise. The attack on the World Trade Center was carried out by a single organization, al-Qaida. Hamas had not attacked us; Islamic Jihad had not attacked us; the Taliban had not attacked us; the guerrillas in the Philippines, Somalia, Colombia and wherever else in the world they exist had not attacked us."
Related Topics: September 11, 2001, Terrorism
Jefferson Davis, 13 Dec 2006
"Jefferson Davis, one of America's greatest statesmen, said that a question settled by violence would inevitably arise again, though at a different time and in a different form. ... he said: '... We ask no conquest, no aggrandizement ... all we ask is to be let alone; that those who never held power over us shall not now attempt our subjugation by arms.'"
Loving Ambiguity, 19 Feb 2007
"I have two phrases that I bet you can't define off the top of your head. They are 'national security' and 'national interests.' Politicians love these phrases precisely because they are both ambiguous and iconic almost in a religious sense. Who, after all, would wish to do anything to harm national security or fail to do what was necessary for our national interests?"
Related Topic: Politics
New Gun-Control Victims, 21 Apr 2007
"The operative fact in that shooting, as is usually the case, was that the only person with a gun was the killer. ... It was, by the way, a gun-control law that guaranteed all of the killer's victims would be unarmed. The law says that you can't have a firearm on a school campus. Well, as you can see, the killer paid no attention to the law."
Obesity Not a Government Problem, 19 Jun 2006
Argues that although humans, including children, have become less active than our ancestors and thus more prone to be obese, it is not government's role to interfere with people's eating habits
"Anybody who doubts that many Americans have a problem with obesity need only visit an all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant. Most of the customers fill their chairs and then some. Nevertheless, it is not a government problem. Freedom means you can have a lot to lose if you want to, and it's nobody's beeswax. ... Healthy living is always a personal decision, and government, though it itches to control every aspect of our lives, should stay out of it."
Original Intent, 3 Jun 2006
"If the Founding Fathers were to come back, I doubt if they would recognize the United States today. ... The Founding Fathers were suspicious of government and wary of it. They recognized that government is always the greatest threat to liberty. ... Clearly, the Founding Fathers did not approve of the modern concept, imposed by federal courts, of one man, one vote."
Related Topic: Founding Fathers
Responsibility, 10 Apr 2006
"... some folks view the tort system as a trip to Las Vegas or as a lottery. If they are involved in a single-car crash, then it's the car's fault or the road's fault. ... If they get fat or harden their arteries, it's the food industry's fault. ... If they stupidly shoot themselves, it's the gun manufacturer's fault."
Related Topic: Personal Responsibility
Right and Simple, 30 Dec 2006
Discusses the proposition that "the right thing to do is both simple to state and simple to understand" in the context of the drug war and the political situation in Venezuela, Colombia and the United States
"The drug war is another example of the wrong thing to do being hidden under piles of old rhetoric. The drug problem is fueled by American consumption. Our politicians try to shift the blame to the drug cartels, as if they were slipping into the country and forcing cocaine up people's noses at gunpoint. Stop consumption in America and there is no market for the cocaine, no funds for drug cartels, no money to be laundered."
Slipped His Moorings, 9 Sep 2006
"The president, I believe, is desperate to be what he knows he is not — a great man. He has fantasized that he is a second Winston Churchill leading the forces of democracy in a great crusade against the forces of darkness. The only trouble is, there is nobody out there in the dark."
Related Topics: George W. Bush, Terrorism
Stop the Cannon Fodder, 27 Jan 2007
"I'm glad that I discouraged all my children from serving in the military, even though I had served. It is important, I believe, to separate the natural and noble feeling of love of country from the present reality. The young people dying in Iraq are not dying to protect their country. ... Do not hand your precious one-of-a-kind children over to cynical men who will squander their lives without blinking an eye. It is a sad thing to die for another’s profits."
Related Topics: Children, Iraq, War
The Central Question, 20 Jan 2007
"Self-government only works if the people have access to the truth. If they are lied to and propagandized instead of informed, then they, in fact, live in a dictatorship, though one carefully disguised by their controllers. That's why Thomas Jefferson said that newspapers that whore for political parties or other interests are no different than newspapers controlled by a government."
Related Topic: Freedom of the Press
The Empire Is Over, 29 Sep 2007
Compares the current U.S. government to the characters in The Wizard of Oz and discusses the signs of an empire ending
"A friend of mine, a classical scholar, sometimes tells his students, 'No one woke up one morning in 476 A.D. and said, "Gee, I'm in the Dark Ages."' The transition from the heyday of Roman power to a stage of barbarism was a gradual process. We are in a process of change. No one is going to announce on TV that the U.S. is no longer a superpower."
Related Topic: Imperialism
The Meaning of Free Speech, 18 Mar 2006
Discusses the response to a Colorado high school teacher who compared President Bush's State of the Union speech to speeches made by Adolf Hitler
"When the Founding Fathers wrote the First Amendment, it was not their intention to protect politically correct speech. It is exactly the purpose of the First Amendment to protect unpopular speech. Read John Stuart Mill's essay 'On Liberty.' The value of freedom is the diversity of opinions and thoughts it encourages."
Related Topic: Freedom of Speech
What Is the Mission?, 3 Jun 2006
"Is it to overthrow Saddam Hussein? He's been overthrown ... Is it to allow the Iraqi people to hold elections? They've held three elections ... But if the purpose was to install an elected government, why are we still there? Why are we spending half a billion dollars to build the world's largest embassy ..."
Related Topic: Iraq War (2003)
What People Believe, 20 May 2006
Explains how people are influenced by their upbringing and by political leaders to leave their families and jobs and "go to a foreign country and fight in a war"
"Persuading people to go to war is much more complicated and involves identity, which is constructed of beliefs. ... Millions of men have gone to war because, as Americans or British or French or Germans or Russians or Japanese, they believed it was their duty. The danger lies in the fact that unscrupulous men, through misrepresentation and propaganda, can motivate people to go to war even though it is not in their country's interest, much less their own."
Related Topic: War
Whoa, Walter!, 4 Sep 2006
"Walter Williams ... says, "Today's Americans are vastly different from those of my generation who fought the life-and-death struggle of World War II." Whoa, Walter, that's jive, and you know it. You were born in 1936. You were 9 years old when World War II ended. Your generation didn't fight any struggle. You've spent your adult life in academia."