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Public Education’s God Complex

By Bryan Hyde The term “God complex” is sometimes used to describe those in influential positions who behave with such arrogance that they believe they are acting as God Himself would--if only He had all the facts. A fairly recent textbook example of such all-knowing behavior involved members of the Utah State Board of Education. How ironic … [Read more...]

Marginalizing Others Via the Bogus Predicate

By Bryan Hyde If patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel as Samuel Johnson suggested in 1775, one can’t help but wonder what the first refuge might have been. In our day, the answer to that question would most likely consist of what Gilbert Ryle referred to as the bogus or unspecified predicate as a means of silencing dissent. The … [Read more...]

Our New National Hymn: How Great We Art

By Bryan Hyde "Raise their heads on gilded poles! Roast the fatted calf! We need a rousing song--summon Toby Keith!" - from The Onion on the killing of Usay & Quday Hussein by U.S forces in 2003. The past couple of weeks have revealed a great deal about the character of the average American. It's not exactly good news either. When … [Read more...]

Food Safety At Any Cost?

By Bryan Hyde Sitting down to our daily meals is such a commonplace occurrence for most of us that we scarcely give it a second thought. But the safety of the food we eat is becoming the focal point of an increasingly intense tug of war between federal regulators and food growers and producers at every level—right down to our own … [Read more...]

The Tyrant Next Door

What makes a community a great place to live? The answer will vary from person to person but most of us would agree on qualities like cleanliness, order and low crime. Notably missing from those terms we use to describe a livable community is the word “freedom." In fact, occasionally the concept of freedom is found to be somewhat at odds … [Read more...]

15 Tough Questions For Political Candidates

Less than a month remains before the first Tuesday in November, and the current election cycle is finally beginning to peak. Many self-identified conservative commentators are breathlessly reminding us that "This is the most important election of our lifetimes" while they're busy helping set up the Republican Kool-Aid stand. Democrats seem … [Read more...]

Islam on Trial

A recent (ahem) debate on a forum I'm involved with started out as a discussion on the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque" -- a textbook example of Joseph Goebbel's "repeat a lie often enough" dictum -- but quickly deteriorated into what amounted to a trial of the Islamic faith. I claim no expertise on the subject of Islam, but I've encountered … [Read more...]

Conditioning Us for the Next War

Just this morning I received an e-mail from a friend breathlessly warning of the dangers of impending Sharia law in America. The e-mail contained a series of photos of an Iranian boy whose arm was being crushed beneath a car's tire for the crime of stealing. Why aren't we bombing them already? Wow. I guess everything we've heard … [Read more...]

Disturbing Parallels Between America & 1930s Germany

The practice of invoking a comparison between your opponent's argument and Nazi ideology is such a common occurrence in internet discussions that, years ago, an author and attorney named Mike Godwin coined a tongue-in-cheek adage known as "Godwin's Law." Strictly speaking, this tactic constitutes an informal fallacy in that it relies upon … [Read more...]

A Propaganda-Proof People

Last week a friend emailed me the following: "Hi Bryan, "How are you doing? "Just wondering, a friend of mine at work was pretty ticked off at you for a show of yours she listened to this weekend. She said that you were saying that Fox [N]ews fans are delusional, and that you didn't reference what people should be watching or listening to … [Read more...]