Kyle Smith
Kyle Smith
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RECENT ARTICLES
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The Policing Crisis in New York City | National Review

The Policing Crisis in New York City | National Review

n Tuesday afternoon in Manhattan, cops carried out a routine arrest of an 18-year-old New York activist who is suspected of disabling police cameras by spraying paint on them. The person is suspected of this for very good reason: There are videos starring the perpetrator carrying out the act in question. (Allegedly.) The arresting officers were plainclothes members of the NYPD. The video of the arrest, in which plainclothes officers and uniformed police using bikes as barriers efficiently collar the subject, went “viral,” meaning it became attractive to stupid people who evidently have...

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Kyle Smith
4d ago
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A Whirlwind Gallop through History with Ben Shapiro | National Review

A Whirlwind Gallop through History with Ben Shapiro | National Review

name Ben Shapiro may not be the first that comes to mind when you think of a mollifying, uniting figure. But he really does make a sincere effort to find common ground between two hostile sides when he suggests that religion as well as reason fueled Western human advancement. Or, as he might put it, we are all children of both Athens and Jerusalem.Shapiro’s latest book, , has just been published, which reminded me I hadn’t yet finished his previous one, , which appeared in paperback earlier this year. Yes, Ben is writing books faster than I can read them, and I am duly ashamed. I have a...

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Kyle Smith
6d ago
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The 29 Percenters | National Review

The 29 Percenters | National Review

summer, after six weeks of race-related agony, protests, riots, horrific acts of violence, a wildfire of iconoclasm, and a nationwide reckoning on matters of race, all of it whipped from one frenzy to another by a media that exists to exaggerate and profit from conflict, renaming the Washington Redskins seemed like a no-brainer. Surely this was the most obvious public step forward we could make as a culture, a small but significant indication that business as usual was no longer tolerable. The team name may have had no relationship whatsoever to the death of George Floyd, but it was the...

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Kyle Smith
Jul 20
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Antonio Gramsci smiles | National Review

Antonio Gramsci smiles | National Review

Micah Mattix notes today in his that more or less all of the major literary prizes these days are being handed out according to social-justice precepts and the imperatives of identity politics. The prizes become increasingly meaningless as they sever themselves from any interest in rewarding actual excellence. Asks Mattix:How long will it be before praising a work of art for its aesthetic excellence alone is a revolutionary act? Nearly every literary prize now takes into consideration the race and politics of authors when naming shortlists and winners. When they don’t, they get into...

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Kyle Smith
Jul 8
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The All-American Glory of Yacht Rock | National Review

The All-American Glory of Yacht Rock | National Review

say jazz is America’s musical signature: As Ken Burns wrote, “the genius of America is improvisation, our unique experiment a profound intersection of freedom and creativity. . . . Nowhere is this more apparent than in jazz — the only art form created by Americans, an enduring and indelible expression of our genius and promise.”Stirring words. Jazz is inventive, vibrant, and complex. Everything about it is great, except the way it sounds. Listening to jazz is like trying to chase down a housefly. There’s a reason why only French tourists pretend to like it. To quote a more honest writer,...

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Kyle Smith
Jul 5
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Ricky Gervais vs. Woke Comedy ‘Dogma’ | National Review

Ricky Gervais vs. Woke Comedy ‘Dogma’ | National Review

finds it baffling that mentioning freedom of speech increasingly gets you as right-wing. Gervais isn’t on the right. He’s a good old social-democratic progressive Trump hater. But he thinks comedians should be able to joke about anything. Ten minutes ago, this wasn’t controversial. “Freedom of speech shouldn’t even be a political issue,” he says. “Everyone on every side should agree with that. . . . It’s odd that it became politicized.”On a recent edition of the Daily Beast’s The Last Laugh, Gervais made an appearance to promote his seriocomic After Life (the first two seasons are...

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Kyle Smith
Jun 25
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The White-Guilt Cult | National Review

The White-Guilt Cult | National Review

If you enjoyed this article, we have a proposition for you: Join NRPLUS. Members get all of our content (including the magazine), no paywalls or content meters, an advertising-minimal experience, and unique access to our writers and editors (conference calls, social-media groups, etc.). And importantly, NRPLUS members help keep NR going. Consider it?If you enjoyed this article, and were stimulated by its contents, we have a proposition for you: Join NRPLUS.ByA look at woke religiosity.ByLeftist intellectuals are captivated by violence and looting.ByValuable reforms can come of this...

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Kyle Smith
Jun 18
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Dave Chappelle Gets It Wrong | National Review

Dave Chappelle Gets It Wrong | National Review

,” says Dave Chappelle, “was murdered by George Zimmerman.” No, he wasn’t.Taking exception to the points made by a standup comic can be obtuse: “Relax, I’m only joking” usually ends the discussion. Comics use hyperbole, anecdote, and cherry-picked facts to drive laughs, sometimes hiding behind a naive or moronic alter ego.None of that applies to 8:46, Chappelle’s 30-minute YouTube special inspired by the death of George Floyd, whose title evokes the time Floyd’s neck spent under a police officer’s knee before he died. Chappelle’s latest isn’t a comedy routine at all; he makes no attempt to...

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Kyle Smith
Jun 22
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Meet the World Expert on All Things: Tom Nichols | National Review

Meet the World Expert on All Things: Tom Nichols | National Review

ello, I’m Tom Nichols. I have very fierce facial hair. I am a super-brain expert authority (™) on all things. You can find me in the Naval War College, USA Today, and in the dictionary, under the word “insufferable.”I am in fact an expert on all things, except the management of time, 100 hours of which I spend on Twitter each week unclogging my nose at you fools who voted for Trump, you fools who are reluctant to vote for Socialists, and you fools who consider it conservative to appoint conservative judges. Which I have wittily dubbed “muh judges” while deriding you weirdos who oppose...

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Kyle Smith
Sep 3
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Begging the Mob’s Forgiveness Doesn’t Work | National Review

Begging the Mob’s Forgiveness Doesn’t Work | National Review

the actual riots, the metaphorical ones. Reputations get burned down. Careers get their windows smashed in. Character gets assassinated.Much of this has been nearly as senseless, emotion-driven, and inane as the actual burning, looting, and destroying of urban neighborhoods. Attacking Drew Brees for expressing widely held patriotic beliefs was about as rational as setting fire to a gas station. Brees should have realized this, taken a deep breath, and reacted in the following way: by doing nothing. Brees should have let his original statement stand. “I will never agree with anybody...

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Kyle Smith
Jun 10
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The Central Park Dog Case Is Covington 2.0 | National Review

The Central Park Dog Case Is Covington 2.0 | National Review

thing about viral videos: They don’t necessarily give the full and complete context for what happened, do they? They might, for instance, begin only after someone does something bizarre and provocative but record solely the reaction. Covington was only 16 months ago. Did we learn anything from it? Apparently not. A similar thing happened in Central Park this weekend, the world reacted in the same way, and once again a misleading video made it appear that a target of a deliberate provocation was a racist for reacting understandably to the provocateur.New Yorker Amy Cooper was walking her dog...

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Kyle Smith
May 27
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Journalists Are Not Heroes | National Review

Journalists Are Not Heroes | National Review

been a lot of social-media anguish lately about journalists’ losing their jobs. It has not gone entirely unnoticed that journalists seem to be more alarmed by job losses in certain industries than in others, hence “Iowahawk” David Burge’s Twitter jibe, in response to a dolorous mention of layoffs in the media, that “355 job losses is a tragedy, 21 million job losses is a statistic.” (Bonus points for the allusion to a journalist-beloved dictator.)It could happen to any of us, of course, myself very much included. I readily concede that many if not most if not all of the people laid off by...

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Kyle Smith
May 21
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Andrew Cuomo’s Reckless Choices | National Review

Andrew Cuomo’s Reckless Choices | National Review

made terrible decisions as mayor of New York City. But as more reporting emerges about the catastrophic decisions made by New York’s governor, it’s possible Andrew Cuomo deserves even more blame than de Blasio for what the coronavirus has done to the tri-state area and consequently the nation.New York and New Jersey combined have suffered more COVID-19 deaths than any other country being tracked by researchers who run the Johns Hopkins crisis dashboard. Cuomo made three breathtakingly bad moves in March that in retrospect amounted to catastrophe. First, Cuomo failed to call for, and even...

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Kyle Smith
May 18
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Thomas unloads on Joe Biden and others in a revealing documentary | National Review

Thomas unloads on Joe Biden and others in a revealing documentary | National Review

Today brings the PBS debut of the must-see documentary, Created Equal: Clarence Thomas In His Own Words. Thomas walks us through his extraordinary life, which began in Georgia in crushing poverty, explains the rage he felt at Catholic school when Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered and his resultant turn to radical black nationalism in college, then his turn back to the right and his subsequent rise.Thomas has, as you would expect, a lot to say about the 1991 circus that attended his hearings to be confirmed to the Supreme Court, over which Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Joe Biden...

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Kyle Smith
May 18
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Our Nevermind Media | National Review

Our Nevermind Media | National Review

lovely it is to have a high-profile job in our major media institutions. Let’s say you completely, hideously muck up a huge story. Let’s say you spend three years wildly misleading the public. Let’s say that, at the outset of the worst public-health crisis in a century, you mock people for being afraid and tell them to go about life as usual. When you’re proven wrong, you get to tell the next chapter of the story anyway. And if you feel like saying, “No fair noticing we were wrong!” you know other members of the mainstream-media cartel will rush to support you.Media observers are today...

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Kyle Smith
May 15
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CNN Buries Its Own Poll Results on Trump’s Favorability. Guess Why. | National Review

CNN Buries Its Own Poll Results on Trump’s Favorability. Guess Why. | National Review

that’s interesting, I thought, as I noted that the RealClearPolitics homepage stated that President Trump was tied for his all-time high in CNN polling. Then I went over to the CNN homepage for confirmation. Guess what I found?The main story was about a church that lost 44 parishioners to COVID-19. The second-most prominent story told us that “Grocery Prices Are Soaring” (which is true if you think that a 2.6 percent increase in April should be called “soaring”), the third-most-prominent item told us, “Doctors treating coronavirus patients are seeing odd and frightening syndromes.” Running...

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Kyle Smith
May 14
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Don’t Shrug at Obama’s Michael Flynn Scandal | National Review

Don’t Shrug at Obama’s Michael Flynn Scandal | National Review

would President Obama be reacting to the collapse of the case against Michael Flynn if Flynn were a black teen?Picture a racist white FBI agent who hates a black student and became enraged when that teen publicly insulted one of the agent’s close friends. Say the FBI sends two guys over to the teen’s house, claiming it suspects him of being involved in drug trafficking, and starts asking the kid questions in hopes that the kid will lie.Suppose the FBI does not read the kid his rights before questioning him. Suppose the FBI discourages the kid from hiring a lawyer and tells the kid its...

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Kyle Smith
May 12
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The Ventilator Shortage That Wasn’t | National Review

The Ventilator Shortage That Wasn’t | National Review

March, one of the most feared aspects of the pandemic was the widely reported coming shortage of ventilators. One well-publicized estimate, repeated by the New York Times, the New Yorker and CNN, was that the U.S. would need roughly one million ventilators, or more than five times as many as we had. Gulp. Ventilators are expensive, they’re complex machines, and they can’t be churned out in the thousands overnight.In the state that (as of today) has one-third of the country’s confirmed COVID-19 cases, New York governor Andrew Cuomo sounded the alarm for ventilators repeatedly. On March 27,...

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Kyle Smith
Apr 17
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