Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. The American Debt to Three Frenchmen and a Spaniard You’ve Never Heard Of


The victory at Yorktown that ultimately forced Britain to accept the inevitability of American independence was the direct result of assistance from three Frenchman and a little known Spaniard.

The army that Washington brought south from New York to Virginia was mostly comprised of regular army French troops commanded by the Comte de Rochambeau whose perseverance almost rivaled that of Washington. Each morning, thousands of commuters cross the Potomac over the Rochambeau Bridge into DC and I’ll bet that, like most Americans, the vast majority don’t know who he was. Without him, Washington and his tenuous Continental Army would have been ineffectual


Was Nike’s Betsy Ross Flag imbroglio planned? Because we’re pretty sure Disney’s “Little Mermaid” one was. Also, how did Trump’s Independence Day speech go from “creeping fascism” to “small and sad?”

The intro/outro song and Stephen’s song of the week is “Every Little Thing” by The Black Keys. Jon’s song of the week is “In Your Own Time” by Calexico and Iron & Wine. To listen to all the music featured on The Conservatarians, subscribe to our Spotify playlist!


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Propaganda


“Never believe all your own side’s propaganda, but don’t start believing the enemy’s.” – Unknown (heard from David Weber)

I have to apologize, as this quote is based on my recollection, which may be inexact. My apologies. That said, I heard this or something close to it at a panel on military science fiction.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Celebrating the Seven Cardinal Sins


One of my gay friends (“Chad”) posts repeated rainbow-colored memes and pictures on his Facebook feed, every day during “Pride Month.” He views gays as a civil rights group: Why should someone be treated differently simply because they were born differently? At first, I found it odd that Chad insisted on celebrating his pride in, well, in simply being born different. Nothing he accomplished, but just the way he was born. That seems like me spending a month every year celebrating my pride in being born with brown hair. I mean, brown hair is nice, but it seems like an inadequate reason for parades.

Anyway, after a while, it occurred to me that Chad’s celebration of pride could serve as a model for other holiday months. Perhaps we should have a celebratory month for each of the Seven Cardinal (Deadly) Sins: Pride, Greed, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Wrath, and Sloth. (Obviously, we would not celebrate The Seven Heavenly Virtues. That’s no fun.) Fortunately, the LGBTQQIP2SAA+ founding, um, fathers had the foresight to observe Pride Month in June, so each of the remaining six months of the year could be used to observe the six remaining Cardinal Sins. It works out so perfectly, I can’t believe that it’s a coincidence. This must have been the plan all along.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. The Devil and Ann Coulter: Defending Truth Ain’t So Easy Anymore


Ms Coulter has fought the left to defend the truth before. This one is an excellent piece for the Fourth of July.

While Jefferson was busy entertaining international visitors in the main house, Randolph would generally retire to the slave quarters to dance and fiddle. One slave, Isaac Granger Jefferson, described Randolph in his dictated memoirs thus: “Old Master’s brother, Mass Randall, was a mighty simple man: used to come out among black people, play the fiddle and dance half the night.”


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. The Heroine of Bunker Hill


Boston, Massachusetts, 1775: A 15 year old girl was present when the first shots of the Battle of Bunker Hill were fired. Rather than running away, she took her friend’s hand and ran toward the battle.

Mara Sargeant is little remembered today, but she is no less a folk hero than many who are still celebrated in verse and song. She was the daughter of John Sargeant, a sea captain who drowned at sea shortly before Mara’s birth, and Elizabeth Sargeant, granddaughter of the famous Puritan minister, physician, and poet Michael Wigglesworth, who wrote the influential poem “The Day of Doom,” often printed and carried in the Bibles of Puritan congregants. The poem delighted its Puritan audience with its vivid descriptions of hell and damnation and chilled them to the core with its stern warnings. The Puritan ethic was still manifest in Wigglesworth’s descendants, and Mara is reported to have left her fiancé, son of a wealthy ship owner, on the day of their wedding because he arrived with the smell of alcohol on his breath.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Lies, Fears and Arrogance: The Irrelevance of Truth


With the latest attack on Donald Trump regarding his plans for Independence Day, I became even more sharply aware of the blatantly deceptive words and actions of the Left. Yes, I know it’s all about politics, but they are so willing to do just about anything—including physical and verbal attacks—that they border on demonstrating a type of psychosis.

It’s difficult to separate their lies and fears from their arrogance.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Vicksburg and the 4th of July


I have often seen it written that because of the July 4, 1863, surrender of Vicksburg, Mississippi, the residents of the city did not have another Independence Day celebration for 82 years. As the story goes, it supposedly took the end of World War II before the people could bring themselves to mark the occasion. As with many popular stories, it does have a grain of truth; celebrations of Independence Day were rather muted in Vicksburg for many years. But to say that they were entirely absent for those 82 years is just not correct.

To begin with, one must remember that Vicksburg was occupied by Union troops after the surrender of the city, and it remained in Federal hands until the end of the war. For the Union soldiers stationed in Vicksburg, July 4, 1864, was not only the birthday of the United States, but it also marked the anniversary of one of the greatest victories of the war, the surrender of the “Gibraltar of the Confederacy.”


Contributor Created with Sketch. Finally, a Restaurant with Sense


At the end of June, the President’s son, Eric Trump, was spit on while dining at a Chicago restaurant by one of the restaurant’s own staff members. The waiter was arrested by the Secret Service, and the restaurant itself was caught in the crosshairs. CNN reported at the time,

“We did not witness the incident and we are just beginning to learn the details. What is certain is this: no customer should ever be spit upon,” The Aviary said in a statement Wednesday.


Contributor Created with Sketch. Another Day, Another Twitter Mob Outrage


The 4th of July parade held in Washington D.C. today elicited days of outrage over first, the presence of tanks, then the fact that the tanks would be only available for ticketed attendees. There was upset over the cost, etc etc. We were told it was the mark of a fascist to have tanks in the streets, and then have tanks only available for viewing for some Americans. It’s honestly hard to keep up with all the reasons why people loudly and publicly call the elected President of the United States a fascist.

Attendees of the parade had to know that they could, at any moment, but thrust into the spotlight and into the tiger pit by those covering the parade from the media or a random left-wing activist. After what happened to the Covington Catholic boys after the March for Life, they should, at least. What’s particularly ironic is, of all the folks at today’s parade, most of whom were Trump supporters (I was in attendance with my family and we were surrounded by MAGA hats, shirts and flags), the woman at the center of a firestorm caused by liberal journalists was actually holding a sign (albeit vague) critical of the President’s border policies:


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. You Can’t Coup If No One Is Home


Tanks are on display on the Mall. And the Progressive tribe, led by Laurence Tribe, see trouble. But tanks are not new to Washington or to parades in the capital. The photo on the left shows Dwight “Nikita” Eisenhower standing to honor the tanks tearing up the streets in front of the White House in 1953 during his inauguration (Laurence Tribe refers to this time period as the “coup d’etat”). Note, these tanks were lighter than an M1A1 and could allegedly float on air, thus causing less wear and tear on the road system. Trump wanted a parade of tanks like they do in Paris on Bastille Day, but the officials felt they would do too much damage to the streets.

FDR Hoover (Correction thanks to @hangon) used tanks to make a point when he called in Douglas McArthur to clean up the trash on the Mall and run over WWI military bonus seekers who wanted to cash in their certificates for payment early. Who knows, perhaps a young revolutionary in China named Deng Xiaoping read about Hoover’s Mall cleanup program in the China News and took notes in case some day he might be called upon to clean up trash after demonstrations in Beijing’s immense Tiananmen Square. To make matters worse, Larry the Worrier was no doubt disturbed to learn that tanks paraded through the streets of Washington, D.C. and New York City at the annual post-WWI Army Day celebrations in the 1930’s under FDR – but Larry, never given to hyperbole, was quiet about it. After all, FDR was part of Larry Tribe’s Progressive Tribe.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. What a Conservative Learns in College


The post title is taken from a Powerline post this morning. In it, John Hinderaker published his daughter Kathryn’s reflections on her time at St. Olaf’s College in Minnesota. Kathryn graduated this year.

I almost cried in reading it. Although Kathryn puts a positive spin on it, I could only think that any conservative student who does not hide their thinking is experiencing something like Jews in Germany when they were simply being harassed with government approval as opposed to being rounded up, imprisoned, and gassed.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Two Submarine Thrillers Worth Watching


Currently showing on Netflix are two films worth a look: Black Sea (2014) with Jude Law and a French film The Wolf’s Call (2019). Of the two, The Wolf’s Call (Le Chant Loup) is more of a the-clock-is-ticking, save-the-world-from-a-cataclysmic-fate story and swims the same narrative seas as Crimson Tide and Tom Clancy’s The Hunt for Red October.

Wolf’s Call centers around the tale of a sonar expert, a “golden ear” played by François Civil, whose nickname on board is “Socks” and an invasion of Finland by Russian divisions, an ICBM headed for Paris, and a mysterious undersea sound signature that Socks eventually identifies. Despite a few implausible plot gimmes, the film has pretty solid production values, and the visuals and the supporting cast of French naval officers are also quite good.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Group Writing: Supervillainry


Cold, when all is said and done, makes a disappointing superweapon.

I mean, the comic book movies are pretty convincing. The hot superhero shoots a lava jet at the cold supervillain, whose ice ray (not to be confused with a freeze ray) sets out an opposite jet, they meet in the middle and cancel each other out in a brilliant contest of CGI. You get Frozone making walls of ice out of thin air. Or you get the Terminator, freezing in liquid nitrogen and shattering like the hopes of a Hillary voter on election night.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Leftist History over American Herstory


Just where does an American-based corporation and their rich, male, former jock, brand representative get off imposing history over the narrative of a woman? I had thought we were past powerful privileged men silencing, dismissing, and trivializing herstory. Yet here we are, with another patriarchal pack mansplaining a woman’s original work. The corporate leadership of Nike, following the lead of Colin Kaepernick, have branded Betsy Ross’s original flag design a white supremacist symbol.

Leftist propaganda organs have amplified this slander, claiming white supremacist groups use the original flag design to signify rejecting the post-Civil War constitutional amendments. The left’s real objection, of course, is to the actual history, the Declaration of Independence that they despise, assigning to it the same strained and stained meaning claimed by the black-robed bigot, Chief (In)Justice Taney in the fraudulent Dred Scott decision. Instead of supporting herstory, and taking back a woman’s original creative work from some knuckle-dragging mouth-breathers, the leftist elite privileged this attack on women, thus banishing a woman’s art as shameful.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. An Exceptional America


A few years ago, Stephen Frye toured America and produced an Englishman’s guide to the States. Perhaps sometimes we think that America influences the cultures of other countries to their deficit. Or at least that is what we are told to believe. And yes, like all neighbors, we have dirty laundry on the line. But this little clip is priceless. Frye, who I suspect has pretty much seen it all, is dumbstruck. He is left grasping for words to describe what’s taking place around him. We are ridiculous – and wonderful. What a great country. Hope abides.


Contributor Created with Sketch. Kaepernick Crossing the Delaware


View original artwork here.


Contributor Created with Sketch. Happy Independence Day!


In Congress, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America, When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.


Contributor Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Chess and Life


“In chess, as in life, a man is his own most dangerous opponent.” Vasily Smyslov

Vasily Smyslov was the seventh official world chess champion. Known for his positional style, he was world champion from 1957-8. He was a Christian in the staunchly atheistic Soviet Union (in private, he harshly criticized Lenin). His quote points to the need to properly evaluate your situation in chess as in life.


This week on The United Kingdom’s Most Trusted Podcast® James Delingpole and Toby Young turn the spotlight on us and the unchecked Antifa gangs beating up people in the streets of Portland, Oregon.

Then James wanders into the 2019 Glastonbury Festival with the punters and the hardcore Greenies and comes away gobsmacked by Miley Cyrus.


Contributor Created with Sketch. America the ‘Just OK’


Stallone Laurel Dias, originally from India and a soldier in the US Army, takes the oath to become a US citizen during a ceremony in Boston.
What is still the most desired — by far — destination for potential migrants from those developing countries? America. Which country had a hand in 72% of the Nobel science prizes since 2001? America. Which country has 18 of the 30 most valuable internet companies, as well as the top five? America. Which is the richest large nation on a per person basis? America.

Yet America is “just OK,” says The New York Times in a transparent attempt at contrarian Independence Day clickbait. But compared to whom? Other rich nations, apparently. They have lower poverty rates, educate their kids better, and get more bang for their healthcare buck. Journalists Taige Jensen and Nayeema Raza conclude “the myth of America as the greatest nation on earth is at best outdated and at worst, wildly inaccurate.” The United States has “more in common with ‘developing countries’ than we’d like to admit.”


The trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg is perhaps the most (in)famous espionage trial in all American history. While their conviction and execution remain familiar and controversial episodes in the Cold War, the fate of their co-conspirator Morton Sobell is less well-known.

In his Mosaic essay, “The Death of Morton Sobell and the End of the Rosenberg Affair,” author David Evanier digs into the details of Sobell’s life before and after the fall of the Rosenberg ring. As he looks back on this period in American history, Evanier also illuminates what Sobell’s life can tell us about the many Jews who attached themselves to the Communist movement. For while only a tiny number of Jews were Marxists, American Jewish Communists did make up a disproportionate share of the American party—much to the chagrin of their coreligionists.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by members Created with Sketch. Antifa and Proud Boys Violence in Portland


The Portland Police Bureau issued, I’ll call it a travel advisory, warning residents of the Portland Metro area that Antifa and the Proud Boys were going to demonstrate in downtown Portland last week. To no one’s surprise, there were violent clashes between the two groups. They both claim the high ground when it comes to virtue but, in reality, they are no more virtuous than tavern brawlers that have forsaken the tavern for fighting in the streets.

The Portland City Council, including the Mayor, have no idea on what to do about this public safety problem, other than to blame the police for being too tough or not tough enough when these two street gangs meet downtown. The media is no different in playing the blame game.


Contributor Created with Sketch. ACF Critic Series #35: Deadwood


Just in time for the 4th, here’s an odd celebration of American freedom: I talked to Paul Cantor talk about David Milch’s most famous achievement, Deadwood–the movie and the TV show. A Western, lawless, but orderly vision of America. An America with commerce but without religion, with freedom but without equality–what kind of community and what kind of justice are possible in such a situation? Something piratical, un-Puritan.


Jay says “Happy Independence Day” with a buffet of American music, starting with “The Banjo” and ending with “America the Beautiful.” In between, you will have many melodies, many voices, all adding up to America. Have a great one.

Track listing for this show: