Review: The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas Are Setting Up a Generation for Failure by Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff

Coddling of the American Mind

One of my favorite aspects of my job is the opportunity to work with interns during the Utah legislative session. We usually hire several interns from the colleges and universities across the state, and they help us during the state legislative session as we track legislation and communicate with staff and legislators. They are all bright, capable, and intelligent. I don’t necessarily think college is for everyone, but for me, getting accepted and then going off to college was akin to receiving my letter to Hogwarts and boarding the train…

Book Review | Melting Pot or Civil War: A Son of Immigrants Makes the Case Against Open Borders by Reihan Salam

Let’s talk about immigration for a moment. It’s strange. In a country that was entirely founded, built, and peopled by immigrants and their descendants, few policy debates are more divisive than those dealing with immigration. Politicized to the extreme, the issue polarizes us. Few seem willing, or able, to compromise. Racism and resentment and limited resources combine to provide politicians with ample fodder to raise tensions and exploit fears. Reihan Salam thinks there is a way, however, a compromise that can solve our immigration conundrums, and his book “Melting Pot…

Book Review | Tyrant: Shakespeare on Politics by Stephen Greenblatt

Rarely have I enjoyed a piece of political commentary as much as I did Stephen Greenblatt’s Tyrant: Shakespeare on Politics. In William Shakespeare’s day, it wasn’t safe to disagree with power. Unlike today’s America, with the protections of the First Amendment, his world was governed by the near-absolute power of the monarch, the aging Queen Elizabeth. And speaking ill of the queen led to swift and often deadly punishment. Instead, the Bard through his plays would examine the ways and means of tyranny, delving into the past and into foreign…

5 books that remind us where Veterans Day came from

Never forget. With the 100th anniversary of what was then called The Great War (no one thought we could possibly do it again, but we sure showed them…), it’s a good time to review what led us there, as well as how terrible the war was. Here are a few books to get you started. Share other books on World War One in the comments. 1. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque. Written from the perspective of a German soldier in the last year of the…

Vote, but do not be fooled by voting

I’m all about voting. Everyone should do it. It’s an important part of how we do democracy around here. We’re a republic, and we vote for representatives who pass laws, execute laws, etc. And they are selected by voting. But don’t let yourself be fooled into thinking that voting in the next election is going to be a panacea for all the problems that Politician X is not solving the way you would like them to (or, even making them worse…or creating them…). Candidate Y is not going to be…

The Mero Moment: The politics of self-righteousness – May 12, 2016

LDS Living magazine had an interesting article about overzealous Mormons who basically compete to be more righteous than the other. This phenomenon elevates Mormon culture ahead of actual commandments. We see it all of the time. Everyone knows someone who is hypersensitive and overzealous about some feature of the Gospel – like food storage or church service or cola drinks. You can see these dysfunctions most clearly in settings where Mormons are clustered and dominate a population. For instance, take a look inside the LDS Church office building. The first…

Gov. Herbert calls special session of Utah State Legislature [UPH Wire]

*attached contains the following: For Immediate Release Contact: Caroline Slater cslater@utah.gov mobile: (385) 312-0202 Gov. Herbert calls special session of Utah State Legislature SALT LAKE CITY (April 20, 2016) – Gov. Gary R. Herbert has issued a call for a special session of the Utah State Legislature to address two separate items: A concurrent resolution opposing the unilateral designation of a national monument in the state of Utah The restoration of funds for several items in S.B. 2, including $4.775 million for education initiatives “It is absolutely irresponsible for the…

Rep. Mia Love bill passes House of Representatives [UPH Wire]

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 04/14/2016 Contact: Richard Piatt 202 225-3011 (office) Rep. Mia Love bill passes the House of Representatives H.R. 3791 creates lending opportunities for middle class Americans WASHINGTON D.C. – *Congresswoman Mia Love* fulfilled an important promise to her constituents, when the *U.S. House of Representatives* *passed her bill by a margin of 247-171. * It will expand opportunities for middle and low income Utahns to receive loans in order to pursue their version of the American dream. Charles Knadler, President and CEO of Utah-based EnerBank reacted to the…

Senator Lee’s Statement on the Passing of Justice Scalia [UPH Wire]

*FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE* Saturday, February 13, 2016 *Senator Lee’s Statement on the Passing of Justice Scalia* WASHINGTON—Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) issued the following statement today in response to the passing of Justice Scalia. “Our deepest condolences to the Scalia family. The Justice and his family are in our prayers,” said Senator Lee. “Justice Scalia was one of the greatest Supreme Court justices of all time. His intellect was admired by Americans of all political persuasions and his consistent fidelity to the text and original meaning of the Constitution have transformed…

Ted Cruz: Who needs enemies when you have friends like this?

I am a fan of Senator Mike Lee’s justice reform efforts in Congress. They’re solid ideas, and they will make a difference. I appreciate his efforts to find ways to create conservative and pragmatic solutions to big problems. He’s a serious-minded policy maker, and his efforts to reform the justice system could be significant. Senator Ted Cruz, however, was not a fan of Lee’s justice reform bill. Despite  writing that no one stood by him “more courageously or indispensably” than Lee during his 21-hour anti-Obamacare speech that preceded the 2013 government shutdown,…