- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 17, 2001

Achy Breaky actor
"That mullet, that line dancing, that eye-opening role in one of the season's most shocking films? Country crooner Billy Ray Cyrus, who skyrocketed to fame in 1992 with the novelty hit 'Achy Breaky Heart' and then disappeared from the charts just as fast, is getting his big breaky in the unlikeliest of places: the new David Lynch film, 'Mulholland Drive.' …
"Cyrus landed the role of Gene, a home-wrecking pool cleaner. The film is no star vehicle for Cyrus, but he holds his own among an apt ensemble and neo-noir master Lynch.
"'I was expecting this really strange man to come out in a black cape or something,' he says of the director. But, in fact, Lynch ended up being quite the cheerleader, encouraging the singer who had previously turned down roles in 'The Apostle' and 'Hope Floats' to seriously pursue acting."
Kevin Polowy, writing on "His Achy Breaky Part," in the November issue of Premiere

Tenured radicals
"Most universities are thriving enclaves of Leftism, where a conservative is as common, and as welcome, as Socrates among the Taliban. Secured in their tenured redoubt thanks to mindlessly generous benefactions from politicians and alumni and attended by the ignorant flatteries of captive undergraduates, the professorate routinely indulges ideological fantasies that would get them punched out of any respectable saloon in America in 30 seconds flat. …
"The fashions of the academies necessarily affect, and frequently dominate, the towns that house them. A case in point is Madison, Wisconsin, home to one of the most politically correct universities in the country. …
"So it wasn't exactly surprising news when the Madison school board voted 3-2 on Oct. 8 to prohibit schoolchildren from reciting the Pledge of Allegiance or singing 'The Star-Spangled Banner.' …
"The more the left rants, the more the public will question why we're spending all that money on higher education, or for that matter on local schools that imbibe the reflexive anti-American sentiment of university common rooms."
Michael M. Uhlmann, writing on "Madison vs. America," Monday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

Rejected authors
"[Friedrich] Hayek lived through a startling disintegration of liberal societies. He saw socialism triumphant and freedom limited to a handful of nations. By the early 1940s, even his fellow Austrian, Harvard economist Joseph Schumpeter, had abandoned capitalism, as had most other intellectuals.
"By 1944, when Hayek wrote his most famous if not his most profound book, 'The Road to Serfdom,' most of his academic colleagues were lining up behind state slavery. George Orwell praised the book in part; it elaborated on the same worries Orwell had about central planning: 'It cannot be said too often at any rate, it is not being said nearly often enough that collectivism is not inherently democratic, but, on the contrary, gives to a tyrannical minority such powers as the Spanish Inquisitor never dreamed of.' When Hayek tried to have 'The Road to Serfdom' published in the United States, it was rejected by three publishers. Orwell's 'Animal Farm,' a rather more vivid approach to the same theme, was in that same heyday of collectivist enthusiasm rejected by eight or nine American publishers, one of whom explained kindly that, 'We are not doing animal books this year.'
"But Hayek gloriously lived to receive the 1974 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science and to witness socialism's collapse."
Dierdre McCloskey, writing on "Persuade and Be Free," in the October issue of Reason

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