Category Archives: Essays

Danegeld Justice

Over at Law & Liberty, Dr. Dalrymple covers—and criticizes—the recent settlement by a French advertising company responsible for the promotion of oxycontin, which is at the heart of the ‘opioid epidemic’ in the United States.

Still, to extract money by threatening the possibility of something even worse, and then spending it on an activity of doubtful value, or an activity that could be easily funded some other way, seems to me scarcely dignified, or even compatible with the rule of law.

Tortured Art

In his Takimag column, the skeptical doctor writes a review about a new film depicting the brutality and evil of the post-war Romanian communist regime. It is reassuring that movies dealing with the innumerable crimes perpetrated by communists over the past century are finally being made, just not by Hollywood.

The purpose of propaganda in Communist states was not to inform or persuade, but to humiliate: that is to say, to force people to pretend to believe what they could not possibly believe, and to celebrate what they most detested, including their own enslavement. Of course, the confessions also broke the spirit of those who made them, even if they survived.

The Young Dictators

The good doctor takes issue with a petition by a typical snowflake at the University of Manchester in the UK calling for the dissolution of an anti-abortion student society.

It is not the function of the law to prevent anyone from feeling stigmatized, for this would be to prohibit a vast range of opinion and leave permissible speech at the mercy of all those sensitive souls who feel stigmatized by any criticism or opinion whatever. A society in which nothing and nobody were stigmatized would be unliveable, morally completely anarchic.

Equity’s Dangerous Echo

Dr. Dalrymple lashes out at a prominent American medical journal for going all in on the ‘diversity’ racket at the expense of real, valuable scholarship.

The proportion of published authors of each racial or demographic group should, according to the “equity” fanatics, mirror that of their proportion in the general population, as if, in a state of fairness, all groups would be represented equally in everything.

A Forgotten Writer of Père Lachaise

In the March edition of New Criterion, our bookish doctor writes at length about the life of Enrique Gómez Carrillo (1873–1927), whose grave he discovered on one of his walks through the most famous cemetery of Paris.

One of the strange, almost bizarre, things about his career is the persistent rumor that he was Mata Hari’s last lover and that it was he who betrayed her to the French as a spy, thereby becoming partly responsible for her death by firing squad.

Judges of History

In this week’s Takimag, our favorite doctor recounts a recent talk he gave to his local English historical society on the fascinating persona of Frances Pitt, a highly popular and prolific writer of natural history.

The miserable attitude of the local Savonarolas is surely an indication of how far has gone the habit of requiring all past figures to have complied throughout their lives with our current moral outlook before we honor them in any way. This means, of course, that we cannot honor anyone from the past, and if we cannot honor anyone from the past, eventually our civilization will collapse—as the Savonarolas and Robespierres of our town probably wish, seeing in it nothing but its defects, the better to feel morally superior.

Bleak Options

In his latest Takimag piece, the despairing doctor comments on the sad state of affairs in the U.S. presidential elections, as well as the sorry state of much of the political life in most of the rest of the degraded and degenerate Western democracies.

How is it possible that two men, whose manifest and manifold failings are immediately visible to the great majority of the population, can so hypnotize their parties that they can find no one else to represent them? This is surely a sign of the deliquescence of the West, for the dislike, if not contempt, for these two men is only an extreme example of what is felt about political leaders throughout much of the Western world.

Taking Pride

Over at The Critic, our irritated doctor lashes out at the obnoxious rainbow propaganda on full display during a particularly poorly serviced train ride in the UK.

Pride in what, exactly? If sexual orientation is not a choice and therefore nothing to be ashamed of, then it can be nothing to be proud of either. Taking pride in what is not an achievement is stupid, self-congratulatory and arrogant.

DoxyPEP Is a Disaster in Waiting

Theodore Dalrymple returns to the pages of The American Conservative after a four-year hiatus to weigh in on a controversial paper published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Our fear of appearing censorious is now so great that we remain silent in the face of any degradation and praise the grossly licentious for their altruism in seeking their own safety.

 

Justice Underserved

In last week’s Takimag column, the concerned doctor delves into the topic of the death penalty and highlights a recent badly botched execution in Alabama as an argument against the ultimate punishment.

Besides, justice delayed, especially for so long a period as 34 years, is justice denied. No system of justice that executes a man after a third of a century of having him in its custody is anything but a disgrace. The delay is not a manifestation of legal scrupulosity, but of legal incompetence.