Mark briefly interrupted his convalescence to host our weekly Clubland Q&A, which included several questions on the revelations of Joe Biden's conversion of his Delaware garage into the national archives of the United States. In our Comments section, Josh Passell, a First Weekend Founding Member of The Mark Steyn Club, provided some important detail which we thought deserved a wider airing:
INVENTORY OF ITEMS FOUND IN SUBJECT'S (BIDEN, J.R.) GARAGE
1967 Corvette Stingray, Hunter Green
Handwritten notes marked "Summary of convo betw. Obama, B. and Medvedev, D.--Re Vlad"
Box marked "Rags", filled with same
File Boxes (2) labeled "Fast&Furious"
Jars (5) of odd hardware
Pickaxe and miner's helmet
Declaration of Independence (orig. copy)
Nuclear launch codes (stained)
Phi Beta Kappa ring
Commercial driver's license
Let's Go: Ukraine travel guide, 1975
Tax returns (Jones, Alex; Rosen, James; Paul, Rand; et al)
Aviator sunglasses (23 pair)
South African visa, dated 1977; Robben Island day pass
Receipt from "Islamic Republic of Iran" for $1,500,000,000
Copy Collected Speeches of Neil Kinnock
List of computer passwords (e.g. password, 1234, JRB+BHO4evah)
UDelaware football helmet, unused
Savings passbook, "10% Fund"
DoD Files labeled "Results of Simulated War v. China", annotated "Uh-oh"
Photo marked "Selma AL, Mar. 1965", with subject's face pasted in between that of Lewis, J. and Williams, H.
Photo marked "Delaware State Graduating Class" with subject's face pasted in front row
Ken-L Ration dog food (2 bags)
Copy Contract Law for Dummies (mint cond.)
Framed photo, Thurmond, Strom, autographed
Framed photo, Byrd, Robert, autographed
Files labeled "Kennedy (John) Assassination", 8 boxes
Charred dish towel
Binder labeled "NATO Defense Strategy and Tactics, 2012"
Ice cream scoop
Thank you, Josh. That seems more comprehensive than anything the "Special Counsel" is likely to provide.
~Also from our Comments section, we should mention a suggestion from Veronica in Auckland for Prince Harry's next book: The Artful Todger.
~Mark has been covering the "side-effects" of the Covid "vaccines" for well over a year now. So has Neil Oliver on his Saturday show. Very few others in mainstream media around the west have taken up the subject at all - and the official advice remains to get boosted early and often, and make sure your infants are up to date, too.
Nevertheless, word seems to be getting out, and people are voting with their feet. Julieanne Corr reports for London's Sunday Times:
Barely anyone aged 18-49 in Ireland takes second Covid booster
Up to 97 per cent of those eligible in the 18-49 age group have not had their second Covid-19 booster.
Figures provided by the HSE show just 71,000 people in that cohort had come forward as of last Friday night, just over 3 per cent of the estimated population.
~Steyn's former Spectator colleague Paul Johnson died last week at the grand age of ninety-four. Mr Johnson was the best at combining the brio and panache of columnar writing with long-form big-picture theses, and his best books will be read for many years to come.
Mark had the pleasure of spending time with Paul and Marigold eighteen years ago on the National Review British Isles cruise. By then, Steyn was already slumped in the civilisational doom-mongering that would lead to his bestseller America Alone, and Johnson, by contrast, was perplexingly optimistic about almost everything. National Review's Jonah Goldberg gave his impressions of the cruise in a piece headlined "Mark Steyn Can Dance. Norman Podhoretz Can Sing":
Anyway, here's the stuff you really wanted to know about.
Mark Steyn is infuriatingly nice, which shouldn't be the case given his talent. He was also not remotely slovenly, but actually something of a Beau Brummell and several dozen pounds trimmer than that fuzzy picture of him would suggest. Smart, charming, and by common assent the best dancer on the boat. In short, I hate him.
I didn't have a chance to chat with Paul Johnson, though I spoke several times with his lovely bride. But I was shocked to discover I disagreed with him more than any other NR speaker. Considering how much I love the man's work, I was fairly stunned. He was bizarrely optimistic about nigh upon everything I would expect him to be pessimistic about. He seemed to believe that France and Germany were one election away from mounting up and fighting alongside America in Iraq and elsewhere. He also found no reason to worry about American universities. I was on one panel with him when he suggested that the universities will purge the Left in due course. Stop laughing.
As proof he said that whenever he visits American universities he finds interesting, right-thinking, and intelligent people who give him nothing but hope for American higher education. I didn't say it then, but his comment reminded me of how Richard Nixon once said it was obvious to him that the world was overpopulated because every where he went around the globe he saw enormous crowds. It seemed not to occur to him that huge crowds form around presidents of the United States. Similarly, I suspect that interesting, intelligent, right-thinking folk tend to muster whenever they hear Paul Johnson is coming to campus. I should have suggested he walk over to the student union and study the bulletin boards a bit more. Take a few fliers about lesbian Maoist origami seminars (or, more properly, ovulars) and call me in the morning.
The Podhoretzes (Norman and Midge) were just delightful. Though they seemed to be drinking from the same bowl as Steyn and the O'Sullivans, who also seemed to believe that singing show tunes and the like was a requirement of sea life. I've seen Norman Podhoretz sing "Making Whoopee." Deal with it. I'm trying to.
Just for the record, Paul Johnson also sang on that 2005 cruise. "These Foolish Things". Very well, according to Mark.
~Notwithstanding Mark's ill health, we had a busy weekend at SteynOnline, starting with Mark himself back in the chair for our Clubland Q&A. Rick McGinnis's Saturday movie date was Joseph H Lewis's The Big Combo. And Steyn's Song of the Week, for the first time in seventeen years, was not Steyn's at all, but Tal Bachman's song of the week.
If you were too busy going through the Joe Biden classified documents you bought in the $1 grab-bag at the Ladies' Aid New Year rummage sale, we hope you'll want to check out one or three of the foregoing as a new week gets underway.
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