The Best Of The Dish Today

Much more Dish coverage soon. Meanwhile, Elizabeth Nolan Brown offers a truce in the gender debate:

Perhaps rape is something best looked at as a phenomenon driven by a small number of serial predators that are enabled by the culture. Callous attitudes toward rape don’t “cause” rape, but they could—in aggregate—create conditions where it’s easier for rapists to do so. Do Valenti and company overstate the extent to which socialization influences rapists? Sometimes. But there’s also a tendency among conservatives and many libertarians to dismiss feminist talk of “rape culture” as patently absurd. And I like to think (or hope, at least) that this is partly a function of parties talking past one another.

It’s a piece, like many of Elizabeth’s, that’s well worth your time. My core principle in all this is about protecting free expression, even at the expense of social justice. Because without free expression, we cannot know what social justice can actually mean. There is an epistemological certainty on the cultural left that troubles me as much as the doctrinal certainty on the Christianist right. It is because we need always to doubt such certainties that free expression comes first. At root, I guess, I just don’t believe that some things must never be said and some debates must never be held. One side may go a long way toward winning … but we should never believe that a debate has ended. It can always be revived. I’ve battled both the conservative cultural police as well as the liberal version on this question. And while I’m more than happy to air as many dissents as there are, I’m not giving up on that basic principle. It’s called liberalism.

Today, I marveled at Merkel, took stock of Obama’s energy and climate legacy, and backed Rand Paul’s call for a formal declaration of war before the US ever goes into combat again. We aired the contours of the latest extension of the talks to restrain Iran’s nuclear weapon potential; and debated whether the executive branch was more of a Republican office than a Democratic one. Plus: the latest round in the fight to insist upon the facts over the myth of Matthew Shepard.

The most popular post of the day was This Is The Way Benghazi Ends …, followed by An Evangelical Changes His Mind On Gays.

Many of today’s posts were updated with your emails – read them all here.  You can always leave your unfiltered comments at our Facebook page and @sullydish. 22 more readers became subscribers today. You can join them here – and get access to all the readons and Deep Dish – for a little as $1.99 month. One long-time holdout writes:

I’ve been enjoying the blog since 2008.  I am sorry I haven’t subscribed until now.  What won me over was the View From Your Window contest.  I am completely hooked on it and was so excited to send in my (correct, I think) guess that I realized I really need to subscribe, if for the contest alone. How about more contests, like one from Tuesday to Saturday, to keep us occupied when we are impatiently itching for the next VFYW?

The contest already takes Chris but primarily Chas these days a ton of time to compile and edit each week, so having another one would be a bit too much to handle. But keep the feedback coming. A final email for the day:

What would happen if Sen. Rockefeller just released the torture report? If it is so important that the American people see it – and I agree that it is – maybe it is time for this child of privilege to take a stand for the sake of the republic. Would he be arrested? Tried? It just seems ridiculous to say “we will read it into the Congressional Record but they will probably stop us. Hmm, if only there was some way to get this report into the hands of the American people.” The Internet. Wikileaks. It’s not that hard.

The Dish is also available. Just sayin’.

See you in the morning.