Writing

Welcome!

My homepage is due for an update. It has remained essentially unchanged since I first built it in 2009. Similarly, the two blogs I kept on and off from about 2003 until about 2011 can safely be declared defunct. It is time for a fresh start and a new website that better reflects my current interests and is compatible with my new career as an attorney. With respect to the latter: none of my posts on this blog will deal with law or politics.

Lying about Libya

My latest op-ed, “Lying about Libya,” appeared today in Mises Daily, a publication of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.  You can read the article here. In it, I write:

“What was sold to the American public as a humanitarian intervention morphed almost immediately into unreserved support of one side in Libya’s civil war and a commitment to overthrowing Libya’s existing government. … To decide whether a military action undertaken in our name is prudent and just, we must adopt a skeptical stance toward politicians’ stories and rationalizations.

Discussing the Libya War on 'Russia Today'

I appeared on Russia Today (RT) yesterday to discuss the U.S./NATO intervention in Libya as well as the situation in Syria - feel free to check it out if you are interested:

My related article, “Rolling the Dice in Libya,” appeared on Antiwar.com yesterday. Another, unrelated op-ed of mine appeared yesterday as well in the Michigan Education Report: “National standards will stifle innovation.” In it, I argue that “strict standards risk forcing students and teachers alike into a curricular straitjacket, alienating creative teachers and sapping the motivation of students.

Rolling the dice in Libya

My latest op-ed, “Rolling the dice in Libya,” appeared today on Antiwar.com. You can find the op-ed here as well as pasted below. If you enjoy it, please consider sharing it on your Facebook wall, mentioning it on Twitter, or emailing it to a friend. Thanks, as always, for reading. — Rolling the dice in Libya Ryan McCarl President Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination in 2008 partly by reminding the party’s base of his early, prescient criticisms of the ill-fated decision to invade Iraq.

Two cents about COIN

My latest op-ed, “Two cents about COIN,” appeared today on Antiwar.com. It discusses the the growing faith of U.S. political and military leaders in the military doctrine of COIN, or manpower-intensive counterinsurgency warfare. You can find the op-ed here as well as pasted below; if you enjoy it, please consider sharing it on your Facebook wall, mentioning it on Twitter, or linking to it on your blog. Thanks, as always, for reading.

Empathy across neighborhood lines

My latest op-ed, “Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations,” appeared in the Chicago Weekly today. You can find the op-ed and add your comments here, and I’ve also pasted it below. Thanks, as always, for reading. —Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations

New short fiction: 'The Day-Trader'

“The Day-Trader,” my most recent short story, is being featured in the July issue of Fogged Clarity. Check it out here. There is a lot of great stuff in this issue - fiction, poetry, a short film, visual art, a music album, and an essay - so be sure to check out the other pieces as well. If you like what you see, you can support Fogged Clarity by linking to it, passing it along to others, and making a donation.

Becoming a teacher and a Michigan Wolverine

I’m excited to report that I have decided to enter the University of Michigan School of Education’s Secondary MAC (MA in Education with Secondary Certification) program in mid-June. The program is 12 months long and includes over 1,000 hours of classroom experience as a student teacher and substitute teacher, resulting in full certification. I look forward to finding unique ways to show my students the importance of learning and reading as well as the value of informed engagement with current events and politics.

Article on Coach John Swinburne

An article I wrote about my incredible high school cross country coach, John Swinburne, was published today in the Muskegon Chronicle and on MLive.com. Check it out here. Swinburne has worked formally and informally in education as a coach, teacher, athletic director, driver’s ed instructor, youth group leader, and mentor to thousands of students in the Muskegon, MI area for four decades. He is a truly great man who has changed many lives, including mine, through his coaching.

Excerpts from Milosz, Balthasar, and Stevens

Among the many definitions of Communism, perhaps one would be the most apt: enemy of orchards. For the disappearance of villages and the remodeling of the terrain necessitated cutting down the orchards once surrounding every house and hut. The idea of collective farming - grain factories instead of little peasant lots - was rational, but with a vengeance, and a similar vengeance lurking in practically every project of the planned economy brought about the downfall of the Soviet system.