People sometimes ask why I left Washington, D.C., for Hillsdale College four years ago. Now maybe I’ll just point them to this Wall Street Journal interview with my boss, college president Larry Arnn.

“Hillsdale College is 40 minutes from anywhere,” he says. “And you know, also, it’s cold up there, and small. The town’s small. We think of those as advantages. Because you need to come to college for the right reason. They’re not coming to our place for the beach. We like that—and manage to recruit, better and better.”

Figures provided by the college bear this out: In 1996, Hillsdale had 1,131 students, whose average high-school GPA was 3.5. Slightly over half—56%—hailed from outside Michigan. Last year undergraduates numbered 1,437. Their average high-school GPA was 3.8, and two-thirds came from out of state.

Arnn WSJ

Planet X

by John J. Miller on June 5, 2015 · 0 comments

in Blog Posts

The new issue of National Review includes my article on Pluto:

We’ll probably find that it’s just another ball of rock and ice. We’ll collect the cold, hard facts about its geology, atmosphere, and temperature. We’ll debate once more whether it’s really a planet. We’ll gain new knowledge about our solar system. As we do, however, we’ll lose a bit of the here-be-dragons mystery that surrounds terra incognita — and I’m going to miss it.

Read it on the NR website here or on this website here.



June 2, 2015

My latest podcast is with Carol Zaleski, co-author of The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings, which is to say it’s about J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and their circle.

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Jack Templeton, R.I.P.

May 20, 2015

He died on Saturday. Six years ago, I profiled him for National Review. Before he made his mark as a philanthropist, he was a doctor: Most of his patients were victims of trauma, which is the leading cause of injury and death among children. “I learned that trauma is no accident,” he says. “The power [...]

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May 14, 2015

My friend Brad Birzer’s forthcoming book on Russell Kirk is now listed on This will be the definitive biography. A few years ago, I wrote an article for Traverse magazine about Kirk. So it’s pretty much the definitive lifestyle-magazine feature about him.

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May 3, 2015

My op-ed on Michigan’s Proposal 1–a tax hike aimed largely at fixing roads–is in the Wall Street Journal: Behind the deterioration of Michigan’s roads and bridges is a culture of government spending that guzzles tax dollars the way SUVs burn gas.

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