The party of civil rights is not the Democrats, correctly reminds Bruce Bartlett, author of “Wrong on Race: The Democratic Party’s Buried Past.” Liberals will call this “revisionist history”; thinking people will call it correcting the liberal fiction. … City Journal’s Michael Knox Beran says John McCain would do his campaign a huge favor by talking about Ronald Reagan instead of Teddy Roosevelt. After all, Mr. Roosevelt was “a man of the state,” not a conservative. As Mr. Beran reminds, TR “made up for his want of inspirational principle by striking out in all sorts of irrelevant directions.” McCain would be wise to heed the lesson. … The Pennsylvania chapter of the Sierra Club includes in its latest Sylvanian magazine the science-bereft American Lung Association contention that Pittsburgh’s air pollution is the worst in the nation. And for perverted measure, it also throws in a headline that says “Return of the smoky city.” It’s just this kind of intellectual vapidity that gives the Sierra Club the bad name it deserves. … When Arkansas state Rep. Lindsley Smith proposed a day to honor Revolutionary pamphleteer Thomas Paine, she could not even garner even a simple majority. Quips The Economist magazine, “34 legislators did not vote at all — probably because they had no idea who Paine was.” Indeed, a sad sign of American times.