Obama-appointed judge deals administration a setback in its efforts to stonewall on targeting

Featured image Late last week, a federal district court in Washington, D.C. found that the IRS has not shown that it is exempt from having to produce all White House requests for private information on taxpayers. The group Cause of Action seeks these communications through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. The decision was rendered by Judge Amy Berman Jackson, an Obama nominee. You can read the opinion here. The IRS »

German Physicists: Late 20th Century Warming “Nothing Unusual”

Featured imageAs regular readers know, a battle over global warming hysteria is raging among scientists, and the alarmists are consistently getting the worst of it. German scientists Horst-Joachim Lüdecke, Alexander Hempelmann and Carl Otto Weiss have published two influential studies in the European Geophysical Union journal. The first, published in 2013, examined the past 250 years of climate history. The second, published earlier this year, extended the research through the past »

IRS sued over treatment of Americans who bank abroad

Featured imageThe Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) requires, in essence, that U.S. citizens who reside outside the U.S. disclose to the IRS all of their foreign banking assets including retirement plans, savings accounts, etc. It also requires foreign banks to assist the IRS in applying the disclosure rules or else face enormous penalties. As its not-so-subtle acronym suggests, the Act purports to be an anti-fat-cat measure through which to crack »

Venezuela in the Midwest

Featured imageIllinois can’t pass a budget, and now can’t even pay out to lottery winners. When a state can’t even manage to pay out lottery winners. . . From Time magazine: Big-time Illinois Lottery winners aren’t getting the largesse. They’re getting left out. Without a state budget agreement two months into the new fiscal year, there’s no authority for the state comptroller to cut checks over $25,000. That means smaller winnings »

Obama’s Stonewall Tactics: A Case Study

Featured imageThe Obama administration has proved to be the least transparent in our modern history. To an unprecedented degree, the administration is staffed by scofflaws who flout their legal obligations. When confronted with requests for information, let alone actual investigations, Obama’s habitual response is to stonewall. This strategy has been remarkably successful in avoiding accountability, in part because legal processes are so slow. We have seen this pattern dozens of times. »

The Latest Frontier in Total Regulation

Featured imageThe most salient feature of what I and others call the “Administrative State” is its relentless logic that virtually every aspect of life should be subject in principle to regulation, and sooner or later in practice, too. Hence the crackdown on little kid lemonade stands and amateur magicians who keep rabbits, which I’ve commented upon previously. Call it the theory of “total regulation” if you like that better than the »

Walters & Murray: The New Jim Crow revisited

Featured imageAfter John Walters wrote a Weekly Standard article on President Obama’s commutations of incarcerated drug offenders, I asked him to take a look at Michelle Alexander’s dreadful but influential book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. I noted the Walters article and discussed Alexander’s book in the post “Meet the new Jim Crow, same as the old BS.” Now Mr. Walters has turned his attention »

Black Lives Matter Comes to the State Fair [Updated]

Featured imageToday, the St. Paul Black Lives Matter organization marched on the State Fair to protest alleged brutality by the St. Paul police department. The march was long-awaited and something like 900 participants had been expected, but nowhere near that many turned out. The protesters closed down streets and highways on their way to the fair. The main entrance to the fair on Snelling Avenue was closed down, which must have »

Here ze comes

Featured imageGlenn Reynolds links to a Daily Mail article highlighting usage notes issued by a gay rights official at the University of Tennessee, where Glenn teaches. The university official has advised staff and students to stop using “he” and “she” – and switch to “xe,” “zir,” and “xyr” instead. The idea is to avoid any implication that mankind is divided into men and women. This is discouraged as “binary” thinking. In »

Dem party leaders attacked for “rigging” the nomination process

Featured imageIt seemed like a good idea at the time. Hillary Clinton would be coronated by the Democrats, so there was no need for many debates. Keep the number of them low — six in total, with only four before the Iowa caucus — and thereby minimize the risk that Clinton will look bad before a large audience. It’s less clear now that this is a good idea. The many Democratic »

Take a Lesson From Trump: Stand Up to the Media

Featured imageThere are several reasons why Donald Trump is popular with Republicans, even though he probably isn’t a Republican himself, and certainly is not a conservative. One of them is the way he stands up to left-wing media. This is a classic, from earlier today: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said “CNN is terrible” after one of its reporters asked him about protesters outside his press conference in Norwood, MA on »

Sunday’s Obligatory Trump Post

Featured imageActually, I got nuthin’. So I’ll just post a funny video below of Darth Vader as rendered by Arnold Schwarzenegger. (Hat tip: JZ.) But other people have thoughts. S.E. Cupp argues that it not the weakness of the GOP establishment that explains Trump’s success, but rather the fact that he stands up to liberalism more robustly than anyone has for a long time (which is, again, a variation of Angelo »

Iowa poll: Trump 23, Carson 18; Clinton 37, Sanders 30

Featured imageA brand new Bloomberg-Des Moines Register poll of likely Republican caucus-goers in Iowa finds Donald Trump in the lead with 23 percent. Ben Carson runs second with 18 percent. Carson is the second choice of 14 percent; Trump ranks second for 9 percent. In three polls taken earlier this month, Trump led Carson by an average margin of almost 8 points. Thus, Carson has gained on Trump. But Trump will »

Saturday’s Obligatory Trump Post [with note by Paul]

Featured imageI can’t decide whether Trump is an agent of disruption recruited by the Clintons (a story that has been making the rounds for a while) or the best thing that could possibly have happened to Republicans for the 2016 cycle, though none of the other candidates, with the partial exception of Ted Cruz, seem to get it. First, note that all the early predictions that Trump would go the same »

The Week in Pictures: Groundhog Day Edition

Featured imageYeah, I know, it isn’t anywhere near February 2, but I go away for two weeks and I expect that some things might have changed while I was away. But no: the news is still: Trump, Trump, China, Trump, Hillary emails, Trump, the stock market, Trump, Biden??, Trump, Trump, NFL pre-season, Trump, and the Kardashians, whoever they are. Trump-Kardashian 2016? Or how about Trump-Jenner? And finally. . .   »

Exclusive: Should the GOP Steal Jefferson from Dems? [With Comment by John on Jackson]

Featured imageOne of my fellow cruisers on the Baltic Sea last week was Seth Lipsky of the New York Sun, who wrote a terrific column about 10 days ago for the New York Post arguing that since Democrats are giving up on Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson (because, at bottom, Democrats dislike and/or are ashamed of America’s history), Republicans ought to steal Jefferson away from them. Of course, Lincoln already did »

Hillary Doubles Down: Republicans Are Nazis, Too

Featured imageSo what happens when a politician says, “I am, you know, adamantly against illegal immigrants”? Oh wait, the person who said that was Senator Hillary Clinton, to WABC Radio’s John Gambling in a 2003 interview. Whatever. Today Hillary trumped (heh) her suggestion yesterday that Republicans are the moral equivalent of Islamic terrorists by suggesting the GOP are Nazis too, because “some” on “the other side” want to round up illegal immigrants »