Donald Trump, George Bush, and the press

Featured image George W. Bush is a good man. The mainstream media hammered him mercilessly and mostly unfairly for eight years. One media mainstay tried to take Bush down late in the 2004 campaign with fake news. Yet, Bush spoke up for the embattled mainstream media today. He called it “indispensable to democracy.” Politico portrays this as “a break from the position of his fellow Republican, President Donald Trump, who has called »

Who cares about “conservatism”?

Featured image“Tom Hagen” doesn’t. He’s the author of a piece by that name in American Greatness. In form, Hagen’s argument parallels that of Michael Anton (aka Decius), discussed here. Anton’s subject is the “liberal international order.” He argues that it is a means to ends, not an end in itself, and thus must be rated on its ability to serve core American foreign policy interests — peace, prestige, and prosperity. Hagen »

Trump Unbound, At Dinner

Featured imageDonald Trump continues to bestride the world like a colossus. I can’t recall a precedent for the extent to which he monopolizes public attention and discourse. You could prove that with newspaper headlines just about every day, but here is an example of how thorough Trump’s dominance is–a list of the most-read articles on Politico that I captured at a random moment during the day: Is it smart for the »

How the Administrative State Threatens Our Liberty: VIP Live, With Howard Root

Featured imageThe administrative state is the #1 threat to our freedom, a fact which no one knows better than our friend Howard Root. Howard was the founder and CEO of Vascular Solutions, Inc., a successful medical products company that was set up as a victim by Barack Obama’s hyper-politicized Department of Justice. For five years, Obama’s DOJ persecuted and harassed Howard and his company with bogus claims. Thankfully, Howard Root had »

More Soldiers, Fewer Bureaucrats

Featured imageThat is President Trump’s budget proposal in a nutshell. Trump’s plan will include a “whopping” $54 billion increase in defense spending, according to the Associated Press. That will take the defense budget a little more than half way to where it was when President Obama started cutting it in 2011. The president’s budget will “impose corresponding cuts to domestic programs and foreign aid,” meaning pretty significant cuts for most federal »

Academic Absurdity of the Week: It’s Whitey’s Fault—Again

Featured imageOne of the main argument of a certain new book that you may have heard about is that the idea of statesmanship has been abandoned in favor of “leadership studies,” which tend to be content-free when not downright stupid. Needless to say, there is an academic journal simply titled Leadership that describes its purpose thus: Leadership is an international, peer-reviewed journal designed to provide an ongoing forum for academic researchers to »

Understanding the administrative state

Featured imageFor the 20-plus years my friend Bruce Sanborn served as chairman of the Claremont Institute, we attended the annual meeting of the America Political Science Association over Labor Day weekend. At the APSA convention we attended the panels sponsored by the Claremont Institute. It was our idea of a good time. In those panels we heard a lot about “the administrative state,” frequently from Professor John Marini. Professor Marini had »

It’s a Trappist!

Featured imageThe cool science news of the week is that astronomers have identified seven planets circling the star known as Trappist 1 just a wee 39 light years away from us, three of which might be in the “goldilocks” zone that could support life. I have two predictions. First, if we think any of these planets are actually habitable and ever decide to try some kind of expedition to the planet »

A Fight In a Museum, Reported With Bias [with comment by Paul]

Featured imageThere was a bizarre incident at the Minneapolis Institute of Art today: a fight broke out in an 18th Century European art gallery. Almost equally remarkable is the manner in which my local newspaper, the Star Tribune, reported the altercation: “Punches thrown when fight erupts inside Minneapolis Institute of Art; one involved had look of neo-Nazi.” The Strib’s report begins: A shoving match broke out in a most unlikely place, »

Green Weenie Update: Dakota Abscess Protest

Featured imageWe’re reported before on the environmental mess left behind by the Dakota Access Pipeline protest neat the Standing Rock indian reservation (here and here), but there’s still one more installment to the story that deserves to be entered in the ledger: Rescue group catching animals left behind at DAPL protest camps NEAR CANNON BALL, N.D. (KFYR) – Crews continue to clean up the Oceti Sakowin protest camp. As officers moved in »

Darrell Issa goes off the deep end

Featured imageIn November, Rep. Darrell Issa had what, for him, may have been a “near death experience.” He almost lost his congressional race. Perhaps this explains why he agreed yesterday with Bill Maher that a special prosecutor should investigate Russia’s alleged interference with the 2016 presidential election. Issa started out on solid ground, telling the lefty talk show host that House and Senate intelligence committees would look into Russia’s activities “within »

Oscar Week in Pictures: Ha Ha Land

Featured imageI almost—almost—wish I had watched the Oscars last night to take in the sublime moment when the best picture award was flubbed. It was the perfect Twitter moment. La La Land blows 28-3 lead! But La La Land won the popular vote! All La La Land had to do was kick the field goal! Warren Beatty’s biggest flop since Ishtar! Only one thing to do morningafterwise—yup, a special edition of »

“The administrative state,” what’s that?

Featured imageLast week, in a speech to CPAC, Steve Bannon declared that the Trump administration is battling for the “deconstruction of the administrative state.” CNN’s coverage of the speech appeared under the following headline: “Steve Bannon outlines his plan to ‘deconstruct’ Washington.” The Washington Post’s headline (in the paper edition) was similar. It mentioned “deconstruction” but not that which is to be deconstructed — the administrative state. In its story, CNN »

A three-way conservative split?

Featured imageOur friend Tevi Troy has an article in Politico about what he perceives to be a three-way split in conservatism produced by the Trump ascendancy. Tevi identifies the three branches as (1) “ever-Trumpers,” the president’s ardent supporters; (2) “conservative critics”; and (3) “safe-space conservatives.” Members of the third group “are trying to find a ‘safe space’ by focusing their attention on media bias against Trump and the excesses of anti-Trump »

Fake News From the Associated Press On Muhammad Ali, Jr.?

Featured imageThis Associated Press story has gotten headlines in newspapers across the United States: “Muhammad Ali’s son asked, ‘Are you Muslim?’ by border agents.” The story appears to be part of the AP’s anti-President Trump campaign. I suspect that it falls into the “too good to check” category: Muhammad Ali’s son, who bears the boxing great’s name, was detained by immigration officials at a Florida airport and questioned about his ancestry »

And the best picture is…

Featured imageLike John and Steve, I will be doing something else during the Academy Awards broadcast tonight. Unlike them, however, I would like to put in a good word for a few of the movies that are up for the Best Picture award tonight. For personal reasons you would understand, I set out to see each of the nine Academy Award Best Picture nominees this year. I don’t think I have »

Another Reason Not to Watch the Oscars

Featured imageLike Steve, I haven’t watched the Oscars in a long time, certainly not in this century. Actually, the last Best Picture nominee I am aware of seeing is Beauty and the Beast, so my connection with Hollywood is tenuous. I wouldn’t dream of watching what promises to be an anti-Trump smugfest, but here is one more reason to stay away: the New York Times is going to advertise its commitment »