Attention Austin Readers

Featured image For Power Line readers in the Austin, Texas, area, I’ll be giving a lecture about Ronald Reagan at the University of Texas at Austin on Friday at lunch time (one hour into the Trump Administration!!), as a guest of the Clements Center for National Security at UT. It’s part of a three-day conference the Clements Center is hosting on “Ronald Reagan and the Transformation of Global Politics in the 1980s.” »

Worst president ever?

Featured imageOur two most recent presidents both have been called “the worst president ever” by some of their critics. In doing so, these critics place partisanship well ahead of an understanding of American history. They should read up on the presidency of James Buchanan. As much as I dislike Barack Obama, I’m not sure he’s even the worst president of my lifetime. You can make a good case that Jimmy Carter »

Speaking of dysphoria

Featured imagePresident Obama has commuted the 35-year sentence of Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning for serious violations of the Espionage Act involving the disclosure of hundreds of thousands of classified documents to the alleged Russian front known as Wikileaks. Manning has served not quite seven years of her sentence. At the time she committed her offenses, Manning had access to sensitive documents serving an intelligence function in Iraq. Manning was accordingly tried »

How Rex Tillerson Got Even With Venezuela’s Socialists

Featured imageThe Washington Post tells a story that sheds considerable light on Rex Tillerson, former CEO of ExxonMobil. The story begins in Venezuela, where ExxonMobil and other oil companies had long done business. Socialist ruler Hugo Chavez needed cash to shore up his failing economy, so he demanded that all foreign oil companies give his government a bigger cut of their revenues. All the companies went along, except ExxonMobil, where Tillerson »

Trump on the EU and NATO

Featured imageThe Washington Post reports that European leaders are “shocked” by statements Donald Trump has made about the EU and NATO. According to the Post, these leaders fear a “transatlantic split.” What should we make of this story from an American perspective? I think we need to analyze the EU and NATO separately. Regarding the EU, Post reporter Michael Birnbaum points to a statement by Trump that he expects the EU »

If You Brexit, You Own It

Featured imageForget all the attention on Trump and trade and China and Trump smashing china and China dealing a trump and all that. It is possible that the most salient event of the next few years will be the breakup, or least dramatic restructuring, of the European Union. Now that British PM Theresa May has pronounced that Britain proceed to a “clean break” or “hard Brexit,” attention will begin to shift »

“Never Trump” Republicans whine that Trump may say “never them”

Featured imageDavid Nakamura of the Washington Post reports: They are some of the biggest names in the Republican national security firmament, veterans of past GOP administrations who say, if called upon by President-elect Donald Trump, they stand ready to serve their country again. But their phones aren’t ringing. Their entreaties to Trump Tower in New York have mostly gone unanswered. In Trump world, these establishment all-stars say they are “PNG” — »

Reporters Beg Martin Luther King III to Denounce Trump [Updated]

Featured imageThis is all from Newsbusters. Please do check out the original post. This afternoon, Martin Luther King III met with Donald Trump at Trump Tower. Following their meeting, reporters begged King–pleaded with him–to denounce Trump, in order to further their anti-Trump narratives. The naked partisanship of their questions would be shocking if we hadn’t seen it thousands of times before. These reporters are Democratic Party operatives, nothing more and nothing »

Britain sticks up for Israel: Is this the Trump effect?

Featured imageGreat Britain has refused to sign a joint agreement supporting negotiations for a two-state solution for Israel-Palestine. Its representatives at a “peace” conference in Paris said the Foreign Office has “particular reservations” about the process, given that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas failed to show up and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the event “the last twitches of the world of yesterday.” We have particular reservations about an international conference »

Power Line’s Inauguration Liberal Beclowning Contest

Featured imageThere’s an old joke about what happens when you cross a postmodernist academic and the Godfather: You get an offer you can’t understand. To which might be added today, who needs Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, about to close after 146 years, when you’ve got liberals beclowning themselves nonstop for free. (I suspect there’s a connection between these two things.) This comes to mind with today’s story about »

300 US Jewish leaders are with you

Featured imagePower Line readers who mischievously pull for Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison to emerge victorious in his bid for the chairmanship of the DNC are not alone. We have noted that former Obama administration green jobs commissar and Mao man Van Jones is with you. We have noted that juicebox Mafioso Matthew Yglesias is with you as well. We may have reached the reductio ad absurdum of this trend. »

Return of the leftover left

Featured imageThe leftover left that materialized during the Bush administration is returning in force as of January 20. Whatever they do to disrupt events related to the inauguration of Donald Trump as president, it is a preview of coming attractions. Alex Pfeiffer’s Daily Caller report links to undercover audio posted by FOX News. Jim Hoft seems to be in their sights. Rick Moran notes at American Thinker “Inauguration protests could get »

A Trump effect in Canada

Featured imageIn this post, I suggested that Great Britain’s refusal to join European governments in signing a joint agreement regarding negotiations for a two-state solution for Israel-Palestine may well be due to a “Trump effect.” Britain wants good relations with the new U.S. president. In particular, it would like a trade deal. Trump seems favorable disposed to negotiating one. It makes no sense for Britain to jeopardize this state of affairs »

Rip Van Reporter

Featured imageAre America’s reporters and editors our most inept occupational group? They are an obvious candidate for the honor. How many reporters had any idea that Americans were so unhappy with the Washington status quo that Donald Trump would be our next president? Approximately zero. (I, on the other hand, predicted that Trump would win, mostly because I understood what a historically awful candidate Hillary Clinton was.) Political reporters are part »

Academic Absurdity of the Week: Fat Tail Distribution of Nonsense

Featured imageThe idea of refraining from “fat shaming” is not entirely without sense, and obesity as a public health problem is likewise not trivial or unserious. What is unserious is what happens to obesity when postmodern academics get their hands on it. There is—wait for it—naturally an academic journal called Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society. Now, if you thought ‘interdisciplinary” meant that the journal included a »

Trump meets with Judge Pryor as rumored “short list” emerges

Featured imagePresident-elect Trump has started meeting with potential Supreme Court nominees. Trump says he has “met with numerous candidates” and will announce his selection “probably” within two weeks after the inauguration. Trump is said to have met on Saturday with William Pryor, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Readers may recall that Pryor was one of two judges Trump mentioned during a primary debate as »

The prophetic voice

Featured imageWhen Martin Luther King, Jr., brought his nonviolent campaign against segregation to Bull Connor’s Birmingham, he laid siege to the bastion of Jim Crow. In Birmingham between 1957 and 1962, black homes and churches had been subjected to a series of horrific bombings intended to terrorize the community. In April 1963 King answered the call to bring his campaign to Birmingham. When King landed in jail on Good Friday for »