Dr. Schumer’s weak, retrospective prescription

Featured image Chuck Schumer has caused a bit of a stir by stating that the Democrats erred in pushing through Obamacare. “Unfortunately,” said Schumer “Democrats blew the opportunity the American people gave them [in the 2008 election]. We took their mandate and put all our focus on the wrong problem — health care reform.” According to Schumer, Democrats should have focused on aiding the middle class in order to build confidence among »

#Shirtgate explained

Featured imageThe feminist establishment has gone completely around the bend. I’m not sure when it happened.; I doubt it is a recent development. In her prescient 1972 book The New Chastity and Other Arguments Against Liberation, Midge Decter examined the first-generation literature of feminism and found it rotten at the core, if not rotten to the core. I haven’t kept up with the literature. My impression, however, is that the movement »

Those damn Minnesotans

Featured imageWhen you read that men from Minnesota have been indicted for aiding the Islamic State — as in the Hill headline “Two Minnesota men charged with aiding ISIS,” or in the Star Tribune headline “2 Minneapolis men charged with attempting to aid terrorists,” or in the local FOX News affiliate headline “2 Minnesota men charged with ISIS support” — you can be pretty sure that we’re talking about first or »

The Telos of the Liberal Mind?

Featured imageRemember the old joke from the 1960s about the liberal cleric who told his congregation that he had been mugged, but that he sympathized with his mugger, because injustice, etc. . . Whereupon an elderly lady in the back of the pews mutters loudly, “Mug him again.” The joke has come to life in Georgetown, where a student who was recently mugged at gunpoint has written an article justifying the »

The IRS Scandal Rears Its Head

Featured imageThe Obama Administration’s IRS scandal is multi-faceted. In addition to the persecution of conservative non-profits by Lois Lerner et al., the question has been percolating for some years whether Obama’s IRS has transferred confidential taxpayer information to Obama’s White House in violation of federal criminal laws. The issue first arose when Austin Goolsbee of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers told reporters that he had information about Koch Industries that »

Did Obama pressure Gov. Nixon to keep the National Guard out?

Featured imageI noted here that the National Guard wasn’t in Ferguson last night, and I wondered why. After all, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon had declared a state of emergency in the St. Louis area — the potential emergency being the impending grand jury decision — and had mobilized the National Guard. In addition, the mayor of Ferguson had requested the Guard’s presence. Yet, the National Guard was nowhere to be seen »

Global Cooling Under Way?

Featured imageOh, who knows, but it is still interesting to note that the Great Lakes are already icing up, the earliest this has occurred since satellite monitoring began 40 years ago: Ice is already starting to develop on Michigan’s Great Lakes. This is the earliest ice on some of the Great Lakes in at least 40 years. According to the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, on November 20, 2014, three of »

Breaking: Supreme Court to Review EPA Mercury Rules

Featured imageJust announced in the last hour: The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to decide whether the Obama administration went too far with new power-plant pollution caps the government estimates will cost almost $10 billion a year. The justices today said they will hear industry and state contentions that the Environmental Protection Agency didn’t adequately consider those costs when it limited mercury and other hazardous power-plant pollutants. The affected companies include American Electric »

Believe your eyes, not liberal talking heads

Featured imageIn the post just below, Scott refers to “the underlying behavioral disparities that are reflected in the numerical racial disparities” in incarceration rates, school discipline and so forth. As he notes, these behavioral disparities were on display for all to see last night. It was surreal to hear liberal talking heads complaining about the number of African-Americans in prison while watching African-Americans (their “hands up” only as high as it »

The fire this time

Featured imageWatching the Ferguson mob rioting for fun and looting for the traditional reasons live on television last night, I didn’t see much “anger” in evidence. The arson and destruction looked premeditated and deliberate, an orgy of opportunity. Was it an accident that the orgy commenced as President Obama urged calm? (The White House has posted the text of his remarks and a video of his statement here.) It was either »

No indictment in the Michael Brown shooting

Featured imageA Missouri grand jury has declined to indict Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown. The decision will, no doubt, be greeted by much outrage and perhaps some violence. At this time, I doubt that anyone outside of the grand jury process knows enough about the evidence to say whether Wilson should have been indicted. Unfortunately, this won’t stand in the way of a blizzard of »

Trayvon and Mike

Featured imageLast night, basketball player Lebron James tweeted this graphic: As many have noted, there are obvious parallels between the Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown cases. Both were young black men who were, as we were told countless times, unarmed. Both were shot by men portrayed as white authority figures–Darren Wilson, a police officer, and George Zimmerman, a “white Hispanic” who, as a neighborhood watch volunteer, was a sort of honorary »

Time to Revitalize Congress?

Featured imageScott kindly noted a couple days ago my appearance earlier this month at Yale’s William F. Buckley Program on the topic of James Burnham. While Burnham’s classic Suicide of the West was the main focus of the conference, in rereading the Burnham corpus before the conference I was struck by one of his neglected books, Congress and the American Tradition (1959). Even in 1959 Burnham could see the capacities of »

Oil, Oil, Toil and Trouble

Featured imageThe fall OPEC meeting is under way right now in Vienna, and all eyes are on the Saudis, to see whether they will lead a strategy to stop the fall in oil prices, which is putting the crimp on Iran, Russia, and Venezuela, among other worthies. We’ve commented previously about what the Saudis may be up to (here and here), and today Business Insider reports that the Saudis show no »

Rioting Mainly for Fun and Profit

Featured imageI wonder whether there would have been the exact same rioting and unrest in Ferguson last night if the grand jury had returned an indictment for manslaughter, or even murder, against officer Wilson. In such a case, the ready-riot brigade would have taken it as vindication of their grievances, rather than the fresh grievance that the non-indictment supposedly supplies. This heterodox thought is prompted by Edward C. Banfield’s famous chapter »

In Ferguson, No Indictment [Updated Re Obama's Comments]

Featured imageThe Ferguson, Missouri saga finally winds toward a conclusion with tonight’s announcement that the grand jury declined to indict Officer Darren Wilson. The decision seems pretty clearly correct; in any event, the grand jurors are literally the only people who have heard and seen the evidence, including the testimony of Officer Wilson. Michael Brown, high on marijuana and having just robbed a convenience store and bullied the clerk, made the »

John McCain’s cynical attempt to portray Chuck Hagel as a victim

Featured imageIt’s normal, I suppose, for conservatives to be sympathetic towards any public official who runs afoul of President Obama. But it’s abnormal to do a 180 degree turn about the merits of such an official. John McCain, though, has executed a full 180 with respect to Chuck Hagel. Today, McCain defended the ousted Secretary of Defense. In response to White House leaks that Hagel was performing poorly, stated, “Believe me, »