14 Israel-Gaza notes

Featured image In the spirit of David Bernstein’s “Some Israel-Gaza notes” at the Volokh Conspiracy, I would like to add my own notes summarizing points I have been making here, some of which Bernstein also makes. 1. Hamas has promoted phony casualty statistics as a propaganda tool and the media have dutifully provided the statistics every day without any reservation. The media fail to report the source of the statistics as anything »

Katie Kieffer: Message to the millenials

Featured imageMy young friend Katie Kieffer is one of two beautiful and conservative Katies with books out this summer. Katie Pavlich is the author of Assault and Flattery:The Truth About the Left and Their War on Women, seeking to corral women to the conservative cause. Katie Kieffer is out with Let Me Be Clear: Barack Obama’s War on Millennials, and One Woman’s Case for Hope, seeking to corral millennials to the »

Meanwhile in Ukraine

Featured imageIt’s not getting much attention, but Ukraine continues to make military progress against rebel separatists. The Washington Post reports that the Ukrainian military has pushed the rebels out of a series of villages and towns in the East, and now has its sights set on Horlivka, a city of about 300,000. If it succeeds in taking Horlivka, the military will be on the doorstep of Donetsk, the separatists’ power center. »

Managers take center stage at Cooperstown

Featured imageThe baseball Hall of Fame inducted six new members today. Among the inductees were managers Tony La Russa, Joe Torre, and Bobby Cox (the others were Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux, and Tom Glavine). One thing about inducting managers: you don’t have to worry about whether their performance was enhanced by drugs. There was a time, though, when it seemed like La Russa was managing on steroids. That time was the »

Is Barack Obama John Galt?

Featured imageIn her polemical novel Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand imagines a world in which the most productive citizens–business magnates, mostly, creators of wealth and generators of progress–go on strike. Tired of being blamed for the world’s ills by parasitic liberals in the press, academia, popular culture and government, they quit. The result is chaos and disaster. John Galt is the mysterious figure who inspires the revolt of the wealth creators. On »

Romney 53%, Obama 44%? Don’t Get Excited

Featured imageMatt Drudge is promoting this CNN poll, out today, in which respondents were asked whom they would vote for if the 2012 election were re-run today. Romney beats Obama, when “leaners” are counted, 53% to 44%. And that’s not all: lots of Obama’s numbers are quite poor. In categories like “is a strong and decisive leader,” “generally agrees with you on issues you care about” (43%/56%), and “can manage the »

IDF on the Gaza UN school: It wasn’t us

Featured imageThe IDF has investigated its possible role in the deaths that occurred at the UN school in Gaza. The Times of Israel’s Mitch Ginsburg files this update: An Israeli army inquiry into fighting at a UN facility in Beit Hanoun Thursday found that IDF mortars did not play a role in the killing of 16 people in the school courtyard, dismissing claims that the military was responsible for their deaths. »

Inside the IRS, part 6

Featured imageWilliam Henck has worked inside the IRS Office of the Chief Counsel as an attorney for over 26 years. We posted his personal account, including his testimony to a retaliatory audit conducted by the IRS against him, this past February in “Inside the IRS.” We followed up with subsequent posts including, most recently, “Inside the IRS, part 5,” regarding the promotion of Fred Schindler to a senior position within the »

A Civil Rights Victory in the District

Featured imageA federal court in the District of Columbia has held that the District’s ban on carrying weapons, either openly or concealed, violates the Second Amendment. The case is Palmer v. District of Columbia. While the holding is by no means unexpected–I believe the District was the last place whose ban on carrying weapons outside the home had not yet been held unconstitutional–it is good to see freedom spreading into the »

Moving on from Libya

Featured imageWalter Russell Mead headlines his commentary on the evacuation of our embassy in Libya — “As Libya implodes, ‘smart diplomacy’ becoming a punch line” — draws at length on the State Department travel advisory on Libya: The security situation in Libya remains unpredictable and unstable. The Libyan government has not been able to adequately build its military and police forces and improve security following the 2011 revolution. Many military-grade weapons »

When You’ve Lost Haaretz…

Featured imageHaaretz is Israel’s establishment, liberal newspaper. Scott once described it to me in shorthand as the New York Times of Israel. So the paper is a natural ally of a Democratic U.S. administration. That is what makes this article by Barak Ravid remarkable. It is titled Kerry’s latest cease-fire plan: What was he thinking? It is behind a subscription wall, but the link goes to Haaretz’s mobile site and should »

2014 World Cup all-stars

Featured imageThe World Cup ended two weeks ago, which means that it’s high time for me to offer my World Cup all-star team. But first, a word about the tournament. The consensus among those who covered it is that this was the best World Cup in modern memory. I’ve followed every World Cup since 1978 (ten in all), but my memory of the early ones has become hazy. Certainly, though, this »

Remy Rings a Bell

Featured imageThe New York Times Magazine today carries a cover story about why math is hard, and perhaps that helps explain widespread economic illiteracy. Maybe the Times should do a sequel on this very topic, except that it might expose too many of its premier columnists (not mentioning any names of course). Anyway, most economists will tell you that your attitude about the minimum wage is a test as to whether you »

John Kerry and “what everyone knows”

Featured imageFor decades, diplomats and pundits have been saying that “everyone” — by which they mean their fellow diplomats and pundits — knows what the solution to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute would look like. It would look, they say, like two states with something similar to the re-1967 Israeli border and “security guarantees” for Israel. Lost on this arrogant breed is the fact that if everyone has known for so long what »

War is over! If you want it

Featured image“Happy Xmas (War Is Over”) was John Lennon’s 1971 Christmas single with Yoko Ono. “War is over! If you want it,” went the song. Barack Obama is thinking along the same lines, and he he wants the war over. He has requested that Congress repeal the 2002 law authorizing the use of military force in Iraq. The Washington Examiner’s Charles Hoskinson reports the reaction of retiring Armed Services Committee chairman »

Kerry toes the Hamas line

Featured imageIn the adjacent posts John and I draw on the commentary of David Horovitz and Barak Ravid on John Kerry’s promotion of a ceasefire that toes the Hamas line in Gaza. Hamas is a genocidal terrorist organization with which Kerry is prohibited from dealing directly under American law. Kerry’s efforts nevertheless serve Hamas and betray Israel as well as Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE in Hamas’s war on Israel. »

While Hamas celebrates

Featured imageTimes of Israel editor is providing the best ongoing commentary I can find online regarding Hamas’s war on Israel. His column today is “Whle Hamas celebrates, Israel focuses on its security.” Here are a couple of excerpts worth pausing over: Entirely unsurprisingly, Hamas is managing to further blacken Israel’s name wherever this conflict is depicted in terms that are the opposite of reality, which is most everywhere. Israel is under »