Monthly Archives: October 2007

Turner Classic Communists

Tonight Turner Classic Movies is featuring films credited to the members of the Hollywood Ten. TCM simply celebrates the Hollywood Ten as victims of American paranoia. Among other things, TCM makes no mention of the fact that they were Communists toeing the party line. Spencer Warren provides the background that TCM refuses to in “Biased Hollywood Ten tales.” »

A letter to the editor of the New York Times

Last week the New York Times published Jed Rubenfeld’s column condemning Michael Mukasey and his purported view of executive power: “Lawbreaker in chief.” The column carried a certain weight because of Rubenfeld’s position as professor of constitutional law at Yale Law School. Professor Kate Stith (below) is Rubenfeld’s colleague at the Yale Law School, and she actually listened to Mukasey’s testimony on the radio in its entirety. In her letter »

A satisfied mind

Porter Wagoner died on Sunday in Nashville at the age of 80. He had an illustrious career as a country western performer. In addition to his fabled partnership with Dolly Parton, Wagoner was a talented songwriter and performer in his own right. The colorful New York Times obituary recalls the dissolution of his partnership with Parton: After Ms. Parton left his show in 1974, there were lawsuits and countersuits between »

The man on whom nothing was lost

When Mayor Giuliani announced his team of foreign policy advisors earlier this year, I thought that they constituted a significant credit in favor of his candidacy. Foremost among them is Yale’s Professor Charles Hill. In today’s New York Sun Eli Lake catches up with Professor Hill: “Meet Giuliani’s new brain on foreign policy.” »

A grown-up in the weak sense

Sebastian Mallaby argues that Hillary Clinton is the only foreign policy grown-up among the Democratic presidential candidate. At one level this is true. As Mallaby points out, Clinton is the only one who unequivocally embraces the obvious next step in the quest to prevent a nuclear Iran, namely tougher sanctions. The rest of the field panders to the Bush-hating base by arguing, nonsensically, that authorizing sanctions amounts to giving Bush »

Rutten to the core

Over the weekend Los Angeles Times media critic Tim Rutten devoted a lame, sloppy column to the defense of the New Republic in the Scott Beauchamp scandal. Blogger Bob Owens, who has doggedly pursued the story on the side of his day job, serves up a devastating sample of Rutten’s careless errors. Michael Goldfarb administers the coup de gr »

A letter to the editor of the Star Tribune

I started listening to Garrison Keillor when I was a law student at the University of MInnesota and Keillor had the weekday morning drivetime slot on Minnesota Public Radio. I thought he was terrific, a guy with talent to burn who could easily make it on the national stage. That was more than thirty years ago. Since he achieved fame on the national stage, however, Keillor has turned into an »

The Phillips Foundation Fellowship

On Saturday, I had the pleasure of appearing on a panel, along with Jed Babbin, Erick Erickson, and Mark Tapscott, to address the Phillips Foundation Fellows. The Phillips Foundation provides fellowships for projects to be undertaken by journalists who share the Foundation’s mission to advance constitutional principles, a democratic society and a vibrant free enterprise system. In 2008, the Foundation will award grants of $75,000, $50,000, and $25,000 to print »

Romney on course

New Hampshire Senator Judd Gregg has endorsed Mitt Romney. The Romney campaign points out that in 2004, Gregg received the largest number of votes of any candidate in any election in the state’s history. Romney is already ahead in the New Hampshire polls (nine points in the latest Rasmussen), and Gregg’s endorsement should help him cement that lead. In addition, a new University of Iowa poll has Romney up by »

The uses of Mearsheimer and Walt

Alleged Hamas member Abdelhaleem Ashqar was acquitted on terorirsm charges in federal district court in Chicago this past February, but convicted of obstruction of justice and criminal contempt. Now Josh Gerstein reports that he now seeks a lenient sentence with the help of The Israel Lobby by University of Chicago Professor John Mearsheimer and Harvard University Professor Stephen Walt: “Every person in this court has been influenced by perception and »

Inside the HLF jury

Reader Donna D. describes herself as “HLF trial watcher” and has previously forwarded her observations of the HLF jury as it deliberated in Dallas. The jury ultimately proved to be hung on charges submitted to it against all but one of the defendants, who was acquitted of all charges but one. Over the weekend she drew our attention to the Dallas Morning News article by Jason Trahan on a possible »

Impossible to Take Seriously

Mark Steyn’s latest column makes a point very similar to Peggy Noonan’s in Friday’s Wall Street Journal: opponents of the Iraq war, such as the editors of the New Republic, seem to have gotten their understanding of war from movies about Vietnam. It’s a good point, but what I want to comment on is this observation by Mark Steyn, which was highlighted by Hugh Hewitt: It’s the same with all »

No memorandum necessary

By all objective measurements the military situation in Iraq, including Baghdad, has improved considerably in recent months. However, those who rely on the Washington Post for their news probably know about this only if they regularly scour the paper’s back pages. The Post’s front page is still reserved for stories designed to obscure the military success we’re having in Iraq. This story from yesterday’s paper is a good example. Reporter »

A bluff that needs to be called, Part Two

As I noted yesterday, some Senate Democrats are talking about possibly blocking Michael Mukasey’s nomination for Attorney General unless he proclaims that waterboarding is torture, and thus illegal. Mukasey would not answer the question during his confirmation hearings because he said he did not know enough about this interrogation technique. I argued that Mukasey should tell the Senate that waterboarding is legal in exigent circumstances or, alternatively, come up with »

We are starstruck, we are tanning

John McCain’s attack on Hillary Clinton’s support for a “hippie museum” honoring Woodstock may give his campaign a boost, but it’s not winning him friends in Bethel, New York where the museum is to be located. According to this report, the unamused residents of the area make two points. First, they argue that the museum will boost the local economy which was hammered by the closing of once-popular Borscht Belt »

A bluff that needs to be called

Senate Democrats who had previously praised Michael Mukasey, President Bush’s nominee for attorney general, are now threatening to vote against him because he has declined to opine on whether waterboarding constitutes torture and is therefore illegal. Joe Biden, a key member of the Judiciary Committee, has said he will not vote for Mukasey unless Mukasey states that waterboarding is illegal. And Chuck Schumer has declared through a spokesman that he »

St. Thomas

I haven’t had enough time lately to keep up with this site, let alone any others, but along the way I have had some fun with my Facebook page. I can see how social networking could be worthwhile, and how some teenagers can spend much of their days Facebooking. I installed software called iLike on my Facebook page, and my middle daughter and I spent some time last weekend trying »