Monthly Archives: July 2009

The head-count on Judge Sotomayor

Ed Whelan has been keeping track of where Republican Senators stand on Judge Sotomayor. He counts 26 Republicans who have come out against her confirmation and 6 who say they will vote to confirm. That leaves eight who are undecided. They are: Barrasso, Bond, Ensign, Enzi, Gregg, McCain, Murkowski, and Voinovich. My guess is that there are a few “no” votes in this group. Assuming, that all of the Dems »

The end of the recession?

The Commerce Department today issued its figures on GDP. They suggest that the recession is winding down and that the economy soon will start growing. The economy contracted at a 1 percent annual pace in the second quarter, according to the Commerce Department. That’s a big improvement over the first quarter, in which the dip was 6.4 percent. Most analysts expect positive growth over the remainder of the year, albeit »

A speech I’d like to hear

This New York Times editorial calls on President Obama to explain to Israelis why “freezing settlements and reviving peace talks is clearly in their interest.” The Times is alarmed because “Israeli leaders do not often risk being at odds with an American president, but polls show broad support for Mr. Netanyahu’s resistance” on the settlement issue. Presumably, the Times would like Obama, “a skilled communicator,” to speak directly to Israelis »

Voter intimidation ok with Obama-Holder Justice Department if done by its side

We wrote here and here about the Justice Department’s dismissal of a voter intimidation case against a group of armed Black Panthers who threatened would-be voters outside a polling place in Philadelphia. The Justice Department won the case after the defendants defaulted (a wise move by them, it turns out), but decided to give the victory away. This struck us as another instance in which the Obama-Holder Justice Department made »

Beer Summit

That’s what people are calling President Obama’s White House picnic table gathering with “Skip” Gates and Jim Crowley. Those of us here in Minnesota are more likely to reverse the phrase: Summit Beer is one of our best local brews. This video of the White House press corps going crazy on the beer summit is remarkable; the snapping cameras sound like a machine gun attack. This may have been the »

Race politics as usual, beer notwithstanding

President Obama had his beer with Sargeant Crowley and Professor Gates today, as Vice President Biden joined in with a non-alcoholic “beer.” It wasn’t much of a photo-op for the White House. The event was filmed from a distance making it difficult to discern whether there was any warmth, or even authenticity, to the event. To extent I could judge, it looked like a rather stiff affair. Understandably. The aftermath »

Afghanistan: What To Do?

Afghanistan is the war that hardly anyone dares oppose but about which, at the same time, not many people are actually enthusiastic. Iraq and Iran are both of great strategic importance by virtue of their size, their location, their natural resources, their history and their stage of development. Afghanistan is not in the same category. It borders Pakistan, to be sure, but otherwise its strategic importance has come mostly from »

The state department’s wishful thinking about Jerusalem

A friend called to my attention the home page of the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem, which is devoid of any material pertaining to Jews or Israelis. Every item visible on the page is about Palestinians. A fair reflection, I think, of where this administration’s sympathies lie and how it sees Jerusalem. »

What is our policy on Iran?

Fareed Zakaria pronounces U.S. policy on Iran “wise.” That policy, he says, consists of “doing nothing.” Specifically, according to Zakaria, we will not negotiate with Iran, given the domestic turmoil there and, more generlly, we will do nothing to stop Iran from “inching closer to a bomb.” (Zakaria states that there is no “imminent” threat of Iran getting a nuclear bomb, but NPR has reported that U.S. intelligence estimates Iran »

Suicide on the installment plan

Don’t miss Debra Burlingame’s Wall Street Journal column “Revenge of the ‘shoe bomber,’” or Andrew McCarthy’s comments on Burlingame’s column. “It’s madness,” McCarthy remarks. »

The Royal Scam: A preview, I hope

I’m headed off to visit my daughter in New York and see Steely Dan play their 1976 album “The Royal Scam” live in concert at the Beacon Theater tomorrow night. “The Royal Scam” is a characteristically cynical album that kicks off with “Kid Charlemagne” and “The Caves of Altamira,” one of the favorite Steely Dan songs of my attorney friend Bill Mohrman. I’m partial to “Don’t Take Me Alive” (video »

In which truth is a defense

One might say that the Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy K-8 charter school in suburban St. Paul is an Islamic school in all but name, except that that even its name is Islamic. Among other things, the school’s principal is an imam and almost all of its students are Muslim. It is housed in a building was owned originally by the Muslim American Society of Minnesota (I’m not sure who owns »

Ascent of the flying imams: A footnote

I wrote here about the decision by Minnesota District Judge Ann Montgomery denying the law enforcement defendants qualified immunity in the lawsuit brought by the flying imams. Leaving Minneapolis to return to Phoenix after a convention of imams, members of the group prayed loudly at the gate, cursed the United States and asked for seatbelt extensions that a USAirways flight attendant thought unnecessary. After a passenger passed a note to »

Dorothy Hoft, RIP

I traveled to Israel with a small group including Gateway Pundit Jim Hoft in the summer of 2007. He is a gentleman and one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. Visiting Jerusalem’s holy Christian sites with Jim was a special experience. His faith was shining. Jim’s mother died earlier this week on Wednesday evening. He has posted a moving tribute to her where readers can leave their condolences here, »

Top Obama Supporter Approved Dismissal of Voter Intimidation Case

We wrote here about the Justice Department’s dismissal of a voter intimidation case against a group of armed Black Panthers who threatened would-be voters outside a polling place in Philadelphia. This video of the defendants indicates the sort of intimidation in which they were engaged: DOJ’s decision to dismiss the case has been mysterious, in part, because it came after the defendants had defaulted. So the case had been won, »

Howard saves the day

Everton became the first club to defeat an MLS all-star team, winning tonight’s match on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw over the 90 minutes. Everton was comprehensively outplayed during the final 60 minutes, but our American goalkeeper Tim Howard kept us in the match and then came up huge in the shoot-out, just as he did against Manchester United earlier this year in the FA Cup semi-final. Considering the »

A deal in the House

The House Democratic leadership has reached a deal with the “blue dog” Democrats on health care legislation. The compromise clears the way for a vote in the House, but under the agreement that vote will not occur until September. This means that members will have time to study the legislation before voting. And because they will be hearing from their constituents during the August recess, some members may actually take »