Monthly Archives: September 2009

Roman Polanski’s real “defense”

Bill Bennett notes that 138 film industry types including Woody Allen, Pedro Almodovar and Martin Scorsese have demanded the immediate release of fellow filmmaker Roman Polanski. Some European political figures have also criticized the arrest of Polanski. Among them are two French cabinet ministers Frederic Mitterand and Bernard Kouchner. It’s difficult for me to understand the basis for demanding Polanski’s release. Sure, he was a great film director, but then »

Why Tom Friedman should have followed his alleged instincts

Normally, a column that begins with the author’s expression of his feelings about writing the piece shouldn’t be read. And if the feeling expressed is the author’s purported distaste for discussing the subject, the column normally shouldn’t be written. Thomas Friedman’s column of today is no exception. He begins by claiming that “he hates to write” about his subject — the notion that criticism of President Obama may cause him »

Paul Rahe: Obama’s wrecking crew

Hillsdale College Professor Paul Rahe writes to comment on second thoughts among some prominent supporters of Obama: In Tuesday’s New York Post, Charles Gasparino reports that, although they will not admit anything of the sort in public, people like Morgan Stanley’s John Mack, BlackRock’s Larry Fink, Greg Fleming (once at Merrill Lynch), JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon, and Goldman Sachs’ Lloyd Blankfein, who backed Obama at the time of the financial »

Tentative theses on Obama and Iran

If any sentient person had serious doubt, last week’s news that Iran has a covert uranium enrichment facility under construction at a military base outside Qom should serve to clarify Iran’s intent to obtain nuclear weapons. News that Obama had been briefed on the existence of this facility during the transition makes it difficult to understand what Obama has said and done about Iran since then. His statements and actions »

This day in baseball history

On Tuesday, September 29, 1959, the Los Angeles Dodgers completed a two-game sweep of the Milwaukee Braves to win their playoff and advance to the World Series. In those days, playoffs occurred only if two teams ended the season tied for first place. This was the fourth such playoff in baseball history and the third in the National League. The Dodgers had been involved in the previous two, losing both. »

Who is Keith Ellison and why should we CAIR?

On September 18, Rep. Keith Ellison spoke at the annual fundraising dinner for the Arizona chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). He did so even though, as the American Islamic Forum for Democracy notes, the FBI has broken all formal relations with CAIR because it is listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terror financing trial. The Holy Land Foundation and five of its »

Senate bill to contain no public option that will be called one

The Senate Finance Committee has voted down the “public option.” The vote wasn’t even close. With five Democrats (Lincoln, Carper, Baucus, Conrad, and Bill Nelson) joining all of the Committee Republicans, the tally was 15-8. The Democrats now, I assume, will attempt to enact a public option by tweaking the failed proposal and giving it another name. Nonetheless, today’s vote is good news. »

The Human Cost of Covering the News

Remember when it was critically important that news media be able to cover and photograph the arrival of the caskets of dead soldiers when they arrived in the U.S.? This was so the public could be informed about the “human cost of war,” as though reporters knew something about the cost of war that the rest of us didn’t. The military changed its policy to allow news coverage of returning »

When Sarkozy mocked Obama, part deux

The Wall Street Journal’s reported editorial supplies the story behind Sarkozy’s mockery of President Obama at the United Nations last week: Both [France and Great Britain] wanted to confront Iran…at the United Nations. Mr. Obama was, after all, chairing a Security Council session devoted to nonproliferation. The latest evidence of Iran’s illegal moves toward acquiring a nuclear weapon was in hand. With the world’s leaders gathered in New York, the »

What’s wrong with this correction?

In their September 18 story on the exposure of ACORN by James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles, Washington Post reporters Darryl Fears and Carol Leonnig fabricated the existence of a quote indicating the existence of a racial animus behind O’Keefe’s work. When called on to supply the quote, the Post instead ran this correction: Th[e] article about the community organizing group ACORN incorrectly said that a conservative journalist targeted the organization »

Civility, Ours and Theirs

It is quite remarkable that the Democratic Party now–belatedly, to say the least–wants to make an issue out of civility. Mark Steyn quotes Lloyd Marcus: The Left published a cartoon depicting former black Secretary of State Condolezza Rice as an Aunt Jemima; another depicted Rice as a huge-lipped parrot for her Massa Bush. Neither were considered racist by their creators or publishers, or even widely condemned on the Left. In »

Joke of the Day, Via Twitter

WARNING: If you get an email entitled: “Nude photo of Nancy Pelosi,” DON’T OPEN IT!! It contains a nude photo of Nancy Pelosi. Tweeted by thrillerchick. By the way, I’m an active Facebooker and “friend” all PL readers. You can also follow me on Twitter @jhinderaker, although so far most of my tweets are links to PL posts. PAUL wonders: If the mouthpiece is called twitter, shouldn’t the utterances be »

Annals of Socialized Medicine

Various interest groups use patently bogus statistics to try to convince us that socialized medicine would be a good thing. But those who live under government medicine have a different story to tell: When the pain in Christina Woodkey’s legs became so severe that she could no long hike or cross-country ski, she went to her local health clinic. The Calgary, Canada, resident was told she’d need to see a »

Backing An Insane Horse, Illegally

As Scott noted here, President Obama’s insistent support for deposed Honduran President Manuel Zelaya is bizarre, in view of the fact that Zelaya is a) virulently anti-American, and 2) apparently insane. The Obama administration’s demand that Zelaya be returned to power is based on the claim that he was removed “illegally” by a “military coup.” Many observers, however, have pointed out that the deposition of Zelaya was entirely legal under »

Obama’s Dilemmas

Stratfor has an interesting dual analysis of the administration’s foreign policy at a crossroads vis-a-vis both Iran and Afghanistan. It’s worth reading in its entirety; here are some excerpts: Obama has three choices in this regard [i.e., to respond to the revelation of Iran's secret nuclear facility]. First, he can impose crippling sanctions against Iran. But that is possible only if the Russians cooperate. Moscow has the rolling stock and »

Cheney For President, Part II

The New York Times offers a portrait of Liz Cheney as conservative activist, focusing on her appearance at the “Smart Girls Summit” in Nashville. The Times’ portrait is flattering, perhaps unintentionally so. I liked this comment by Liz’s sister Mary: Ms. Cheney’s resolute national security positions seem to differ not at all from those of her favorite vice president. “I think you’d be hard-pressed to find any daylight at all »

Support for Health Care Reform Continues to Drop

The bump in support for the Democrats’ health care plans that resulted from President Obama’s speech to Congress and associated media blitz is now history, as support for those plans is at a new low among voters: Just 41% of voters nationwide now favor the health care reform proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That’s down two points from a week ago and the lowest level of support yet »