Monthly Archives: November 2009

Israel’s settlement freeze

I don’t think we’ve commented on the announcement last week that Israel will implement a 10-month freeze on private building in the West Bank. The key to understanding this decision, I think, is to recognize the limited nature of the freeze. Jeff Barak, former editor-in-chief of the Jerusalem Post, makes the point: [T]he 10-month settlement freeze will not change the reality of construction work in the West Bank in any »

Nice kid you got there

The Washington Post is showing great interest in the Republican Party these days. To me, that’s a bit like Leopold and Loeb showing great interest in one of your children. Unlike some entries in the Post’s series of occasional “whither the GOP” articles, today’s article at least has the virtue of being written by adults. Even so, its effort to paint the Party as plagued by lack of leadership and »

Mad As Hell

If you were a Congressman, these numbers would make you tremble: Scott Rasmussen finds that an astonishing 71 percent of voters describe themselves as angry at the current policies of the federal government. That’s up five percent since September. A plurality of 46 percent say they are “very angry” at the federal government. That’s up 10 percent since September. Not surprisingly, voters continue to reject the Democrats’ health care proposals »

Who failed whom?

During the last presidential primary season, we wrote extensively about Mike Huckabee’s excessive use of his power, as governor of Arkansas, to issue pardons and commutations, and his role in influencing the parole process. In one particularly egregious instance, Huckabee worked behind the scenes in favor of releasing on parole a convicted rapist who, once free, raped and murdered a woman in Missouri. Now we learn that Maurice Clemmons, accused »

Judaism: A word from David Gelernter

David Gelernter is a Renaissance man. He is a professor of computer science at Yale University and the author of books that suggest a kind of Herodotean interest in everything human. His books include Drawing Life: Surviving the Unabomber, Mirror Worlds, The Muse in the Machine: Computerizing the Poetry of Human Thought, Machine Beauty: Elegance and the Heart of Technology, and 1939: The Lost World of the Fair. Professor Gelernter’s »

The supremacy of Honduras

According to today’s Wall Street Journal, 61 percent of Hondurans turned out to vote in the country’s presidential election yesterday. By a wide margin Hondurans elected conservative rancher Porfirio “Pepe” Lobo to their presidency. The Journal reports: “The results gave Mr. Lobo 56% of the vote, well ahead of Liberal Party candidate Elvin Santos at 38%, confirming voters’ expected punishment of the Liberals — party of both the deposed president »

The scientific method isn’t what it used to be

I confess to being less of a “global warming skeptic” than I believe my fellow Power Liners, John and Scott, are. But I become pretty skeptical pretty quickly when I read that scientists at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) – the ones whose email correspondence reveals less than a solid commitment to honesty in science – have admitted that much of the raw data upon which »

The Obama-Holder Justice Department turns a blind eye to ACORN

As I noted yesterday, ACORN caught a break from the Department of Justice when DOJ decided, based on a strained reading of the applicable statute, that the Obama administration can lawfully pay ACORN for services provided under contracts signed before Congress banned the government from providing money to the group. But ACORN arguably caught a bigger break by virtue of the Justice Department’s unwillingness to investigate this corrupt organization. In »

Today’s Cartoons

Chris Muir’s assessment of the Obama administration may be a little harsh–I don’t think they actually planned for things to go this badly–but it’s fun anyway; click to enlarge: And Michael Ramirez comments on the global warming scandal: There’s no question that it’s a fraud, but whether the “scientists” who have been promoting the global warming hoax have committed felonies is not yet clear. They have taken countless millions of »

Miss World 2009

The finale of the Miss World pageant will be held in Johannesburg, South Africa on December 12, but the competition has actually been underway for a while. Miss World has a unique system of preliminary rounds, the winners of which automatically advance to the semifinals of the competition. First came the Miss Sport contest, which was won by Miss Japan. Initially, Miss England, Rachel Christie, who is also an Olympic »

Iran to World: Drop Dead!

All those harsh measures that the “international community” has been threatening have really taughtIran’s mullahs a lesson: Iran’s Government today announced plans to build ten new uranium enrichment plants and said work would start within two months. Each site will be the size of the existing Natanz plant with the aim of producing between 250-300 tonnes of uranium a year. IRNA, Iran’s state news agency, says the Government ordered the »

The University of Minnesota redesigns teachers

Everybody is familiar with the vulgar Marxism in which race is substituted for class. In one form or another, it is ubiquitous in the academy, though its racism pervades every form. It has given rise to stultifying orthodoxies in doctrine, governance and curriculum. The University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development is the foremost institution through which primary and secondary school teachers are licensed to teach in the »

Paul Rahe: Is Obama a one-trick pony?

Hillsdale College Professor Paul Rahe writes: I am not a great admirer of Peggy Noonan as a journalist. Most of the time, she aims at capturing a mood, and I generally find the lack of analysis and the sentimentalism so visible in her work offputting. There are, however, moments when she hits the ball out of the park, and she did so just a few days ago in The Wall »

The Holder Justice Department twists the law ACORN’s way

The Holder Justice Department has concluded that the Obama administration can lawfully pay Acorn for services provided under contracts signed before Congress banned the government from providing money to the group. Here is the Office of Legal Counsel memo reaching this conclusion. OLC analysis is tortured. Congress stated: “None of the funds made available by this Joint Resolution or any prior Act may be provided to ACORN. . .” On »

East Anglia to Make Climate Data Public

Shaken by Climategate, the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit has reversed its long-standing policy and agreed to make its climate database public so that other researchers can check the conclusions that have been reached by global warming alarmists who, until now, have been the only ones with access to the data. What is not clear from this report is whether the formulas and calculations that were applied to »

Ohio taxpayers footing bill for defense of “Joe the Plumber” attackers

Last fall, during the peak of the presidential campaign, three Ohio state employees used their positions to target, Samuel Wurzelbacher, aka “Joe the Plumber” by searching state records in the hope of finding material with which to smear him. Ohio’s independent Office of the Inspector General investigated the actions of the three employees. It concluded that there was “no legitimate agency function or purpose” and “no reasonable basis” to authorize »

That’ll Show ‘Em!

You almost have to laugh at the way the media cover the “international community’s” kicking of the Iran can down the road. The board of the International Atomic Energy Agency, which a few days ago acknowledged that its policy toward Iran had “reached a dead end,” has passed a resolution criticizing Iran for flouting U.N. resolutions and demanding that it stop work on nuclear weapons. The Associated Press risibly declares »