Monthly Archives: August 2010

A limp and boring speech

President Obama’s speech from the oval office, only the second of his presidency, was surprisingly limp. With three momentous subjects to cover – Iraq, Afghanistan, and the U.S. economy – Obama struggled to say anything new or interesting. It isn’t just that the soaring rhetoric of 2008 has disappeared; Obama is now affirmatively boring. In “turning the page” on Iraq, the Great Speechifier could find no words with which to »

Sometimes the past really is a foreign country

Many people view Republicans and especially their leaders as being fixated on the past, and that perception is not entirely unjustified. Just last week, at the Lincoln Memorial, Sarah Palin spoke of the need to restore America rather than to transform it. And not that long ago, as some of us measure time, Bob Dole ran for president promising to be “a bridge to the past.” These days, however, it »

Dead Heat

We have been reporting on the Minnesota gubernatorial race among Tom Emmer, a solid conservative; Mark Dayton, a deeply flawed and wackily liberal Democrat; and tax-raiser Tom Horner playing the traditional spoiler’s role as the representative of the Independence Party. Republicans have been dispirited by an early poll showing Dayton with a substantial lead, but today’s NPR/Humphrey Institute survey has the race tied among likely voters, 34-34, with Horner at »

Sarah celebrates shabbat

Sarah Palin celebrated the Jewish sabbath among friends Friday night before her appearance at the Restore Honor rally on the Washington mall on Saturday. Benyamin Korn reports: By evening, the halls of the Hershey Lodge were filled with the aroma of chulent, the traditional Sabbath stew….My colleague Sheya, director of PalinTV, presented Mrs. Palin with the ArtScroll edition of Perek Shira, a commentary on the song of celebration sung by »

Meet Ignat Solzhenitsyn

Last year I went to New York to take my daughter to see Steely Dan perform The Royal Scam and selected favorites at the Beacon Theater. My attorney friend Kirk Kolbo joined us for the show. (I provided an account of the show here.) National Review’s Jay Nordlinger joined us for dinner after the show. All in all, it was one of the most fun evenings I’ve ever had. During »

Inside the Orlando mosque

The video below is an investigative report on the the June 2009 fundraiser for Hamas held at Masjid Al-Rahman mosque in Orlando, Florida. Featuring “that tool” George Galloway, the fundraiser was intended to raise money for Galloway’s Viva Palestina, then funneling money openly to the Islamist terrorist movement of Hamas in Gaza. Big Peace comments that the video also serves as a backgrounder on the Muslim Brotherhood front groups in »

Wallowing in Katrina

Like most nostalgia, the excessive coverage this weekend of the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina signified a yearning for happier days from the past. In this case, it was the yearning of the MSM and President Obama for the happy days when Republicans were the ones having their competence questioned and feeling the ire of the public. But Bill Otis finds deeper, more ominous significance in the weakend of wallowing: »

Glenn Beck nails it

As John has noted, America remains unclear about President Obama’s religious affiliation. Thus, in a Pew Research survey, 43 percent (a plurality) said they don’t know which religion Obama practices. John has offered some good explanations for this uncertainty, especially the misperception that Obama is a Muslim. But I think it is Glenn Beck who has the best explanation for why so many Americans don’t identify Obama as a Christian. »

Our Goof, the President

It wouldn’t be fair to say that President Obama is dumb, but I think it is accurate to say that he is a goof. Thus his style, formerly described as analytical…cerebral…aloof…now appears deer-in-the-headlights clueless. The Drudge Report, in the unfair but funny style that it sometimes adopts, contrasts our President with Russia’s de facto ruler: That’s unfair, but this isn’t: why can’t Obama be a man and admit that his »

Mark Dayton deep sixes and dissembles (correction appended)

At a charity auction in 1994 or so I won the opportunity to have Mark Dayton take me and a friend to “power lunch for two” at the Minneapolis Club. The lunch occurred toward the end of Dayton’s tenure as the Minnesota state auditor. The lunch was extremely unpleasant because Dayton seemed to be unable to disagree agreeably. Dayton nevertheless put me on his Christmas card list for roughly the »

Anything can happen, or so the Democrats better hope

Gallup’s weekly tracking poll of 2010 congressional voting preferences for August 23-29 has Republicans leading Democrats by 51 percent to 41 percent among registered voters. The 10-percentage-point lead is the GOP’s largest of the year and, in fact, is its largest lead in Gallup’s history of tracking the midterm generic ballot. The “enthusiasm gap” is even more pronounced. Gallup finds that Republicans are now twice as likely as Democrats to »

Bad Bet

In China, politicians aren’t happy with bankers either, but for somewhat different reasons. Stratfor reports that China is awash in rumors that the head of the People’s Bank of China has fled the country: Rumors have circulated in China that People’s Bank of China (PBC) Gov. Zhou Xiaochuan may have left the country. The rumors appear to have started following reports on Aug. 28 which cited Ming Pao, a Hong »

“Toss-Up” is the New “Leans Republican”

Last night, Paul noted that there are a number of House races around the country being classified as “leans Democratic” that are in fact toss-ups at best. We can add that there are other races being termed “toss-ups” where the Republican should be considered a strong favorite. Thus, The Hill reports that Charlie Cook has moved several races from “leans Democratic” to “toss-up”: Reps. Allen Boyd (D-Fla.), John Boccieri (D-Ohio) »

Rangel, the Race Card, and Iraq

Charlie Rangel is trying to fight off several primary challengers, ethics charges and–who knows?–possibly jail time for tax evasion. What to do? The Post headlines: “Desperate Rangel wraps self in civil rights.” Rep. Charles Rangel played the race card yesterday as he entered the final stretch of his renomination campaign before the Sept. 14 primary. Speaking to scores of supporters at an outdoor celebration organized by church leaders in Harlem, »

Investigate this

Over at Big Peace, Christine Brim reports that the Muslim Brotherhood-associated Coordinating Council of Muslim Organizations will bring 25-30 Muslim leaders of 20 national Muslim groups to attend a special workshop presented by the White House and assorted government agencies tomorrow. The workshop is to provide the groups “funding, government assistance and resources.” Working from an Islamic Society of North America email newsletter, Ms. Brim notes that the workshop will »

“leans Democratic” is the new “toss-up”

In this post from one month ago, I listed the 26 House seats currently held by Democrats that Larry Sabato rated as “toss ups” in a mid-July analysis. I suggested that, because Sabato also identified 13 Democratic-held seats as “likely Republican,” the list of 26 formed the central battleground in determining whether Republicans would gain 39 seats and thus control of the House. These days, I’m less focused on getting »

Whistling Past the Graveyard

News coverage of Glenn Beck’s Washington rally has generally been inoffensive. Sure, the Associated Press gave almost equal time to Al Sharpton’s pathetically small counter-rally, but for the most part liberal news outlets found little to criticize in yesterday’s gathering on the Mall. The New York Times was generally respectful and began its account by referring to the “enormous and impassioned crowd” that attended the event. I had to laugh, »