Monthly Archives: December 2010

Dumbest News Story of the Day

“Scientists” in London claim to have found evidence of differences in brain structure between conservatives and liberals. You get one guess as to which group is flattered by the comparison: Scientists have found that people with conservative views have brains with larger amygdalas, almond shaped areas in the centre of the brain often associated with anxiety and emotions. On the other hand, they have a smaller anterior cingulate, an area »

The Real Blizzard of 2010

Snow melts, but as Ronald Reagan used to say, government programs are forever. Michael Ramirez identifies the blizzard that does far more harm than bad weather; click to enlarge: As far as the snow storm on the East Coast is concerned, Charlotte Hays makes the salient point at The Corner: Mayor Bloomberg may be receiving an unfair amount of criticism for his lackluster performance in coping with Mother Nature, given »

Draper’s gap

Liberals are big on gaps. The gap between rich and poor is a particularly fertile source of big government schemes. It’s a perennial inspiration of plans to tax and plans to spend. Minneapolis Star Tribune education reporter Norman Draper brings us a new but nevertheless “glaring gap” that must be filled. You have undoubtedly missed it. It’s the “dearth of books the [Muslim] students can relate to and from which »

Rudy Favard’s gift

Rick and Patty Parker of Boston needed a little daily help with their severely disabled son. Fortunately, their pediatrician knew precisely where to turn for help. He sent Mrs. Parker in the direction of Elizabeth Paquette, the nurse at Malden Catholic High School: “Paquette said she’d take care of it. The boys at Malden Catholic are taught to embrace service: She’d find plenty of students to help.” Boston Globe columnist »

Dead Zero: A word from the author

Stephen Hunter is the Pulitzer Prize-winning former chief film critic of the Washington Post. His most recent collection of film criticism is Now Playing at the Valencia. He wrote for us, most recently, here last week about the Coen Brothers’ version of True Grit, now playing at a theater near you. Steve is also the author of the Bob Lee Swagger series of novels followed by many Power Line readers. »

Barack Obama and Michael Vick

President Obama has an unfortunate habit of weighing in on controversies that are basically none of his business, most notoriously when he blasted the Cambridge police for arresting Henry Gates. This morning he did it again, telephoning Jeffrey Lurie, the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles, to express appreciation for the Eagles’ giving quarterback Michael Vick a second chance. At the Washington Post, Ezra Klein terms this the “weirdest story of »

How do they like him now?

I think it’s clear that the Democrats expected George W. Bush to be the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to electoral politics. Frankly, I expected this as well, albeit to a lesser degree than the Dems did. But that’s not how things are turning out. It’s not just that Democratic efforts to make the 2010 election a referendum on the Bush presidency failed (predictably enough). There is »

Looking Back, 75 Years Later

Our friend Rudy Boschwitz, former Senator from Minnesota, writes: I am writing this on December 23rd, 2010, the 75th Anniversary of my arriving in the United States from Europe in 1935 as a boy of five. Below there is a story about my arrival that appeared a couple of weeks ago in The Forward, the (left leaning!!) national Jewish Newspaper. The trip on the Cunard Line’s SS Majestic is a »

The early returns on Obamacare

The Washington Post reports that Obamacare is off to a rocky start. One of its key early features — the one that allows people who are already sick to obtain insurance — is attracting few customers and costing more than expected. As to the first matter, the chief actuary of the Medicare program predicted earlier this year that 375,000 people would sign up for the new pool plans by the »

Useful idiots, PBS edition

One would have thought we were well past the day when the the folks at PBS would be shilling for Castro and Communism, but one would be wrong. Mary Anastasia O’Grady brings us a remarkable example of Castroite stupefaction in her Wall Street Journal column “A Cuban fairy tale from PBS,” noted here by Tim Graham at NewsBusters. O’Grady finds reporter Ray Suarez declaring the glories of Cuban health care »

Anybody but Steele

Next month, the Republican National Committee will elect its chairman. According to Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post, the three front-runners are Reince Priebus, state party chairman in Wisconsin; Saul Anuzis, former state party chairman in Michigan; and Ann Wagner, former state party chair in Missouri. Priebus can point to Republican electoral successes in Wisconsin this year. Anuzis, who also ran two years ago, is said to have expertise that »

Hey Barack, it’s the late ’70s calling; they want their American foreign policy back

“Colombia’s new leader seen as good for U.S.” So reads a headline on the front page of today’s Washington Post. Why is Columbia’s president Juan Manuel Santos seen as good for the United States? I figured it must be because, like his immensely popular predecessor Alvaro Uribe, he is maintaining excellent relations with the U.S. and standing solidly against the loathsome Hugo Chavez. But I was wrong. According to the »

Voting With Their Wallets

That Americans are migrating away from high-tax, unionized states and toward low-tax, non-unionized states is well known and was well documented by the 2010 census. But the Tax Foundation has added a financial dimension to the story by adding up the personal income that has fled from blue New York to red Texas: The Lone Star State is scooping up more than just our congressional seats — some $846 million »

The Real War on Christmas

For the last couple of years we haven’t heard much about the “war on Christmas” here in the U.S., for good reason: political correctness is more annoying than threatening. But around the world, there is an actual war on Christmas, which we have seen in the headlines over the past few days. In Nigeria, on Christmas Eve, “[m]ultiple explosions in central Nigeria have killed 32 people and six others died »

The uses of Pfc Manning

Jed Babbin argues that Bradley Manning, the Army private alleged to have provided WikiLeaks with hundreds of thousands of State and Defense Department classified e-mails, has become the left’s “new face for the ‘injustice’ committed in America’s name.” Jed argues that Manning is perfect for the role because he enables leftists to indulge two of their pet views: that our justice system oppresses dissenters and that America, and by extension »

World’s Most Successful Propaganda Campaign?

Fidel Castro is one of history’s greatest villains, having turned his island nation into a prison while looting, perhaps, a greater percentage of its wealth than any warlord or tyrant on record. Yet around the world, he and his corrupt regime are viewed mostly with amused tolerance, if not outright approval. In large part, this is due to the regime’s skill in producing propaganda. In fact, propaganda may be the »

Learning from HSBC

Last week Contentions posted an image of an HSBC Bank ad touting Iran found in an Athens airport. The full ad creative can be found here. It turns out that the ad is part of HSBC’s current global ad campaign. According to the ad, “Only 4% of American films are made by women. In Iran it’s 25%.” The Contentions commenter asked whether fully literate copywriters are so rare a commodity »