Monthly Archives: May 2012

Bush portraits unveiled at White House; Obama is “congenial”

Featured image Former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura returned to the White House today for the unveiling of their portraits. The former President’s parents – themselves a former President and a former First Lady – were also in attendance. They received the longest ovation of the day. President and Ms. Obama both spoke. Peter Wehner, who was present as a former member of the Bush staff, got it exactly »

Found: The outrage

Featured image If you’ve been wondering “where’s the outrage,” I think I have found it. Illinois State Rep. Mike Bost (R., Murphysboro) has it. Sir, I salute you. I identify with you. I share your pain. More here. »

GOP Takes Big Lead on Economy

Featured image Scott Rasmussen has the latest voter rankings of the parties on the ten top issues. This is a survey of 1,000 likely voters, so it is entitled to considerable weight. The biggest news is that voters trust Republicans more than Democrats on the economy by a decisive 50%-39%. While it is not unusual for the GOP to have a substantial advantage on the economy, this is the first time in »

The Hinderaker-Ward Experience, Episode 26: The Amateur (Bumped)

Featured image I am taking the liberty of re-posting Episode 26 of the Hinderaker-Ward Experience. I originally posted it on Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, and I am afraid that a lot of readers who would have found it interesting may have missed it. In particular, may have missed our extremely interesting interview with Ed Klein, author of The Amateur, which has rocketed straight to number one on the New York Times »

These Aren’t Your Father’s Republicans

Featured image One of the most heartening aspects of the early stages of the presidential race has been the Romney campaign’s aggressiveness. Nothing discourages activists more than getting out front of a candidate who, it later turns out, isn’t willing to do what it takes to win. A number of Republicans of recent years could be said to fit that description, most recently John McCain. But not Mitt Romney. We’ve seen it »

With an enemy like this, who needs friends?

Featured image It’s clear that President Obama’s re-election strategy begins and ends with attacking Mitt Romney. How could it be otherwise? Obama cannot run on his record. Bare-knuckle attacks on one’s opponent are unpresidential, though. Thus, they are best left to surrogates. But as I’ve written, Obama has proclaimed himself a better speechwriter than his speechwriters and a better political director than his political director. Presumably, he also considers himself a better »

Nevada Senate race seems to tighten; Obama and Romney neck-and-neck

Featured image A new poll of the Nevada Senate race by NBC News/Marist has Republican Sen. Dean Heller leading Democratic challenger Rep. Shelley Berkley by a slender margin of 46-44. Heller’s lead is less than the margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent. Less than a month ago, a Rasmussen poll had Heller leading by 11 points. It should be noted, however, that Rasmussen polled likely voters, while NBC News/Marist »

Media Alert

Featured image I will be on the Kudlow Report on CNBC tonight at 7:00 Eastern, debating Barack Obama’s attack on Mitt Romney’s term as Governor of Massachusetts. Unbelievably, in my view, Obama is going after Massachusetts’s job creation record under Romney. The phrase “glass house” comes to mind. It should be fun; please tune in if you can. »

Public sector compensation in Wisconsin remains excessive

Featured image As the recall election in Wisconsin approaches, this paper on public employee compensation in Wisconsin is worth a look. Andrew Biggs of AEI and Jason Richwine of Heritage find that even with the passage of Act 10, the Budget Repair Act that led to battle being waged by the public sector unions and their leftist comrades, the average Wisconsin state worker receives total compensation including benefits of $81,637, compared to »

Leon Panetta attempts to clean up after his President

Featured image Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has embarked on a nine-day trip to Asia, during which he will brief our allies on America’s new Pacific-oriented defense strategy. In its briefings on the trip, Defense Department officials have stressed the importance of India to U.S. strategy, noting that it is the only country specifically mentioned in the strategic guidance document. Along the same lines, Deputy Secretary Ashton Carter said yesterday in a »

The Karski confusion

Featured image The citation for the Presidential Medal of Freedom awarded to Jan Karski reads in part: “He worked as a courier, entering the Warsaw ghetto and the Nazi Izbica transit camp, where he saw first-hand the atrocities occurring under Nazi occupation.” Izbica was indeed a transit camp; it was a transit camp for Jews to be shipped to Belzec, which was a death camp. (Lucy Dawidowicz called it an “annihilation camp.”) »

Labor’s Armageddon

Featured image The climax of Theodore Roosevelt’s nomination acceptance speech at the Progressive Party convention of 1912 was his declaration that “We stand at Armageddon, and we battle for the Lord.”  How ironic therefore that Armageddon for the supposedly “Progressive” forces of organized labor should be occurring in the Progressive promised land of Wisconsin next week. The Wall Street Journal this morning reports the grim tidings for public sector unions in the »

Is It Possible GOP Might Out-Spend the Dems?

Featured image In modern times, it has been an iron rule that in any seriously contested race, the Democratic candidate will have more money spent on his behalf than the Republican. Democrats simply have more money, partly because their unions are able to seize money from their members against their will to spend on politics, and partly because most rich people who are active in politics are on the left. This was »

One of Obama’s Earliest Supporters Defects

Featured image Artur Davis is an impressive guy. Here is how Howard Fineman of Newsweek described him in the course of a 2008 article hailing Barack Obama as “a symbol of a new generation of leadership.” By 1990, Artur Davis had worked his way up from a childhood of poverty in Alabama to the top of his graduating class at Harvard College, and he was a hard man to impress. One day »

E.J. Dionne’s self-refuting shot at Mitt Romney

Featured image In a previous post, I commented on a piece in which E.J. Dionne argues that contemporary conservatism has abandoned the most attractive features of the traditional conservative movement. I tried to show that Dionne’s thesis is based on a gross distortion of the conservative tradition in America and, indeed, of the conservative scholar on whose work Dionne mainly relies. Before taking aim at conservatism, Dionne took a shot at Mitt »

A Tsunami of Exaggeration

Featured image One of the current obsessions is how much debris from the tsunami in Japan last year—some of it possibly radioactive!!!—will be washing ashore in North America.  Usha Lee McFarling writes in the Los Angeles Times that we should all calm down: First, there is no giant carpet of items making its way across the ocean. Immediately after the disaster, there were large rafts of debris — roofs and lumber and »

Crony Capitalism and Defense Spending

Featured image Today, I visited one of my favorite post-retirement haunts, the American Enterprise Institute, to hear a speech by Ashton Carter, the Deputy Secretary of Defense. Carter spoke on a wide range of defense issues, but the very first substantive point he made was that, in the current budgetary environment (and quite apart from the prospect of sequestration), Congress should not be forcing pet projects and systems on the Department of »