Monthly Archives: November 2012

Ceasefire terms: TBD

Featured image The Iranian mullahcracy has armed Hamas with increasingly powerful weapons. Daniel Pipes provides the background to the arms smuggling that Hamas depends on in “Gaza’s not the key, Philadelphi is.” Short of replacing Hamas with less murderous successors, shutting down the smuggling must be one of Israel’s key goals for the area. So what arrangements did the ceasefire engineered by the United States provide for the termination of smuggling into »

The “nuclear option,” then and now

Featured image I don’t recall any of us commenting on the plan of Senate Democrats to reform, and perhaps end, the filibuster. But Harry Reid and his crew seem prepared to push for major changes in the filibuster come January. If they do, it will trigger quite a battle and probably extinguish whatever chances exist for cooperation between congressional Democrats and Republicans. It isn’t clear just what Reid has in mind. One »

Green Weenie of the Week: Pedophilia Edition

Featured image Ever since Obama’s re-election the climate campaign and the energy-from-carrot-juice enthusiasts have had a new spring in their step.  They really think that a carbon tax, global climate treaty, and a windmill in every garage is now assured because of The One. So it’s been hard to pick a truly deserving Power Line Green Weenie from among the horde of preening weenies certain salvation is at hand.  Take, for instance, »

“Speak Loudly and Carry a Busted Hockey Stick”

Featured image That is the title of this essay by Dr. Walter Starck. If you are just beginning to look into the issues surrounding purported anthropogenic global warming, Dr. Starck’s essay is a good place to start. He notes that claims of precision in describing the Earth’s climate history are bogus: The average temperature for the Earth, or any region or even any specific place is very difficult to determine with any »

The New York Times Scoffs at Free Speech

Featured image Liberal support for free speech has been waning for a long time, and at present it seems to be just about extinct. The latest evidence is a story in today’s New York Times about Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man who made the video that was falsely blamed for the Benghazi attack, and has languished in jail for the last two months as a result. One might think that the Times »

Has Morsi softened his dictatorial decree?

Featured image There are conflicting reports as to whether Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi has softened the decree in which he exempted all of his decisions from judicial review. A television network allied with his party said Morsi has agreed that most of his actions will be subject to review by the courts after all. But Reuters later reported that a Morsi spokesman said the initial decree has not been amended in any »

The mainstreaming of Hamas

Featured image Yesterday, I argued that one of President Obama’s objectives in brokering a deal that enhances Hamas’ status was to enhance Hamas’ status. I noted that leftists in America and Europe have, for some time, viewed Hamas as the authentic representataive of Palestinians and, accordingly, have attempted to portray the terrorist outfit as “moderate.” Obama’s tilt towards Hamas, it seems to me, is a manifestation of this view. With that tilt, »

Republican 2014 Senate prospects get a boost

Featured image As it stands now, Republicans will have to pick up six seats in 2014 in order to take control of the Senate. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the Democrats will be defending a number of vulnerable seats. One of the most vulnerable is the West Virginia seat occupied by Jay Rockefeller. Today, Republican Shelley Moore Capito is expected to announce that she will challenge the 75-year-old »

Thinkin’ about “Lincoln”

Featured image We went to see the film Lincoln this past weekend. Until reading David Brooks’s obtuse column about the film, I was unsure that I knew enough to comment intelligently about the film. I apparently know at least as much as Brooks, however, and therefore offer the following in the way of notes for interested readers. Let me say up front that the film deserves to be seen and, in my »

Anti-semitism rears its head in London

Featured image John wrote here about the display of anti-Semitism directed by fans of Lazio, an Italian soccer team, against Tottenham Hotspur supporters in Rome last week. Before the match, Lazio’s “Ultras” attacked Spurs fans, sending one to the hospital with serious stab wounds. Then, during the match, they chanted “Juden Tottenham” – using the German word for Jew — and unfurled a “Free Palestine” banner. Tottenham, as John noted, is strongly »

Does this mean it’s now okay to say that Obama is a redistributionist?

Featured image With the reelection of President Obama secured, Washington Post economics reporter Zachary Goldfarb finally identifies “the bedrock belief that has driven the president for decade” (or Obama’s “driving force,” per the web edition). That bedrock belief is that the power of the federal government must be used reduce income inequality in America. According to Goldfarb, Obama formed this belief as a child and young adult living abroad, where he observed, »

Miss Universe 2012, Part 2: Another Digression [UPDATED With the Thales Joke]

Featured image Honestly, I haven’t gotten over the election yet, and scanning the news produces a numb sense of impending doom. Moreover, being a resident of Minnesota, I can’t seek comfort in sports, unlike some people we know. So what’s left? Let’s focus on the Miss Universe pageant, set to climax in Las Vegas on December 19. The pageant is in a preliminary stage. The Miss Universe web site is up, and »

Why did Obama broker a victory for Hamas?

Featured image With unusual candor, the Washington Post declares in its top headline that “Hamas’ tactics garner support” and that “Palestinians see path to victory through fighting.” This strengthening of Hamas is the entirely predictable consequence of the cease fire that the Obama administration worked to impose on Israel. Because Hamas waged war against Israel and the Israelis backed down, it is (to quote) the Post “the commonly held view in both »

How Solow Can You Go?

Featured image The current issue of The New Republic has a long attack on Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, and free market economics generally by the Nobel laureate economist Robert Solow, entitled “Hayek, Friedman, and the Illusions of Conservative Economics.”  Ostensibly a review of the brand new book The Great Persuasion: Reinventing Free Markets Since the Great Depression by Angus Burgin, the review is less about the book than it is an excuse »

Of Rice and men, part 3

Featured image Reader Peter Rice is retired from the United States Foreign Service. He spent his first four years with the government as an Army officer, including one year of service in Vietnam. Mr. Rice writes to comment on Susan Rice and the Washington Post editorial “The GOP’s bizarre attack on Susan Rice.” As Mr. Rice points out below, the adjective “bizarre” more aptly applies to the Post editorial: This past Thursday »

Sunday morning going up

Featured image If you were listening to AM radio in 1969, you felt the blast of fresh air provided by the unlikely gospel/pop hit “Oh Happy Day” by the Edwin Hawkins Singers. Who were the Edwin Hawkins Singers and where did that song come from? The Wall Street Journal’s Marc Myers goes to the principals to get the story behind the single in “When he washed my sins away.” (The format of »

State Department wonders why Egyptians can’t get along

Featured image The U.S. State Department responded to Mohamed Morsi’s grab of near dictatorial powers, and to the protests of the Egyptian people thereto, with this statement: The decisions and declarations announced on November 22 raise concerns for many Egyptians and for the international community. One of the aspirations of the revolution was to ensure that power would not be overly concentrated in the hands of any one person or institution. The »