Monthly Archives: May 2016

Dark clouds gather over Hillary Clinton

Featured image Dan Metcalfe teaches secrecy law at American University’s Washington College of Law. He served as Director of the Justice Department’s Office of Information and Privacy for more than 25 years, during which time he handled information-disclosure policy issues on dozens of Clinton Administration scandals. He’s a registered Democrat who says he will vote for Hillary Clinton in November “if she escapes indictment and manages to become the Democratic presidential nominee.” »

The dilemma Trump poses

Featured image Michael Gerson’s latest column attacking Donald Trump bemoans the fact that Marco Rubio has endorsed the tycoon and the prospect that Paul Ryan soon may do so. More on that later. The passage from Gerson that caught my eye is this one: Here is the problem in sum: Republicans have not been given the option of choosing the lesser of two evils. The GOP has selected someone who is unfit »

Media Alert (Australia Edition)

Featured image Andrew Bolt is a terrific columnist for Melbourne’s Herald Sun; his columns also appear in the Daily Telegraph and other papers. Andrew also hosts a television show, The Bolt Report on Sky News. Tomorrow evening I am going to appear on The Bolt Report, attempting to explain our election to Australians. (I know, wish me luck.) I am not sure exactly when the segment will air; tomorrow evening will be »

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, Part 2

Featured image Last week the Obama administration announced new regulations designed to raise the wages of hundreds of thousands of salaried employees by re-classifying them in ways that make them eligible for overtime. This is the same logic of supposing that you can lift yourself up by standing in a bucket and pulling up on the handle. Even the New York Times has noticed that this regulation is going to be counter-productive, »

Donald Trump Intends to Run as Donald Trump

Featured image There’s a famous anecdote that appears I think in Teddy White’s Making of the President, 1964 about a reporter who, upon hearing Barry Goldwater’s line “Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice,” said: “My God—he’s going to run as Barry Goldwater!” That sentiment is enjoying a sequel today with Donald Trump’s press conference about his charity to veterans’ groups, but whose dominant news was not his donations but his »

Dartmouth undone, Part Two

Featured image As Scott discusses below, Dartmouth has declared that it will not punish the BlackLivesMatter-supporting students who rampaged through Dartmouth’s Baker Library, cursing at and intimidating students as they tried to study for exams. Dartmouth’s decision is disgraceful. If the concept of a “safe space” has any meaning, it applies to Baker Library. But if you’re angry and Black, you can disrupt that space by insulting students as they go about »

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

Featured image I’ve been meaning for a while to knock out an article on the theme, “there’s nothing wrong with America that 4 percent growth won’t solve.” That’s an exaggeration, of course, but not much of one. Faster economic growth will alleviate a number of our leading problems, especially stagnant wages, a sinking labor force participation rate, badly unbalanced budgets, adult children living in basements, ESPN’s sinking ratings, etc. One difficulty is »

Dartmouth undone

Featured image It turns out that rendering “they” a singular pronoun is not Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon’s greatest outrage against common sense in favor of the contortions of political correctness. It’s not even his greatest recent outrage. That distinction must go to Hanlon’s toleration of the rampage by BlackLivesMatter thugs through Dartmouth’s Baker Library as students studied for exams. At Dartblog Joe Asch reports: “No charges for BLM confirmed (again).” It is »

New York Times reporter airs baseless “Trump is a fascist” claim

Featured image I like much of Peter Baker’s reporting. I liked his book about the George W. Bush administration. I don’t like this article by Baker called “Rise of Donald Trump Tracks Growing Debate Over Global Fascism.” It’s a slippery piece. Baker doesn’t argue that Trump is a fascist — it’s more along the lines of “some people say Trump is a fascist.” But by choosing to repeat the charge, and writing »

Five (plus one?) for the Trump VP short list

Featured image Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post serves up his list of the five people he judges most likely to wind up sharing the GOP ticket with Donald Trump. I don’t know whether Cillizza’s picks are all in Trump’s top five, or even whether they are all under consideration. However, the list seems plausible enough to present to our readers for comment on a slow news day. Here are the five »

Academic Loons of the Week: The Yoga and the Commissar

Featured image Tough to decide on who gets the honor of our Academic Absurdity of the Week award. I was inclined to give it to the ingenious author of “Humor and Parody in Finnish Rap Music Videos,” since I’m still trying to recover from the mistake of listening to a Finnish rock band in a park in Helsinki last summer. (Their “music” sounded to me like a whale being waterboarded.) I can’t »

Is The Libertarian Party Serious? [with comment by Paul]

Featured image John notes below that one of Gary Johnson’s leading issues is drug legalization, which is not likely to sell well in places like otherwise libertarian-friendly New Hampshire, which has experienced a massive increase in heroin use in recent years. Then there was Johnson’s answer to the question posed to him in a candidate debate at the Libertarian Party convention: should the United States have entered World Wars I & II? »

Trump’s intellectuals

Featured image Fred Barnes identifies a handful of conservative intellectuals who support Donald Trump to one degree or another. In some cases, the reasons presented for supporting Trump are unpersuasive and/or illogical. Roger Simon says: Like others, I want things to change. . .and Donald seems like the man with the courage and will to do it. He’s unafraid. He’s upbeat. He’s funny. He despises political correctness (as anybody with a brain »

Is This the Libertarian Moment?

Featured image As the Libertarian Party’s convention nominates former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson for president, some are saying that the Libertarians’ time has finally come, that 2016 could be the Libertarian moment. I very much doubt it. A few years ago, I was invited to the George W. Bush Library in Dallas for a conference on the economy. While there, I was also part of a small group that met with »

America’s honor

Featured image In observance of Memorial Day 2007 the Wall Street Journal published a characteristically brilliant column by Peter Collier to mark the occasion. The column remains accessible online here. I don’t think we’ll read or hear anything more thoughtful or appropriate to the occasion today. Here it is: Once we knew who and what to honor on Memorial Day: those who had given all their tomorrows, as was said of the »

Brexit: “An off ramp from the road to serfdom”

Featured image Next month, Great Britain will vote on whether to exit the European Union. One of the main arguments against a “Brexit” seems to be that Germany and company will punish Britain economically if it exits in order to deter other states from following or perhaps just out of spite. For some, though, this reality may be an argument in favor of leaving. Why remain attached, and cede more and more »

Loose Ends (1)

Featured image I stumble across lots of little items in my eclectic reading pile that don’t rise to the level of deserving a whole item on Power Line (especially when they are about metaphysics, my weekend hobby), but which might be worth a sentence or two in a grab bag of things. So I’m going to start a new recurrent series called “Loose Ends.” Though I’m sure many readers will think it »