Author Archives: Paul Mirengoff

Donald Trump’s phony claim of prescience about the Iraq war

Featured image Donald Trump rarely misses an opportunity to tout his early opposition to the war in Iraq. But how early did his opposition come? If it predated the invasion (and Trump had ample opportunity publicly to oppose intervention during the long build-up to the war), then he can claim to have been prescient, assuming that the war was a mistake. If not, then Trump was just one of many voices who »

Donald Trump’s fallacious analysis of Middle East instability

Featured image Donald Trump said on Meet the Press yesterday that the Middle East would be a more stable place if Saddam Hussein and Muammar Qaddafi were still in power. For once, Trump answered a question about the Middle East more or less correctly. The Middle East would be more stable if Saddam and Qaddafi held true power in Iraq and Libya. But the question is whether, absent foreign intervention, Saddam and »

John Boehner, friend of disadvantaged D.C. students

Featured image John Boehner has received plenty of criticism from conservatives over his handling of the House Speakership, and some of it is deserved. But here’s a little known accomplishment of Boehner’s for which, I think, he deserves considerable credit: he created and kept alive a private school voucher program for the District of Columbia public schools. Through Boehner’s D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, 6,252 low-income District students have gone to parochial or »

How Dodd-Frank explains our weak recovery

Featured image Yesterday, John noted how weak the Obama economic “recovery” has been. As he put it, “the Obama economy has been, in a word, lousy, and its lousiness is most evident in the fact that full-time jobs have been so scarce that tens of millions have quit looking. . . .” Why, though, hasn’t the economy taken off under Obama, as it did in the past following recessions? Democrats attribute the »

Mike Lee’s bogus conservative case for criminal justice reform

Featured image Senator Mike Lee takes to the pages of the Washington Examiner to make what he calls the conservative case for criminal justice reform. The criminal justice reform Sen. Lee has in mind is the softer sentencing and release of many criminals called for by the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015 (SRCA), of which he is a sponsor. Lee’s case for such reform turns out not to be conservative »

Putin kicks Obama, who pretends not to feel a thing

Featured image President Obama responded to his latest humiliation at the hands of Vladimir Putin by stating that “Mr. Putin had to go into Syria not out of strength but out of weakness, because his client, Mr. Assad, was crumbling.” This statement — pulled from the same notebook as the president’s pathetic speech to the U.N. — is true, but it fails to paper over the failure of Obama’s approach to Syria »

Bipartisan sentencing reform proposal would free gun-carrying felons

Featured image As John noted, President Obama barely waited for the blood to dry in Oregon before seizing on the mass shooting at a community college to call for “common sense gun safety laws.” Ironically, at just about the same time a bipartisan group of Senators was introducing criminal sentencing reform legislation that would cause the release from jail of criminals who carried guns while committing drug felonies. As Bill Otis explains, »

Demand hearings on the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015

Featured image Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, calls the newly introduced Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015 (SRCA) “a landmark piece of legislation.” Julie Stewart, the president of an anti-mandatory minimums organization, calls it, correctly, “the most significant sentencing reform legislation in a generation.” So when do the hearings on this momentous act begin? Never, it appears — unless the demand for them becomes irresistible. As I noted »

Bipartisan sentencing reform introduced; career prosecutors denounce it

Featured image Today, as expected, a bipartisan collection of Senators introduced sentencing reform legislation. The nine Senators sponsoring the legislation are: Grassley, Graham, Cornyn, and Lee on the Republican side and a rogue’s gallery of Democrats — Leahy, Durbin, Schumer, Whitehouse, and Booker. The last of these Democrats, a teller of tale tales, is credited with much of the work. The legislation could have been worse, but it isn’t worthy of passage »

Impressive fundraising numbers for Sanders and Carson

Featured image Bernie Sanders nearly matched Hillary Clinton’s fundraising total for the past three months. Clinton raised around $28 million; Sanders raised around $26 million. Clinton’s haul came with the help of 58 fundraising events. Sanders held seven. The Vermont Senator relied on small contributions from a large number of donors using the internet. As the Washington Post points out, this means several good things for Sanders. First, he has been able »

Private email for me, but not for thee

Featured image As Scott notes below, Clinton and her senior staff were well aware of the security risks posed by the widespread use of personal e-mail by State Department officials. The latest batch of released emails drives this point home. In one email exchange, Anne-Marie Slaughter, a high level staffer, suggested protesting proposed budget cuts by pointing out publicly that the agency’s poor technology often forces high-ranking officials to use personal email. »

Russian hackers tried to access Clinton’s server

Featured image AP reports that Russia-linked hackers tried at least five times to pry into Hillary Clinton’s private email account while she was secretary of state. This is clear from newly released spam emails from Clinton’s server that were released today. The emails in question were disguised as speeding tickets from New York. They instructed recipients to print the attached tickets. Doing so would have allowed hackers to take over control of »

Democrats face potential crack-up over crime; Republicans shouldn’t bail them out

Featured image Yesterday, I discussed the possibility that the Democratic party may experience a crack-up as a result of slavish adherence to the demands of environmentalists, backed by the party’s upscale, elitist wing. The hard-left environmentalist agenda is likely to alienate members of the working class, a traditional Democratic constituency. We may be seeing the beginning of this process with the dispute over the Keystone XLpipeline. The modern Democratic party depends not »

Syria may become a “no-fly zone” yet, for the U.S.

Featured image For years, many have advocated that the U.S. enforce a no-fly zone in Syria. Doing so would have prevented the slaughter of thousands of innocent civilians by Bashar al-Assad’s air force. Would a no-fly zone have led to Assad’s ouster? It’s not clear. Would Assad’s ouster have been, on balance, a positive development for America? That’s not clear either. The answers may depend on when, during this long and sickening »

Obama’s U.N. message — kick me, I won’t feel a thing

Featured image “History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake. . .What if that nightmare gave you a back kick?” This passage from Ulysses captures the Obama presidency in the realm of foreign policy. History, the nightmare from which the president is trying to escape, has given him a “back kick” — in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Ukraine, and Yemen for example — and he risks becoming a »

Obama administration admitted 1,519 foreigners with terrorist ties into the U.S.

Featured image Judicial Watch reports that the Obama administration has granted asylum or residency to 1,519 foreigners with terrorist ties. This information comes from an annual report to Congress by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). More than half of the terror supporters granted asylum or residency by Team Obama provided material support to terrorist organizations, according to the USCIS report. Other received military-type training from a terrorist organization (nine »

Teamsters’ wariness of Hillary could spell trouble for her and her party

Featured image Fox News reports that the Teamsters union has decided not to endorse Hillary Clinton for president at this time. According to James Rosen, the union’s 26-member board decided unanimously to withhold endorsing Clinton. Rosen’s Teamsters source cited three reasons. First, the Teamsters are unhappy with Clinton’s recent announcement that she opposes construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. Second, they want to see whether Joe Biden will enter the race. Third, »