Author Archives: Paul Mirengoff

The political uses of mass murder

Featured image There was a time, I seem to recall, when no one attempted to tie mass murder by random sickos to politics. For example, I don’t remember anyone wondering about the politics of Richard Speck, the killer of Chicago student nurses, or Charles Whitman, the University of Texas shooter. I don’t know when the turning point occurred. Perhaps it was the Oklahoma City bombing. In any event, the bounce Bill Clinton »

The rising tide has lifted most boats

Featured image A new study by the Pew Mobility Project shows that, contrary to gloomy commentary mostly from the left, incomes have not stagnated in America. The study compares the incomes of people in their 40s with the incomes of their parents at a similar age. Using income data through 2009, it found that 84 percent of Americans surpass the inflation-adjusted income their parents earned. For males, who compete with females in »

Ungrateful business leaders fail to reciprocate Obama’s largesse

Featured image The Washington Post’s Zachary Goldfarb complains that corporate America has failed to show sufficient gratitude to its friend Barack Obama: President Obama has repeatedly embraced three titans of American commerce, General Electric, Boeing and JPMorgan Chase, showering their chief executives with praise and adopting policies that benefit the companies. . . Yet these companies — from the C-suite to the rank and file — have shown little enthusiasm for the »

Why left-wing carping about Citizens United is not reality based

Featured image Matt Bai of the New York Times has written an excellent article which shows that most of what we’ve been told by the left about the alleged evils wrought by the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizen United decision doesn’t hold up. For example, Bai disputes the common complaint that Citizens United unleashed a torrent of money from businesses and the multimillionaires who run them, and as a result we are now »

The mother of all defining moments?

Featured image Pat Sajak on President Obama’s anti-entrepenurial riff: It’s as if President Obama climbed into a tank, put on his helmet, talked about how his foray into Cambodia was seared in his memory, looked at his watch, misspelled “potato” and pardoned Richard Nixon all in the same day. Sajak argues that “defining moments take hold most devastatingly when they confirm what a large portion of the electorate already believes.” Anyone can »

Lack of edge may be the Rubio edge

Featured image In an previous post, I divided six leading Republican VP candidates into (1) seemingly safe choices (Portman, Pawlenty, and Thune) and (2) more charismatic choices (Rubio, Ryan, and Jindal). If I had to guess, I’d put my money on Romney making a safe choice. John McCain, Romney is not, for which, on balance, I am thankful. Even so, I’d be tempted to select Rubio, assuming that he makes it through »

New York Times poll of registered voters produces dead heat

Featured image A New York Times/CBS poll of 982 registered voters shows Mitt Romney with a statistically insignificant 47-46 lead over President Obama when undecided voters who lean towards a candidate are included. Without “leaners,” the split is 45-43. As importantly, only 39 percent say they approve of Obama’s handling of the economy, compared to 55 percent who say they disapprove. In April, 44 percent approved and 48 percent disapproved. However, just »

Has Mitt Romney found his voice?

Featured image The estimable John Podhoretz thinks he has found it and, as we know, so does the estimable John Hinderaker. Podhoretz writes: The president’s “you didn’t build that” statement has not only framed the race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney exactly as Romney needed, it has transformed Romney’s campaign. He gave a very good speech last week at the NAACP convention, but even the strength of that performance was as »

Romney’s old tax returns — should he or shouldn’t he?

Featured image Mitt Romney is being urged by some of his supporters to release his old tax returns. Apparently, certain members of his inner campaign circle are also advocating that course. Romney reportedly turned over 20 years’ worth of returns to John McCain’s campaign when McCain was vetting him as a possible VP candidate in 2008. McCain says that there was absolutely nothing problematic in the returns. This raises an obvious question: »

The facts about “outsourcing”

Featured image The Washington Post editorial board labels Team Obama’s Bain-related attacks on Mitt Romney “bunk,” and presents facts showing that the movement overseas of investment capital, and the jobs that go with it, benefits the U.S. economy with no net harm to our job market: In a May 2012 paper, researchers at the London School of Economics Center for Economic Performance examined 58 U.S. manufacturing industries from 2000 to 2007, and »

Is the Holder Justice department letting Wall Street off the hook?

Featured image Attorney General Holder has come in for constant and largely deserved criticism from conservatives. The complaints cover plenty of territory: the Fast and Furious scandal, including the subsequent stonewalling; the bright idea of holding a trial of the 9/11 mastermind in New York City; the attacks on state laws designed to help with immigration enforcement; the efforts to promote voting fraud by attacking laws designed to prevent it; the decision »

Poll: Americans want the Bush tax cuts for everyone

Featured image A new poll by McClatchy/Marist finds that most Americans — including those on the low end of the income spectrum — favor keeping the Bush tax cuts in place for all Americans. According to the poll, 52 percent of registered voters say they want all of these tax cuts extended, including those for incomes above $250,000. 43 percent want the cuts extended just for incomes below that threshhold. The results »

The Veepstakes

Featured image Some time in the next month, Mitt Romney likely will tell us who his running mate is. When within that time frame we’ll get such an announcement, who knows. Who is on the short list? Jim Geraghty believes that “barring some surprise, completely under-the-radar choice, the list is (in alphabetical order) Ayotte, Jindal, Pawlenty, Portman, Ryan, Rubio and Thune.” With the possible exception of Ayotte’s inclusion, that sounds about right. »

Two Classes Divided By “I Do”

Featured image The left loves to talk about growing income inequality in America. But it doesn’t like to mention the huge role that changes in marriage patterns have played in this growth. Jason DeParle of the New York Times takes up the subject in an article called Two Classes Separated By ‘I Do.’ He writes: “Estimates vary widely, but scholars have said that changes in marriage patterns — as opposed to changes »

Why immigration reform should take its cue from reality

Featured image The Sunday Washington Post featured a thoughtful article about illegal immigration by Roberto Suro. Suro argues that we make a big mistake by viewing illegal immigrants as either (a) candidates for deportation or (b) future citizens. I agree. We cannot deport our way to a sound immigration policy. In my view, large-scale deportation would be impractical, harmful to the economy, and inhumane. But providing illegal immigrants with a path to »

Hillary Clinton in Egypt

Featured image Hillary Clinton’s trip to Egypt should provide her with food for thought, assuming she is capable of the independent variety of that activity. On Sunday, protesters hurled tomatoes and shoes at her motorcade. One tomato landed in the face of an Egyptian official. Some of the Egyptian charmers taunted Clinton with chants of “Monica, Monica” as she passed by. The Egyptian military was next in line to rebuke the Secretary »

Barack Obama’s high-risk, high-reward campaign strategy, and how Romney should respond

As John pointed out earlier today, President Obama’s reelection strategy consists of attempting to destroy Mitt Romney, and this is a sensible strategy because Obama cannot run on his record. Even so, it may seem odd that Obama is pushing his Bain-related attacks so hard this early, at a time when the polls show him to be even or ahead in the race. The Bill Clintons and the Ed Rendells »