Author Archives: Paul Mirengoff

A penny’s worth of thoughts on Pence

Featured image As vice president-elect, Mike Pence and his family attended the musical “Hamilton” in New York City. After the performance, as the Pence family was leaving the theater, the cast saw fit to deliver a political lecture to the soon-to-be VP. Pence, a better man than me, halted and listened respectfully to the left-wing sermon. He told his family that this is what freedom looks like. Yesterday, Vice President Pence attended »

Is war the only alternative to the Iran deal?

Featured image Michael Oren is Israel’s deputy minister for diplomacy and a former Israeli ambassador to the United States. Writing in the New York Times, Oren disputes the argument that “the only alternative to the Iran nuclear deal is war.” Noting that the same argument was made before the Iran deal was reached in 2015, he responds that, now as then, the alternative to the deal isn’t war, but a better deal. »

Dick Durbin plays dumb on Dreamers

Featured image When President Trump put an end to the illegal DACA program, he placed in jeopardy (though not immediately) approximately 780,000 illegal immigrants who had relied on the program to obtain lawful status. At the same time, Trump signaled that he wants Congress permanently to remove these individuals from jeopardy by passing legislation granting them the status they enjoy under DACA. Given the illegality of DACA, such legislation is, in fact, »

Ireland honors Che Guevara

Featured image The Irish post office, An Post, will release a stamp commemorating Che Guevara 50 years after the Cuban communist was killed while trying, with no success, to export Castro’s revolution to Bolivia. The Irish government, through its Cabinet, approved this decision. The stamp will cost 1 Euro. The Irish government seems enamored of Guevara, whose grandmother was the daughter of Irish immigrants who left for Argentina during the notorious famine. »

Scalise gets standing ovation; some not pleased

Featured image House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, who was shot and almost killed while practicing for the annual congressional baseball game, threw out the first pitch at the opening game of the Washington Nationals playoff series last night. Scalise used crutches to make his way onto the field and a walker to set himself for the first pitch. He threw it to David Bailey, the Capitol Police special agent who was also »

Decertificaton of the Iran deal without withdrawal: What does it get us?

Featured image I wrote here about the Trump administration’s likely decision to decertify the Iran nuclear deal. In the same post, I quoted reports that Trump was unlikely, decertification notwithstanding, to push Congress to impose on Iran the sanctions we lifted as part of the nuclear deal. It now seems clear that, indeed, Trump will not lobby for reimposing the sanctions. If anything, he is lobbying not to have sanctions renewed. According »

Trump accused of “sabotaging” Obamacare [UPDATED]

Featured image The mainstream media has been promoting the idea that the Trump administration is intentionally sabotaging Obamacare. This article in the Washington Post, which uses the word “sabotage” in the headline of the paper edition, is an example of the talking point. One way the administration is said to be sabotaging Obamacare is by cutting funds to groups that try to enroll people in the program and by reducing its advertising »

This day in baseball history: Lonborg’s masterpiece

Featured image Game Two of the 1967 World Series was played on October 5 at Fenway Park. The Red Sox called on their ace Jim Lonborg to salvage a split of the two games in Boston. Lonborg had attended Stanford on an academic scholarship. He had majored in biology. He was fond of the symphony. This background earned him the nickname “Dr. Lonborg.” Clearly, he was not the typical big leaguer of »

Harry Reid’s role in the Menendez scandal

Featured image Earlier this week, former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testified in the corruption trial of former Senator Robert Menendez. According to Sebelius, she was pulled into an “unusual” meeting regarding an $8.9 million billing dispute between Menendez’s friend and benefactor, Dr. Salomon Melgen, and Medicare. The meeting occurred in the office of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, with Reid present. Though Dr. Melgen’s name apparently wasn’t mentioned during the meeting, Menendez »

This day in baseball history: Gibson gives Cards an early edge

Featured image The 1967 World Series began on Wednesday, October 4 in Fenway Park. The Boston Red Sox participated for the first time since 1946 when they lost in seven games to the St. Louis Cardinals, their opponent once again. The Red Sox didn’t clinch the 1967 pennant until after their final game of the season ended, when Detroit lost to California. The Cardinals, by contrast, clinched the pennant in mid-September. They »

Trump likely to decertify Iran deal; then what?

Featured image All indications are that President Trump next week will decline to certify Iran as in compliance with the nuclear agreement negotiated by former President Obama. So report Eliana Johnson of Politico and Adam Kredo of the Washington Free Beacon, among others. I don’t see how Trump, in good faith, can certify that Iran is complying. Last week the head of the IAEA revealed that his organization can’t verify that Iran »

What is William & Mary prepared to do to defend free speech on campus?

Featured image As Steve discusses in the post just below, students affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement shut down a presentation at the College of William & Mary. They rushed the stage and prevented the invited guest from speaking. The invited guest was Claire Gastañaga of the American Civil Liberties Union. Gastañaga, a William & Mary alum, had intended to speak about “Students and the First Amendment.” She never got that »

DOD Drops SPLC From Extremism Training Materials

Featured image The Daily Caller reports that the Department of Defense has officially severed all ties to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The DOD’s Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity, which teaches about racial, gender and religious equality and “pluralism,” had been using SPLC material. In 2014, the Pentagon told CNS News it would remove information on hate groups provided by the SPLC, but continue to rely on SPLC data. »

Ron Chernow’s “Grant”

Featured image For years, John and I have defended the presidency of Ulysses S. Grant, rated by most historians as a failure and by some as among the worst in American history. This post is, I think, my most extensive commentary on the subject. In addition to defending Grant’s presidency, my post considers why historians have treated it so unfairly. The answer, I argued, is that historians found it in their interest »

Trump is not the problem in Puerto Rico

Featured image Steve and I have written about the efforts of Democrats and the media to convince the public that Hurricane Maria is “Trump’s Katrina.” Actually, it’s doubtful that Hurricane Katrina was “Bush’s Katrina.” In any event, there is no merit to the left’s attempt to treat President Trump’s response to Hurricane Maria as wanting, much less scandalous. Glenn Reynolds explains why in his column for USA Today. He begins with this »

CBS lawyer fired for denouncing Vegas victims as Republicans

Featured image In a world of blogging and social media, there are plenty of traps for the unwary corporate employee (as I know from experience). But for some events, the only appropriate responses are so obvious that even the unwary need not worry about being trapped. The Las Vegas shooting is an example. At this juncture, one either says nothing or expresses sympathy for the victims. If the need to score a »

Kaepernick donated $25,000 to group honoring cop killer

Featured image Colin Kaepernick has received favorable publicity for pledging $1 million in charitable donations. But according to the Washington Times, $25,000 of that money has been donated to an outfit called Assata’s Daughters, which is named after former Black Liberation Army member Assata Shakur. Assata Shakur was convicted of first-degree murder in the 1973 shooting death of New Jersey state trooper Werner Foerster. He was sentenced to life in prison, but »