Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Lincoln & the Jews

Featured image One can discover, and learn from, the remarkable character of Abraham Lincoln in studying any aspect of his life. Thus even its narrow byways hold interest if navigated by a serious scholar. One such is Jonathan Sarna, perhaps the most prominent living scholar of American Judaism. A week ago this past Sunday the Jewish Review of Books held its second annual event for supporters and subscribers. This year’s event included »

Change this

Featured image I dread a revival of the Clintons in the White House Show. The first time around it was a genre bending affair. To borrow from Polonius, it presented tragedy, comedy, history, pastoral, pastoral-comical, historical-pastoral, tragical-historical, tragical-comical-historical-pastoral. Try to adapt Marx’s adage about history repeating itself to that. Bill Clinton gave us a preview of the revival in his inimitable style last night at the Democratic National Convention (full text and »

Transformation, bedtime style

Featured image Students of ancient history may recall that in February 2008, campaigning for Barack Obama, Michelle Obama proclaimed: “Let me tell you something. For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country, because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback.” Before the ascent of Barack Obama, in other words, she happily disclosed, she wasn’t really proud of the United States. It was a »

The persistence of Hillary

Featured image Hillary Clinton appeared with Tim Kaine for an interview by Scott Pelley on 60 Minutes yesterday. CBS News has posted the video and transcript here. Let us say that Pelley comported himself with Madam Hillary in an extremely deferential manner. This isn’t exactly surprising. CBS News presents an aggravated case of media bias. It is run by the brother of Obama’s national security liar and Pelley himself is a rabid »

Ellison exploits the ignorant

Featured image As the Minnesota’s Fifth District representative in Congress, Keith Ellison has a good gig. He’s a hustler who is accustomed to exploiting the ignorance of voters in a one-party district in a town with a one-party newspaper. Ellison has exploited the ignorance of his constituents in lying repeatedly about his personal history, as I tried to show in “Louis Farrakhan’s first congressman.” Seeking to make himself a player on the »

Mark Falcoff: From Cuba to Venezuela

Featured image Mark Falcoff is resident scholar emeritus at the American Enterprise Institute and author, among other books, of Cuba the Morning After: Confronting Castro’s Legacy. He is also on occasional contributor to Power Line. He writes: Not long ago when the Obama administration decided to end our diplomatic and political embargo of Cuba many friends and associates asked me, as a long time Cuba-watcher, what I thought about it. At the »

Annals of mewling idiocy

Featured image In the annals of mewling idiocy emanating from Foggy Bottom, Secretary of State John Kerry must be given pride of place. Speaking to his friends in Vienna late last week, he contributed in a major way to man-made global warming if there is such a thing. Kerry was in Vienna to amend the 1987 Montreal Protocol that would phase out hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, from basic household and commercial appliances like »

A personal note on Pritikin

Featured image I’m leaving the Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa in Miami in the next hour. I’ve been here for a week and am sorry to leave. It has been an eye-opening experience. I won’t bore you with the details. I will only say this. If you have high blood pressure, or high blood sugar, or high cholesterol, I think the Pritikin diet can help you. Several people here for high blood »

The Rangel angle

Featured image I’m winding up my week at the Pritikin Longevity Center & Spa tomorrow and I’m not looking forward to leaving. It’s located at the Trump National Doral Miami. The weather has been accommodating. I’ve learned a lot. Indeed, I think I’ve become a true believer in the gospel according to Pritikin. I’ve wanted to do this for a long time, going back to the days when the program was based »

Trump takes a victory lap (2)

Featured image Here’s a question with a binary “yes” or “no” answer: Does the election present a “binary choice” between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump? Hugh Hewitt argues that the answer is “yes.” Hugh’s right. Steve Hayes argues that the answer is “no.” Steve’s right. In the words of the joke, you may ask, how can they both be right? You know, you’re right too. Hugh conditioned his argument on the understanding »

Trump takes a victory lap

Featured image Donald Trump is giving an utterly bizarre if perectly characteristic statement. He is free associating as he highlights great moments from the primary season. He is trashing Ted Cruz. He is revisiting the source of the personal offense Cruz has taken. He disclaims a desire for Cruz’s endorsement. He vouches again for the National Enquirer. He proclaims the ease with which he dispatched his GOP rivals. He reviews his rise »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll prefeaces A LEGACY OF LUDICROUS LIES with this note: “My second installment in the ‘Conversation on Race’ will appear next week. The Dallas memorial service was the same day I had to send in my column. I feel compelled to opine even though many others have already done so. Combating lies about guns is in my wheelhouse.” She writes: Once upon a time, a couple of decades ago, »

From Rocky to Cruz

Featured image Theodore White attended the Republican convention of 1964 and sat among the Goldwater forces. When Nelson Rockefeller gave his speech condemnig “extremists” of various stripes, White was there. This was of course shortly after Rockefeller’s divorce from his first wife, back in the antediluvian era when divorce was frowned on. White observed one of the Republican women booing Rockefeller during his speech. She shook her fist at Rockefeller as he »

Did Cruz miscalculate?

Featured image Ted Cruz seems to me an unusually calculating politician. He has been planning to run for president at least since he was sworn in as a senator in 2012. Among conservative Republicans, he has sought (and seeks) to occupy the Ivory Soap niche. He’s the purest of them all. Last night we saw Cruz’s calculating the aftereffects of the Trump Train Wreck that is scheduled for November 8. Cruz wants »

The ordeal of Bill Henck

Featured image The IRS is at the center of the deepest scandals of the Obama administration. Bill Henck has given us a look from his perspective inside the IRS Office of the Chief Counsel, where he has worked as an attorney for 29 years. In 2014 we posted Bill’s personal account of a retaliatory audit conducted by the IRS against him in “Inside the IRS.” We followed up with subsequent posts by »

Obama to police: Confess

Featured image The Media Research Center’s Craig Bannister picks up President Obama’s telling remarks a week ago Sunday following a meeting with Spain’s Prime Minister Rajoy. The White House has posted the text of their remarks here. In the relevant exchange, President Obama toes the line of his friends in the Black Lives Matter movement and advises the police to confess to their alleged racist wrongdoing. The reporter ask Obamas: “[A]s you »

From the Trump National Doral

Featured image I’m taking a sort of working vacation at the Pritikn Health Resort & Spa in Miami. My theory was that the “working” part would come in Pritikin’s location at the Trump National Doral Miami; Pritikin leases part of the propety from the Trump National Doral. My thought was that I would scout out the property to see what we could learn about Mr. Trump. At my physical this morning, I »