Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Obama’s new clothes

Featured image Events have conspired to make President Obama look like a fool, as he did in his obnoxious defense of the higher wisdom of his avoidance of any mention of Islam in connection with the Orlando massacre. Obama’s higher wisdom is not only foolish, it is also lethal. Former NSA analyst and counterintelligence officer John Schindler tacitly makes this point in his Observer column “The road to Orlando.” Schindler observes: During »

Dear AG Healey (Rated R for language)

Featured image I can’t say that this is how all overreaching government authorities should be answered, but it does set an inspirational example. At the Daily Caller Michael Bastach explains: Alex Epstein had a terse response to a subpoena sent by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey Wednesday. Healey demanded the oil giant ExxonMobil hand over 40 years of documents, including information pertaining to the company’s dealings with about a dozen think tanks »

The essential Obama

Featured image Below is the video of President Obama responding to critics who note his avoidance of any association of Islam with the Orlando massacre and other such events. By contrast with his formulaic statement on the massacre this past Sunday, Obama is impassioned as he responds to his critics. Message: he cares. He cares to reiterate that he has it right and isn’t going to let events make him rethink his »

What I saw at the trial

Featured image I abbreviated my observations and comments on the terrorism case against the Somali Minnesotans that was tried before Judge Michael Davis in Minneapolis to column-length for the Star Tribune. The column appears in today’s paper under the headline “What I saw at the trial.” The Opinion pieces featured on the Star Tribune home page today omit any mention of my column. You have to go looking for it to find »

A tale of five Muhammads

Featured image Attending the Somali terrorism trial before Judge Michael Davis in Minneapolis was an incredibly rich experience. I am still trying to process what I saw at the trial. Like the Orlando massacre, the case lies at the intersection of Islam, immigration and terrorism. The group of Somali Minnesotans charged in the case or gone to ISIS in Syria without being charged numbers 12 or 13 or 14. It’s not a »

Taya Kyle pins Jesse Ventura on appeal

Featured image I wrote about Jesse Ventura’s defamation/unjust enrichment lawsuit against the estate of Chris Kyle in “American Sniper on trial” and in “American Sniper on trial: The verdict” and in American Sniper on trial: The appeal.” The case arises from a couple of pages now excised from the book about Kyle’s close encounter with Ventura at a bar in southern California. Ventura alleged that the story Kyle recounted was false and »

Obama’s heart

Featured image President Obama spoke briefly on the Orlando massacre yesterday. The White House has posted his remarks here. The remarks are almost entirely formulaic and vacuous. Obama referred to the massacre as “an act of terror and an act of hate.” In the course of perpetrating the massacre, Omar Mateen reportedly made a 911 call pledging allegiance to the Islamic State. Obama nevertheless plugged gun control and omitted any mention of »

The persistence of mendacity (2)

Featured image When the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke, Dick Morris polled possible responses for Bill Clinton. Morris determined that truth was not an option if Clinton wanted to remain in office. “Well, we just have to win then,” Clinton concluded. Thus Clinton’s finger-wagging denial of what proved to be the facts of the case. When Clinton was finally questioned under oath by one of the lawyers working in the office of the »

“Days of Rage” revisited

Featured image Bryan Burrough’s book Days of Rage: America’s Radical Underground, the FBI, and the Forgotten Age of Revolutionary Violence was published in paperback this past April. I read the book when it came out in hardcover last year and flipped over it. I recommend it highly to Power Line readers. Trying to copy Jay Nordlinger’s approach in his Impromptus columns at NR, I wrote about the book in “Notes on Days »

A Risen in the sun, cont’d

Featured image James Risen is a New York Times reporter who has done great damage to the national security of the United States, some through leaks he has published in the Times and some through leaks the Times has passed. The case of fired CIA agent Jeffrey Sterling involves one such leak on which the Times passed but that Risen included in his book State of War. Sterling was prosecuted and convicted »

What I saw at the trial

Featured image This past Friday afternoon the jury returned with guilty verdicts in the trial of the three “Minnesota men” charged with seeking to join ISIS in Syria. Having attended the trial and filed daily reports on Power Line, I spent the weekend working on a short article summarizing what I saw at the trial. The article is published as “‘Minnesota men’ on trial” in the new issue of the Weekly Standard »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll takes One More Trip to the Bathroom…Because it’s That Important! Let us say that a baby is born and it turns out to be a boy. Blue-wrapped cigars for everyone! And don’t forget Mrs. Clinton’s husband who enjoys a good cigar. The boy baby’s gender is of course, not “assigned” at all, but obvious even on ultrasound. Yes, there is a vanishingly small number of babies born with »

Honest, Earnest style

Featured image To rewrite history the Obama administration is toying with the devices that George Orwell depicted in 1984. The party line that Orwell attributed to Ingsoc provides this rationale: “Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.” Today’s New York Post editorial comes up with another example, this one involving the oxymoronically named White House spokesman Josh Earnest. At the May 9 press briefing, Kevin »

The persistence of mendacity

Featured image Hillary Clinton took a few questions from Bret Baier in an interview that played on FOX News Special Report last night. The interview runs eight minutes (video below). Baier only got in a few questions about the Clinton email scandal. From word one falsehood and evasion have reflected the order of the day. Last night was no exception. Even though the interview ran true to form, it is nevertheless almost »

75 years from now

Featured image In the the Gram Parsons song “One Hundred Years From Now,” the singer observes: “Nobody knows what kind of trouble we’re in.” Looking on the bright side, however, he doubts that one hundred years from now people will “still feel this way.” That must be the theory behind the State Department’s approach to the Freedom of Information Act in a lawsuit brought against it by the RNC. CNN reports that »

Getting ready for Hillary

Featured image Today is a big day for Hillary Clinton. She has either just wrapped up the Democratic presidential nomination or should do so after the results are tabulated in today’s primaries. According to the AP’s latest tally (including superdelegates, who can change their minds), Clinton is now the Democrats’ presumptive nominee. Probably not in honor of the occasion, RealClearPolitics has posted Toby Harnden’s Sunday Times account of Hillary Clinton’s rally last »

Trump breaks another rule [updated with Trump statement]

Featured image When Donald Trump started banging on the judge presiding over the Trump University case, he noted that the judge “happens to be, we believe, Mexican, which is great.” Not just “great,” it was also “fine.” Trump added: “You know what? I think the Mexicans are going to end up loving Donald Trump when I give all these jobs, OK?” I said at the time that Trump was disgracing himself and »