Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Netanyahu’s victory

Featured image I don’t profess any insight into Benjamin Netanyahu’s victory in the Israeli elections yesterday. He will in all likelihood become Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, exceeding the time in office of David Ben-Gurion, and his new term, when he assembles the coalition he needs to proceed, should give him political life after Obama. As John Podhoretz puts it in his New York Post column this morning: “He gambled his entire career »

CRB: What becomes a liar most?

Featured image We conclude our preview of the new (Winter) issue of the Claremont Review of Books this morning. Subscribe here for $19.95 and get immediate online access. It is an invaluable magazine. Better yet, support the Claremont Institute and its mission with a tax-deductible contribution here that, among other things, will help defray the cost of publishing the magazine. I have a morbid fascination with the life and lies of Lillian »

Jack Lew clams up

Featured image You have to love Rep. Sean Duffy, the congressman representing Wisconsin’s Seventh District. He showed his mettle today in a House hearing at which he questioned Jacob Lew, the United States Secretary of the Treasury. Secretary of the Treasury is a position that has been held by accomplished and prominent Americans going back to Alexander Hamilton. Tax cheat Timothy Geithner depreciated the currency of the office, so to speak, but »

Bill Kristol defends the Cotton letter

Featured image Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol appeared on C-SPAN yesterday morning to talk about his mordant editorial “The party of the furrowed brow” and to take calls from viewers. C-SPAN host Paul Orgel began by asking Bill to explicate the editorial. As it turned out, Bill talked more than anything else about the letter that Senator Cotton drafted to explain relevant American constitutional principles to the Supreme Leader and his minions. »

Beyond the phony war on amnesty

Featured image if the Republican Senators want to put up a fight on Obama’s lawless executie amnesty — a big if — Curt Levey proposes a realistic and obvious plan in today’s Wall Street Journal: “Immigration push back: Don’t confirm his judges” (accessible via Google here). Levey writes; Congress’s approval of unconditional funding for the Department of Homeland Security was an embarrassing setback in Republicans’ struggle to respond to President Obama’s unilateral »

Of fatuity and fatwas

Featured image President Obama’s has courted the Islamic Republic of Iran since the first days of his presidency. In Obama’s mind, a “path” exists, in Obama’s mind, for this nation to be “a very successful regional power.” The charitable interpretation is that Obama does not understand the nature of the Iranian regime. He does not understand that Iran is a revolutionary power. He thinks it can can coddled and conciliated into normality »

CRB: The browning of America

Featured image We continue with our preview of the new (Winter) issue of the Claremont Review of Books. It should arrive in the mail just in time for Spring. You can subscribe here for $19.95 and have immediate online access thrown in for free. In Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam and the West, Weekly Standard senior editor Christopher Caldwell looked into Europe’s dire future. It is an eloquent and »

Don’t tell Glenn Reynolds

Featured image It’s been nearly a month since Glenn Reynolds voiced his recurring refrain: “I DON’T WANT TO HEAR ANOTHER GODDAMN THING ABOUT MY CARBON FOOTPRINT.” Glenn reserves the refrain for links to stories reporting egregious overconsumption of carbon-based fuels by liberal hypocrites concerned about your contributions to global warming climate change. Glenn’s refrain comes to mind in connection with the recent story reporting “Obama, first lady fly to Los Angeles on »

At the National Archives, living in fear

Featured image The Free Beacon reports on the news buried in an op-column by AP president Gary Pruitt on the undermining of the Freedom of Information Act by “authorities” (to use Pruitt’s anodyne term) responsible for compliance with it. “We’re talking about this issue now because of Sunshine Week,” Pruitt explains, “created a decade ago to showcase the laws that give Americans the right to know what their government is up to. »

The Hillary approved email server!

Featured image Steve’s friend Remy seeks to capitalize on Madam Hillary’s approach to the preservation of electronic records. He is marketing “DC Matic, the Hillary approved email server” (video below). Here’s how it works: First you select the government business you’d like to conceal from the public. Then, simply use DC Matic’s proprietary privacy controls to fix the problem. Simple as that! Having two email addresses is confusing and a terrible idea. »

CRB: The achievement of Martin Gilbert

Featured image Our friends at the Claremont Review of Books have just published their Winter number and, as usual, let me pick three reviews to preview for our readers. You can subscribe here for $19.95 and have immediate online access thrown in for free. Tributes to Harry V. Jaffa lead off the new issue. Jaffa was the guiding spirit of the CRB; the CRB calls on a handful of his former students »

Kerry huffs and puffs

Featured image John Kerry appeared on Face the Nation this morning in a prerecorded interview with Margaret Brennan (video below). Kerry huffed and puffed about the letter drafted by Senator Cotton about the constitutional principles applicable to the deal in process with Iran. There is a certain sympathetic logic to Brennan’s otherwise insane question: “Are you going to apologize [to Iran} for this letter?” Kerry indignantly responds that he will not apologize »

Tom Cotton defends his letter

Featured image Senator Tom Cotton appeared on Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer this morning (video below). Schieffer grilled and derided Senator Cotton about the letter he drafted setting forth the basic constitutional principles applicable to the deal in process with Iran. Senator Cotton’s remarks should now be viewed in the context of Obama chief of staff Dennis McDonough’s letter last night to Senator Corker, of which Schieffer seemed not to be »

Dennis McDonough explains

Featured image Our attention should remain riveted on President Obama’s deal in process with Iran. It will put Iran on a path to the development of nuclear weapons to be mounted on Iran’s intercontinental ballistic missiles. It will undo the sanctions regime intended to prevent this outcome. And in the meantime it will contribute financing to Iran’s exploits as the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism, not to mention the regime’s genocidal »

But why always Hillary?

Featured image Looking around for worthy items to post in our Picks this morning, I find a famous line from Middlemarch comes to mind: “But why always Dorothea?” In this case, of course, the question would be “But why always Hillary?” We know the answer, but it’s still a good question. For some reason, political reporters and commentators want to write about Madam Hillary this weekend, and they all have something sharp »

Kerry reassures Iran’s Supreme Leader [With Observation By John]

Featured image The letter drafted by Senator Tom Cotton sets forth basic constitutional principles applicable to the executive agreement into which President Obama will enter with Iran. The letter continues to reverberate. Speaking in Egypt on his way to work more on the deal, Secretary of State Kerry purported to take issue with the letter. Jay Solomon reports in today’s Wall Street Journal (the article is accessible here via Google): Secretary of »

Notes on “Middlemarch” (3)

Featured image This is the finale (to borrow the term Eliot applies to her conclusion) of my notes on Middlemarch. Previous installments are here (part 1) and here (part 2). Middlemarch begins and ends with Dorothea Brooke. The novel opens with a Prelude and closes with a Finale that frame Dorothea’s story with that of Saint Theresa (as the novel spells her name). The novel’s first paragraph reads: Who that cares much »