Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Ayaan Hirsi Ali at Yale

Featured image Ayaan Hirsi Ali spoke to a full house at Yale last night under the auspices of the William F. Buckley, Jr. Program. The Yale Daily News reports that she spoke “without significant interruption or disturbance.” The YDN notes the lack of disruption because Hirsi Ali’s appearance provoked the vehement opposition of the Muslim Students Association at Yale under the leadership of one Abrar Omeish. The MSA at Yale “sent a »

Allah and Ali at Yale

Featured image The William F. Buckley, Jr. Program at Yale is hosting Ayaan Hirsi Ali to speak on campus today. Her appearance has provoked the Yale Muslim Students Association to issue a letter in protest with 35 co-signers (the letter is quoted in part here, here and here). In the spirit of Buckley himself, Yale’s Professor David Gelernter addresses the Yale MSA: I love your new free-speech concept! Obviously this woman should »

Down with the administrative state

Featured image You may not be interested in administrative law, but administrative law is interested in you. Administrative law is unrecognized by the Constitution, but, according to Columbia Law School Professor Philip Hamburger, it “has become the government’s primary mode of controlling Americans.” He observes that “administrative law has avoided much rancor because its burdens have been felt mostly by corporations.” This is where you come in: “Increasingly, however, administrative law has »

HRC, in Mandela’s footsteps

Featured image Those of us who lived through the Clinton administration may have forgotten how acrid was the atmosphere. One of its features was the administration’s pervasive untruth. Reading Michael Isikoff’s book Uncovering Clinton, to take just one small example, one begins to understand that everyone around the Clintons, including the journalists who covered them, understands the basics of their marital arrangement, yet remained (and remains) silent about it. Who are we »

In Gaza, the work continues

Featured image Palestinian Islamic Jihad is one of the genocidal terrorist groups operating out of Gaza. I forgot to mention last week, consistent with the teaching of Imam Obama, that — along with the Islamic State, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Hamas — they are not Islamic. The invaluable MEMRI has posted the video “Palestinian Islamic Jihad Digs New Tunnels in Gaza” as featured on Qatar’s Al-Jazeera TV this past September »

The case of the mystery virus

Featured image Twin Cities internist Chris Foley is a faithful reader whom I know in his professional capacity. Today he writes to address the case of the mystery virus: It might be worth a short commentary re the connection between the sudden “mystery” virus that is hospitalizing children all over the US and the indiscriminate distribution of illegal alien kids “all over the US.” To wit: “Human rhinoviruses and enteroviruses in influenza-like »

Jan Karski’s message

Featured image I first learned of Jan Karski’s story in Walter Laqueur’s The Terrible Secret: Suppression of the Truth About Hitler’s “Final Solution,” published in 1980 (and first learned of Laqueur’s book from George Will’s excellent column on it in the Washington Post that year). Karski was an incredibly brave and dignified man. We need to attend to his example, now more than ever. Karski performed heroic service in World War II »

Do you know the way to Mel Tormé?

Featured image Today is the anniversary of the birth of Mel Tormé on September 13, 1925. I think Tormé is simply one of the all-time great American artists, too little known and vastly underappreciated. Permit me this salute in the hope that I might interest you in deepening your familiarity with his work. Tormé died at age 73 in 1999 in Los Angeles at the end of an incredibly fruitful career. The »

Bill Maher flips

Featured image To borrow Rick’s lovelorn lament in Casablanca: Of all the gin joints in all the towns in the world, Bill Maher walks into mine (and John Hinderaker’s). My gin joint, so to speak, is Minnesota’s Second Congressional District, where I drink, live, and vote. Bill Maher has walked in to announce that he has has picked incumbent Republican Rep. John Kline to knock off in Maher’s bid to Flip a »

Netanyahu on 9/11

Featured image Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke yesterday at the 14th annual International Conference on Counter-Terrorism in Herzliya, Israel. He speaks as both a student of terrorism and a the leader of a country on the front line against the perpetrators of terrorism, so as always his remarks have a special interest. The text is posted here. The video is below. In his introductory remarks, Netanyahu addressed himself to United States Ambassador Dan »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll reports this morning “Healthy as a Californian.” If your weekly fix of Ammo Grrrll is not enough for you, she also steps out from the deep cover of her Power Line alter ego to celebrate the late Donald Westlake in the Weekly Standard book review “Westlake lives!” For us Ammo Grrrll writes: My mother once sent me the dozens of warnings that came with her new dustbuster including »

A question (or two) for Imam Obama

Featured image I have an impertinent question for President Obama in his capacity as a spokesman for Islam. It seems to me to follow naturally from his brief disquisition on the Islamic State or ISIS yesterday (White House transcript here): ISIL is not “Islamic.” No religion condones the killing of innocents. And the vast majority of ISIL’s victims have been Muslim. Thus spake the man who sounds like Imam Barry. Or Carnac »

Dartmouth’s 9/11

Featured image Following 9/11 the New York Times ran Portraits of Grief profiling many of those lost in the 9/11 attacks. We can’t capture the magnitude of the loss, or the meaning of who and what we lost, but the Times’s focus on individuals made a contribution. Taking just one small slice, I want to retrieve from the series the Times’s portraits of Dartmouth alumni who lost their lives on 9/11. With »

You cannot be Syrious!

Featured image Paul Mirengoff has done the hard work and dissected the substance of President Obama’s speech on ISIS last night. John commented here and Steve here. The White House has now posted a transcript of the speech along with the video below. My impression was that Obama was trying to impersonate a serious man, though he has demonstrated spectacular misjudgment and neglect in his approach to ISIS. The misjudgment or neglect »

A day to be proud…

Featured image I first wrote about Rick Rescorla in 2003 after finishing James Stewart’s Heart of a Soldier, the book based on Stewart’s New Yorker article “The real heroes are dead.” (“The real heroes are dead” is what Rescorla would say in response to recognition of his heroism on the battlefield in Vietnam.) The book is good, not great, but it touches on profound themes in a thought-provoking way: life and death, »

From the granite state

Featured image In the results from yesterday’s New Hampshire GOP primary, former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown prevailed in the contest for the nomination to take on incumbent Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen. Shaheen is one of the many Democrats who seeks to confuse voters in her home state about what she has been up to in DC. Brown has an uphill battle, but we hope he wins and we wish him well. He »

50 shades of of untruth

Featured image In the Age of Obama we are inundated with partisan Democratic falsehoods. The lies are nonstop and overwhelming. From Barack Obama to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, they define the modus operandi of the Democratic money. We need a man of patience and discernment to denote the Fifty Shades of Untruth and begin the task of reclamation. Victor Davis Hanson begins the task in “Obama’s Untruth, Inc.” It’s the political »