Author Archives: Scott Johnson

The crazy revisited

Featured image John included the video of Jimmy Carter below in in his post “The good, the bad and the crazy.” John filed it under “the crazy.” I would go a little further; I think it qualifies as sick, bad and crazy all by itself. I want to add a comment by way of a footnote to John’s post. The interviewer is Marc Lamont Hill. If he does say so himself, “Dr. »

A word from Stephen Harper

Featured image Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was a no-show at the march in Paris on Sunday, and he is taking some heat for it at home. From where we sit, however, it is a matter of profound national shame and embarrassment that the Prime Minister of Canada makes the president of the United States and his crew sound like cretins. We don’t need Prime Minister Harper to make this out by »

Berns on Berrigan

Featured image I studied the writings of both Harry Jaffa and Walter Berns intently when I was in the process of abandoning liberalism and becoming conservative. I think I read just about everything each had published as of 1973. Fortunately for me, that included Jaffa’s great book on Lincoln, Crisis of the House Divided. I consumed Bern’s writings on the Constitution and the First Amendment, but I especially enjoyed Berns’s essay on »

Caldwell’s reflections, cont’d

Featured image After the murders in connection with the attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris on Friday, I pulled down Christopher Caldwell’s Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam and the West. It’s a highly quotable book; I quoted a paragraph from chapter 4 (“Fear masquerading as tolerance”) here. In chapter 5, the first in the section devoted to Islam, Caldwell notes that, up until the present generation, Europeans “have not »

Defender of the faith

Featured image Like al Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, the Islamic State and all the rest, the Paris terrorists promote the imposition of Sharia law in the name of Islam. They all understand themselves to be Muslims acting on behalf of the faith and its prophet. Yet the Obama administration makes a special point of standing up for the good name of Islam, such as it is, and refusing to credit the »

Risen rules

Featured image New York Times reporter James Risen was subpoenaed to testify in the prosecution of CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling. Sterling is under prosecution for blowing a CIA program intended to undermine Iran’s nuclear program. The program was subject to a security classification indicating its extreme sensitivity. To no discernible public good, Risen publicized the program in his book State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration. »

60 Minutes does Obamacare

Featured image 60 Minutes turned its attention to Obamacare in a story reported by Lesley Stahl and produced by Rich Bonin this past Sunday. The segment promoted Steven Brill’s new book on Obamacare. According to Stahl and Brill, Obamacare’s great failure is its lack of price controls. Assuming price controls to be a great good — one of those great goods without a downside — the segment allocated no blame to Obama. »

Holder’s homily

Featured image Attorney General Eric Holder was in Paris yesterday. Holder had time to make the rounds of the Sunday morning gabfests, but notto join the million-plus throng marching with more than 40 heads of state from around the world somewhere outside the studio with Holder’s satellite uplink. Both the New York Post and the New York Daily News note Holder’s absence from the march. The gabfest maestros could have asked what »

The Attkisson angle

Featured image Around the time late last week that I complained of the lack of media interest in Sharyl Attkisson’s lawsuit against Eric Holder et al. for the intrusions into her computers, the Daily Beast posted a good account by Lloyd Grove in “Ex-CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s battle royale with the feds.” Grove asserts that the Justice Department and the Postal Service “pushed back hard against Attkisson’s allegations.” Grove quotes the Justice »

Caldwell’s reflections

Featured image There are many excellent books on the European crisis reflected by the events in Paris this past week. Among them I would cite Bat Ye’or’s Eurabia, Bruce Bawer’s While Europe Slept, Melanie Phillips’s Londonistan, and Claire Berlinski’s Menace in Europe. If I had to pick one to recommend, I’m not sure which I would pick. I find myself returning frequently to one book that falls into this category: Christopher Caldwell’s »

Obama calls extremely stupid confab

Featured image President Obama performed the obligatory characterization of the terrorist attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris last week as “cowardly” and “evil.” “Evil” it certainly was. “Cowardly” would probably be an adjective more appropriate to the Obama administration’s characterization of Islamist terrorism as “violent extremism,” though “stupid” certainly shouldn’t be overlooked either. President Obama and his administration refuse to identify the ideology that inspires our enemy. They continue to yammer incessantly »

A period of consequences

Featured image Watching the horrifying events in Paris this week, I have found Churchill’s great speech of November 12, 1936, coming to mind. It is one of Churchill’s prophetic speeches — I believe in the Prophet Churchill — decrying the complacency of the government in the face of the gathering storm in Germany. “So they go on in strange paradox,” Churchill asserted in Parliament of those responsible for the defense of the »

Prophet-driven

Featured image At NRO, Ian Tuttle observes that it has become conventional to refer to “the Prophet Mohammed.” Tuttle asks why. I myself am careful not to refer to Muhammad (spelled however) as “the Prophet.” Fine if he’s yours, and no offense intended, but he’s not mine. Tuttle observes with considerable understatement: “There seems to be an implicit, unique measure of respect accorded to the religious leader of Islam that is passé »

Steadfast (non-denial) denials [updated]

Featured image Sharyl Attkisson filed her lawsuit against the Department of Justice et al. on Monday. She spoke briefly with us about it in the interview with her that we posted here on Monday afternoon. The lawsuit alleges the violation of Attkisson’s civil rights as a result of the illegal electronic monitoring and surveillance of her home and business computers and phones from 2011 to 2013. Attkisson tells the story behind the »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll returns this week THINKING ABOUT PLINKING. She writes: It is 7:00 on a Wednesday morning and just turning from dark to light. It is a beautiful 55 degrees. And I am loading magazines preparatory to going plinking. I got an Israeli-made autoloader for my birthday. Last year I got a gun-cleaning workbench. I’m easy to buy for. Indoor ranges are fine, but for the most fun you can »

Back to the future

Featured image In September 2012, the Obama administration peddled the line that a hateful anti-Islamic video resulted in the attack on our consulate in Benghazi and the death of our ambassador and three of his colleagues. The administration sent Susan Rice forth to the Sunday gabfests following the September 11 attack to toe the line that the attack represented a protest that had spun out of control. Obama himself was still peddling »

Trying to get to you

Featured image Elvis fans are celebrating the eightieth anniversary of his birth today. As usual, even in the absence of round number anniversaries, it’s Elvis all over the world. The celebrations take in the expected spots such as Elvis’s birthplace in Tupelo (where the North Mississippi Symphony Concert is holding an Elvis-themed show) and Elvis’s Graceland home in Memphis. Commemorative events will also take place in Hollywood, at the Elvis Fest in »