Author Archives: Scott Johnson

The Gruber variations

Featured image On Morning Joe yesterday, the crew assessed the veracity of the Obama administration against the page-two Wall Street Journal story that I quoted and commented on in “From the mixed-up files of Jonathan Gruber.” On MSNBC a good time was had by all. Kudos to Joe Scarborough for picking up the story and to his sidekick Mika for playing it relatively straight. As for the rest, this is an unimpressive »

Iran (and Obama) vs. Israel (2)

Featured image Former Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s Ally: My Journey Across the Israeli-American Divide is out from Random House today. The book is part autobiography, part memoir, part history and part (as they say in the bookstore) current events. I urge interested readers to pick it up now and study it with care. The book makes a valuable contribution to recent history in which he has been a participant and to which »

Donald Kagan reflects

Featured image Yale history/classics professor Donald Kagan is a great old-fashioned scholar and teacher. The author of a classic four-volume history of the Peloponnesian War, he has written many other books of distinction including Pericles of Athens and the Birth of Democracy and On the Origins of War: And the Preservation of Peace. Professor Kagan retired from his position at Yale in 2013. He gave his last lecture to a packed auditorium. »

From the mixed-up files of Jonathan Gruber

Featured image You have to wonder if the Obama administration has ever uttered a true word about Obamacare. I say no. President Obama has shifted the prevarications into overdrive in anticipation of the Supreme Court’s imminent decision on the IRS’s regulatory revision of the Obamacare law in King v. Burwell. On the issue before the Court in the case, we await a true word from the Obama administration, but we’re not holding »

At court in Charleston

Featured image USA Today has posted a seven-minute video of the remarkable court hearing held in Charleston on Friday at which Dylann Roof made his first appearance following the heartbreaking murders of Rev. Clementa Pinckney, Rev. Daniel Simmons Sr., Rev. Sharonda Singleton, and churchgoers at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Family members of the victims appeared. “One by one,” the New York Times reported, “they looked to the screen in a corner »

Iran (and Obama) vs. Israel (1)

Featured image The Islamic Republic of Iran avows its desire to eliminate Israel. It is an avowedly anti-Semitic terror state. To state the obvious, it wars on Israel because Israel is the Jewish state. Iran’s war against Israel is of course not simply verbal. It has armed Hezbollah with more than 100,000 missiles to use against Israel on demand. It seeks nuclear weapons that will make the elimination of Israel an afternoon’s »

Oren vs. Obama on Iran’s anti-Semitism

Featured image President Obama variously excuses, discounts and rationalizes the avowed anti-Semitic statements and goals of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Calling on his favorite reporter for the dissemination of his wisdom on such subject, Obama has observed to Jeffrey Goldberg, for example: “The fact that you are anti-Semitic, or racist, doesn’t preclude you from being interested in survival. The fact that the supreme leader is anti-Semitic doesn’t mean that this overrides »

In which Michael Oren gets the Alinsky treatment

Featured image Former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren is the author of the new book Ally: My Journey Across the American Israeli-Divide, to be published this coming Tuesday. Through the courtesies of Random House, I obtained and read an advance copy of the book in order to interview Ambassador Oren for a Power Line podcast that should be posted this weekend. I hope you will read the book and »

My Traveling Star

Featured image Sirius XM has turned over one of its channels to James Taylor 24/7 in connection with the release of his new compact disc. I first saw him perform in a basement dive with Joni Mitchell in Boston in the fall of 1968, a week or two before his first album was released on the Beatles’ label. I’ve been a fan ever since, though I have not kept up with all »

The wrong side of Z Street

Featured image The pro-Israel group Z Street had its application for tax-exempt status held up at the IRS. When founder Lori Lowenthal Marcus asked why, she was told that IRS auditors had been instructed to give pro-Israel groups special attention and that Z Street’s application had been forwarded to a special IRS unit for additional review. Not to put too fine a point on the legal issues, this isn’t kosher. It’s illegal. »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll anticipates Father’s Day this Sunday in GOD BLESS THE DADDIES. She writes: Sunday, of course, is Father’s Day. Despite decades of being portrayed in sitcoms and commercials as brainless twits who would be lost without the superior intelligence of their eye-rolling wives and children, the true importance of fathers can scarcely be overstated. If you doubt me, visit any prison jammed to bursting with lost fatherless men. In »

Right question, wrong answer

Featured image Our congressman is John Kline, a man who served 25 years in the Marine Corps before he retired at the rank of Colonel. He served as a helicopter pilot and was ultimately accorded the responsibility of flying Marine One. He also served as a personal military aide to Presidents Carter and Reagan. When Rep. Kline asks the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff a question bearing on our national »

Prayers for Charleston

Featured image Sen. Rev. Clementa Pinckney and eight churchgoers were murdered during a prayer service at the historically black Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church (also known as “Mother Emanuel) in Charleston, South Carolina last night. The gunman remains at large. Neither the murderer nor the eight other victims have yet been identified by name. The Washington Post reports on the shootings here. The AP has posted a slightly more current story here. »

Notes on Dartmouth commencement ’15

Featured image Our youngest daughter was graduated from Dartmouth College on Sunday morning. We attended the commencement ceremony on the Green in Hanover, New Hampshire. Please forgive the personal nature and limited interest of this post. Herewith, as William Buckley might have said, a few random thoughts that accentuate the positive. Dartmouth holds the commencement ceremony outdoors rain or shine. Five years ago we attended commencement on the Green for our middle »

Kerry’s absolute idiocy

Featured image The Obama administration’s rush to sell us out to Iran presents a spectacle of deception, prevarication, and idiocy the likes of which we have never seen. It is as though Henry Wallace had been given the keys to the kingdom upon the death of Franklin Roosevelt in 1945 instead of Harry Truman and made Alger Hiss Secretary of State instead of Dean Acheson. Among the “parameters” of a final agreement »

Invitation to a microaggression

Featured image Here I quote Elizabeth Price Foley, writing at InstaPundit: The University of California, headed now by former Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, has gone insane with political correctness. The confirmation comes via its new “faculty training guide,” which has conveniently listed some microaggressions to be avoided in the classroom, including: * “I believe the most qualified person should get the job.” * “Affirmative action is racist.” * “Everyone »

The abandonment of Israel

Featured image Michael Oren is the former Israeli Ambassador to the United States and newly elected member of Israel’s Knesset (as a member of the Kulanu Party). He is also an accomplished historian and author. His new book, to be published next week, is Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide. I just received an advance copy of the book for a podcast interview with Ambassador Oren to take place later this »