Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Gowdy strikes a nerve

Featured image When FBI Director James Comey appeared before the House Judiciary Committee yesterday, the GOP members grilled him about his handling and disposition of the Clinton email investigation. As former prosecutors, several members drew on their experience working with the FBI to point out the apparent anomalies that have come to light, including the various immunity deals that went roughly nowhere. (Paul Sperry provides a useful summary in the New York »

Live from Council Bluffs, Trump on the stump

Featured image Nebraska attorney Dave Begley returned to his stomping grounds in Council Bluffs to file another of his reports on the appearances of the presidential candidates. Here he gives us Trump on the stump yesterday (full event video below). Dave writes: The freewheelin’ Donald Trump is a thing of the past as he spoke on Wednesday using the TelePrompter. The speech was more structured but it needed some editing. The main »

Comey on the stabbing rampage

Featured image FBI Director James Comey appeared on Capitol Hill for an oversight hearing held by the House Judiciary Committee today. GOP members focused their questions primarily on the FBI’s handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation and Comey’s ultimate decision not to recommend charges against the former secretary of state. The C-SPAN video of the hearing is posted here. I found the questioning by Reps. Sensenbrenner, Jordan, Gowdy, Franks, Ratcliffe, Trott »

Friday on my mind

Featured image Late this past Friday afternoon the FBI conducted its second document dump in the Clinton email case. To those paying attention it has become clear that the case has compromised the FBI and destroyed the reputation of FBI Director of James Comey. These Friday afternoon document dumps come straight from the scandal management playbook perfected under the (Bill) Clinton administration. They remind us, in case any reminder was necessary, of »

Shimon Peres dead at 93

Featured image Shimon Peres died this morning in Israel at the age of 93. Marilyn Berger writes his obituary for the New York Times. Tom Gross corrects the Times obituary here. Berger’s obituary is posted with a video on Peres’s life and career with commentary by Clyde Haberman. Raphael Ahren looks back at Peres’s long career for the Times of Israel here. On a personal note, I was invited to attend Israel’s »

Michael Oren: An inconvenient truth

Featured image Former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren was in New York last week in connection with the doings at the United Nations. Oren’s memoir is the invaluable Ally, which we interviewed him about on the Power Line podcast posted here. Oren is now a member of the Knesset from the Kulanu Party and deputy minister for diplomacy. During his visit last week Newsweek posted Oren’s latest piece laying »

After last night

Featured image Every observation, thought or prediction I have had on the course of political events this year may have proved wrong. My observations here can therefore probably serve most usefully as a contrary indicator, but I had a few watching last night’s incredibly painful debate and at this point I can only say I hope I’m wrong. If you either support the defeat of Hillary Clinton or the election of Donald »

Bibi calls on Trump and Clinton

Featured image Sticking around in New York following his address to the UN General Assembly last week, Benjamin Netanyahu called on both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton yesterday. We received the Trump campaign’s summary (“readout”) of the meeting. I was interested in it and thought some other readers might find it of interest: Donald J. Trump met privately today with Prime Minister Netanyahu for over an hour at Mr. Trump’s residence in »

What about Burhan Mohumed?

Featured image When the New York Times comes through town to check in with Minnesota’s Somali community, a variation of the genre World ends: Women and minorities hardest hit is at hand. Times reporter Jack Healy, for example, arrived this past June just in time for the verdicts in the terrorism case involving Minnesota’s ISIS wannabes. Healy’s article on the verdicts (written with freelancer Matt Furber) sought to convey the impression that »

There’s something about Hillary’s health

Featured image Readers who have been following the saga of Hillary’s dubious health will remember that Dr. Lisa Bardack is Clinton’s personal physician. At Tom Lifson’s American Thinker site, Jay Michaels gives Dr. Bardack’s letters testifying to Hillary’s good health the kind of close reading that Leo Strauss brought to Plato’s dialogues. Michaels’s post comes with the suitably literary heading “Dr. Lisa Bardack’s Faustian bargain.” Pursuing a theme we have articulated here »

Statesmanship: Obama versus Bibi

Featured image Walter Russell Mead assesses the statesmanship of Barack Obama versus that of Benjamin Netanyahu in the American Interest post “The real Middle East.” The subhead provides this précis: “Precisely because he has a colder view of international affairs than Obama, Netanyahu’s leadership has made Israel stronger than ever.” In the heart of this post he writes: There is perhaps only one thing harder for the American mind to process than »

My mother declared my bedroom a disaster area

Featured image The Wall Street Journal’s Notable & Quotable column runs a 1984 letter to President Ronald Reagan, and a draft of his reply, as published in the second volume of Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving of a Wider Audience, compiled by Shaun Usher, out next month from Chronicle Books. Usher also has a related Letters of Note site. Reagan letters including the one below are accessible here. »

Scandal management with the FBI

Featured image Like everything touched by the Clintons, the FBI has now been compromised and slimed. We saw it in FBI Director James Comey’s absurd statement announcing Hillary Clinton’s get-out-of-jail-free pass. We saw it in the FBI’s holiday weekend document dump of 302 interviews in the case. We saw it again again late yesterday afternoon with more of the same. These Friday afternoon document dumps come straight from the scandal management playbook »

Under investigation [With Comment By John]

Featured image As rioters and looters went on the rampage in Charlotte on Wednesday evening, WBTV News reported live via Twitter that “protesters” (my quotes, not WBTV’s) on I277 were “stopping traffic and surrounding vehicles. AVOID.” Glenn Reynolds retweeted the item and commented: “Run them down.” Falling into the category of “What oft was thought, but ne’er so well express’d,” I found that cathartic. The powers-that-be at Twitter, however, were having none »

There’s something about Hillary’s eyes

Featured image Yesterday Tom Lifson took note of Hillary’s wandering eyes. Several physicians have written us to observe that they are consistent with a left abducens nerve (CN6) palsy, residual from her cerebral venous sinus thrombosis. Now Dr. John Coppedge elaborates on this thesis in a post at The Hill that he calls “Clinton’s eyes — a window into her health issues.” Dr. Coppedge explains: Her eyes did not always move in »

Netanyahu: The UN is a moral farce

Featured image Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu gave his annual address to the UN General Assembly yesterday (text here, video below). There is something thrilling about hearing the truth about important matters blurted out before a largely unfriendly audience that knows every word is true. In this crowd Netanyahu is the little boy who cried that the emperor has no clothes. Whether in text or video form, the speech in its entirety is »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll has discovered THE EASIEST JOB: Columns that Write Themselves. She writes: Writing a weekly column is a privilege and a joy. Once I settle on a topic, the words usually flow pretty freely, and when they don’t, I power on, which is what we women do! Writers’ block or Dehydrating Flu-monia, we don’t stop until we have to be heaved head-first into a van! Often I fiddle — »