Author Archives: Steven Hayward

Debates Then and Now

Featured image If you want to know just how crazy things are, consider that Hofstra University, host of tonight’s debate, has posted a “trigger warning” outside because some Hofstra students might find the content of the debate traumatizing. And just who do you think will do the triggering? I suppose if Hillary collapses on stage (is Lloyd’s quoting odds, or any Las Vegas bookmakers taking bets?) I suppose liberals will be traumatized, »

Academic Absurdity of the Week, Pumpkin Spice Edition

Featured image I am preparing a full-scale, end-of-the-world beat down on the abomination of pumpkin spice for an upcoming Week in Pictures, but I can’t help but wonder whether I’ve been trumped (heh) by this recent “scholarly” article in the journal GeoHumanities: The Perilous Whiteness of Pumpkins Lisa Jordan Powell & Elizabeth S.D. Engelhardt Abstract This article examines the symbolic whiteness associated with pumpkins in the contemporary United States. Starbucks’ pumpkin spice »

Don’t Look Now But. . .

Featured image Further to our recent posts here and here on the weakness of the Obama economy, here are two stories of note from this morning: Profit Slump for S&P 500 Heads for a Sixth Straight Quarter Companies in the S&P 500 are now expected to report an earnings decline for the sixth consecutive quarter in the coming weeks, according to analysts polled by FactSet. That slump would be the longest since »

What the NFL Can Teach Washington About Social Policy

Featured image I’m a certified New England Patriots hater. Don’t even get me started. But you do have to tip your hat to them when they deserve it. Their 3 – 0 start without pretty boy quarterback Tom Brady is a remarkable feat of coaching by the worst-dressed coach in all of pro sports, Bill Belichick. But something else Belichick is doing is a terrific example of the law of unintended consequences »

The Economy in Pictures

Featured image Paul helpfully noted here Friday the Josh Barro article about why the economic recovery under Obama has been the weakest on record. (Shorter Barro” “It’s the Obama, stupid!”) The good folks at The Daily Shot offer some interesting charts that help visualize the story. Usually after a recession the housing sector contributes significantly to an economic rebound. This did not happen after the crash of ’08, and as you can »

The Next Environmental Scare?

Featured image It’s been a parlor game for a while to decide what apocalyptic scare environmental doom mongers would come up with once climate change settles down into a normal problem. I’ve been nominating the weakening of the polar magnetic fields, which would be a Really Bad Thing for life on the planet. Sooner or later some environmentalist will blame mankind’s electrical grid for this potential calamity. (Think of the cell phone »

The Week in Pictures: Narrative Riot Edition

Featured image The comically named (but humor-challenged) White House spokesperson Josh Earnest beclowned himself a few days ago with the remark that we’re in a “war of narratives” with ISIS. Actually, he may be on to something. We may well be able to defeat ISIS by unleashing English lit majors on them. One whiff of postmodern narrative jargon from a poet laureate of Bennington College might well reduce the most hardened jihadist »

National Review Infiltrates San Francisco

Featured image Splendid evening last night in San Francisco, at the annual William F. Buckley Prize dinner hosted by National Review Institute, this year honoring the great George Shultz, secretary of state under Ronaldus Magnus, and Michael Grebe, the long time head of the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. Shultz is 95, but still has it going on, telling some of the great old stories about bringing down the Soviet Union back »

Academic Absurdity of the Week: Fake Peer Reviews

Featured image I’m guessing that the number of Power Line readers who take in the academic series Lectures in Computer Science doesn’t approach zero, but is zero, so we might put it in scientific notation this way: PLR(N=0)~0. In which case you would have missed this gem: Your Paper has been Accepted, Rejected, or Whatever: Automatic Generation of Scientific Paper Reviews Alberto Bartoli, Andrea De Lorenzo, Eric Medvet , Fabiano Tarlao Abstract Peer review is widely viewed »

Today’s Hot Reads

Featured image There are several articles up just now that deserve more than just a nod in our “Picks” banner. Start with The Week’s Damon Linker, a center-left writer usually worth reading for his straight shooting self-criticism of liberalism. His latest column dissents from the liberal line that the nationalism evinced by Donald Trump is solely and purely racist: [The] perfect distillation of liberalism in 2016: Trump voters and their analogues overseas »

Natural and “Unnatural” Citizens

Featured image Everyone is skipping right past the deeper meaning of the little detail that the New York “devicer” (I guess “bomber” is now a trigger warning term?—heh) Ahmad Khan Rahami is a “naturalized” American citizen, having immigrated from Afghanistan some years ago. Stop right there, and let’s think for a moment about what the term “naturalized citizen” ought to mean, for in the case of Mr. Rahami, his “naturalization” process clearly »

Midnight Regs, Part 2

Featured image No sooner are the pixels posted on my note yesterday regarding “midnight regulations” than The Hill reports this: GOP Mostly Powerless in Stopping Obama ‘Midnight’ Regulations . . . Republican lawmakers and independent experts expect more [regulations] to come. But Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas told Roll Call that his party cannot do much because “the framers of the Constitution didn’t give us a lot of tools that didn’t »

Forget the 3 am Phone Call: Watch Midnight Regs Instead

Featured image There’s a phenomenon going back to the Carter-Reagan transition or before that is well known among K Street lawyers and what is called the “regulated community” (a perfectly Orwellian term for private sector business under the visible foot of government): outgoing Democratic administrations enact a number of new rule-makings on the last day of the administration, often very controversial and costly rules that the outgoing administration has sat on for »

What’s Wrong With Hillary?

Featured image For a while a few weeks ago, the question on many minds was: “Is Donald Trump trying to throw the election?” His gaffetastic performance beggared belief. But now you have to wonder whether Hillary wants to win, or is content with being the first female presidential nominee of a major party. Below is video of her comments on her campaign plane last night about the bombings in New York City. »

Economic Macroaggression

Featured image James Grant, the founder of the indispensable Grant’s Interest Rate Observer and one of my favorite financial writers, likes to describe macroeconomics as “politics disguised with differential calculus.” Boom! Because of course macroeconomics is the cornerstone of Keynesianism, the convenient doctrine that provides politicians with the excuse to spend as much money as they can. Supposedly it works on a “multiplier” effect, but the only thing it seems to multiply »

The Week in Pictures: Powering Through Edition

Featured image It’s hard to get past the repetitiveness of the campaign, but we’re going to power through, just like Hillary. Meanwhile, I think “Dicking Bimbos” would be the greatest bar band name ever. Roger Clinton can be the lead singer! Powell’s Colon could be the opening act. And finally. . . »

The Greatest Doctor’s Note Ever

Featured image While we ponder the medical mystery of Hillary Clinton and scour Donald Trump’s latest test results, may we pause to take in the greatest doctor’s note of all time: Which also reminds me of Churchill’s response to King Feisal of Saudi Arabia, who had told Churchill that Islam forbid drinking alcohol as they were sitting down to dinner. To which Churchill sensibly replied: “My religion commands the consumption of alcohol »