Author Archives: Steven Hayward

Trump University, for Real

Featured image The Chronicle of Higher Education emailed me a few weeks ago asking for a book recommendation or two for background reading to understand the Trump phenomenon. I recommended Jeffrey Bell’s fine 1992 book Populism and Elitism: Politics in the Age of Equality. (I think I also recommended Christopher Lasch’s The Revolt of the Elites.) As I explained to the Chronicle, Bell predicted that the conflict between left and right would be »

Loose Ends (7)

Featured image • The Wall Street Journal this morning beat me to an idea that I was planning to roll out here: if various Gorebot attorney generals can bring a supposed fraud suit against ExxonMobil, why can’t I bring a fraud suit against Al Gore and the climatistas whose political campaigning intends to depress the market values of hydrocarbon companies and boost the stocks of solar and wind power companies? That’s the »

Academic Brownshirts March Again

Featured image Over the last few weeks we’ve offered various academic absurdities, drawn from the fine work of the Twitter account of RealPeerReview. The anonymous person behind this Twitter account posted abstracts from publicly available academic journals. And that was precisely the problem: the mere exposure of the mediocre and politicized “scholarship” that emerges from the campus dens of identity politics is all that is necessary for the wider world to see »

Loose Ends (6)

Featured image • “See Russia like no one else has”?? This is the email subject line from The Nation magazine, flacking for their September Russia excursion. And it is the most perfect subject line ever, or perhaps truth in advertising at least: It is certainly the case that The Nation has seen Russia like no one else has for decades now. Here’s my favorite part of the trip description: Throughout the trip, »

The Week in Pictures: 2nd Amendment Edition

Featured image Mass shootings, by whatever kind of perpetrator, bring out the maximum ignorance from liberals and the media (but I repeat myself), but it’s even worse when the reaction involves averting one’s gaze from the growing problem of Islamic extremism in our midst. Good thing we have our cartoonists on the job. (And finally—something to change the subject from bathrooms.) Maybe we mistranslated Khruschchev all those years ago? Where Trump steaks »

Hitler Learns the Journal of American Greatness Has Shut Down

Featured image Our friends at the Journal of American Greatness (or “JAG” as I call them for short), who offered the most serious defense of Trumpism, if not necessarily Trump himself, have decided to fold up the site. They credit Power Line with giving them their first major boost in traffic, after which they acquired still more high profile attention, and started quite a few fights. So naturally, there’s only one thing »

Breaking: State Dept. Protests Obama Lethargy

Featured image There’s an old joke about how it would be nice if there was an American Interests desk at the State Department, since Foggy Bottom was usually more sympathetic to foreign nations than our own. The truth behind that joke is what makes so extraordinary the story the Wall Street Journal is reporting tonight about the 51 State Department employees who have signed a petition calling for a tougher military policy »

Is Trump Our Charles de Gaulle?

Featured image The most frequent cliché about Trump from his detractors is that he’s the next Hitler, which is silly. Trump may be many defective things, but he’s not that. But I wonder if he might be our Charles de Gaulle? Just to be clear, I think Trump is a pygmy compared to de Gaulle intellectually (there really can’t be any comparison between de Gaulle’s Edge of the Sword and Trump’s Art »

Loose Ends (5)

Featured image • George Will thinks Republicans should ditch Trump and draft Mitch Daniels for president. I heartily agree with the idea, though I doubt you can persuade Daniels to do it. I tried once, in 2011. Will: Without explicitly mentioning the paranoia currently convulsing many campuses, Daniels identified its origin. He said that “even more absurd” than the idea that life is a lottery is the idea that “most of us »

Power Line University (3): Brexit and the “Eurosausage”

Featured image One reason the “Yes, Prime Minister” series is so effective as a teaching tool about the nature of contemporary politics is that many of its story lines were taken from the real political controversies of the 1980s. One involved “bangers,” i.e., what passes for “sausage” in British pubs. The European Union, in its attempt to “harmonize” food standards, wanted Britain to rename “bangers” as something other than “sausage.” They were »

Brexit: What Would Thatcher Do?

Featured image The Brexit vote in the UK next week is one of the most important political events of this era, and I’ll be watching it closely. Here we like to say, “What would Reagan do?” I’m not sure whether the parallel question is asked in Britain: “What would Thatcher do?” She was a Euroskeptic, and likely would be in favor of voting “Yes” on the Brexit referendum. Here’s her famous short »

Power Line University (2): Who Reads the Papers?

Featured image For our second installment of our Power Line University “Yes, Prime Minister” course, let’s enjoy the famous scene “Who reads the papers?” There’s an American version of this joke: “The Washington Post is read by people who think they run the country; the New York Times is read by people who think they ought to run the country; the New York Daily News is read by people who actually do run »

Sir Roger Scruton!

Featured image Delighted to hear the news that the great British philosopher Roger Scruton has received a knighthood, and is now Sir Roger Scruton. I’ve had occasion to talk about Roger many times before on Power Line, such as here (praising his memoir Gentle Regrets), here (on his great recent book How To Be a Conservative), and here (featuring my short interview with him four years ago about his book on environmentalism). »

Court Case of the Week

Featured image Normally the DC Circuit Court of Appeals hears important cases involving the reach and scope of the powers of the administrative state, and last week’s decision in Wallaesa v. FAA is no exception, except that the facts of the case are laughable while reminding us how much we love flying: On November 6, 2009, Wallaesa, a passenger on Southwest Airlines flight 3049 from Baltimore to Las Vegas, struck up a »

This Is How All Bureaucrats Should Be Answered

Featured image Making the rounds right now is an exchange that I certainly hope is authentic, between the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife and ranchers Larry and Amanda Anderson. It seems the Oregon bureaucrats want permission to survey the Andersons’ ranch land for purposes of tracking species decline. Here’s the letter from the state, which I think you can make out: And here is the Andersons’ splendid reply (full text below »

Energy Geek Week

Featured image One of my all time favorite Steve Martin scenes is “the new phone book is here!” from The Jerk: Well this is how I feel every year with the release of the BP Statistical Survey of World Energy! It’s an energy geek’s best friend. I’m known to run around the neighborhood, channeling Steve Martin: “The new BP Statistical Survey of World Energy is here! The new BP Statistical Survey of »

Down with “Hamilton”

Featured image Back in April I noted that the liberal culturati were unhappy over the success of the Broadway smash Hamilton, precisely because its multiracial cast and hip-hop format don’t conform to or reinforce the identity politics frame of the Left. Broadway is making a capitalist dead white guy look cool! Horrors! With Hamilton dominating the Tony Awards show last night, the New York Times returned to the theme as if to »