Author Archives: Steven Hayward

Venezuela: Now a Shortage of Baseball Players?

Featured image It surprised no one when the news came out a couple months ago that Venezuela’s socialist economy had run out of one of the easiest products to stock—toilet paper—but today the Wall Street Journal reports that most of the U.S. major league baseball talent scouting and development operations in Venezuela are closing down: The Mariners are the latest Major League Baseball team to pull out of Venezuela, leaving only four »

Death of the Copy Editor

Featured image A sage friend once remarked that the decline of copy editing in book and newspaper publishing coincided with the decline in the number of priests defrocked by the Catholic Church.  Sounds reasonable to me. And far be it from me to jump on just any old typo, since a number of them get through here at Power Line (chiefly because I seldom spot my own typos, which is apparently typical »

Police Body Cams: Not So Fast?

Featured image I’ve generally favored the idea of equipping police with body cams. But the ever wise Todd Zywicki of George Mason Law school offers the following caution about possible unintended consequences: I think I am generally favorably inclined toward body cameras for police. But I also worry about the unintended consequences. For example, in a world of overcriminalization, often the best police judgment is to not enforce a law against someone. »

Our Inhuman Humanities

Featured image The rise of political correctness and rigid ideological filters is only one reason the humanities are suffering a precipitous decline in enrollment at colleges and universities.  Other reasons include the deliberate obscurity and mediocrity that attend so many humanities programs and professors these days.  (I’ve observed classics departments where the object seems to be keeping as esoteric, inaccessible, and irrelevant as possible.) Why would students want to waste their time »

Another Predictable Failure of Liberalism

Featured image Remember how the advocates of Obamacare said it would reduce the number of expensive emergency room visits because there’d be fewer uninsured people? Of course you knew the opposite would happen. From today’s Wall Street Journal: U.S. Emergency Room Visits Keep Climbing Emergency-room visits continued to climb in the second year of the Affordable Care Act, contradicting the law’s supporters who had predicted a decline in traffic as more people »

The British Election and Its Lessons for Us

Featured image Britain goes to the polls on Thursday to elect a new government. Did you know this? It is hardly getting any media notice here in the U.S., perhaps because our lazy media can’t take its eyes off the long coronation of Queen Hillary.  Anyway, the polls are a scramble, and everyone paying attention (which means only Michael Barone and Henry Olsen) is saying it is the most unpredictable election in »

Climate: Only One Day to Go!

Featured image From The Guardian, May 4, 2007: UN Scientists Warn Time Is Running Out to Tackle Global Warming Governments are running out of time to address climate change and to avoid the worst effects of rising temperatures, an influential UN panel warned yesterday. Greater energy efficiency, renewable electricity sources and new technology to dump carbon dioxide underground can all help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the experts said. But there could »

Climate: Better Put Some Ice on That

Featured image The climatistas have long been fond of warning us about “tipping points,” which will unleash a torrent of “perfect storms,” or some other mashup of overused clichés.  Blink, and you’ll miss them. (Sorry, couldn’t help it.)  Al Gore famously predicted that we’d have an ice-free arctic by this year if we did nothing. Now one problem with letting climate clichés do your thinking for you is that there’s a very »

The Week in Pictures: Mother’s Day Edition

Featured image Mother’s Day isn’t officially being observed until next weekend, but Mother’s Day came a week ahead of time in Baltimore, where real fathers seem to be as scarce as city fathers. Plus we got the lowest-attended major league baseball game in history. Bruce Jenner is the new honorary chair of Women’s Republican Clubs, to the supreme annoyance of the Diversity Enforcers everywhere. And Hillary has a challenger: Go Bernie! And »

What We Have to Look Forward To

Featured image November 2016 is a long way off.  A reminder of what’s ahead: »

Dogmatism Rightly Understood

Featured image Last weekend I got to spend some time with a bunch of impressive students that the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) rounded up for one of their periodic leadership conferences, this time in Casper, Wyoming. One of the things I shared with the assembled students (who were really really bright) was my short list of indispensable essays or parts of classic books that everyone should re-read at least annually. My list »

The Binks Awakens!

Featured image Are any of you other geeks out there looking forward to the new Star Wars films as much as I am?  I regard it as a good sign that J.J. Abrams took on the franchise, despite having gotten hopelessly lost with Lost. His reboot of Star Trek turned out rather well I thought (please spare me any more Jean Luc Piccard and his UN General Assembly sensibilities).  Besides, George Lucas »

Stalinism Abroad and at Home

Featured image Here are three photos of good old-fashioned Stalinist architecture, but only two of them are from former Communist countries. See if you can spot the one from here at home, and guess where.  (Answer key below.) »

The End in Vietnam, 40 Years On

Featured image There are surprisingly few recollections under way today of the final ignominious chapter of our Vietnam agony, when the U.S. was chased out of Saigon.  I wonder if there isn’t a larger subtext here.  We not only seem to be re-running the 1960s at home right now (Ferguson, Baltimore, etc), but we seem to be trying to re-run 1970s foreign policy too, with American retreat leading to chaos, instability, and »

A Global Cooling Reminder

Featured image The Wall Street Journal‘s “Notable and Quotable” feature offers today a reminder not only of the climate “consensus” of the 1970s, but also the familiar language about the signs and wonders and the certainty of scientists about how global cooling was upon us. From Time magazine, June 24, 1974, just because: As they review the bizarre and unpredictable weather pattern of the past several years, a growing number of scientists »

The Climatistas Are Quaking

Featured image For the latest example of climate change fanaticism, look no further than Newsweek yesterday (how is Newsweek still a thing at all?), where we are solemnly told that . . . wait for it now . . . climate change caused the Nepal earthquake: “This effect could certainly have made the Nepal earthquake come sooner,” says Professor Roland Burgmann, of the Department of Earth and Planetary Science at the University »

Iranian Piracy: Nothing Happens for No Good Reason

Featured image I’ve had occasion before to mention the maxim of my late teacher of international affairs, Harold Rood, that “nothing happens for no good reason.”  (By the way, there’s a brand new book out about Rood’s idiosyncratic method of understanding international affairs: You Run the Show or the Show Runs You: Capturing Harold W. Rood’s Strategic Thought for a New Generation, by J.D. Crouch II and Patrick J. Garrity. More about »