Coates’s moment

Featured image Ta-Nehesi Coates was awarded the National Book Award (non-fiction) for Between the World and Me on Wednesday night. It is an utterly abominable book. I wrote about it in the City Journal column “An updated racial hustle.” Christopher Caldwell nailed it in the Weekly Standard. Anthony Daniels administered justice to it in the New Criterion. Most recently, Bill Voegeli took a learned whack at it in the Claremont Review of »

CRB: Beyond hope? Beyond change?

Featured image With its Fall 2015 number, the Claremont Review of Books celebrates its fifteenth anniversary. It has rolled out a new site. It has sent its characteristically excellent new issue off to the printer. And it has let me dip in to the issue to select a few pieces to bring to the attention of Power Line readers. (Subscription services are accessible via the CRB home page linked above — a »

City Journal at 25, with Brian Anderson

Featured image The Manhattan Institute’s City Journal is celebrating its twenty-fifth anniversary. The table of contents for the twenty-fifth anniversary issue is posted here (subscribe here). To salute the magazine’s milestone, and bring the magazine to the attention of readers who might not be familiar with it, I submitted a set of questions to long-time editor Myron Magnet (now retired) and current editor Brian Anderson. I posted my exchange with Myron Magnet »

O’Reilly Versus Will, and Healey’s First Law of Holes

Featured image Regarding the ongoing feud between George Will and Bill O’Reilly, it is evident that O’Reilly has never heard of Healey’s First Law of Holes (coined by the British politician Denis Healey), which runs: “If you’re in one—stop digging.” O’Reilly lost no time in responding to Will’s latest column dismantling Killing Reagan, released yesterday afternoon. It is interesting that, just as he did with his on-air response to the Washington Post »

George Will on O’Reilly: Fire Two

Featured image George Will is just out this afternoon with a second column about Bill O’Reilly’s travesty of  a novel, Killing Reagan. If anything it is even more savage in dismantling O’Reilly than the first one. I wonder if O’Reilly will have Will on again for a second round on TV? I’m betting not. O’Reilly is a typical playground bully who runs from anyone able to stand up to him. You should »

Kondracke replies to the Times

Featured image Peter Robinson writes: Mort Kondracke and Fred Barnes have just published a marvelous book, Jack Kemp, the Bleeding Heart Conservative Who Changed America. Reviewing the book today, the New York Times slams it. Not only did the Kemp-Roth tax cut legislation of 1981 fail to do any good, Tim Noah, the reviewer, insists, but the legislation — the centerpiece, you will recall, of Reagan’s first-term economic reforms — proved “a »

Gutter balls with Bill [With comment by Paul]

Featured image Last night I touched on the demented highlights of Bill O’Reilly’s wild interview with George Will in “O’Reilly projects.” I’ve watched the video now a few more times. If you haven’t seen it, you may find it of interest. I’m not entirely sure I understand all his points, but I think each point O’Reilly makes is haywire. O’Reilly begins with Will’s failure to call O’Reilly before publishing his “provocative column.” »

O’Reilly projects

Featured image Bill O’Reilly invited George Will to appear on his show tonight purportedly to discuss Will’s column disparaging O’Reilly’s bad Reagan book (video below). Instead, O’Reilly ambushed Will with a misdirected interrogation that only dug his hole a little deeper. O’Reilly then invented an obligation on Will’s part to call O’Reilly before publishing Will’s column on the book. The book is the issue. The book, as they say, speaks for itself. »

Did O’Reilly “slander” Reagan?

Featured image The law of defamation protects the profound interest each of us has in our reputation. It has long roots in the common law of England. The English attitude to reputation can be seen in Cassio’s lament to Iago in Othello: “Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial.” The foul Iago seeks to persuade Cassio that »

Unmaking at 50

Featured image Even as a mindless teen-age liberal I read Bill Buckley’s syndicated column in the St. Paul Pioneer Press. I even learned something from it. I looked up the words I didn’t understand in the dictionary. Reading Buckley was my preparation for the Verbal portion of the SAT exam. Reading Buckley and looking up the exotic vocabulary he employed might have constituted overpreparation, even back in those somewhat more rigorous days. »

Road Notes

Featured image Long road trip this week, which is why my dispatches have been light. But much to recount. Perhaps a few of you have tuned in to the some of the installments of CNN’s documentary series on The Sixties or The Seventies. They employ a unique style: rather than have an omniscient Ken Burns-style narrator, they let interview subjects tell the story and stitch it together over video footage and images. »

American Sniper on trial: The appeal

Featured image I wrote about Jesse Ventura’s defamation/unjust enrichment lawsuit against the estate of Chris Kyle last year in “American Sniper on trial” and in “American Sniper on trial: The verdict.” The case arises from a couple of pages about Kyle’s close encounter with Ventura at a bar in southern California. Ventura alleged that the story Kyle recounted was false and defamatory and that the success of the book was attributable in »

Killing O’Reilly’s Reagan

Featured image A lot of people have been asking me for my opinion about Bill O’Reilly’s latest co-authored potboiler, Killing Reagan. To call it bovine excrement would be an insult to hoofed animals of all species. Today in the Washington Post, Craig Shirley, Kiron Skinner, Paul Kengor, and yours truly have written an article that details some of the massive defects with O’Reilly’s parallel universe. (The four of us have published a »

A word from Stephen Knott

Featured image Stephen Knott is professor of national security affairs at the Naval War College and the coauthor of a new book on the relationship between George Washington, the indispensable man, and Alexander Hamilton, an indomitable genius among the founders. We invited Professor Knott to write something that would allow us to bring the book to the attention of Power Line readers. Professor Knott has graciously responded with this message: Washington and »

We Get Results (with Comment from Steve)

Featured image We have noted over the years that when we plug books, it seems to drive sales. When I praised John Williams’ Stoner and Butcher’s Crossing in this post, Stoner was for a time adjacent to Lolita in Amazon’s best-selling books. So when I wrote about Red Sparrow, a spy novel that I absolutely loved, I decided to keep track. I checked the Amazon statistics right after doing the post. Red »

Five Came Back to TCM

Featured image Five of America’s most prominent Hollywood directors volunteered to put their art to use producing documentary, training, and propaganda films in the Army and Navy during World War II. Feeling certain that war was coming to the United States, and wanting to do something about it, John Ford went first, joining the Navy in September 1941. After Pearl Harbor, Ford was followed by Frank Capra, John Huston, William Wyler, and »

Red Sparrow

Featured image My wife and I went to a Minnesota Twins game with Clark Griffith and his wife a few weeks ago. Clark is a fun guy to watch a baseball game with; his family owned the Washington Senators and the Twins for a long time and he is an expert observer, albeit awfully objective for a home-town fan like me. Anyway, Clark and I were chatting during the game, and Clark »