Books

Churchill on “A Peculiar Type of Brainy People”

Featured image As with so many other things, Churchill was on to the problem of the administrative state and today’s presumptuous liberal cosmopolitanism from early on.  A 1933 speech offers a perfect description of our Beltway mentality today: The worst difficulties from which we suffer do not come from without. They come from within. They do not come from the cottages of the wage-earners. They come from a peculiar type of brainy »

New books, dead authors

Featured image Pending the arrival of Ammo Grrrll tomorrow, I need laugh now more than ever, and I do not think I’m alone. In the run-up to July 4, moreover, we have the time for it. Joe Queenan provides the opportunity for more than one laugh in his Wall Street Journal Review column “New books, dead authors” (accessible here via Google) of this past weekend. Queenan observes that Tom Clancy and other »

The Candidates and Their Reading Lists

Featured image Forget Jeb’s and Hillary’s tax returns. We get it: they both make a lot of money from speeches and such. More interesting is what they read, or claim to read. Last year The Atlantic put together a list of Jeb’s and Hillary’s current book list. In one sense it doesn’t much matter whether they actually read the books they list; more revealing is what they chose to disclose. Here’s Hillary’s »

In praise of Lesley Goodman

Featured image In his elegy of William Butler Yeats, W.H. Auden concludes with this couplet offering advice addressed to an unnamed poet: “In the prison of his days/Teach the free man how to praise.” This morning I want to take a brief timeout to praise Lesley Goodman. Professor Goodman has a Ph.D. in English from Harvard. She is a voracious and learned reader at the beginning of what should be a great »

Iran (and Obama) vs. Israel (2)

Featured image Former Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s Ally: My Journey Across the Israeli-American Divide is out from Random House today. The book is part autobiography, part memoir, part history and part (as they say in the bookstore) current events. I urge interested readers to pick it up now and study it with care. The book makes a valuable contribution to recent history in which he has been a participant and to which »

Allen Weinstein, RIP

Featured image One of the things Hugh Hewitt likes to do when he has a liberal journalist or thinker on his radio show—especially a younger one—is to ask first, “Do you think Alger Hiss was a Soviet spy?” He does this for two reasons. First, to test historical literacy. It is amazing how many young liberals know nothing of the Hiss case, and as such this question is a good proxy for »

The abandonment of Israel

Featured image Michael Oren is the former Israeli Ambassador to the United States and newly elected member of Israel’s Knesset (as a member of the Kulanu Party). He is also an accomplished historian and author. His new book, to be published next week, is Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide. I just received an advance copy of the book for a podcast interview with Ambassador Oren to take place later this »

Mark Bauerlein: The State of the American Mind

Featured image Mark Bauerlein and Adam Bellow have edited an intriguing volume of essays reporting on The State of the American Mind: 16 Leading Critics on the new Anti-Intellectualism. The book, officially published by Templeton Press today, presents as a kind of update on Allan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind (1987). Closing was published, with a foreword by the late Saul Bellow that helped draw attention to the book. (In »

Horowitz in winter

Featured image FrontPage managing editor Jamie Glazov commissioned me to review David Horowitz’s new book, You’re Going To Be Dead One Day: A Love Story (Regnery, 176 pages, $24.99). Today is the book’s official publication date and the book is now available at Amazon. Jamie has authorized me to post my review on Power Line in the hope that it might introduce new readers to David’s memoiristic books of recent years. This »

Tom Stoppard: Still Fooling With Us After All These Years

Featured image In the Daily Mail this morning, I came across this headline: Sir Tom Stoppard admits inventing a quote from a fake professor to go in the programme for one of his most famous plays. Stoppard is one of my favorite playwrights, so I followed the link, even though the idea of Stoppard inventing a quote by a fake professor is not exactly a shock. This was the story: Playwright Sir »

CRB: Woman in full

Featured image Today we conclude our preview of the new issue of the Claremont Review of Books. Subscribe here for the heavily subsidized, ridiculously low price of $19.95 and get immediate online access thrown in for free. With our previews this week I have tried to convey some sense of the range of pieces on offer in the issue. On Wednesday we looked at Bill Voegeli’s essay on the uprising against political »

CRB: Slavery all the way down

Featured image Today and tomorrow we continue our preview of the new issue of the Claremont Review of Books. Subscribe here for the heavily subsidized, ridiculously low price of $19.95 and get immediate online access thrown in for free. As I said yesterday, if you enjoy books and politics, the CRB is the best magazine going. If you enjoy reading about books about politics, ditto. Allen Guelzo is the Henry R. Luce »

Deep secrets of racial profiling (4)

Featured image If you’re trying to get a handle on the race-based assault on law enforcement, unfortunately, you must acquaint yourself with Michelle Alexander and The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness.. Published in paperback in 2012, the book is now in its eighteenth printing with a new foreword by Cornel West. In his foreword, West declares it “the secular bible for a new social movement.” This he »

Buzz

Featured image Our friend David Lebedoff has written a number of books, one or two of which we have plugged here. But now, just in time for the Summer beach market, he has published his first thriller, called Buzz. Buzz is somewhat in the tradition of Jaws, only the deadly predator is a whole lot smaller. Most of us are used to swatting them without much thought: That’s right: mosquitos. The plot »

Life lessons from Justice Thomas

Featured image This is the season of formulaic left-wing commencement speeches. Contributing to the cause of true “diversity” — diversity in the life of the mind — Zev Chafets has edited a volume of heterodox commencement speeches under the title Remembering Who We Are: A Treasury of Conservative Commencement Addresses. There are several speeches that I find inspirational and/or moving and/or thought-provoking in the book. One that is all of the above, »

Notes on “Days of Rage” (3)

Featured image This concludes my series of posts on Bryan Burrough’s important and riveting new book, Days of Rage: America’s Radical Underground, the FBI and the Forgotten Age of Revolutionary Violence. Part 1 is here; part 2 is here. We recorded an interview with Burrough about the book earlier this week; the interview is posted here. • Joanne Chesimard/Assata Shakur was a member and leader of the cop-killing Black Liberation Army. Burrough »

Notes on “Days of Rage” (2)

Featured image Reading Bryan Burrough’s book Days of Rage from cover to cover over the weekend, I flipped over the book. In this post I continue to jot notes on the book to amplify the attention it has received so far. Part 1 is posted here; our interview with Bryan Burrough, recorded on Tuesday, is posted here. • Burrough tells the story of six terrorist groups that conducted campaigns of “revolutionary violence,” »