Churchill

The Weekly Winston: Fiscal Abyss Edition

Featured image Now that we’re past the “fiscal cliff” (note I didn’t say “safely” past), we really ought to try to promote a term that is more accurate to our real predicament, which is much worse.  How about “fiscal abyss”?  This is the term of art we ought to use as we approach the political sequel to the fiscal cliff, which will come with the expiration of the debt ceiling sometime in »

The Weekly Winston: Fiscal Cliff Edition

Featured image Everyone supposes that supply-side economics was a purely American phenomenon, with its antecedents going back to Calvin Coolidge and his tax-cutting Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon and ending up with the Laffer Curve.  And of course Ronald Reagan liked to quote John F. Kennedy on the wisdom of income tax rate cuts, much to the consternation of good liberals today. But in fact Churchill was part of the early supply-side revolution, »

The Weekly Winston: Christmas Message Edition

Featured image From a broadcast Churchill made from the White House on his visit to FDR in December 1941 a few weeks after Pearl Harbor was attacked: Let the children play and have their night of fun and laughter.  Let the gifts of Father Christmas delight their play.  Let us grown-ups share to the full their unstinted pleasures before we turn again to the stern task and the formidable years that lie »

The Weekly Winston: Public Opinion in American Democracy

Featured image This short fragment from volume III of The World Crisis, published in 1927, is worth keeping in mind as we watch the ongoing political fight over the fiscal cliff.  (By the way, notice the curious but prescient mistake in this passage.*) The rigid Constitution of the United States, the gigantic scale of its party machinery, the fixed terms for which public officers and representatives are chosen, invest the President with »

CRB: Code of the gentleman

Featured image We continue our Christmas extravaganza previewing the Fall issue of the Claremont Review of Books through Friday. If you lean conservative and love to read about history, politics, economics, literature, culture and current events, the CRB has earned your attention. Subscriptions are available here for $19.95 (including immediate online access). Students of Winston Churchill know that Aristotle played a key role in his self-education. Churchill’s search for “a concise compendious »

The Weekly Winston: On Lincoln and the Civil War

Featured image I still haven’t got out to see the new Lincoln movie yet—perhaps this week—so I’ll have to let it rest with Scott’s review here, with the caveat that I’m tempted to weigh in on his mention of Richard Hofstatdter, whose views on Lincoln are inadequate and defective in important ways.  (But for a fragment of the argument against Hofstadter, see this old post.) Here’s what Churchill had to say about »

The Weekly Winston: “The Happy Warrior of Squandermania”

Featured image The Wall Street Journal this morning carries a feature by my pal Stephen Moore about the elfin Grover Norquist, who reminds us that Democratic promises about future spending cuts to accompany immediate tax increases are “imaginary unicorns.”  Which brought to mind a useful phrase that Churchill applied to his old friend David Lloyd-George that we ought to revive and deploy just now—“the Happy Warrior of Squandermania.”  Here’s the full quotation, »

The Last Biographer?

Featured image I’m always behind on my reading pile, so I was slow to catch up with the Wall Street Journal’s bizarro review last Saturday of the new Manchester-Reid Churchill biography, The Last Lion: Defender of the Realm.  Most of the “review” was more a memoir of the reviewer’s casual acquaintanceship with Manchester rather than a discussion of the book.  The subtext of the review, most people I’ve spoken with agree, seems to »

The Weekly Winston: Post-Election Edition

Featured image Some of Churchill’s most famous remarks involved election campaigns and their aftermath, especially losing campaigns.  The most often recalled were his comment after the 1945 landslide loss when Clementine said that perhaps it was a blessing in disguise, to which Winston replied that if so, it was certainly very well disguised.  Or: “In war you can only be killed once, but in politics many times.” But in light of this »

A Last Lion Interlude

Featured image While we await game day tomorrow, let me refresh everyone’s memory about book news. Back in May I brought Power Line readers’ attention to the forthcoming final volume of William Manchester’s multi-volume Churchill biography, The Last Lion: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965.   The official pub date is tomorrow, but Amazon is shipping it already and you can have your copy tomorrow if you want to distract from election day rumors »

Bonus Winston: Election Choice Edition

Featured image From a 1949 Churchill speech that applies perfectly to tomorrow’s choice: The choice is between two ways of life: between individual liberty and State domination; between concentration of ownership in the hands of the State and the extension of ownership over the widest number of individuals; between the dead hand of monopoly and the stimulus of competition; between a policy of increasing restraint and a policy of liberating energy and »

The Weekly Winston: Opinion Poll Edition

Featured image By now you are probably suffering from opinion poll overload.  I decided months ago not to sign up for automatic opinion poll updates and twitter feeds, for fear of jamming my mailbox.  There seems to be a new poll about every 15 minutes; certainly several a day.  As recently at the 1980 election the major polls came out only every few days, and one of the small details that made »

The Weekly Winston: War on Coal Edition

Featured image With President Obama doing his best to obscure or deny his hostility to coal in the closing weeks of this campaign, herewith Sir Winston in 1928 on the importance of utilizing coal as an alternative to importing oil from you-know-where: We used to be a source of fuel; we are increasingly becoming a sink.  These supplies of foreign liquid fuel are no doubt vital to our industry, but our ever »

The Weekly Winston: Obamanomics Edition

Featured image There is a surfeit of Churchillisms that can be brought to bear on Obama’s claim that he supports free enterprise—so much so that he just had to bail out the auto companies and throw billions at unprofitable green energy startups.  As Milton Friedman liked to say, the capitalist system is a profit and loss system.  The losses are just as important as the profits, as they discipline resource allocation.  Bailing out »

The Weekly Winston: Joe Biden Edition

Featured image From remarks on the floor of the House of Commons, April 28, 1926: I always try to economize the use of false arguments as much as possible, because a false argument is so often detected, and it always repels any listener who is not already a convinced and enthusiastic partisan. Maybe a better parallel for our Biden would be one of WSC’s descriptions of Stafford Cripps, a far left-leaning Labourite: »

The Weekly Winston: Obama Debate Edition

Featured image Sir Winston puts his finger on why Obamaworld was shocked at Obama’s face plant in the debate on Wednesday (not to mention the entire phenomena of liberal “tolerance” and political correctness: . . . some people’s idea of [debate] is that they are free to say what they like, but if anyone says anything back, that is an outrage. »

The Weekly Winston: Middle East Edition

Featured image Since the Obama Administration’s Middle Eastern misprision continues, perhaps another word of advice from Sir Winston, made in 1958, is in order: The Middle East is one of the hardest-hearted areas in the world.  It has always been fought over, and peace has only reigned when a major power has established firm influence and shown that it will maintain its will.  Your friends must be supported with every vigour and »