Libertarian push-polling at CPAC

Featured image A poll of participants at the just concluded CPAC gathering in Washington, D.C. asked, among other things, “Do you favor or oppose the National Security Agency’s (NSA) use of data collection such as phone-tapping and reading of emails to combat global terrorism?” 78 percent of respondents said they oppose; only 19 percent said they are in favor. The question is ambiguous, I think. It could be construed to mean, “Do »

A Successful Meet Up In Minneapolis

Featured image Tonight Brian Ward and I sponsored a Power Line/Fraters Libertas/Ricochet meet up at Keegan’s Irish Pub in Northeast Minneapolis. It was a fun event. The turnout was excellent, and seemed even better because our group was packed into one end of the pub. We said hello to lots of old friends–like Mitch Berg, with whom I am going shooting tomorrow–and met many more new ones. We questioned whether our plan »

Latino voters as “Reagan Democrats?” You’re having a laugh

Featured image During yesterday’s CPAC panel on immigration reform, Alfonso Aguilar, the executive director of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles, claimed that “Latino voters are the Reagan Democrats of today.” Rev. Luis Cortés Jr.​ added, “I believe that the majority of them can actually be members of CPAC in the future.” Aguilar’s claim is preposterous. Reagan Democrats wouldn’t have voted by more than 70 percent for a leftist president. Cortes’ claim, »

Can there be meaningful immigration reform without citizenship?

Featured image CPAC presented a panel on immigration today. I wasn’t there, but this report suggests that the panel was an improvement over last year’s, which was basically a cheerleading session for amnesty and a path to citizenship. Unlike last year, today’s panel included one member, Derrick Morgan of the Heritage Foundation, who opposes that agenda. The panel was supposed to discuss this question: “Can there be meaningful immigration reform without citizenship?” »

If You Like Prosperity, Support AFP

Featured image What drives me crazy about some groups associated with the Tea Party movement is that all they want to do is attack Republicans. This year, some conservatives are trying to defeat Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. This is deeply misguided: McConnell is a solid conservative who scored a perfect 100% American Conservative Union rating in the 2012 session, and has a 90% lifetime ACU rating. The problem with the Senate is »

“I assumed that a man in a business suit wouldn’t be patient…”

Featured image I dunno, I feel like I’ve been complaining a lot lately. So here is one of those many feel good stories that you see if you live on the web. It’s about an autistic child and a business traveler. I can relate, as I have flown more than a million miles on business: Shanell Mouland, 36, from New Brunswick, Canada, uploaded a note to her blog Go Team Kate last »

Happy New Year! [Updated]

Featured image I don’t do lists or resolutions, and have nothing much to say about turning the page on 2013, apart from an observation I have made many times before: 2013 was a pretty lousy year for the world and the nation, but a great year for me and my family. I hope it was for yours, too. That happens a lot: most of what is good in our lives takes place »

Conservatism’s increasingly uneasy relationship with “corporate America”

Featured image I wrote below about yesterday’s meeting at which leaders of the technology industry urged President Obama to alter America’s electronic surveillance policy in order to advance their business interests. The meeting brought to mind Lenin’s alleged statement that “the capitalists will sell us the rope with which to hang them.” The meeting also brought to mind an excellent article by John Fonte about the relationship between big business and the »

Hispanics are less sold on Obama, but why?

Featured image Hispanic support for President Obama declined considerably during the past year. In December 2012, his approval rating with Hispanics stood at 75 percent. Now, it is down to 52 percent. Proponents of amnesty-style immigration reform are have seized on this degree of buyers’ remorse as a reason for Republicans to support their agenda. They say the poll numbers show that Republicans can make inroads with Hispanic voters, but only if »

The Cracked Guide to Public Policy

Featured image One of the basic techniques of public policy analysis to convey to students (and alert citizens) is the law of unintended consequences and its corollary, the law of perverse results.  I typically say these are the two most frequently enacted laws by Congress and our state legislatures (like Obamacare, though many of its perverse results are fully intended). So lo and behold, it ought to be an embarrassment to the »

Fifty Years On

Featured image Today marks the 50th anniversary of the death of an important person whose reach and legacy has only grown larger with time: C.S. Lewis.  (You thought I was going to say some other name perhaps?) Lots to say about this great man, of course.  I’m teaching his short book The Abolition of Man in one of my courses this semester.  It is perhaps the single best and most artful short »

The Tea Party, The Constitution, and the Future of Conservatism

Featured image Charles Kesler, author of I Am The Change: Barack Obama and the Future of Liberalism (now out in paperback), lectured at Hillsdale College last month about the Tea Party and the future of conservatism.  He mixes praise with criticism of the Tea Party, just as we have here from time to time.  This lecture is an hour long, so you’ll need a moment of leisure to take it in, but »

“Establishment” vs. “Tea Party” — how explosive is the dispute?

Featured image How seriously should we take the acrimonious tension between so-called establishment Republicans and the Tea Party. I take it pretty seriously, but Charles Krauthammer does not. Last night on Fox, Krauthammer said that the rift is overblown by the mainstream media, and isn’t a major problem because it pertains to tactics, not ends. In the case of the government shutdown, for example, both sides wanted Obamacare repealed; the dispute was »

The indispensable man revisited

Featured image We are in San Francisco visiting daughter number two, who is working here for a start-up. We picked this weekend to visit so that we could attend the gala annual dinner held by the Pacific Research Institute. This year’s dinner honored George Shultz. Charles Krauthammer was the featured speaker and, as he records below, our own Steve Hayward was the master of ceremonies. The tributes to Shultz by Steve and »

Lessons from the long October

Featured image This year, October seemed to last for two months, with enough drama for four. The first half featured the partial government shutdown – a political victory for Democrats. The second half featured the Obamacare rollout fiasco – a political victory for Republicans. Yuval Levin agrees with Ross Douthat that the juxtaposition of the shutdown and the launch of the exchanges has put on display the deficiencies of both populism and »

For Prudence, Supplemental

Featured image Scott shouldn’t have all the fun–or the mixed reader reaction.  It is a remarkable fact of the Obama era that we have come to the point of serious division and rancor amongst ourselves.  I don’t think there was this degree of disagreement over whether and how to oppose Bill Clinton in the 1990s.  I have lots of thoughts on this state of affairs, including the possibility that this internal debate »

For prudence

Featured image Looking back at the shutdown showdown and the intraparty rift it exposed among Republicans, Rich Lowry and Ramesh Ponnuru make the case for political prudence. They call their essay “Against despair.” In taking issue with Senators Cruz and Lee on the shutdown showdown, Lowry and Ponnuru take the high road. I think that the essay makes some elementary and obvious points well. The essay is worth reading and I commend »