Ted Cruz’s independence from independents

Featured image Eliana Johnson reports that Ted Cruz and his strategists see a path to the presidency that relies on turning out the conservative base and largely ignoring independents: It’s almost conventional wisdom now that presidential candidates woo the party faithful in primary contests and tack to the middle in the general election to attract more-moderate voters. Not Cruz. As one of his advisers puts it, “winning independents has meant not winning.” »

James Mitchell: KSM predicted what the Dems would do to me

Featured imageMegyn Kelly interviewed CIA interrogator James Mitchell last night on FNC’s Kelly File over three segments. Mitchell is a psychologist who helped fashion the CIA’s enhanced interrogation program and is one of the men who interrogated KSM. As such, he comes in for criticism in the Senate Intelligence Committee Democrats’ recently released report (or executive summary). FOX News Insider covers the interview and breaks it into clips here. The video »

The Context of Harsh Interrogation

Featured imageAs Dick Cheney and others have emphasized, it is foolish to evaluate the enhanced interrogation techniques used by the CIA without acknowledging their context: in the aftermath of 9/11, the federal government’s most important responsibility was to do everything possible to ensure that there was no sequel. Democratic Senators and Congressmen who were briefed on the CIA’s operations at the time had no problem with what the agency was doing. »

The gift of books

Featured imageIn a recent column Thomas Sowell urged his readers to “Give the gift of books!” I second that emotion (as well as the books to which he draws attention). I think the following five books are among the most important books for conservative readers published this year. I can say this with absolute certainty: they are the most important new books for conservatives that I read this year: Philip Hamburger, »

Law Student Digs the Hole Deeper

Featured imageWhen students at Columbia and other law schools around the country demanded that exams be postponed because they were traumatized by the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases, we and many others responded with ridicule. In today’s National Law Journal, a third-year law student at Harvard named William Desmond says that we got it all wrong: the request for extra time for exams was a sign of the students’ strength. »

So Who Can You Still Joke About?

Featured imageI’ve been trying to come up with a list of nationalities or ethnic groups—even subgroups—about whom it is still safe to make a joke publicly, since political correctness is shrinking the domain down to the vanishing point.  Before long you won’t be able to make jokes about “little green men” from Mars, for fear of offending illegal aliens “undocumented” immigrants.  I’m not even sure you can joke about white people any »

“Known wolf” syndrome

Featured imageThe hostage taking in Australia is over now, and the name of the hostage-taker has been released. He was an Iranian-born Islamic cleric named Man Monis, aka Shiekh Haron. If the past is any guide, Monis will be described as a “lone wolf” terrorist because, as far as we know, he acted on his own, not on orders from a terrorist organization. But Patrick Poole of PJ Media argues that »

Cheney unchained

Featured imageIn the clip below from his interview with Chuck Todd on Meet the Press yesterday (whole 18-minute segment here), Dick Cheney responded to a question regarding what he would say if ISIS were to waterboard captured Americans. How could we complain? His response may not be the Answer of the Year, but it’s up there. It seems to me that Cheney undertook two tasks in his appearance on Meet the »

Attacks on Banks, Paid For By Banks?

Featured imageIf you look at photos of anti-Wall Street, Occupy-type protests, it seems clear that the people doing the demonstrating have not had lots of dealings with banks–like most Americans, actually. So they are acting on hearsay, or on a theory: they have been told that “big banks” are somehow responsible for the sorry state of our economy, in particular the fact that most young people can’t find good jobs. Elizabeth »

Miss World Wrap-Up

Featured imageAround 11:00 this morning I scouted for broadcast information on the Miss World finale, and found that it was already in progress. It started at 2:30 London time, 8:30 on a Sunday morning, Central time. The only place where it could be televised in prime time was Asia; I assume they got it there, but here in the U.S., as best I could tell you had to watch on the »

“Rape Culture,” Debunked

Featured imageWhat is behind the recent hysteria over “rape culture” on college campuses, given that 1) the incidence of rape, like other violent crimes, has been declining for decades, and 2) as one would expect, non-students are more likely to be raped than students? The motivation presumably is political. This report by the Department of Justice indicates how far “rape culture” dogma departs from reality. The claim that one in five »

An Old Fashioned Fisking of Green Hyperbole

Featured imageI had thought briefly yesterday of producing an old-fashioned fisking of Tom Friedman’s Sunday NY Times column, “Why 2014 Is A Big Deal,” which was lazy and superficial even by his low standards, but thought why bother at this point. How does he come up with gems like this: Technology is a cruel thing. The innovators who’ve made solar panels, wind power and batteries so efficient that they can now »

Democrats lack bridge to the future

Featured imageIt’s official: the Democrats are divided on their path to 2016. The Washington Post, in front page story has declared it so. The division is already known to anyone who has been paying attention. Steve Hayward has been writing about it for a long time. Pass me some popcorn, Steve. The division, explains the Post, is between pragmatists like Hillary Clinton (just to pick a name) and hardcore ideologues like »

What’s the common thread in Obama’s anti-ISIS campaign? Acquiescence to Iran

Featured imageHow goes the Obama administration’s campaign to “degrade and destroy” ISIS? Badly, according to Max Boot. In Iraq, there have been a few modest successes. But Obama refuses to provide direct support to Sunnis in Anbar and Nineveh provinces, and the Iraqi government, still strongly influenced by Iran, will not supply arms and equipment either. The folly of Obama’s policy in Iraq is self-evident. He relies on proxy forces to »

My take on the campus “rape culture”

Featured imageI agree with John that there is no “rape culture” on college campuses. But I also agree with Joe Asch, the proprietor of Dartblog, that sexual assault, or, at a minimum, serious sexual harassment, is a real problem at colleges and universities. I base my conclusion in part on conversations with a dozen or so current college students or recent grads. Not all of them see the situation the same »

Dick Cheney For President

Featured imageI agree with the suggestion of Bill Kristol, that this answer from Dick Cheney to Chuck Todd on Meet the Press this morning deserves the award for Answer of the Year (only 40 seconds long), and it deserves upgrading from our “Picks” section: »

Coming Soon to a Utility Bill Near You?

Featured imageThe New York Times today has a long news story (“Energy Bills Send Shivers in New England”) about soaring utility bills in the Northeast, where many people are seeing 100 percent increases in their energy costs over just a few months ago: For October, [John York] had paid $376. For November, with virtually no change in his volume of work and without having turned up the thermostat in his two-room »