Author Archives: Paul Mirengoff

Jamal Khashoggi and the Washington Post, Part Three

Featured image On Sunday, the Washington Post (paper edition) published a lengthy tribute to Jamal Khashoggi, its former columnist. The article is worth reading. Joby Warrick, Loveday Morris, and Souad Mekhennet present a more nuanced and informative account of Khashoggi than the Post has been willing to render until now. I think the Post has recognized that its portrait of Khashoggi as a pro-democracy saint needs to be modified slightly now that »

Bar complaint filed against Blasey Ford’s lawyer

Featured image Judicial Watch has filed a complaint with the Board of Professional Responsibility of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals against Christine Blasey Ford’s lawyers, Debra Katz, Lisa Banks, and Michael Bromwich. The complaint is based on the alleged failure of these lawyers to inform their client that Chairman Grassley offered to fly female staff investigators to meet Dr. Ford in California to obtain her testimony. Rule 1.4(a) of the »

After the “fistfight”

Featured image As Scott has noted, the official Saudi explanation for the killing of Jamal Khashoggi is that he died in a fistfight at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey. That’s plausible. Few of us would be likely to survive a fistfight against more than a dozen vengeful Saudi agents and a hacksaw. Khashoggi’s demise raises questions for the U.S. about our future relations with the Saudis. It might also raise questions »

Tom Friedman doubles down on magical thinking

Featured image To figure how not to think about events in the Middle East, it’s often useful to consult Tom Friedman. Yesterday, Friedman appeared on PBS with Christiane Amanpour to discuss the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. Friedman looks like a fool in the wake of the murder because last year he wrote a gushing column praising Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), Saudi Arabia’s powerful crown prince, for implementing a “top-down Arab spring.” Friedman »

Jamal Khashoggi and the Washington Post, Part Two [UPDATED]

Featured image The Washington Post decries what it calls a “whispering campaign” to “smear” Jamal Khashoggi that is “designed to protect President Trump”. The “whisperers” are “hard-line Republicans and conservative commentators.” The latter are writing articles critical of Khashoggi (which means they are not whispering). The former are “privately sharing” the articles (which, I had thought, is how articles typically are shared). The Post’s Robert Costa and Karoun Demirjian provide no evidence »

Are you lonesome tonight?

Featured image Is the U.S. experiencing an epidemic of loneliness? George Will, citing a book by Sen. Ben Sasse argues that we are. Sasse contends, in Will’s words, that “Americans are richer, more informed and ‘connected’ than ever — and unhappier, more isolated and less fulfilled.” I haven’t read Sasse’s book, but Will’s summary of it leaves me skeptical. How do we measure loneliness? Will notes that in the last quarter of »

Rooney moves DC United to verge of playoffs

Featured image When Wayne Rooney joined DC United this summer, some folks wondered whether he would play hard or was just in it for the pay check. Others wondered whether he had enough left to make a difference even playing hard. These people hadn’t been paying attention. Anyone familiar with Rooney’s playing career knows what a fierce competitor he is. And, as I noted here, during the 2017-18 English Premier League season, »

Jamal Khashoggi and the Washington Post

Featured image Many questions surround the apparent murder of Jamal Khashoggi. By far, the most important ones are who, exactly, is responsible and what will the U.S. do in response. Here’s another question that, although of far less importance, may be of interest: Why did the Washington Post hire Khashoggi as a contributor? David Goldman describes Khashoggi as “a top level spook who played a high-stakes game in Saudi spookdom.” Is Goldman »

Hillary is right about Monica

Featured image Over the weekend, a CBS reporter asked Hillary Clinton whether her husband should have resigned due to his affair with Monica Lewinsky. “Absolutely not,” Hillary replied. Hillary has been criticized and ridiculed for her response. And some feminists are wringing their hands over what one of them has called “the enduring Bill Clinton dilemma.” But Hillary is right. Bill Clinton should not have resigned over his affair with Lewinsky. Lewinsky »

Elizabeth Warren’s about-face on Indian gaming

Featured image That Fauxahontas thing isn’t Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s only Indian controversy. There’s also the fact that Warren, in a reversal of position, has been backing an Indian gaming bill tied to special interests. As we shall see, the two may be related. The Free Beacon reports: Democratic senator Elizabeth Warren is backing legislation that would heavily benefit a foreign gambling conglomerate and a string of special interests, despite pledging to end »

Macron’s cynical cabinet reshuffle

Featured image Emmanuel Macron is one the luckiest politicians I know of. Running as a candidate of his own party, Macron normally would have been a no-hoper in France’s 2017 presidential elections. But the Socialist Party imploded and the center-right party’s candidate was a caught in a serious scandal. Macron thus made the run-off election. There, he had the good fortune of squaring off against the vastly unpopular Marine Le Pen. Macron »

“Horseface” versus “Tiny”

Featured image The Trump presidency is built on the twin pillars of keeping America prosperous and entertained. So far he’s succeeding on both fronts. Trump’s capacity to keep the economy strong may be limited. Forces beyond any president’s control go a long way to determining our economic well being. By contrast, Trump’s capacity to entertain seems boundless. He was at it again today. Following his big court victory over Stormy Daniels, Trump »

The European reaction to Khashoggi

Featured image The mainstream media has criticized President Trump’s reaction to reports that Saudi Arabia is responsible for the disappearance and probable death of Jamal Khashoggi. Trump has said he is waiting for more facts, clearly an appropriate position to take. He has also said that if the Saudis are responsible for killing Khashoggi the U.S. response will be “severe punishment.” From the media’s perspective, this statement seems unobjectionable. At the same »

Mind games

Featured image The headline of this Washington Post article (paper edition) is “Warren dust-up shows Trump sway over Democratic contest.” A better title would substitute “minds” for “contest.” Trump certainly got in Elizabeth Warren’s head. His constant “Pocahontas” references induced her to take a DNA test, publicize its results, and thereby make herself a source of greater ridicule than before. Trump is also responsible for the fact that clownish Michael Avenatti is »

Elizabeth Warren’s “vindication”

Featured image Elizabeth Warren claims that a study of her DNA she had performed by a Stanford professor backs her claim that she’s an Indian. Sen. Warren is calling on President Trump to donate $1 million to her favorite charity, based on Trump’s statement that he would do so “if you take the test and it shows you’re an Indian.” As I read the results, however, they show that Warren is not »

The Khashoggi slaying, the anti-Trump media, and American foreign policy

Featured image The murder of Jamal Khashoggi has replaced Brett Kavanaugh’s high school days as the mainstream media’s obsession. The media attributes the murder to the Saudi Arabian government. I don’t know whether the evidence conclusively supports this view, but for purposes of this post let’s assume that responsibility lies with the Saudis. The American media calls Khashoggi a journalist, and it’s true that he contributed articles to the Washington Post. However, »

Do the Democrats have a “Latino problem”?

Featured image NBC News thinks they do, and is concerned that they may not be able to “fix it in time” for the 2018 election. NBC News frets that “party operatives and tied-in organizations in [Texas] and across the country are seeing signs — surprising to some — that many Hispanics may sit out the midterms.” This “lack of enthusiasm among Latinos has party leaders concerned that a key part of the »