Books

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll announces GOOD ORAL HYGIENE & OTHER GOOD NEWS. She writes: In an amazing coincidence, I was having MY teeth cleaned the same week as Beto O’Rourke! Dental Mania! I did not think to livestream the event for my tens of fans. My hygienist is Laura, not Diana, like Beto’s. And I knew you’d want to know that. By the way, my actual real middle name is Marie, so »

William Shawcross: Let Kissinger speak

Featured image William Shawcross is the distinguished journalist and author of many interesting books. His father, Sir Hartley Shawcross, served as Great Britain’s Chief Prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial. When Winston Churchill himself needed a lawyer after the war, he turned to Sir Hartley. Those of us of a certain age are probably most familiar with William Shawcross from his book Sideshow: Kissinger, Nixon, and the Destruction of Cambodia. Originally »

Understanding Alice Walker (& the Times), cont’d

Featured image I wrote about Alice Walker’s New York Times Book Review interview and Book Review editor Pamela Paul’s response to criticism raised by it here. Richard Cohen devotes his Washington Post column to the subject and does a better job getting at the heart of Pamela Paul’s neurasthenic comments than I did. He gives a careful reading to what Paul had to say and finds it wanting. He concludes: The tone »

Watergate revisited: A footnote

Featured image Last month I took a look back at the Watergate scandal in “Watergate revisited.” I am afraid we will have more occasions to chew on the subject in the coming year. At the moment, I want only to add this footnote. The best book I know of to review our current state of knowledge of the scandal is James Rosen’s The Strong Man: John Mitchell and the Secrets of Watergate »

Understanding Alice Walker (& the Times)

Featured image I subscribe to the New York Times Books Briefing (an email newsletter). In today’s email from Times Book Review editor Pamela Paul there is this drily stated bullet point: • Alice Walker recommended an anti-Semitic book in the Book Review’s By the Book column. In the face of public outcry, she defended her choice. You may have read about Walker’s book recommendation last week. Turning to the article linked in »

Jean Gabin, the Actor who was France

Featured image A few months ago, I wrote about the long and winding career of French actor Marcel Dalio. He’s best known for his role in “La Grande Illusion” (1937) in which he plays a wealthy French Jew prisoner of war (World War I), alongside Captain de Boeldieu, an aristocrat, and Lieutenant Maréchal, a working-class mechanic who serves as a stand-in for the ordinary Frenchman. Maréchal is played by Jean Gabin. He »

Starting To Do Your Christmas Shopping?

Featured image If, like me, you are just beginning to think about what to get friends and family for Christmas–or, equally, if you are almost done shopping and are looking for the last perfect gift–here is an idea: Ammo Grrrll’s compendium of her Power Line columns, plus brand new material, available at Amazon as Ammo Grrrll Hits The Target: A Humorist’s Friday Columns From Power Line (Volume 1). Volume 1 covers Ammo »

Attn: Shoppers—The Perfect Stocking Stuffer!

Featured image Looking for the perfect gift for that hard-to-shop for person? Well, this may not be the perfect gift, but tomorrow Encounter Books will release—just in time for Christmas stockings!—the paperback edition of Patriotism Is Not Enough, available on Amazon at the bargain price of just $11.59 ($5.50 off the cover price). The paperback edition features an all new preface. Because I finished writing the book before Trump was even nominated, let »

A Whitaker Chambers Xmas revisited

Featured image A friend asked me to recommend a book about Whittaker Chambers as a Christmas gift for her smartly conservative daughter a few years ago. Chambers stands at the center of an incredible drama and several fantastic books that I know of about him. There is still much to be learned from him and his case. I want to revisit and expand the list this year with a little help from »

The Power Line Show, Ep. 100: Historians in Cars—Andrew Roberts on History and Churchill

Featured image Many of you have likely seen or heard of Jerry Seinfeld’s video series “Comedians in Cars,” and for this episode of the Power Line Show I decided to emulate it with “Historians in Cars.” But not just any historian. I got to take the great Andrew Roberts for a car ride in the Bay Area this week. (Thanks to those Power Line readers who braved the lunacy of the Berkeley »

Happy Birthday, Sir Winston!

Featured image Today is Winston Churchill’s 144th birthday, though any day is worthy of recalling what I have taken to using with students on the first day of my seminar on political leadership—Leo Strauss’s famous eulogy to Churchill in the classroom at Chicago: The death of Churchill is a healthy reminder to students of political science of their limitations, the limitations of their craft. The tyrant stood at the pinnacle of his »

The virtue of nationalism

Featured image President Trump came under the usual hyperbolic assaults a few weeks ago for defending the virtue of nationalism. As it happens, Yoram Hazony is the author, most recently, of a new book by that name (i.e., The Virtue of Nationalism). He is a conservative and, I think, one of Israel’s leading public intellectuals. If not the latter, he is certainly one of Israel’s leading lights. Taking up the theme of »

What’s This? The NY Times Likes Churchill Again?

Featured image I have commented frequently here and elsewhere that liberals used to love Winston Churchill, while conservatives were often lukewarm at best. (Read William F. Buckley Jr’s caustic obituary of Churchill, for example.) He was praised to the skies by Arthur Schlesinger, Isaiah Berlin, and especially John F. Kennedy. Yet the furies of leftist political correctness now require that Churchill be denounced. Time magazine, which named Churchill its “Man of the »

CRB: The way we hate now

Featured image This week we have previewed three stellar reviews from the new (Fall) of the Claremont Review of Books (subscribe here). These outstanding reviews have given us the lowdown on new biographies of Lenin, Stalin, Wilson and de Gaulle. Forgive me for repeating myself: it is an invaluable magazine for those of us who love trustworthy essays on, and reviews of books about, politics, history, literature and culture. Now think back »

CRB: A certain idea of France

Featured image In the third installment of our preview of the new (Fall) issue of the Claremont Review of Books (subscribe here), Angelo Codevilla reviews Julian Jackson’s new one-volume biography of Charles de Gaulle. De Gaulle was one of the great men of our time. As Professor Codevilla writes: Charles de Gaulle famously said of Henri Petain—the French Army’s savior in the Great War who then betrayed his country to the Nazis »

Florida Recounts Are Going Nowhere

Featured image That’s what history tells us, anyway. Scott Rasmussen, at his new web site ScottRasmussen.com, offers some reassuring facts: From 2000 to 2016, there were a total of 4,687 statewide elections in the United States, and 26 of them have been close enough to require a recount. Three of those recounts overturned the results declared on election night: a 2004 governor’s race in Washington, a 2006 state auditor’s race in Vermont, »

CRB: The great resenter

Featured image We continue our preview of the new (Fall) issue of the Claremont Review of Books hot off the press. It went to the printer on Monday and should be in the mail to subscribers now. Buy an annual subscription including immediate online access here for the modest price of $19.95. It is an invaluable magazine for those of us who love trustworthy essays on, and reviews of books about, politics, »