Books

Podcast: Cleveland Rocks, with Troy Senik

Featured image Move over Calvin Coolidge: Grover Cleveland has a valid claim to being regarded as the most constitutionally faithful and fiscally frugal president since the Civil War—a case made splendidly in Troy Senik’s new biography that is being published today, A Man of Iron: The Turbulent Life and Improbable Presidency of Grover Cleveland. What explains this outlier of a politician, who is so unlike Democrats before him, never mind all the »

A newer science of politics

Featured image In Modern Liberty and Its Discontents, the French political philosopher Pierre Manent praises the comprehensive understanding advanced by Aristotle in his Politics: Aristotle’s Politics gives a description and analysis of political life that in a certain way is exhaustive—in any case more complete and subtle than any subsequent description or analysis. The bringing to light of the elements of the city, the critical and impartial analysis of the claims of »

A day to be proud

Featured image I first wrote about Rick Rescorla in 2003 after finishing James Stewart’s Heart of a Soldier, the book based on Stewart’s New Yorker article “The real heroes are dead.” (“The real heroes are dead” is what Rescorla would say in response to recognition of his heroism on the battlefield in Vietnam.) It’s a good book that touches on profound themes in a thought-provoking way: life and death, love and friendship, »

Stalin’s library and mine

Featured image In his In Depth interview on C-SPAN yesterday, Steve cited Leo Strauss’s Natural Right and History as one of the books he most wanted to recommend to viewers. Watch the interview here to pick up the rest of his recommendations. Seeing the image of Strauss’s book on the screen reminded me of my own list. I thought it might make sense to reiterate it today at the beginning of another »

In Depth with Steven Hayward

Featured image Steve Hayward had his mojo working for his appearance on C-SPAN 2’s In Depth series yesterday. C-SPAN’s John McArdle interviewed Steve in a well-produced two-hour show reviewing Steve’s career and the books he has written including, most recently, M. Stanton Evans: Conservative Wit, Apostle of Freedom and Patriotism Is Not Enough: Harry Jaffa, Walter Berns, and the Arguments That Redefined American Conservatism. McArdle was well prepared with good questions. The »

Run from the Rosas

Featured image Townhall senior writer Julio Rosas scheduled a ride-along with the Minneapolis Police Department to cover the dire issues of public safety with which we are contending. Rosas is the author of Fiery But Mostly Peaceful: The 2020 Riots and the Gaslighting of America, published by DW Books this past May. Rosas caught the Saint George Floyd riots that devastated Minneapolis in 2020 and he sought to update his research. As »

Daniel Pipes: The Rushdie affair revisited

Featured image Daniel Pipes is the founder of the Middle East Forum. He literally wrote the book on the Rushdie affair: The Rushdie Affair: The Novel, The Ayatollah, and the West. I pulled it down from the bookshelf and wrote him last week following the attempted assassination of Rushdie at the Chautauqua Institution. He kindly agreed to answer my questions by email. In the exchange below I allude to his prescient tracking »

The Rushdie affair & us

Featured image Ayatollah Ruholla Khomeni was the architect of the Iranian revolution and the guiding spirit of the Iranian regime that has held sway since 1979. He was the regime’s Supreme Leader. Ayatollah Ali Khameni is his successor. Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses was published in September 1988. A few months later, on February 14, 1989, Khomeni issued a fatwa proclaiming a death sentence on Rushdie “and all those involved in »

Give Birx the works

Featured image Michael Senger read Deborah Birx’s memoir Silent Invasion: The Untold Story of the Trump Administration, Covid-19, and Preventing the Next Pandemic Before It’s Too Late so that we don’t have to. In Senger’s judgment, Birx’s book “reads like a how-to guide from the front lines of subverting a democratic superpower from within.” Given late-breaking events yesterday, I can’t declare this the quote of the day, but it deserves special attention: »

David McCullough, RIP

Featured image Today comes news of the death of historian David McCullough yesterday at the age of 89. The New York Times obituary by Daniel Lewis is here. McCullough was a popular historian who was an intense researcher with an incredible gift for narrative. I think he loved narrative history and America in roughly equal measure. The two loves made him an immensely popular popular historian — a popular historian of quality. »

Dead and Gone

Featured image We are close to the end of this song of the day series featuring Minnesota musicians, but I may indulge myself one more time tomorrow. If you have followed along, you may have noticed that I have excavated songs with an upbeat tone or feeling. In the spirit of the Inflation Reduction Act, the time has come for music in a more desperate mood. With my friend Scott Sansby I »

Churchill’s magnanimity

Featured image Churchill expert Richard Langworth is senior fellow at the Hilldale College Churchill Project. He wrote me yesterday after I cited Churchill’s comments on Stanley Baldwin in “What base ingratitude.” I said that Baldwin had tested the limits of Churchill’s magnanimity. My quotations from Churchill suggested that Baldwin had exceeded the limits. Mr. Langworth wrote to let me know that he had “a further refinement on that[.]” In “Churchill’s Magnanimity: Stanley »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll has an important message for her readers and those of her husband as well in BLESSED WITH ALL THIS LIFE. She writes: Sometimes, when the President of the Free World has just announced that he has cancer which was brought on by an oily windshield when he was a lad in Delaware, where he moved from Scranton when he was 10, it can get a person down. Oh, »

COVID’s Greatest Victim: Hong Kong

Featured image Before COVID arrived, there were mass protests in Hong Kong over the ChiComms in Beijing repudiating their promise to respect Hong Hong’s democracy for 50 years following the 1997 handover. Dissidents were being arrested and jailed (Jimmy Lai is still in jail), and free elections canceled. Once COVID hit and lockdown started, any chance of mass mobilization dried up. There wouldn’t even be a chance for a Tiananman Square moment. »

Via Meadia

Featured image The Wall Street Journal’s Global View columnist Walter Russell Mead wrote an excellent column for us on his interest in the subject of his new book, The Arc of a Covenant: The United States, Israel, and the Fate of the Jewish People. Having spoken with Walter in his office in 2015, I vividly remember his discussion of American attitudes toward the Middle East. He was finishing God and Gold: Britain, »

Walter Russell Mead: The Arc of a Covenant

Featured image Walter Russell Mead is the James Clarke Chace Professor of Foreign Affairs and Humanities at Bard College and the Wall Street Journal’s Global View columnist. He is the author of Special Providence: American Foreign Policy and How It Changed the World (2002), perhaps the most important foreign policy book of the past 25 years, and, most recently, The Arc of a Covenant: The United States, Israel, and the Fate of »

Getting Right With Burke

Featured image Listeners to the 3WHH podcast will know that “Lucretia” and I have long divided on the question of Edmund Burke. To paraphrase something William F. Buckley once said about Harry Jaffa, if you think it is difficult to argue with Lucretia, just try agreeing with her—it’s nearly impossible. Back in our grad school days we liked to make fun of the leftist pop psychology popular at the time that everything »