Books

Never enough, Yale edition

Featured image Wherever craven liberal authorities hold sway, the quest to bring our past into conformity with the wave of our totalitarian leftist future continues with token resistance, it any at all. Yale University presents a useful case in point. At NRO Kyle Smith notes that “Yale’s determination to take a giant jar of Wite-Out to history has reached a new level of fatuousness.” Smith points to the Yale Alumni Magazine report »

The Liberal Crackup

Featured image The Wall Street Journal ran an excerpt from Mark Lilla’s new book, The Once and Future Liberal, coming out on Tuesday that we mentioned here yesterday. Here’s a link to the whole piece if you are a WSJ subscriber, but if not here are two of the better paragraphs in it: As a teacher, I am increasingly struck by a difference between my conservative and progressive students. Contrary to the stereotype, »

Coming: Lilla-Livered Liberalism?

Featured image When I see things like the meltdown at Google or any of the various campus disgraces that can be mentioned, I like to ask: “When are liberals going to defend liberalism?” One liberal who is standing up for liberalism is Mark Lilla of Columbia University. As noted here back in November, Lilla wrote an op-ed for the New York Times criticizing the Democratic Party’s reliance on identity politics. For this, »

CRB: War without end

Featured image This morning we continue our preview of the new issue of the Claremont Review of Books. Thanks to our friends at the Claremont Institute, I read the new issue in galley to select three pieces to be submitted for the consideration of Power Line readers. As always, wanting to do right by the magazine and by our readers, I had a hard time choosing. You, however, can do your own »

CRB: More justice, less crime

Featured image The new (Summer) issue of the Claremont Review of Books is in the mail. Thanks to our friends at the Claremont Institute, I have read the new issue in galley to select three pieces to be submitted for the consideration of Power Line readers. As always, wanting to do right by the magazine and by our readers, I had a hard time choosing. You, however, can do your own choosing »

When Bush begged the Times

Featured image Yesterday in “Is the Times a law unto itself?” I wrote that President Bush begged then New York Times managing editor Bill Keller not to publish the Pulitzer Prize-winning story by James Risen and Eric Lichtblau disclosing the existence of the National Security Agency’s Terrorist Surveillance Program (TSP). Bush made his plea at a meeting with Keller, Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger, Jr. and then Times Washington bureau chief Philip Taubman »

Faith of his fathers

Featured image Despite whatever political disagreements I have had with Senator McCain over the years, I am deeply saddened by the news that he is contending with an aggressive form of brain cancer. I found the occasions on which I have spent time in his company to be a personal highlight. He is an American original. We extend prayers on behalf of him and his family. In 2008 when Senator McCain was »

When You’ve Lost Rick Perlstein . . .

Featured image I offered a long reflection here the other day on what is shaping up as the most scandalously bad book since Michael Bellesiles’s fraudulent Arming America—Nancy MacLean’s Democracy in Chains. I decided to get a copy for myself (despite complaining that the criticism of the book is yet another Koch-directed conspiracy, MacLean must be delighted that the controversy is juicing sales), and there is literally a howler on every page. »

The Scandal of the Liberal Mind

Featured image Some years ago the evangelical scholar Mark Noll wrote an influential book titled The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind. It was a critique of the lack of intellectual seriousness and depth among his fellow evangelicals, and a clarion call to for evangelical thinkers to step up their game. Christianity Today named it the “Book of the Year” in 1994, and it provoked far-reaching and long-lasting discussion among evangelicals. I wonder »

Trump: The West’s Suicide Hotline?

Featured image I join John in utter amazement (though not surprise) about the left’s freak out over Donald Trump’s defense of the West in his terrific Warsaw speech. From the reaction John and others have highlighted, you’d have thought Trump had called Russia an “evil empire” or something. (Heh.) I hope Trump continues this theme, and provides the left with more beclowning opportunities. If this keeps up Trump is going to carry »

Patriotism, Next Week in Washington

Featured image Carson Holloway, who for some inexplicable reason I don’t know and have never met, has a very nice long review of my book Patriotism Is Not Enough over at Public Discourse. I’m stunned that someone I have not bribed captures the action and intent of the book so fully: Hayward, however, writes here for a more popular audience of thoughtful citizens, offering them an accessible account of the questions that »

The administrative threat revisited

Featured image At the RealClearPolicy site, editor M. Anthony Mills has posted a good summary of Professor Philip Hamburger’s critique of the administrative state — the regime of administrative law promulgated and administered by administrative agencies — set forth this year in the inspired Encounter Books pamphlet The Administrative Threat. I recently noted Professor Hamburger’s pamphlet here. I wrote about Professor Hamburger’s great work of scholarship on the subject — Is Administrative »

The romance of Soviet stooges

Featured image Vivian Gornick is the author of the 1979 book titled The Romance of Communism. It’s a romance with which many readers of the New York Times are familiar even if the thought of it is revolting to anyone who knows the relevant history. Earlier this year in anticipation of May Day the Times turned over valuable real estate in its Sunday Review section to Gornick to celebrate the time “When »

How to read Herman Wouk

Featured image Yesterday CBS News profiled author Herman Wouk at the ripe old age of 102. The cluelessness of the CBS correspondent made the interview uncomfortable viewing, but it reminded me that I had meant to draw attention to the essay by Williams College Professor Michael Lewis about Wouk. This Michael Lewis, I should add, is Faison-Pierson-Stoddard Professor of Art History at Williams College, not the popular journalist and author. Published in »

Recalling Max Eastman

Featured image I often grab an old, forgotten book to take with me on overseas trips, and for my current trip I grabbed Max Eastman’s Reflections on the Failure of Socialism. Eastman is one of those mostly forgotten figures from the first half of the 20th century who left Communism and became a conservative of a kind. Eastman had been, for a time, the editor of The Masses, and later The Liberator—both »

Bureaucracy in America

Featured image I have been threatening for a few years now to write a book with the title Bureaucracy in America, which would attempt to do for our administrative state what Tocqueville’s Democracy in America did in the 19th century—explain the deeper cultural and philosophical aspects of the practice of American democracy. For it is Tocqueville who offers the preface to a serious reconsideration of our administrative state today, in his famous »

The administrative threat

Featured image Researching the constitutionality of the regime of administrative law, I came across a notice early in 2014 that Philip Hamburger’s Is Administrative Law Unlawful? was forthcoming in hardcover from the University of Chicago Press (it’s now available in paperback). “The audacity of hope” had nothing on the audacity of Hamburger. Indeed, the audacity of Hamburger was a cure for the audacity of hope. The question he posed in the title »