Great Britain

Gaffe machine Biden strikes again

Featured image Yesterday, Joe Biden claimed that 14 foreign leaders have called him to “voice concern” about President Trump. Among the 14, he said, was Margaret Thatcher. Lady Thatcher died in 2013, thus missing out on the Trump presidency. Biden then corrected himself, saying that he was actually referring to current British Prime Minister Theresa May. He called his mistake a “Freudian slip.” Freudian? Maybe. Both are female authority figures (though May’s »

Maggie, 40 Years On

Featured image Today is the 40th anniversary of the election of Margaret Thatcher as the first female prime minister of Great Britain—a precursor of the election the following year of Ronald Reagan. Before her arrival many people thought England’s long, slow postwar decline was irreversible.  “Britain is becoming a third world country . . . an offshore industrial slum,” Economist magazine correspondent Robert Moss wrote in 1977. Daniel Yergin and Joseph Stanislaw recall in »

“Green” Energy Policies Hurt the Environment, Another Case Study

Featured image Britain has a fracking industry–or could have one, anyway, if it weren’t for the Greens’ political clout. It finally became too much for Natascha Engel, Britain’s “fracking czar,” who quit with a blistering letter of resignation: Natascha Engel’s decision to walk away from such a high-profile role is driven, she says, by her dismay that Ministers are jeopardising Britain’s energy security because they would rather appease noisy green campaigners than »

Brexit, The Musical

Featured image We have Hamilton, the musical, but the British now have its, um, very rough (strong language warning!) equivalent about Brexit. I think the continuing clown show within the British government over Brexit is one of the key stories of our time, and the outcome, like the 2016 vote itself, contains significant meaning for the United States, for the question of Brexit is the same as the question with Trump: Are »

Seven MPs quit Labour Party over anti-Semitism

Featured image Yesterday, seven members of Parliament left Britian’s Labour Party. They will remain in Parliament as an independent bloc. The Washington Post has the details. The leader of Britain’s small Liberal Democrat party said he hoped to work with this bloc. He also suggested that it might grow in the near future. The seven MPs cited several areas of disagreement with the direction of the Labour Party under its radical head, »

A Reminder of Better Times and Better Leaders

Featured image Is it purely a coincidence that the governments of Britain, France, and Germany are all in deep trouble? Both Theresa May and Emmanuel Macron may not survive the week, and Angela Merkel is testing just how long a lame duck period is possible. Gee—I wonder what they have in common? It’s a total mystery. (NB: Theresa May and the Tories would likely already be gone were it not for the »

Back in the Saddle

Featured image We returned last night from 11 days of vacation in England, so normal posting will resume as soon as I have had a chance to catch up on the news. In particular, I need to figure out how the Democrats plan to impeach President Trump on the ground that he used his own money as consideration for a nondisclosure agreement with Stormy Danials (and, I take it, one other woman). »

The Power Line Show, Ep. 91: The Deep End of the (Lord) Liverpool

Featured image This week the Power Line Show takes a break from the All-Kavanaugh-All-the-Time format of recent weeks, and sits down with historian William Anthony Hay, author of a brand new biography of Robert Banks Jenkinson. What? You’ve never heard of Robert Banks Jenkinson? You might recognize him better by his “stage name,” Lord Liverpool, Prime Minister of Great Britain from 1812-1827, during the windup of the Napoleonic wars and the War »

Theresa May’s Brilliant Brexit Strategy?

Featured image I really hate to pick on British Prime Minister Theresa May, though it does seem evident that she’s totally botched the Brexit negotiations. I noted here several weeks ago that it is a good thing that May is a politician, because she obviously will never make it on “Dancing with the Stars,” and this week as if to prove the point her own party set her up for a another »

Ring Rees-Mogg

Featured image Over the weekend I finally finished reading Dominic Green’s long Weekly Standard profile of Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Tory backbencher and serious Brexiteer. I learned a lot from reading Green’s profile, but what kept me going was the sheer entertainment of the thing. Wanting to hear what Rees-Mogg sounds like, I tracked down the highlight reel below on YouTube. I can’t get enough of it. Fortunately, it’s only part 1 of »

English Sports for the Non-English

Featured image Some years ago, during a leisure hour (or three) in a British pub up in Yorkshire, I asked an English acquaintance if he could explain Cricket to me. He paused a moment, and said, “No—I can’t.” And so I never have figured out anything about that peculiar game. Which is preface to this brilliantly done five-minute parody of British sports. Well worth your time: »

Europe: Things Fall Apart

Featured image German Chancellor Angela Merkel is hanging on by her fingernails in Germany right now, as the backlash against migrants reached a critical mass in recent weeks. The cabinet minister who confronted Merkel and forced immigration concessions, Horst Seehofer of the “conservative” CSU party based chiefly in Bavaria, has seen his own poll ratings collapse in the aftermath of the political crisis. But this is just as likely to be the »

Ban Cutlery Now! (2)

Featured image We noted here a few weeks ago how London, which has no guns but somehow still has achieved a higher murder rate than New York City, is trying to ban knives because of an epidemic of knife violence. The London Times reported Sunday that the problem of knife violence is actually worse outside of London: The Sunday Times disclosed last month that London’s murder rate had overtaken New York’s in »

Ban Cutlery Now!

Featured image Sometimes news items come across the transom that require little analysis or commentary. Like this story out of London a few hours ago: Five teenagers and one man have been stabbed in London within the space of 90 minutes amid a surge in knife and gun violence in the capital. It was recently reported that London now has a higher murder rate than New York City. And I thought Britain had »

What is to be done?

Featured image Russia’s attempted murder of former Russian spy Serge Skripal and his daughter Yulia on British soil is an act of war, isn’t it? Austin Bay takes up the question here. I take it that if it’s not, it may be close enough for government work. Someone remind me. What did President Obama do about Iran’s attempted assassination of the Saudi ambassador to the United States in Washington, DC. Whatever it »

Crisis of the chicken undivided

Featured image It’s a story that seems redolent of a dreary bygone era in British history. The United Kingdom is in the throes of “an ongoing chicken shortage.” The shortage is attributed by someone who isn’t feeling the pain to “a hiccup in the supply chain.” The shortage is serious. It has closed the doors at half the KFC outlets in the country f/k/a Great Britain. They have a crisis on their »

The Sex Harassment Scandal Goes International

Featured image The elevation of sexual harassment to the pole position of current media-political concern may have actually begun overseas before it snowballed here with l’affaire Weinstein. I didn’t follow the story closely, but I do recall a few years ago that the prominent and beloved television host Jimmy Savile over in the UK was revealed to have been a Weinstein-scale pedophile of long standing—sort of a Brit version of Charlie Rose »