WASHINGTON -- In 1994, Lindsey Graham, then a 39-year-old South Carolina legislator, ran for Congress in a district that he said had not elected a Republican since Union guns made it do so during Reconstruction. He promised that in Washington he would be "one less vote for an agenda that makes you want to throw up." He was elected to the Senate ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Smoking, said King James I in 1604, is "loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, dangerous to the lungs." Three years later he planted a colony in Jamestown. Its tobacco enhanced the royal treasury until Virginia produced a bumper crop of revolutionaries, including the tobacco farmer George Washington.
WASHINGTON -- In oral arguments Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear the government defend its kleptocratic behavior while administering an indefensible law. The Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 is among the measures by which New Dealers tried and failed to regulate and mandate America back to prosperity. Seventy-eight years later,...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Syracuse University alumni are new additions to the lengthening list of persons who can stop contributing to their alma maters. The university has succumbed -- after, one suspects, not much agonizing -- to the temptation to indulge in progressive gestures. It will divest all fossil fuel stocks from its endowment. It thereby trumps ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Next week brings a constitutional moment illustrating a paradox of Barack Obama's presidency. The catalyst of the drama is legislation proposed by Sen. Bob Corker, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, asserting Congress' foreign policy responsibilities and prerogatives. The paradox is this:
Obama's disdain for ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- What began as a trickle has become a stream that could become a cleansing torrent. Criticisms of the overcriminalization of American life might catalyze an appreciation of the toll the administrative state is taking on the criminal justice system, and liberty generally.
In 2007, professor Tim Wu of Columbia Law School recounted a ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Visiting a struggling pitcher on the mound, Baltimore Orioles manager Earl Weaver advised, "If you know how to cheat, start now." Be advised that Googling is cheating as you try to identify:
(1) The player who compiled at least 400 total bases in five different seasons (no one else did it in four).
(2) Which three players hit 500...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was born in 1970, six years after events refuted a theory on which he is wagering his candidacy. The 1964 theory was that many millions of conservatives abstained from voting because the GOP did not nominate sufficiently deep-dyed conservatives. So if in 1964 the party would choose someone like Arizona Sen. ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- An abscess of anger seems to gnaw at Hillary Clinton, but the reasons for her resentments remain unclear. The world's oldest party, which governed the nation during two world wars and is the primary architect of America's regulatory and redistributive state, is eager to give her its presidential nomination, in recognition of ... ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Every day the Chinese go to work, Americans get a raise: Chinese workers, many earning each day about what Americans spend on a Starbucks latte, produce apparel, appliances and other stuff cheaply, thereby enlarging Americans' disposable income. Americans similarly get a raise when they shop at the stores that made Sam Walton a ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- The rate of dog ownership is rising ominously. How can a profusion of puppies be worrisome? A report from the Raymond James financial services firm concerning trends in the housing market explains: Increasing numbers of women "are adopting dogs for security and/or companionship," partly because of "the great education divide."
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ideas fly from Gov. John Kasich like sparks from a flint. While explaining his prison reforms, he interrupts himself midsentence -- his sentences, like some E. E. Cummings poems, are unpunctuated -- to praise a Delaware church that buys prom dresses for low-income high school girls. His spirit would add spice and his policies ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- In the mid-1960s, a social scientist noted something ominous that came to be called "Moynihan's Scissors": Two lines on a graph crossed, replicating a scissors' blades. The descending line charted the decline in the minority male unemployment rate. The ascending line charted the simultaneous rise of new welfare cases.
The broken ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Conservatives' next disappointment will at least be a validation. The coming reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank will confirm their warnings about the difficulty of prying the government's tentacles off what should be society's private sphere.
The bank, which exists to allocate credit by criteria other than the market's ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Michael Froman received from a Harvard Law School classmate, Barack Obama, a job that validates the axiom that the unlikelihood of any negotiation reaching agreement grows by the square of the number of parties involved. In trade negotiations, even one's own country is troublesome, as the catfish conundrum illustrates. And the ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Rep. Peter Roskam is now chairman of the Ways and Means subcommittee whose jurisdiction includes oversight of the Internal Revenue Service, and hence of Lois Lerner's legacy. He knows how interesting her career was before she, as head of the IRS exempt-organizations division, directed the suppression of conservative advocacy ...Read more
CHICAGO -- The most portentous election of 2014, which gave the worst-governed state its first Republican governor in 12 years, has initiated this century's most intriguing political experiment. Illinois has favored Democratic presidential candidates by an average of 16 points in the last six elections. But by electing businessman Bruce Rauner, ...Read more
"We're here today because we all understand that in dealing with violent extremism, that we need answers that go beyond a military answer. We need answers that go beyond force."
-- Vice President Joe Biden at the Countering Violent Extremism Summit, Feb. 17
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration's semantic somersaults to avoid attaching the ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Americans, a litigious people, believe that rules for coping with messy reality can be written in tidy legal language. This belief will be tested by the debate that will resume when Congress returns from a recess it should not have taken, with a war to authorize. The debate concerns an Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF)...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Barack Obama's tone of mild exasperation when tutoring the public often makes his pronouncements grating even when they are sensible. As was his recent suggestion that Americans, misled by media, are exaggerating the threat of terrorism.
The world might currently seem unusually disorderly, but it can be so without being unusually ...Read more