Today's Standard

• July 22, 2017

Can the Senate Defund Planned Parenthood?

The Senate parliamentarian now says no. But two years ago she had a different answer.
3:50 PM, Jul 22, 2017
The Senate parliamentarian now says that the BCRA provision defunding Planned Parenthood runs afoul of what is known as the Byrd Rule. But in 2015 the same parliamentarian permitted an identical provision in a budget reconciliation bill that passed the Senate and was vetoed by President Obama. Read more

Regrets: I've Had a Few...

Hosted by Eric Felten.
11:00 AM, Jul 22, 2017
President Trump regrets having chosen Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Michael Warren joins Eric Felten to talk about what the White House thinks it can do about it. John McCormack looks at the ever-changing prospects that the Senate will do something about Obamacare. A​​nd Steve Hayward reports from California's mudslide-ravaged coastal Highway 1. Read more

Prufrock: George Strait's Long Ride, the Honest Cocktail, and Virginia Woolf on Jane Austen

9:30 AM, Jul 22, 2017
The best in books and arts from around the web, including: The drawings of the Old Masters, the problems with CRISPR, the resilience of democratic republicanism, and more. Read more

Republicans Have Overlooked Reagan's Origin Story

From the July 31, 2017, issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
8:00 AM, Jul 22, 2017
For the longest time, Reagan was dismissed as an intellectual lightweight—in part because he was a conservative and thus did not have the “proper” views. But Reagan also had a disarmingly folksy way of communicating ideas, which gave the false impression that he had not put a lot of thought into politics. This notion was dealt a heavy blow in 2001, with the publication of Reagan, In His Own Hand, an edited volume of Reagan’s writings that demonstrated the depth of his political views. Read more

Top of His Game

From the July 31, 2017, issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
7:30 AM, Jul 22, 2017
In July 2016, Roger Federer looked like he might be calling time on his illustrious career. He was 34, old for an athlete and especially so for tennis, a game in which Federer was at his best in his mid- to late 20s. His knee gave out on him in the semifinals of Wimbledon, and he announced that he would take off the rest of the year to heal. Federer was doing what he had to do, but like everyone else, he worried that the outlook was grim. Read more

Time to Break Up Amazon?

Americans have a schizophrenic attitude toward successful big businesses.
6:00 AM, Jul 22, 2017
Bigness alone has never been considered by the courts to be an evil. In the language of the Supreme Court, monopoly power that is the result of “a superior product, business acumen, or historic accident” is unobjectionable. So why are so many people calling out disruptive and innovative companies like Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Netflix. Read more

The Little Sick

From the July 31, 2017, issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
5:30 AM, Jul 22, 2017
The Big Sick is a movie about a struggling comedian from a Pakistani family and his graduate-student waif of a girlfriend. They break up. She gets a mysterious infection and is put in a medically induced coma. He must deal with her parents, who are angry with him for the way he treated her, and his own parents, who are angry that he won’t accept a Pakistani girl of their choosing. Read more

Scaramucci Day 1: 'We Are Going to Do a Lot of Winning'

Highlights of the new communication director's first press conference.
5:10 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Anthony Scaramucci clearly loves the president. Just watch. Read more

Bad News for Melissa McCarthy

Hosted by Eric Felten.
4:14 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Today on the Kristol Clear podcast, Spicer is out; Scaramucci is in. Bill Kristol talks about the latest White House shakeup. Read more

Prufrock: Netflix vs. Dickens, a Brilliant History of Special Ops, and the Popularity of 'Paradise Lost'

1:58 PM, Jul 21, 2017
The best in books and arts from around the web, including: What makes political poetry bad (and good), an alternative history of jazz, the future of physical labor, and more. Read more

Anthony Scaramucci's Greatest Hits

Take a tour through some of the new White House communications director's best moments—so far!
1:35 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Hedge fund manager and new White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci has never held a press job before. But he has repeatedly demonstrated the key qualifying characteristics: a willingness and ability to carry water for the president. Read more

Amtrak Chief Admits His Rail System Is a Financial Loser

Unique candor.
12:50 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Amtrak interim CEO Charles W. Moorman III made a rare admission for a businessman in a speech last week: His company is never going to make a profit. Read more

Priebus on Scaramucci's Hire: 'I support Anthony 100%'

Sean Spicer resigns after White House names investment banker as new communications director.
12:40 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Reince Priebus denies reports that he joined Spicer in resisting the hiring of Scaramucci, an investment baker and GOP fundraiser. Read more

Why Are Pro-Choicers Afraid of George Delgado?

The doctor claims progesterone can help reverse the effects of medical abortion if taken in time.
12:20 PM, Jul 21, 2017
Delgado is currently under the klieg lights of hostile media because, among many other general-practice services, he offers pregnant women who have started a non-surgical abortion and change their minds a few hours or days later a chance to reverse the procedure. Read more

The Great Tesla Fight

Show Notes from Substandard episode 1.36: Planet of the Apes, apocalyptic movies, a Westworld for Star Wars, and a giant fight about Tesla and driverless cars.
11:00 AM, Jul 21, 2017
If you can believe it, the thigh-high man-boots and the red banana hammock and the porn stash are only the beginning of the crazy in Zardoz. There’s a flying stone head and mind weapons and, oh, just go head and watch the trailer. You know you want to. Read more

Graham: Ending Program to Arm Anti-Assad Rebels is 'Capitulation to Russia'

Others in Congress also criticize the administration's decision to cut the CIA covert program.
9:20 AM, Jul 21, 2017
The Trump administration has seized on working with Russia to defeat the Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria, where U.S. and Russian priorities have traditionally been at odds: Russia has long insisted that Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad remain in power, while America has pushed for his ouster. Read more

So What Comes Next on Health Care?

From the July 31, 2017 issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
6:05 AM, Jul 21, 2017
The latest version of the Senate GOP’s bill to partially repeal and replace Obamacare was pronounced dead the evening of Monday, July 17, when Utah senator Mike Lee and Kansas senator Jerry Moran announced their opposition, bringing the number of “no” votes to at least four. In a Senate that Republicans control 52-48, the bill could lose only two GOP votes and still pass, and Kentucky’s Rand Paul and Maine’s Susan Collins had already come out against it. Read more

Agita in the Oval Office

From the July 31, 2017 issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
5:12 AM, Jul 21, 2017
Donald Trump is angry and frustrated with the federal investigation into Russian meddling in our election. In his view, the inquiry doesn’t just call into question the legitimacy of his election. Now he feels his own family is a target and under siege. Trump blames the highest-ranking members of his Department of Justice for this state of affairs, and he granted an interview last week to the “failing” New York Times (as he likes to call it) to complain publicly. Read more

True American Greatness

Advance editorial from the July 31, 2017, issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.
6:00 PM, Jul 20, 2017
John McCain failed to win the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, and he failed to win the general election in 2008. In 2016 Donald Trump won both the nomination and the general election in his one and only try. Trump’s conclusion from this is undoubtedly that he is a winner, and McCain a loser.

But victories and losses are transient.

 Read more

Remembering Hootie Johnson, Survivor of the Culture Wars

Johnson led Augusta National through a withering onslaught from the left.
3:50 PM, Jul 20, 2017
In 2002, a left-wing gadfly and publicist named Martha Burk wrote a letter to Johnson, noting the fact that the famously exclusive and expensive Augusta National had no female members.

If Johnson had been, say, the president of Yale, and not chairman of Augusta National, he would have moved swiftly to appease Burk and prevent what any public-relations counselor would have warned to be bad publicity. Fortunately, he did not.

 Read more