Mark Hemingway is a Senior Writer for The Weekly Standard. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, MTV.com, Reason and numerous other publications. Prior to joining The Weekly Standard, he worked at The Washington Examiner, National Review, Market News International, and USA Today. He has appeared on C-Span's "Washington Journal", CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and National Public Radio's "All Things Considered'. He was the recipient of a Gold Award journalism fellowship from the Phillips Foundation in 2003 and was a Global Prosperity Initiative fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University in 2003 and 2004. Originally from Bend, Oregon, he now lives in Alexandria, Virginia with his wife Mollie Ziegler Hemingway and two daughters.
There was a bit of a dust-up between the Cruz and Carson campaigns in Iowa. On caucus night, Cruz's campaign sent out a message to supporters telling them that "CNN is reporting Ben Carson will stop campaigning after Iowa" and urging them to tell other caucusgoers this news, and it soon spread from there. This, of course, made it sound as if Ben Carson was dropping out. The Carson campaign was understandably peeved, and Cruz publicly apologized for his campaign soon after Iowa.
At the debate Saturday, Cruz was again asked about the incident and he again apologized but also took the opportunity to explain what had happened.Read more
Megyn Kelly is a good looking woman. I don't say this to objectify her, I say it because I have eyes. While it would be absurd not to notice this, that doesn't take away from the fact that she's certainly a capable broadcast journalist. I would not want to be in the position of having to answer questions from her if I had something to hide.
Anyway, she did a fine job moderating the debate last night. But a lot of people were commenting on the fact she was wearing some very large fake eyelashes. Including me, sitting on my couch, opining on Twitter:
I'm worried Megyn Kelly's eyelashes are going to stab me through the TV.Read more
Harmony Daws was recently appointed president of the Oregon Right to Life board of directors. She works at a cleaning business in Portland, and informed her boss of her new position. Her boss did not take it well:
After that conversation, her boss came to her again and told her to never mention her pro-life work. Harmony agreed, mentioning that it had only come up in their conversation as friends, having worked together for four years. Her employer was cold and distant for the following week and a half. Then last Friday, she fired Harmony for "discrimination" and for Harmony's beliefs that she saw online, apparently including her blog and the ORTL website.Read more
In the New York Times, Margot Sanger-Katz kicks the tires on Bernie Sanders’s just released health care plan and the details, or rather the lackthereof, are not encouraging:
The plan, released two hours before Sunday night's Democratic debate, was full of details about the taxes that would be collected to finance it. The plan would charge a special income tax, called a premium, increase payroll taxes and raise a variety of taxes on high-income Americans, including income and capital gains taxes.
Missing, however, were more than a few sentences about how the proposal would change the health care system in the United States.
On Wednesday, I noted that the New York Times had heaped a lot of favorable coverage upon New Yorker writer Jane Mayer’s new book on the Koch brothers, despite the fact that the coverage was unfair to the Kochs and failed to disclose that Mayer is the wife of the Times's Washington editor. Well, the Times may want to take a closer look at whether Mayer's connection to the paper is a good thing. Among the Hillary Clinton emails released by the State Department is this one:
Just as a quick reminder, Sidney Blumenthal is a particularly odious creature of Washington. During Hillary Clinton's tenure at the State Department, he advised her on Libya strategy, even though he was engaged in a shady war profiteering scheme in thatRead more
In 2011, Jane Mayer of the New Yorker published, "Covert Operations," an article that purported to "expose" the well-known fact the Koch Brothers were financially supporting a lot of libertarian and conservative causes. The trouble is, the article had some pretty serious factual problems and misrepresentations. (For more on that, see here, here, and here.) Nonetheless, despite being unfair and misleading, the article made a splash and succeeded in turning the Koch Brothers into public enemy one as far as Democrats and liberals were concerned.Read more
East of the Cascade Mountains, Oregon is largely bitterbrush and high desert. Virtually no one lives there, and compared with the populous and rainy Willamette Valley to the west, agriculture is difficult. Unless you’re from the area—I was raised there—it's hard to appreciate the sense of space, let alone understand the hotly contested land dispute between the federal government and ranchers-turned-militiamen who have occupied a federal building in Burns, Oregon.
Most people on the East Coast have no idea how much land the federal government controls out west. Over half of Oregon is under federal control, and that proportion is much higher in eastern Oregon. (Although it could be worse: The federal governmentRead more
Earlier this week, it made news that "Bringing Peace, Security to Syria" was listed as one of the top achievements in 2015 by the Obama State Department. If this is what peace and security in Syria look like, I’d hate to see the hellish charnel house the region would have to become for the State Department to admit it's chaos.
This bizarre messaging reminded me of another bit of news that came out of the White House recently: Obama gave the Medal of Freedom to Barbra Streisand. While ISIS and The Prince of Tides both fall under the heading of "things I dislike intensely," I will try and explain more precisely why these two things are related.
Streisand hasn't exactly been a pop culture fixture over the lastRead more
Last Thursday, Attorney General Eric Holder was called to testify before Congress. His attitude toward his questioners was by any measure unbecoming of his office. At one point he actually demanded he be “given some credit” for his performance as attorney general. Though, bad as that outburst was, it was slightly less petulant than the earlier insinuation that his critics are racist.
One hopes Holder isn’t expecting kudos for his handling of the Fast and Furious scandal—the reason forRead more
A federal judge has ruled that the state of Utah can cut off funds to Planned Parenthood, reversing an earlier decision requiring the state to keep funding the abortion provider.
Utah cut off funds to Planned Parenthood after undercover videos from the Center for Medical Progress showed the organization negotiating to sell tissue from aborted fetuses. Planned Parenthood later revised its policy to stop receiving reimbursements for fetal tissue in the wake of the release of the videos.
Planned Parenthood sued Utah for cutting off state funds, resulting in a temporary restraining order to keep funding the organization on the grounds that abortion is a constitutional right. Tuesday's ruling by U.S.Read more
Throughout the debate over the Iran nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the Obama administration insisted that its approach to brokering a deal with the mullahs is guided by a simple principle: "verification, not trust." Of course, by the time a deal was struck the Obama administration had given away the store, so there was precious little left to verify. Recall that prior to the negotiations, the White House position was that Iran's entire nuclear weapons program should be dismantled, centrifuges and all. Well, that didn't happen. Then the administration promised Iran would have to submit to "anytime, anywhere" inspections of their nuclear facilities. Somehow that evolved into letting IranRead more
Via Commentary's Noah Rothman, I see The New York Times is up with a feature on Florida senator and presidential candidate Marco Rubio's new television ad airing in New Hampshire and Iowa. In the middle of describing the ad, the article contains this gem:
Mr. Rubio's contention that Mr. Obama has been "humiliated by Putin, Iran and Islamic jihadists" would surely draw objections from many, not least the president himself, who says that his nuclear deal will prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, and that the United States-led military effort is hitting the Islamic State "harder than ever.
Some shocking results from the latest New York Times poll:
For first time in 20 yrs of @nytimes poll, a majority of Americans opposes ban on assault weapons pic.twitter.com/xosjHoDNTi— Patrick J. Egan (@Patrick_J_Egan) December 11, 2015
It seems that President Obama's call for an assault weapons ban in his recent Oval Office address and the New York Times's front page editorial advocating that Americans be made to give up their guns had a significant impact on influencing public opinion -- just not in the way that they had hoped.Read more
On December 7, Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced a federal investigation of the Chicago police department. Recent history shows that the Obama Department of Justice cannot be counted on to perform a competent investigation, but at least this particular inquiry is not without cause. The city has earned the nickname "Chiraq," because by international standards, certain Chicago neighborhoods have some of the highest murder rates anywhere in the world. Even as the city has become an abattoir, police have been routinely abusive—a series of troubling investigations suggests the police were operating a "black site" out of an off-the-books warehouse where cops were holding and interrogating suspects without due process.Read more
The New York Times has a short article today that seems primed to cause maximum alarm, headlined, "Jeb Bush's Tax Plan Would Cause $8.1 Trillion Budget Hole, Analysis Finds."
I've read the article, and while it deals with the potential problems and fallout from Jeb Bush creating such a big revenue shortage, its says virtually nothing about how this analysis from the Tax Policy Center was done:
This new analysis tries to shed some more light on those questions with the help of a complex model. The Tax Policy Center found bigger revenue losses ($6.8 trillion) than a conservative Tax Foundation analysis and smaller than one by the more liberal Citizens for Tax Justice. That $6.Read more
I remain perplexed by the current "debate" over gun laws. After President Obama's speech on Sunday, a great many pundits seemed to have raced forward with evaluating the political considerations of pitching new gun control laws for 2016. However, it seems to me that the logical and rhetorical considerations must be dealt with first.
Indeed, the arguments being mounted in favor of gun control are so terrible every way you look at them that assuming the people making them are being honest or rationally motivated seems to be a major mistake. Here's stab at a of taxonomy of the problems:
The president, and many other national Democratic leaders, are uniting behind a proposal to prevent people who are onRead more
Ahmed Mohamed, the 15 year-old Muslim kid who was invited to the White House after he was arrested for bringing a clock that he allegedly built to school, has filed a $15 million lawsuit:
The son of Sudanese immigrants who lived in a Dallas suburb, the young robotics fan brought in a homemade clock to impress a new teacher at MacArthur High School.Read more
The Associated Press is running with a rather tendentious headline at the moment, "AP FACT CHECK: On climate science, most GOP candidates fail." For their fact check, the AP asked a group of Ph.D. scientists to grade presidential candidates based on their statements about global warming. To keep this supposedly unbiased, they didn't tell the scientists which statements were from which candidate.Read more
For decades, the American university system has been creeping towards both moral and intellectual bankruptcy. But the events last week at Yale and the University of Missouri suggest we are reaching a tipping point, and that campus culture is transitioning from painfully idiotic to wantonly destructive. Even at the height of the Vietnam war protests, administrators endeavored, with varying degrees of success, to keep the inmates from running the asylum.Read more
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