Reader. Writer. Thinker. Commentator. Truth Seeker.

On North Korea Distrust and Verify

For The Federalist I prepared a quick analysis of the political and policy implications of the forthcoming U.S. – North Korea summit.

As I note in the piece, America must define what is in its national interest in North Korea, and have an understanding as to the regime’s ultimate goal.

Few have raised outgoing Pacific Commander Admiral Harry Harris’ view, in spite of his experience leading America’s forces in the region: That North Korea desires to reunify Korea under Communist rule, contrary to the conventional wisdom that Kim Jong-un’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles are solely about ensuring his regime’s survival.

Adm. Harris’ ignored perspective squares perfectly with what Kim Jong-il indicated in his purported last will and testament.

In fact, virtually all of Kim Jong-un’s actions have tracked perfectly with what his father allegedly counseled.

Read my take on the forthcoming talks here.

My Interview with Instapundit on ‘The Judiciary’s Class War’

For Encounter Books, I recently interviewed the incomparable Glenn Harlan Reynolds (aka Instapundit) on his new broadside The Judiciary’s Class War.

This broadside cleverly ties together the cultural and political divide in America between elites and Deplorables — or as Reynolds terms it “Front Row” versus “Back Row” kids — perverse cases being heard and rulings be made in the courts, and the pernicious administrative state.

Reynolds suggests that we need to reform the judiciary to restore balance to our constitutional order. His proposed reforms aim in no small part at drawing jurists from outside the bicoastal progressive cultural and ideological bubble to the higher courts, and casting bubble-inhabiting high court jurists out into the heartland.

Have a listen on below or on iTunes, and read the full transcript here.

Is a Census Citizenship Question an Assault on Representative Democracy?

Is it a bigger threat to republican government when American citizens are hypothetically better represented, or when noncitizens in actuality dilute their representation?

This is a question at the core of an emerging controversy I touched on recently over a seemingly trivial query the Department of Justice has urged the Census Bureau to reinstate on the 2020 Census: Are you a U.S. citizen?

Former Obama attorney general Eric Holder has now joined 17 state attorneys general in expressing his outrage over the potential reinstatement of this citizenship question in the census by way of a characteristically deceptive and hyperbolic column penned for popular consumption in The New Republic.

I systematically debunk Holder’s arguments in a new piece at The Federalist.

You can find my related twitter thread beginning below:

My Interview with British MEP Daniel Hannan on Populism, Brexit and the EU and the Long Financial Crisis Hangover

In connection with the release of Encounter Books’ Vox Populi: The Perils and Promises of Populism, I interviewed one of its exceptional contributors, the always-eloquent and erudite British MEP Daniel Hannan.

During our discussion we touch on among other things:

  • The anti-progressive character of modern populism
  • The failure of the elite political establishment
  • Brexit and the future of the EU
  • The death of classical liberalism in Europe
  • The underappreciated impact on the financial crisis on the Western body politic
  • The imperative to defend free market capitalism

You can listen to our interview in full here, and read a transcript of our discussion here.

My Interview with Victor Davis Hanson on Trump, Trumpism and Russiagate

In connection with the release of Encounter Books’ Vox Populi: The Perils and Promises of Populism, I interviewed the author of one its more provocative essays, the often-contrarian and always-compelling Professor Victor Davis Hanson.

During our discussion we discuss among other things:

  • The populism of President Trump
  • The insights President Trump has into the American people that his political opponents lack
  • The significance of the 2016 presidential election in history and what it augurs for the world
  • Whether Trumpism is a full-blown political movement or an outlier in U.S. history
  • How Trump is doing when it comes to constructing the four core pillars of Trumpism
  • Russiagate and Deep State subversion
  • And much more

You can listen to our interview in full here, and read a transcript of our discussion here.

The 10 Richest Ironies of the Trump Age

Beyond the noise of controversies real and invented, a 24-hour news cycle demanding perpetual outrage and hyperbole and partisan polarization on grounds more stylistic than substantive and cultural than ideological, the Trump Age has provided a signal that is incredibly clarifying.

To wit, the Trump presidency has exposed the American political elite by illuminating the internal contradictions, deep-seated biases and core hypocrisies of its players. At heart, what his presidency has revealed — due to equal parts Trump Derangement Syndrome, stylistic disdain and genuine fear that his agenda poses a threat to their livelihood — is that power is the political class’s single unifying principle.

I’ve catalogued the greatest ironies of the Trump era in a new piece at PJ Media titled “The 10 Richest Ironies of the Trump Age.”

And I’ve summarized my piece in a shareable Twitter thread that begins below:

Dems Revolt Over a Citizenship Question in the 2020 U.S. Census With Dramatic Implications

Do Americans have a right to know who is living among them? The Trump Department of Justice says yes, but Democrats are revolting when it comes to the reinstatement of a simple question on citizenship in the upcoming 2020 U.S. Census.

For The Federalist I explore the emerging controversy over this issue, which is critical because population count (including noncitizens) impacts (i) the apportionment of seats in the U.S. house, (ii) the relative power of each state in the electoral college, (iii) the allocation of billions of dollars in federal funds and (iv) the drawing of potentially every political district in the country.

I also touch on the broader lack of transparency on citizenship in government data, and why it is in the political class’s interest to shield the truth from Americans — truth that hurts its narrative and threatens its agenda.

I’ve summarized my piece in a shareable Twitter thread that begins below:

Read the whole thing here.

My In-Depth Interview with Rupert Darwall on Environmental Fascism, Climate Change Fraud, the Paris Accord and More (Video)

For the second episode of Encounter Books’ new “Close Encounters” video interview series, I spoke with policy analyst and former special adviser to the Chancellor of the Exchequer Left, Rupert Darwall, on his new book Green Tyranny: Exposing the Totalitarian Roots of the Climate Industrial Complex.

During the interview (video, full transcript) we discuss the Nazi roots of the modern environmentalist movement, Sweden’s environmentalist power grab, the anti-capitalist underpinnings of the environmentalist movement, the links between the acid rain fraud and today’s global warming movement, why the Paris climate accord represent a battle for America’s soul and much more.

Three Swamp Myths Trump’s National Security Strategy Exposes

For The Federalist I explore three key national security and foreign policy myths the Trump administration’s new National Security Strategy exposes — and seeks to overturn.

In challenging these myths, the administration also challenges the progressive Wilsonian internationalist worldview that underlies them, which is essential because flawed premises lead to failed policies.

If we are to imbue our policies with the Jeanne Kirkpatrickian core of the Trump administration’s strategy of “principled realism,” we will truly have a safer, more secure and more prosperous America.

I’ve summarized my piece in a Twitter thread unraveled below.

Read More

Will The Obama Administration Ever Be Brought To Justice Over Its Iran Scandals?

I’ve often asked if there was anything Iran could have done that would have caused the Obama administration to ditch Iran Deal.

The more we find out about the illicit Iranian activities the Obama administration apparently allowed to fester as a carrot to supposedly entice Iran to come to the negotiating table, the more I think the better question might be if there was anything the Obama administration would not give Iran in service of Iran Deal.

I write about the latest dumbfounding revelation — which follows on the heels of the allegedly Obama administration-spiked “Project Cassandra” investigation into a cars-for-cocaine Hezbollah financing scheme — in a new piece for The Federalist detailing a Turkey-Iran sanctions-evasion scheme that may have generated upwards of $100bn for the mullocracy.

As I detail, the Obama administration willfully ignored its own sanctions regime, thereby providing de facto sanctions relief to the tune of billions of dollars for the mullahs at a time in which they were under significant economic duress.

This episode, like so many others, raises fundamental questions I pose in the piece about the illegal, nefarious and dangerous activities the Obama administration appears to have tolerated in order to get to a deal.

We need answers to these questions if we are to hold our officials accountable and prevent future administrations from undertaking actions similarly detrimental to the national interest in service of foreign policy “wins” — in particular ones as Chamberlainian as Iran Deal has proven to be.

I’ve posted a thread on Twitter that unpacks this piece as well.

Read the whole thing here.

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