National Review

National Review Takes a Risk and Conservatives Rejoice (Whether They Know it Now or Not)

Late yesterday evening, The National Review, that outlet of conservatism founded by one of the giants of the ideology, William F. Buckley, stood athwart history and yelled “Stop!”

At Donald Trump.

Gathering a respectable cadre of conservative voices — from the hinterlands of the once proud Tea Party to the deep middle of the establishment — these writers and thinkers banded together to offer a few paragraphs each on the danger of Trump as a charlatan, or a know-nothing, or a bully, or a creep, or simply a blowhard.

Rather than try to deconstruct what they said and find a cohesive theme beyond simply that Trump is no conservative and to allow him to top the ticket would be disastrous for the GOP and likely hand Hillary the presidency, I’ll simply encourage you to take the time to read each opinion and think about it.

For me, the issue regarding Trump is a very simple one. He has no principles. He is the consummate businessman and is therefore willing to negotiate his core beliefs to close the deal. Perhaps some may see this as a quality they admire. But the truth is that is exactly what we’ve had in office these last eight years and we are worse off for it. And it should come as no surprise that Donald Trump — a man who has given a great deal of lip-service and financial support to those who have ascended on the progressive left — should resemble them.

Climate Change Guilt Distraction

“There is such a thing as being too late when it comes to climate change.” — Obama

And so, because we may be too late to save the Earth or humanity (let that sink in for a minute), President Obama has unleashed what the New York Times has called “the strongest action ever taken in the United States to combat climate change.”

Well thank God we have a plan. Because time is running short and we all may be dead soon. Right? Yeah, right. From NRO:

The president will instruct U.S. power plants to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by just under one-third (32 percent). How that is to be achieved and at what cost is … not Barack Obama’s problem. States will have until 2018 — comfortably remote from any presidential election — to submit their plans, and until 2030 to implement them.

The thing that frustrates so completely about the climate change debate is that, like so many of the high and mighty pronouncements from the left side of the political divide, if you point out that the science is almost always contentious and subject to shift radically from year to year, and even from scientist to scientist, those who have eaten the holy wafer of the body and blood of The Sacred Cult of Enviromentalism will declare you a DENIER (read: hater of the Earth and all good things) and VERY, VERY STUPID.

Conservatives to Congress: “Spend one dollar less”

A new strategy has emerged from conservative groups over the debt ceiling as they emerge from a fractured fight over the government shutdown. The message to Congress: spend one dollar less than last year.

The coalition of 20 groups, first reported by National Review, has written a letter to lawmakers urging them to take caution in their approach on the debt ceiling and government funding as House and Senate tackling the budget.

“The undersigned public policy organizations are writing to you today about the upcoming debt ceiling debate and our belief that Congress has a moral obligation to pursue additional spending reductions before taking on additional debt,” wrote the organizations in the letter to members of Congress.

“Specifically, we propose the following: If Washington wants to take on more debt, isn’t it fair that they at least be forced to spend One Dollar Less next year than they’re spending this year?” the letter continued. “Most families are reducing their budgets by far more than one dollar, shouldn’t Washington at least do this much? The American people certainly think so.”

Signers to the letter include Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform, Andrew Moylan of the R Street Institute, Wayne Crews of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and Phil Kerpen of American Commitment.

Buzzfeed calls out the NRA for…not commenting on Navy Yard shooting?


In the wake of a terrible tragedy, there are almost universal requests for calm, peace, and a moratorium on politics. We have now reached the stage in the evolution of the Onion Nation where not commenting on a tragedy is worth criticizing.

Within hours of the shooting at the Washington Navy Yard this morning, in which at least 12 have lost their lives, the objective journalists of Buzzfeed compiled a list of NRA tweets around the time of recent mass shootings, showing that the gun rights organization stops tweeting for a day or more when such an event occurs. The irony is astounding. If the NRA makes a statement about a shooting event, they are accused of politicizing it, standing on the graves of the victims, or worse. And now if they don’t make a statement, that’s also worth calling out?

Sure, Buzzfeed will just claim they found it interesting and weren’t criticizing. But savvy social media producers that they are should know better. Gun rights opponents will take their post and do the dirty work for them, calling the NRA cowards for staying silent in the face of such horror that they will inevitably be accused of causing.

The great Charles Cooke of National Review summed up the stupendous hypocrisy well on Twitter:

GOP rolls out Pledge to America, mixed reaction among conservatives

House Republicans officially rolled out the Pledge to America (PDF embedded at the bottom of the page or you can download here) yesterday morning at a lumber company in Sterling, Virginia:

The agenda is reminiscent of “The Contract with America” that House Republicans announced on the steps of the Capitol in 1994. That manifesto helped them win control of the House during the second year of Democrat Bill Clinton’s presidency.

While short on specifics, the new Republican plan calls for $100 billion in annual savings by scaling back federal spending to 2008 levels — with exceptions for the elderly and U.S. troops — and ending government control of mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Republican House leaders also vowed to stop “job killing tax hikes” and allow small business owners to take a tax deduction equal to 20 percent of their business income.
Under pressure from the conservative Tea Party movement to slash the size and cost of government, the Republicans promised to repeal Obama’s landmark overhaul of the healthcare system and eliminate unspent funds from his $814 billion economic stimulus program.

The reaction among Democrats has been predictable as they again try to bring up George W. Bush, a strategy that hasn’t worked thus far:

Trust The Republicans To Cut Spending? You’re A Fool

Over at National Review’s Exchequer blog, Kevin Williamson points out that there’s no reason to hope that the GOP would cut Federal spending should it regain power:

Republicans, perhaps because of their party’s evangelical wing, understand what it means to be born again — and they’re out to convince Americans that they are born-again debt crusaders, ready to rumble in the holy struggle for smaller deficits and less-unbalanced budgets. This takes a little bit of chutzpah. Here’s McConnell: “The American people don’t think our problem is that government taxes too little. Our problem is that government taxes too much. And that it spends too much and borrows too much. And until Democrats demonstrate even the slightest ability to restrain the recklessness with which they spend Americans’ hard-earned tax dollars, the job creators and the workers of this country aren’t about to take them seriously on how to lower the debt. The American people shouldn’t be asked to pay the price for Democrats’ recklessness through higher taxes.”

Except, as Williamson points out, there’s this:


Utopians of the Left and the Right

In a recent column in this month’s issue of National Review (which I still read, due to a complimentary subscribtion, despite my anger with the tossing aside of Christopher Buckley for his audacious Obama endorsement) the eloquent Mark Steyn argues for citizens who give little more than “stilted cheers” for their political leadership. He illustrates the Soviet-style cult following that Barack Obama has benefited greatly from as being counter to the ideals America was founded on.

Harry Reid told us that “shadowy billionaires” are trying to buy America…

And he was right! Well, sort of. It’s not Charles and David Koch, the libertarian brothers who’ve been the target of vicious attacks by Harry Reid (D-NV). But rather, it’s Tom Steyer, a billionaire and radical environmentalist.

Steyer, who has met with Reid and other Democrats, has pledged $100 million to make climate change a big issue in the 2014 mid-term election. At the heart of the environmentalist’s personal campaign is his rabid opposition to the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

When the State Department announced last week that it would delay a decision on the oil pipeline, the latest example of this administration putting party over policy, Steyer came out as a big winner.

The State Department recently concluded that Keystone XL would have little impact on the environment, also noting that alternatives would result in higher carbon emissions, making Steyer’s objection to the pipeline look petty and paranoid.

It also makes President Obama and Democrats look exceedingly hypocritical because, after all their attacks on the Koch brothers, Steyer has successfully managed to buy a presidency, but it’s a Democrat. That’s a fact that National Review’s Tom Rogan pointed out yesterday on Fox and Friends.

What the Ex-Im Bank Does is Immoral

Many of us understand that what’s seen as the current reasoning behind the very existence of Export-Import Bank makes it very difficult for proponents of the agency to make the case for keeping the agency running.

There aren’t any major market failures that can only be addressed by a government-regulated agency offering extra stimulus to foreigners to purchase American, and if there are any major failures that must be addressed, a government-run agency will simply not be enough to respond it, due to the government’s inherently incompetent nature.

Because all cases have already been made against the agency but one, Veronique de Rugy decided to contribute by making the case that the insistence in keeping the Ex-Im bank running is not only a simply incoherent and inefficient solution to an imaginary problem, it is also immoral.

According to her column at the National Review, the Ex-Im Bank uses its tactics to coerce governments of very poor countries to purchase Boeing aeroplanes from America.

This is the case with Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian government owns Ethiopian Airlines. According to recent statistics on Ethiopia, 78 percent of its population makes less than $2 a day, making it one of the poorest countries in the world.

What the Ex-Im Bank does to Ethiopians is to force their government to purchase their planes by encouraging officials to spend the little means they have on purchasing products they don’t need, all in the name of the eventual economic boost that some of us use as an excuse to justify the agency’s immoral exercise of their power.

Today in Liberty: CBO on employer mandate, religious liberty and business owners, CPAC boots atheist group

“A good measure of how serious Republicans are on cutting spending is how they react when the tiniest Pentagon spending cuts are proposed.”Coalition to Reduce Spending

— CBO report on employer mandate measure: House Republicans may have received a bit of set back yesterday on a measure that would change the definition of a full-time employee from 30 hours per week, as set under the employer mandate, to 40 hours. The Save American Workers Act would reduce the number of people receiving employer-based coverage by 1 million, according to the Congressional Budget Office, and increase budget deficits by $73.7 billion in the net 10 years. Republicans plan to bring the measure to the floor some time next month. The Obama administration has delayed the mandate for small and medium-sized businesses until 2016. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and many other organizations back the Save American Workers Act.

— Tea Party Express likely to endorse in Kansas GOP Senate race: Though she didn’t outright say that they were endorsing Milton Wolf, Amy Kremer, chair of the Tea Party Express, intimated that in a tweet this morning. “Headed to Kansas today for a big announcement tomorrow,” Kremer tweeted. “Looking forward to seeing my friend !”

The views and opinions expressed by individual authors are not necessarily those of other authors, advertisers, developers or editors at United Liberty.