Tag Archives: National Review

Et, tu … National Review?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

William F. Buckley, the late, great iconic conservative thinker, surely would be proud of the publication he founded.

It has called on Donald Trump, the nation’s lame-duck president, to cease his “petulant refusal” to accept Joe Biden’s election as president. The magazine wants Trump to exit the White House quietly and leave the task of governing to the man who thumped him in the Nov. 3 presidential election.

The National Review — which Buckley founded in 1955 — published an editorial calling on Trump to throw in the towel.

“There are legitimate issues to consider after the 2020 vote about the security of mail-in ballots and the process of counting votes (some jurisdictions, bizarrely, take weeks to complete their initial count), but make no mistake: The chief driver of the post-election contention of the past several weeks is the petulant refusal of one man to accept the verdict of the American people,” the editorial said. “The Trump team (and much of the GOP) is working backwards, desperately trying to find something, anything to support the president’s aggrieved feelings, rather than objectively considering the evidence and reacting as warranted.”

There you have it. A legitimate, conservative publication founded on legitimate conservative principles has called on a phony conservative — the 45th president of the United States — to pack it in.

William Buckley would be a happy man.

Conversation (continued) …

I’ve told you already about a fellow I met the other morning. We covered a lot of ground in the 10 or 12 minutes we chatted.

It centered mostly on the congressional hearing involving FBI agent Peter Strzok and his role in the Robert Mueller investigation into the “Russia thing.”

He mentioned he has been retired for 20 years. Then he asked me if I was retired. “Yes,” I said. “I’m a retired journalist. I was a member of the ‘Mainstream Media,'” I added.

He nodded. “Ahhh, that explains why you’re a liberal,” he said.

I stopped him. “No, sir. My job didn’t define me. My inherent bias is what informs my world view,” I told him.

He had described himself as a “libertarian,” who wasn’t aligned with Democrats or Republicans.

It dawned on me a long time ago, but his assumption that my more progressive/liberal tendencies are a result of my occupation drives home a key point.

Conservatives are winning the war of ideologies. They have succeeded in tarring media representatives and outlets as inherently “liberal.” The “liberal media” get blamed for all that is wrong with journalism.

My own view of the term “mainstream media,” though takes a different approach. I long have considered the “mainstream media” to be a much more diverse bunch than the way conservatives label them. I include many conservative-leaning outlets among members of the “mainstream media”: Fox News, The Weekly Standard, The National Review all belong to the MSM; I also might throw in Breitbart News just to get folks’ pulse to race a bit.

Indeed, I worked for three newspaper groups with ownership that was decidedly not liberal in its outlook. Scripps League Newspapers was run by an elderly scion from the E.W. Scripps newspaper empire; then I went to work for the Hearst Corp., another right-leaning outfit; my career ended while working for Morris Communications, which was a far-right-leaning organization led by a man who is the product of the “old South,” if you get my drift.

The media are as diverse as any other craft.

The gentleman with whom I had this exchange over the weekend likely didn’t intend to paint us all with such a broad brush … but he did.

I don’t yet know if I’ll see him again. If I do, I might take the time to inform him of my own view of what comprises the “mainstream media.”

I suppose I could ask him: If the “liberal mainstream media” are so powerful and pervasive, how do all those conservatives keep getting elected to public office?

Ah, yes, more ‘fake news’ from POTUS

Mr. President, you have put forth yet another lie.

Doggone it, sir! I cannot let this one go.

You keep attaching the pejorative term “fake news” to the media and your political foes, but you have turned fake news into an art form.

The terror attack in Spain prompted another careless, reckless response from you, sir. Let me remind you of what you tweeted: Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught. There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!

Did you say at that hideous press event the other day that you like to “get the facts straight” before you make a statement? Yeah, you did.

The tweet about Gen. Pershing, Mr. President, is a lie. You defamed the memory of one of our great national heroes all in the name of making some sort of stupid and ridiculous point about the nature of the terror attack that killed at least 13 people in Spain.

That fake story you told during the campaign about Gen. Pershing dipping bullets in pig’s blood and then shooting Islamic prisoners to death is a lie. It didn’t happen. So, you told the lie once again today. You put out fake news. You are a habitual, pathological liar. You, Mr. President, disgrace the office to which you were elected.

You not only defamed Gen. Pershing with that hideous story, you accused him of committing a horrific war crime.

I’ll attach how the National Review reported what you said, in case you haven’t seen it. It’s not often that I agree with the National Review, but we’re on the same page on this one, Mr. President. They can’t stomach you as president; neither can I. Nor can the hefty plurality of Americans who voted for Hillary in the 2016 election.

You keep demonstrating time and time again your total unfitness for high political office.

Fake news? You keep blathering that line at any opportunity.

Well, I got my fill of your so-called “fake news” long ago. The Barack Obama birth issue; the Muslims supposedly cheering the fall of the Twin Towers on 9/11; the “millions” of illegal immigrants voting for Hillary; your insistence on voter fraud throughout the nation.

They’re all lies. They’re all “fake news.”

You should be ashamed of yourself. Except that shame requires a conscience. You are sorely lacking in both.

When did National Review become a GOP pariah?


I’m puzzled.

I’ve always thought that the National Review was seen as the “bible” of conservative thought. The magazine founded by the late, great William F. Buckley was the go-to publication for conservatives to get their view distributed among the masses.

The National Review was the magazine to read.

What in the name of all that is holy is happening?

The Republican National Committee has cut the National Review out of its debate participation. GOP presidential frontrunner calls the magazine a “failing” publication.

Times are changing, yes?

William Buckley might not recognize what’s happening these days to the conservative movement.

Or that his once-revered publication has been shoved aside. There once was a time when thoughtful conservative leaders would occupy the platform that the National Review provided. They would offer their policy views on this or that issue.

Conservatives would embrace them; liberals might not join in the group hug, but they would at least consider the argument made, if only to shore up their own bias.

We have not entered a new age of wisdom when we toss aside thoughtfulness in favor of anger and shoot-from-the-hip talk-show rhetoric.

Mr. Buckley, wherever you are, I wish you were around to talk some sense into these guys who have redefined the conservative movement you once led.


Let’s slam door on immigrants? Uh … let’s not

First bricks of new house. Brick wall foundation isolated 3l illustration

Larry Kudlow used to believe in immigration reform.

Then he swilled the Kool-Aid being served up by the likes of Donald Trump.

Kudlow, in a National Review column, has posited a profoundly preposterous notion. He wants a nation built by immigrants to slam the door shut — temporarily, he says — on all future immigrants. Anyone coming here in search of a better life need to look elsewhere, he says.

Kudlow believes the nation needs to enact what he called a “wartime lockdown” while we fight the Islamic State and other terrorists.

The term “un-American” only begins to define, in my view, the outrageousness of such a proposal.

“There may be some unfairness to this. But I don’t care,” wrote Kudlow. “Wars breed unfairness, just as they breed collateral damage. We may set back tourism. We may anger Saudi princes whose kids are in American schools. But so be it. We need a wartime footing if we are going to protect the American homeland.”

Saudi princes aren’t the only folks we’d offend. How about offshore business tycoons who want to send their young executives here to set up shop, to do business with American clients? How about folks from all corners of the planet seeking to come here because they read somewhere that America is “the land of opportunity”?

While we’re at it, Mr. Kudlow, let’s be sure to sandblast the inscription off the Statue of Liberty, the one that welcomes the “tired and the poor” to our shores. Hey, if not sandblast it — given that he says his idea is just temporary — we can hang a black shroud over it.

Kudlow has changed his mind on immigration reform because we’re now at war. I agree that we are at war. We’ve been at war since 9/11. Truth be told, we likely should have declared war on terrorists even before that. We’ve known for decades about the existence of terrorists willing to commit unspeakable acts.

The 9/11 attacks acted as the proverbial two-by-four between our eyes. The bad guys got our attention.

Do we shut down our borders, though, to become a nation none of us recognizes while we fight this international scourge? No.

If we are going to continue to be the world’s exceptional nation, then we keep our border open, welcome those who want to come here — while remaining hyper-vigilant in our quest to prevent terrorists from infiltrating us — and we keep taking the fight to the enemy.


Terror vs. gun deaths


Here’s an interesting statistic that today drew some attention on one of the many Sunday morning TV news/talk shows.

In the past decade, 153,144 people have died in this country from gun violence; 3,046 individuals have died at the hands of terrorists during that same period.

This came from Chuck Todd, moderator of “Meet the Press,” citing the stats provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

He asked Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review, about whether the country needs to do as much to combat gun violence as it has done to battle terrorism.

Lowry gave a reasonable and intelligent answer, which was that government’s fundamental role is to protect citizens against foreign enemies; he added that any gun-related action “on the margins” won’t do anything and that more comprehensive action runs the risk of infringing on the Constitution’s Second Amendment right to “keep and bear arms.”

Meet the Press tackles gun violence

The discussion was fascinating.

Still, I’m a bit baffled by the fact that with such a huge disparity between gun-violence deaths and terror-related deaths, we still have been unable — or unwilling — to deploy government’s machinery to impose additional restrictions on gun ownership that does not infringe on citizens’ right to own a firearm.

After all, the government created a whole new Cabinet-level agency — the Department of Homeland Security — immediately after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Still, madmen take guns into public places and massacre thousands more innocent victims … and we do nothing?


Goldberg gets it about The Donald

Donald Trump is taking fire not just from liberals but from conservatives.

Amazing, if you ask me.

OK, you didn’t ask, but I’ll offer my opinion anyway.

The latest broadside comes from Jonah Goldberg, who I consider to be one of the better, smarter conservative pundits around. I always enjoy reading his world view, even though I generally disagree with it.


But where it regards The Donald, well, young Jonah is on point. You need to read his essay here. If you’re in the right frame of mind, as I happened to be when I read, you’ll laugh out loud. No kidding!

Here’s a tiny bit of what he wrote:

“… what I find so gaudy about Trump is his constant reference to the fact that he made a lot of money, and his expectation that it somehow makes him immune to criticism or means that he’s a better person than his GOP competitors, never mind yours truly.”

I’ve already taken note of Trump’s continual references to how rich he is. Some of my own critics have wondered if I’m envious of his wealth. No. I’m not.

His yammering about his wealth — which some have suggested isn’t nearly as immense as he says it is — simply drives me crazy. One more tidbit from Goldberg: “He’s a bore who overcompensates for his insecurities by talking about how awesome he is, often in the third person. Jonah can’t stand that.”

And yet, in this wacky world of ours, his boastfulness is getting traction by those who think it all translates into leadership.

Another key point in Goldberg’s essay is how thin-skinned Trump is, how he bristles at criticism. Trump has fired back at his critics, such as Goldberg, which puzzles the young columnist, who wondered why someone who considers himself to be “master of the Universe” would get upset anything anyone said about him.

We’ve clearly entered a new age, or perhaps been transported without our knowledge into a parallel political universe.

The behavior that The Donald is exhibiting is precisely the kind of thing that in another time would have resulted in his being laughed off the political stage. The prancing and preening he does would be grist for ridicule from serious politicians.

These days they’re taking this guy seriously.

And with good reason. The Donald is at or near the top of every public opinion poll of Republican voters.

I believe Jonah Goldberg has a point: The Donald’s fans need an intervention.