The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From Wednesday night’s Fox News All-Stars.

On President Obama’s statement on Libya:

There were a couple of oddities in the statement — first of all the idea of sending the U.S. secretary of state to Geneva to the U.N. Human Rights Council, one of the most illegitimate and absurd bodies on the planet. And example of its absurdity is that Libya sits on it! …

Secondly, all of this, again, started in Tunisia over a month ago. Why isn’t there at least a carrier in the Mediterranean? We have a lot of them in different parts of the world. It isn’t as if it [these Arab revolutions] started overnight.

If we did [have a carrier group there], when the president says “the full range of options,” at least there’d be a plausible something behind it. Right now there’s a plausible nothing.

Lastly … Libya will probably end up as a failed state, a split state. When it was under the Italian colonial rule, it was three autonomous provinces. It’s all tribal. Qaddafi insisted on keeping it tribal, unlike, for example, Egypt, which has a national army.

So it could end up like Somalia with one difference – it’s got a lot of oil. And that means it‘s going to be  hugely unstable and a source of continuing instability into the future regardless of what the immediate outcome is of the current struggle.

On the administration’s announcement that it will no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) as it considers it unconstitutional:

Look, I can understand the president struggling — it’s the word he used — with the wisdom of gay marriage, with the propriety, with its social effects. But to struggle over the constitutionality of it? This is after two years of defending the constitutionality! All of a sudden he wakes up on a Wednesday and decides that all of his arguments are now invalid?

Color me a little skeptical on this one.

I think what’s going on here is you’ve got a president who’s got a listless base on the left. He’s running for reelection. This is a nice way to throw a bone, to shore up part of that constituency.

And second, here’s a president who is — all of a sudden out of nowhere — bringing up what the mainstream media likes to call a wedge issue, a divisive issue, out of nowhere, at a time when he’s being attacked for his lack of action, his passivity on the debt issue; for his passivity/lack of action on a Middle East on fire; for his lack of leadership on the deficit — all of a sudden he comes up with a social issue on which the Clinton administration had found something of a federal compromise.

It allows each state to be a laboratory of democracy, work it out on its own. The key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act is that states are not required to recognize the gay marriage of other states — so it doesn’t federalize it [the question]. And that’s a good compromise in a large country that is not united on this issue. It allows each state to go its own way.

And all of a sudden he’s saying I woke up this morning and I can’t defend it [the law] even though his government is required to actually to continue to enforce it. It makes no sense at all. …

And that’s where [at the state level] it ought to be decided. That’s why I think we have had up until now what you could call a stable resolution, allowing it to happen in those states where it’s supported. This all of a sudden is the administration saying we’re going to nationalize this in a way that I think is unwarranted and really quite unwelcome.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

Most Popular

White House

Implications of the Flynn Pardon

President Trump granted a pardon to Michael Flynn, his former national-security adviser, today. Flynn had pled guilty to lying to FBI agents about conversations, during the 2016 transition, with the Russian ambassador about sanctions. Flynn’s pardon should bring to an end one gross violation of the ... Read More
White House

Implications of the Flynn Pardon

President Trump granted a pardon to Michael Flynn, his former national-security adviser, today. Flynn had pled guilty to lying to FBI agents about conversations, during the 2016 transition, with the Russian ambassador about sanctions. Flynn’s pardon should bring to an end one gross violation of the ... Read More
History

Thanksgiving Is Not a Lie

We live in a time of heedless iconoclasm, and so one of the country’s oldest traditions is under assault. Thanksgiving is increasingly portrayed as, at best, based on falsehoods and, at worst, a whitewash of genocide against Native Americans. The New York Times ran a piece the other day titled, “The ... Read More
History

Thanksgiving Is Not a Lie

We live in a time of heedless iconoclasm, and so one of the country’s oldest traditions is under assault. Thanksgiving is increasingly portrayed as, at best, based on falsehoods and, at worst, a whitewash of genocide against Native Americans. The New York Times ran a piece the other day titled, “The ... Read More

The Imaginary Trump

Like Andrew Jackson, Donald Trump is man who represents the age in which he lived. Whatever you may think of the age. Jackson embodied a generation of men who had risen and made their mark in a young country. He represented their desire for greater representation, even if it had costs for slaves and Indians. He ... Read More

The Imaginary Trump

Like Andrew Jackson, Donald Trump is man who represents the age in which he lived. Whatever you may think of the age. Jackson embodied a generation of men who had risen and made their mark in a young country. He represented their desire for greater representation, even if it had costs for slaves and Indians. He ... Read More
Culture

On Being Grateful

My mother always enjoyed making Thanksgiving dinner. She took a traditional Southern woman’s pride in being a good cook, following her mother’s recipes, and my family made a rare display of kindness by declining to inform her that she was a fairly dreadful cook, one whose kitchen alchemy on the electric range ... Read More
Culture

On Being Grateful

My mother always enjoyed making Thanksgiving dinner. She took a traditional Southern woman’s pride in being a good cook, following her mother’s recipes, and my family made a rare display of kindness by declining to inform her that she was a fairly dreadful cook, one whose kitchen alchemy on the electric range ... Read More
Economy & Business

Shopping Superstitions

It’s the boss-bossiest time of the year, when Americans getting ready to open up their wallets to buy Christmas presents are lectured by illiterate halfwits about where and how to spend their money. The usual demands: Buy local, or buy from small businesses. This is pure nonsense, and you should feel free to ... Read More
Economy & Business

Shopping Superstitions

It’s the boss-bossiest time of the year, when Americans getting ready to open up their wallets to buy Christmas presents are lectured by illiterate halfwits about where and how to spend their money. The usual demands: Buy local, or buy from small businesses. This is pure nonsense, and you should feel free to ... Read More
Film & TV

Bowing Down to Obama

‘How can we miss you when you won’t go away?” political podcaster Yvette Carnell joked two years ago when Barack Obama began his comeback tour by making sideline pronouncements about the state of the nation after his brief retirement. Now the comeback is official, with two new Kool-Aid-drinker Obama ... Read More
Film & TV

Bowing Down to Obama

‘How can we miss you when you won’t go away?” political podcaster Yvette Carnell joked two years ago when Barack Obama began his comeback tour by making sideline pronouncements about the state of the nation after his brief retirement. Now the comeback is official, with two new Kool-Aid-drinker Obama ... Read More
U.S.

Gratitude: What We Owe to Our Country

Editor’s Note: The following essay by National Review founder William F. Buckley comes from the first chapter of his 1990 book, Gratitude: Reflections on What We Owe to Our Country. I have always thought Anatole France’s story of the juggler to be one of enduring moral resonance. This is the arresting and ... Read More
U.S.

Gratitude: What We Owe to Our Country

Editor’s Note: The following essay by National Review founder William F. Buckley comes from the first chapter of his 1990 book, Gratitude: Reflections on What We Owe to Our Country. I have always thought Anatole France’s story of the juggler to be one of enduring moral resonance. This is the arresting and ... Read More