Magazine | June 6, 2011, Issue



after Mellin de Saint-Gelais

May the Lord make you a pauper,

A homeless old man without

An ear of corn in the barn, not

A bottle of wine in the cellar.

Until then, I pray by right and reason,

Home shall bring you no pleasure,

So for comfort you may prefer

To commit crimes, and rest in prison.

Or may you be forced into exile,

Anonymous among rude strangers,

To beg for rancid leftovers,

Without words for hunger. Meanwhile,

Stand outside her door in your cashmere

Coat in a storm, under the rainspout

All night long, cry out

For her to open, but she will not hear.

In This Issue


Politics & Policy

Shoot First, Ask Never

Osama bin Laden’s killing demonstrated in spectacular fashion American military and intelligence skills — and Pres. Barack Obama, who staked his presidency on the operation, was triumphant. Bin Laden’s death ...
Politics & Policy


If President Obama had failed to get his massive health-care overhaul through Congress, Mitt Romney would today be a strong frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination. Some conservatives and libertarians ...
Politics & Policy

A Voice for Choice

Three Philadelphia businessmen captured the attention of Pennsylvania’s political class last year when they pumped more than $5 million into the campaign of state senator Anthony H. Williams, a black ...
Politics & Policy

Better Off Dead

The test of a true friend is whether he’ll come to your house, moments or hours after your death, and quickly dispose of the embarrassing or potentially humiliating bric-à-brac we ...


Politics & Policy

Too Big to Win

Why can’t America win wars? It’s been two-thirds of a century since we saw (as President Obama vividly put it) “Emperor Hirohito coming down and signing a surrender to MacArthur.” ...
Politics & Policy

A Thousand Years Away

Sangin District, Helmand Province, Afghanistan — In late March, I rejoined the platoon whose maneuvers I described in the March 7 edition of National Review. To reach the platoon, I ...
Politics & Policy

Mortal Ally

Most Americans do not understand why Pakistan behaves the way it does, but they do understand that it has come to seem more enemy than ally. This shift in American ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

A Fine Madness

Before I went to see The Beaver, Jodie Foster’s tragicomic fable about a suicidal man who finds temporary salvation by communicating with the world through a Cockney-accented hand puppet, I ...


Politics & Policy


Scott Walker’s Miscalculation I blinked and almost missed this comment by Josh Barro (“It’s Not Just Wisconsin,” March 21): “Under Walker’s proposed ‘budget repair’ bill, most state and local employees in ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ A $250,000 debt at Tiffany’s? Newt is obviously desperate to close his gender gap. ‐ Newt Gingrich praised Paul Ryan’s budget, then issued a statement quibbling with part of its ...
The Bent Pin

Royal Flushes

Yes, I watched the Royal Wedding and I have the gut reactions to prove it.              First, I don’t like Prince William. I’ve never had any particular thoughts about him ...
The Long View


TO: Production/Story Team for “SEAL Team Six” FROM: Vice President of Feature Film Development IN RE: Story/script notes for the second draft of “SEAL Team Six” Gang: First, let me tell you how much ...

A Club for All and None

When you learn that mothers have been banned from joining a parenting organization specifically convened for fathers, you know there are two possible reactions: 1. So? It’s a free society. We ...
Politics & Policy


CURSES after Mellin de Saint-Gelais May the Lord make you a pauper, A homeless old man without An ear of corn in the barn, not A bottle of wine in the cellar. Until then, I pray ...
Happy Warrior

Criminal Comedy

I read The Joke, Milan Kundera’s first novel, when I was a schoolboy. Bit above my level, but, even as a teenager, I liked the premise. Ludvik is a young man ...

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

It’s the Stock Market, Stupid

Before going any further, I must say that I don’t believe Protectionist Donald really will go all the way with his present attempt to strangle global trade. I believe that the end run will be quite similar to what it was with the steel and aluminum tariffs — which is to say, a photo op in the Oval Office. ... Read More

An Even Worse Vatican Deal with China

Of all the disturbing and even silly things that have been said in defense of the deal between the Vatican and China reportedly being negotiated, the most offensive is that critics of this proposed arrangement to regularize Catholic life in the PRC don’t understand that the Cold War is over and the world is in ... Read More

Ten Things that Caught My Eye Today (March 23, 2018)

I send out a free weekly e-mail newsletter that typically goes out Saturday mornings and includes WFB flashbacks, Firing Line videos, upcoming events, and some of what I’ve been up to. Sign up here. 1. Cardinal Timothy Dolan in the Wall Street Journal: Talking about New York, he noted: 2. The Guardian on the ... Read More
National Review

Palm Sunday with WFB

The wonderful National Review Institute forum in New York City last month, held on the tenth anniversary of Bill Buckley’s death -- but truly a celebration of his life and legacy -- was captured by the good folks at C-SPAN, who now tell us that two panels of the forum will be broadcast this Sunday on C-SAN 3. ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Sliming of Bari Weiss

If you follow at all the ideological war that’s erupted around the New York Times editorial page, then you know Bari Weiss. It’s too much to call Bari conservative. A better description might be heterodox. On some issues, particularly social issues and immigration, she’s a woman of the Left. On others — ... Read More