Magazine April 8, 2013, Issue

A Law unto Himself

Rand Paul speaking on the floor of the Senate, March 6, 2013 (AP/Senate Television)
The alarming scope of the power President Obama claims

Toward the end of the February 7 confirmation hearing for CIA director John Brennan, Senator Jay Rockefeller praised the nominee’s performance. “I’ve been through a whole lot of confirmation hearings in 28 years here,” the West Virginia Democrat said, “and I quite honestly do not recall anybody who was more forthright, more direct, more accommodating.”

Sad if true, because Brennan’s testimony was anything but forthright, especially on the subject of the president’s purported power to order the deaths of suspected terrorists. Consider Brennan’s response when Senator Ron Wyden asked what “needs to be done to ensure that members of the public

Jacob Sullum — Mr. Sullum (jsullum@reason.com) is a senior editor at Reason and a nationally syndicated columnist.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

A Law unto Himself

Toward the end of the February 7 confirmation hearing for CIA director John Brennan, Senator Jay Rockefeller praised the nominee’s performance. “I’ve been through a whole lot of confirmation hearings ...
Politics & Policy

SDI at 30

It has been 30 years now since President Reagan gave his famous speech announcing our missile-defense project. That is a long time, as modern science goes. Thirty years before Reagan’s ...

Features

Politics & Policy

The Humble Pope

Rome – Twenty-first-century ecclesiastical heraldry may strike some as an arcane hangover from a long-gone past, when bishops were lords temporal as well as lords spiritual. Still, the rich vocabulary of ...
Politics & Policy

Leisure Time

Productive, law-abiding citizens work for a living. We encourage schoolchildren to work and study hard to grow into responsible adults. We expect able-bodied welfare recipients to work for their bread. ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Domestic Strife

Watching the ever-amusing drama of Joe Biden playing the role of vice president is a reminder of the complicated and often uneasy relationship between vice presidents and their presidents. The ...
Politics & Policy

Outside Philip Roth

Writers’ epitaphs can be unbearably maudlin — Frost’s “I had a lover’s quarrel with the world” comes to mind, but there are others — which is why I’ve always liked ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Natural Gas Will Meet Markets, Too As a 25-year veteran of the electric-power industry (first as a contractor, then as a utility employee), I found Jerry Taylor and Peter Van Doren’s ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ Obama had a hard time of it in Jerusalem, but then so did the last guy claiming to be the messiah. ‐ What went wrong for Republicans in 2012? The ...
The Long View

Bethesda Mental Health Clinic

DOCTOR’S NOTES Moderate Republican Senator Support Group Tuesday’s Session: Once again, late to get started due to J. McCain and L. Graham’s arriving late from Palm Steakhouse. Have repeatedly told them to leave the ...
Athwart

Willful Belief

Oz the Great and Powerful which is neither, has a Braveheart moment where the Wizard addresses the fine, diverse folk ruled by Glinda the Good Witch. They are in trouble ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

HAPPY BAY Happy Bay is what a beach should be: the sea grapes shade a flat of sifted sand, an azure sky blends with a turquoise sea. The younger tourists, muscular and tanned, ride jet ...
Happy Warrior

The Party of Surrender

From RNC honcho Reince Priebus, from the senator from Swing-State Central Rob Portman, and even from the great Charles Murray, the same mournful dirge echoes through the cavernous emptiness of ...

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