Bill Kristol

Just Desserts
December 22, 2008

I made a gratuitous crack about Bill Kristol's intelligence in this post, and some time after writing it, I wondered: Had I been unjust to him? I mean, he's the son of two impressive intellectuals (Irving Kristol and Gertrude Himmelfarb), he earned a PhD from Harvard with conservative heavyweight Harvey Mansfield, and over the years he has occasionally shown himself to be a thoughtful guy.

Bill Kristol Wants His Culture War Back
December 15, 2008

It’s always a bit disconcerting to find oneself agreeing with a figure as odious as Bill Kristol, but he’s right to call out conservatives for their naked contempt for the American auto industry, especially when compared with their solicitousness for the even more screwed up financial sector. With Kristol, though, you can pretty much assume bad faith (and if you couldn’t, he gives it away by listing, as a feature of the bailout bill he supports, the fact that it would shift “difficult decisions to the Obama administration”).

Bill Kristol Is ... Making Sense?
December 08, 2008

Bill Kristol, in a remarkably thoughtful and sober-minded column (at least relative to this past year's output), makes the case today against reflexive, small-government conservatism. He writes: But conservatives should think twice before charging into battle against Obama under the banner of “small-government conservatism.” It’s a banner many Republicans and conservatives have rediscovered since the election and have been waving around energetically.

If My Grandmother Had Wheels, She'd Be A Pushcart
November 03, 2008

If this and that and also the other happened... Bill Kristol is not really consoling the liberals. He's consoling himself.

Dress Barnes
October 28, 2008

  On Fox News last night, Fred Barnes went on the attack against whomever in the McCain campaign was responsible for Sarah Palin's $150,000 wardrobe, declaring the person in question--whom he later said he believed was spokeswoman Nicole Wallace--a "coward" who should "step forward" to take responsibility. (Records seem to indicate that it was Jeff Larson, not Wallace, who made the purchases.

Sarah Palin's Brain
October 20, 2008

Anyone looking for further evidence that Bill Kristol is auditioning for the role of Sarah Palin's political enabler--beyond his deadening drumbeat of "Sarah is awesome!" columns in the Times--can find plenty of it in Jane Mayer's New Yorker piece on the Alaska governor's unlikely veep rise: The most ardent promoter, however, was Kristol, and his enthusiasm became the talk of Alaska’s political circles. According to [GOP activist Paulette] Simpson, Senator Stevens told her that “Kristol was really pushing Palin” in Washington before McCain picked her.

More Political Wisdom From Bill Kristol
October 15, 2008

 I realize that at this point it's ridiculous to treat Bill Kristol as anything other than an intellectually dishonest apologist for his pal John McCain. Still, he is a prominent pundit who is presumably still taken seriously by someone somewhere, and so I feel compelled to take issue with his remarks in Mo Dowd's column today. Asked about his increasingly lonely cheerleading of Sarah Palin, Kristol snipped: Conservative eggheads are my friends, but politically they're a contrarian indicator.

Department Of Pots And Kettles
October 13, 2008

In the op-ed Jon cited earlier, Bill Kristol slammed the McCain campaign as "overmatched" and "out-and-out dysfunctional," characterized by "strategic incoherence" and "operational incompetence." Sounds a little bit like a certain New York Times columnist.

Will Mccain Go Where Dole Wouldn't?
October 06, 2008

Sarah Palin touches Bill Kristol's erogenous zone by telling him that McCain should "take the gloves off" in tomorrow night's debate. (A quibble: Wouldn't a real hockey mom recommend that McCain "drop the gloves"?)  The McCain campaign has obviously decided to take the gloves off in its other campaign venues, such as stump speeches and ads. But it'll be interesting to see if McCain goes after Obama in such a fashion when he's actually seeing him in person (although, of course, not looking him in the eye, which McCain is apparently unwilling to do).

Sarah Palin, Hyper-intellectual (cont'd)
September 12, 2008

Bill Kristol tries to spin Palin's apparent confusion over who planned the 9/11 attacks and Andrew (appropriately) loses it: Memo to Kristol: you may think Palin is sophisticated enough to grasp the high-level fantasies and abstractions that you have devised in your own head to defend the indefensible. But she isn't, buddy. She has a degree in sports journalism from the University of Idaho, and went to several colleges in several years. She thinks Leo Strauss is a brand of jeans. She doesn't have a clue what she's talking about.