This circuitious episode, hosted by Steve in Budapest with John Yoo in Dallas and Lucretia in her undisclosed desert location, starts off with the entirely predictable news that David Brooks drinks his whisky on the rocks (insert shudders and horror here), and quickly moves on to the news that hasn’t broken yet, so we’ll fix it: Gavin Newson is running for president. We know—he hasn’t offically announced, but he’s behaving like a candidate more and more every day. And why has no one noticed that Newsom would also solve the Democrats’ Kamala problem? (See the Constitution, Article II, Section 1, especially the passage that reads, “The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves.” That rules out Kamala as Newsom’s running mate, which is okay because Newsom and Harris hate each other.

We also devote too much time to the sartorial severity that is the Fetterman Senate Dress code, and you’ll just need to listen to hear who Lucretia calls “Senator Stripper Boots.”

Lucretia hosts this week, as the fearsome threesome give a brief summary of a recent law school seminar on natural law and the Constitution we presented last week at Berkeley Law before a group of somewhat skeptical students, and then moving on to assaying the Biden impeachment inquiry and Hunter Biden’s smoking gun charge, asking why all the White House spokespeople seem to have come from Nerd Central (we mean you, Ian Sams!), and explaining the fundamental asymmetry of the Administrative State in Democratic and Republican presidencies.

And isn’t it nice that Virginia Democrats have offered us a whole new definition of a “working family”? Who knew that Only Fans might become a new source for campaign contributions. Also: once again the question—are Biden and Harris both on the Democrats’ chopping block for next year?

We’re a day late and a person short this week, as we’re missing John Yoo because of schedule conflicts. Over morning coffee instead of evening single malt, this shortened, ad-free epiode finds Lucretia and Steve wondering if the Branch Covidians can really be getting ready to impose a mask mandate on all of us again, and pondering whether the COVID case of the multiply-boosted DOKTOR Jill Biden should make us wonder whether anyone knows anything anymore.

Could this all be a sign of the deepening panic among Democrats over the latest polls showing Donald Trump stronger than ever, and ever increasing doubts about Joe Biden?

Never mind saving “our democracy”—who’s going to save our gerontocracy! With Mitch McConnell and Joe Biden in a contest for Greatest Brain Freeze Moment, while Dianne Feinstein and John Fetterman look on with envy, we are starting to long for the good old days of the youthful vigor of the Soviet Politburo. Is it time for age limits for high federal office (though Sen. Chuck Grassley, still firing on all cylinders two weeks before his 90th birthday, might want a word with us), or do we just need cognitive tests for office?

Equally alarming is how the Baude-Paulson argument for disqualiftying Trump for the presidency under the 14th Amendment is gaining traction. Could a county registrar of voters in some deep blue percinct throw the 2024 election into complete chaos? John has a good article on this scene suggesting the answer is a hard No, which we review.

Meanwhile, the whole Georgia case gets curiouser and curiouser, as you’d expect in our current Alice in Wonderland world of “verdict first, trial later” phase of Trump-specific law enforcement. But also some good news: the forces of decency are fighting back against the left’s demagogic attack on Clarence Thomas.

This classic format episode of the Power Line podcast features Steve Hayward all by himself, and breaks some news: Steve is returning to Pepperdine University this academic year as the Edward Gaylord Visiting Professor at the School of Public Policy. Steve will be filling the large shoes of the late Ted McAllister, who passed away earlier this year, leaving a big hole in the SPP program.

Pepperdine’s SPP Dean Pete Peterson asked Steve to offer the faculty address to this year’s incoming class of graduate student last week, and he spoke on the relevant contemporary lessons from Max Weber’s famous lecture “Politics as a Vocation,” which intersects perfectly with Karl Rove’s Wall Street Journal essay over the weekend on how America has sometimes been in much worse shape than today. True, but not exhaustive, and supposing natural cycles of history will take us out of our current funk is likely a mistake, akin to fiddling while Rome burns.

Wondering what to make of the first GOP debate, Trump’s arrest and mug shot, and the apparently deteriorating battlefield situation in Ukraine? Then you’ve come to the right place. John Yoo hosts this week while we break it all down in crisp fashion, partly because our schedules this week prevented us from recording at a time suitable to have our whisky glasses filled. Next week, we promise!

As loyal listeners know, yesterday Steve, John, and Lucretia took over the flagship Ricochet podcast in the absence of both Peter Robinson (still somewhere in the Witness Protection Program) and Rob Long (out walking a Hollywood picket line somewhere), and we made James Lileks’ life completely miserable.

We decided that a couple of issues we brought up deserved some extended discussion in this bonus episode, starting with the “trust” question: why do Americans now hold nearly all major institutions, both public and private, in such low regard? We run through a number of factors, from ideology, competence, and corruption, but also wonder about whether our ruling elites today don’t have the same kind of noblesse oblige that characterized the elites of the 1950s (the Dulles brothers get a special shout-out).

The late week news was so screwball that Steve surrendered to Screwball Peanut Butter Whiskey to cope while Lucretia the Lightweight settled for Irish coffee while John, out of place as usual, passed on a liquid lunch to have a real one. (By the way, the Screwball Peanut Butter Whiskey is not recommended.)

Lucretia enjoys her Irish whisky (with real whipped cream!) while waiting to pounce on Steve.

This isn’t our normal 3WHH; John isn’t here, just Steve and Lucretia. So maybe a 2WHH. The occasion for today’s extra episode—since we moved up our usual weekly offering on account of the latest weekly Trump indictment, is to take note of two related items.

First, did you know that Italy’s new and very popular prime minister Giorgia Meloni recently visited Washington and had a brief meeting with President Biden? I missed this too, as the meeting took place behind closed doors, probably to cover up the fact that Biden either fell asleep or sniffed PM Meloni’s blonde hair, and there was apparently no press availability or public photo op. Of course, Biden called Meloni a fascist when she was first elected, so I expect there was no enthusiasm for noting her visit.

Our normal weekend rendezvous at the whisky bar was convened early this week to get out our fresh reactions to the Trump indictment for his role in the events of January 6, and our general reaction after reading the filing is—is this all there is? Where is incitement? Where is conspiring with violent groups like the Proud Boys and Barbie and Ken? There is very little if any new evidence or facts in the filing, and there are some stunning assumptions of fact that will surely fall apart in the courtroom.

More seriously, John Yoo rightly describes this filing as the most serious political-criminal trial since the trial of Aaron Burr way back in 1807—a trial that, keep in mind—acquitted Burr on the charge opf treason. And the timing, coming amidst a lot of new revelations of Biden corruption this week—seems suspicious.

After clearing the decks of the latest headlines from the week involving Biden trials and Trump tribulations, we get down to business discussing John’s new book The Politically-Incorrect Guide to the Supreme Court (co-authored with Robert Delahunty). Naturally Steve and Lucretia have some issues to pick with John.

Steve manages to annoy everyone by noting the Statute-That-Cannot-Be-Named-On-This-Podcast (rhymes with Lean Fair Fact) and connecting it to the “L-Word,” meaning the Lochner case. You thought it meant something else? How old fashioned and quaint in this Age of Infinite Pronouns.

I knew when I saw news of Vice President Kamala Harris claiming that Florida’s new African-American history standards for public schools taught that “enslaved people benefitted from slavery,” I knew instinctively that this was a lie of unusual medacity even for her. Don’t take my word for it: read the curriculum guide for yourself, especially page six, where Harris and the rest of the race-obsessed educrat-complex twists one sentence in the most grotesque way imaginable.

The real sin of the curriculum guide, from the left’s demented point of view, actually can be seen page eight, where the curriculum mentions including the history of slavery before 1619. Ah—there’s the rub. The real reason Harris attacks the Florida curriculum is that it dares to correct the distortions and omissions of the 1619 Project, which has become the platform for saying that America was, and is, purely a slavocracy, and that American capitalism practically invented slavery.

Are the anticipated coming Trump indictments serious? Defrauding the federal government? Obstructing Congress? Violating the Ku Klux Klan Act? This is indeed John McEnroe territory—”You cannot be serious!” But is it going to work?

Let’s just say this episode revisits the events of January 6 with considerable disagreement among the panel about how it should be understood, what we still don’t know, and how it is afftecting the next election cycle, concerning which, Luretia road-tests her latest outlandish theory. (“We’re going to get comments on this one!”, she promises.)

John Yoo is away overseas this week, so Steve and Lucretia are joined by Glenn Ellmers, author of the brand new book The Narrow Passage: Plato, Foucault, and the Possibilty of Political Philosophy. Do not be intimidated by the mention of Foucault or anything else in the title, as this crispy-written and very accessible book comes in at a reader-friendly 79 pages (Glenn admits that it began as an essay that grew a little out of control). It sheds a lot of light on our current culture war, which is really a continuation of the ructions in the country from the left that began in the 1960s but fooled us by receding briefly in the shadows for a time when the Cold War ended. More than that, though, the roots of our current contentions trace all the way back to Plato, and from whom we may also find some answers. As as we say, all this in 79 pages!

Steve and Lucretia also dilate the Farce of the Week in Washington, the latest lower court rulings that look like promising attacks on the administrative state, and why the Equal Protection Clause was such a mess at the Supreme Court for 150 years, contra Alan Dershowitz’s argument that Earl Warren had it right all along. No sale!

We’ll be back next week with John, when we’ll subject him to a heroic pummeling over his new co-authored book everyone should get, The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Supreme Court. Send in your questions!

You’ve heard of the Avengers. And the Incredibles. We at the 3WHH consider ourselves The Uncensorables. (Only because Justice League is taken.) In any case, just when you thought it was safe to pass by the courthouse and law library because the Supreme Court term has finished, along comes a bracing district court opinion slapping the Biden Administration hard for its collaborating with social media companies to censor COVID dissenters who turned out to be right about nearly everything.

We also work through the aftermath of the Harvard/UNC decision, which is forcing the left to transfer their hated for Citizens United to this case. And what’s up with the left’s complaint that the 303 Creative case was a phony case? What’s phony is the left’s argument, which John Yoo (this week’s show host) dispatches with ease, while Steve reminds us that the left has been contriving phony cases for decades.

Finally, since it was Fourth of July week, we reflect on the holiday this year, Steve gives a foerboding prediction for the 250th anniversary of the Declaration in 2026, and we offer up recommendations for the best books about the Declaration for our slowly developing reading list of essential whisky-wisdom pairings.

It’s over. The fat lady has sung. The Supreme Court ended its current term with a big bang, delivering a long-overdue smackdown of affirmative action that with any luck history will say was a turning point for restoring the proper understanding of equality in our Constitution, though the follow up to overcome ther massive resistance of universities and their epigones in HR and DEI departments everywhere will be crucial—and exhausting.

But wait! There’s more! The Court also smacked down Biden’s student loan power grab, and vindicated the principle of free speech the right of conscience in turning back the coercive identitarian demand that a Christian website designer must be compelled to produce offensive products.

The submersible that is the Biden presidency looks to be under as much increasing pressure as the Trump reboot tour, and maybe both will implode? And when is the Supreme Court going to end the suspense and deliver the rulings on the big cases we’ve all been waiting for?

The Court did deliver a disappointment of sorts in U.S. v. Texas, which rejected the state challenge to the Biden Administration’s complete implosion of border enforcement, ruling that while states along the border have indeed suffered injury, they lack standing to sue, and/or the Court lacks a remedy it can supply, so the Biden Administration wins this round. But we break down the convoluted reasoning of the majority opinion (can it really be right that if the executive branch arrested just one person crossing the border instead of zero, states would lose standing to sue, or the Court any remedy whatsoever?), and wonder whether the case is nearly as good for liberals as they think, and whether the next item on the agenda for conservative jurisprudence is to develop a new doctrine of standing, as it did with the “major questions doctrine” promulgated last year.

By the end of the week when our three bartenders assembled, the Trump indictment had been pretty well munched and masticated, so there wasn’t much left to say about the matter for the moment. But John Yoo has a wild idea to resolve the controversy: President Biden, he says, should pardon Trump right now, and say “Let’s put everything before the voters next year on the issues.”

Of course the last thing Biden wants to do right now is run on the issues, since he’s doing such a dreadul job, and in any case there is no chance Trump will agree to any conditions for a pardon (such as admitting guilt or agreeing to drop out of the presidential election altogether). And it is doubtful Biden has either the statesmanship or the cynical wit to see the mischievous possibilities of a pardon.

Who needs Steve’s peaty, smoky whisky this week when Canada is supplying a surplus for half the nation? (But it ain’t Canadian Club they’re serving.) After clearing the smoke from our eyes—and our whisky glasses, we get down to business on what is known so far about the Trump indictment (we recorded before the full details of the indictment were released), and wonder of the Dept. of Justice isn’t blowing a lot of smoke.

And just how did the Supreme Court manage to botch the Voting Rights Act case?

John Yoo is away traveling this weekend, so the 3WHH reverts to its old form, with Lucretia pummeling Steve like a chiropractor working on a stiff neck for his conventional thinking about the debt ceiling deal. But otherwise we’re in a jolly mood this week, as we see signs that a “Revolt of the Normies”—that is sensible middle class Americans—against gender wokery is finally underway. Just ask the sales manager for Bud Light, or shareholders of Target. (We could have alternately called this episode “Pride Month Goeth Before the Fall.”)

Then, in response to some listener requests, we begin a preliminary excursion into a “Best Books” list, though we want to await John’s return for an orderly treatment of this question. For this episode Steve and Lucretia talk about political novels, and why some are enduring, like Orwell’s 1984 or Koestler’s Darkness at Noon, and why others have been forgotten, like Andre Malraux’s Man’s Fate, or Wyndham Lewis’s Revenge for Love (which Steve is reading right now). As usual Steve and Lucretia come at this subject from different directions, and finally settle together on . . . Shakespeare.