Trump’s Realism: America First Not America Alone

Is Donald Trump a student of Charles Maurice de Talleyrand? Some of Trump’s recent actions suggest that he is, at least intuitively. I am thinking in particular of Talleyrand’s observation that “non-intervention is a metaphysical idea, indistinguishable in practice from intervention.” The question is not whether a state like America is part of the process.

By | 2017-04-13T00:32:34+00:00 April 10th, 2017|

Crisis of the White House Divided

President-elect Donald Trump greets House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and other Congressional leaders as he arrives for his inauguration ceremony at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, Pool) In the first 100 days of the Trump administration, we have learned some important lessons about what it

By | 2017-04-13T00:33:24+00:00 April 10th, 2017|

Trump’s Cultural Optics

Every movement president is soon accused of selling out to the establishment and drowning in Washington’s permanent and deep swamp. “Let Reagan be Reagan” was an early lamentation of conservatives, fearing their godhead was being watered down by Jim Baker and diluted by George H.W. Bush centrists. Bill Clinton used to trot Hillary Clinton

By | 2017-04-13T15:29:40+00:00 April 9th, 2017|

Looking Down on Trump’s Brain

According to Ross Douthat, in his April 1, 2017 New York Times article, “Trump Needs a Brain”: Trump himself doesn’t know what he wants to do on major issues and there’s nobody in his innermost circle who seems to have a compelling vision that might guide him. Douthat says in an “ideologically unstable age” Trump

By | 2017-04-07T15:49:32+00:00 April 4th, 2017|

The Grand Old Banana Republic

Name the country that I am describing: A popular political figure rises to power in the midst of a contentious period of division. He espouses great aspirations and represents a break with a past mired in corruption, deceit, and war. Upon assuming power, this leader expands the size and scope of the government—aggregating ever greater

By | 2017-04-05T16:56:27+00:00 April 4th, 2017|

“What if?” The Evelyn Farkas Fracas

I’m sure you’ve noticed that conservatives and Republicans (no, they are not necessarily the same) enjoy playing the counter-factual game of “What if?” What if a Republican had presided over Benghazi instead of Ms. “At-this-point-What-Difference-Does-It-Make” Clinton? What if a Republican administration had intervened to prevent Arizona from enforcing federal immigration laws? What if

By | 2017-04-11T18:44:56+00:00 April 3rd, 2017|

GOP Leaders, Remember Trump Ran Against Your Pieties … and Won

Politics is a team sport. It’s a basic truth of republican government—one that was even written into the nation’s founding document. The signers of the Declaration of Independence all agreed to “pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.” In short, they would stand together or hang separately, to paraphrase Benjamin

By | 2017-04-04T13:36:09+00:00 April 1st, 2017|

Trump: Ending the War on Cops

As the ambush of two police officers in Miami last week reminds us, the war on police, fomented to some extent by former President Obama and his cronies, is not over. But in the two months since President Trump took office, things are much more positive in the law enforcement community. Trump, who was unapologetically

By | 2017-04-03T06:55:12+00:00 April 1st, 2017|

Let My People Go: Removing the Shackles of Academic Jim Crow

On Wednesday March 29, Betsy DeVos, the Secretary of Education, gave a thoughtful speech before the Brookings Institution. The speech was a substantive development in a week otherwise dominated by the ongoing investigation into the Trump administration, which—as it happens—is turning into an investigation of Democrat spying. In her speech DeVos’s noted that, “parents know

By | 2017-04-03T06:52:59+00:00 March 31st, 2017|