Today the proposition that the whole planet is on course to embrace Western liberalism is no longer credible. One would expect the only global superpower to acquire a level of distance from those ideas or, at least, to reexamine them in full and even contemplate how they can be revised and improved. And in fact what we see in America today is a serious engagement with the most serious questions of modern political history. Whether the adventure will come to a happy end is perhaps too early to tell, but American political life is busy with big, daunting problems. The problem of freedom first of all — America is battling with hyper freedom — but also the question of how to reconcile a greater depth of experience than is possible in a liberal society with the freedom from authoritarian rule promised by liberalism. Conventional wisdom suggests that the United States has already reached its peak. But what if it is only now starting to forge its own path forward? What if American … [Read more...] about How Fantasy Triumphed Over Reality in American Politics
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Besides the president outright telling Woodward that he “wanted to always play it down,” Trump has also said that coronavirus cases would be “close to zero,” everything was “under control” in February, that children were virtually “immune” to the disease, that 99 percent of COVID-19 cases are “totally harmless,” and that the virus “will go away in April” with the “heat.” … [Read more...] about Kayleigh McEnany, Despite All Reality, Claims Trump ‘Never Downplayed’ Virus
With new sanctions, Trump sided against Iran’s government and with the pro-democracy forces within the country. When Iran tried to goad the U.S. into war, hoping to isolate the Trump administration from its European allies, Trump did not take the bait. Instead, he pulled back from air strikes that would have caused civilian casualties, and launched a targeted strike against General Qasem Soleimani instead. … [Read more...] about Pollak: The Dream of Peace in Israel Is Becoming a Reality
It wasn’t Biden’s call for spending $2 trillion in four years on climate projects, or his endorsement of turning Section 8 housing vouchers into an entitlement, or plans for paid family leave and child care that his campaign had to disavow in private conversations with its favorite Wall Street rentiers — it was his apparent embrace of postal banking, a policy that would enable the public sector to perform some functions currently reserved for private finance. By providing America’s poor with basic financial services, postal banking could theoretically impinge on the business models of payday lenders in the near term. Perhaps more significantly, if successful, such a program could invite further incursions into private financial capital’s prerogatives in the long run. Thus, this was the idea that raised Wall Street’s hackles. Similarly, Silicon Valley’s mindful megamillionaires don’t begrudge the working-class some social support … [Read more...] about Biden 2020: Change That Wall Street Liberals Can Believe In?
Bush never conceded the possibility that he could lose. Nor did he feel any obligation to maintain intellectual consistency. His campaign demanded the letter of the law be carried out in those instances when it suited his side, and it flouted the letter of the law in those (military ballots, illegally submitted absentee ballots in Seminole County) when it did not. It whipped up a mob to halt a recount in Miami-Dade County that at the time appeared potentially decisive. Conservatives celebrated these developments without a hint of dissent. While Democrats in Washington constantly undermined the Gore campaign by telling reporters that Gore should concede, Washington Republicans maintained ranks. Through their greater resolve and partisan discipline, the Republicans triumphed. … [Read more...] about In a Contested Election, This Time Democrats Won’t Be Drowned Out