Politics

The Moon will probably still be there later on…

Reacting to the “zeroing out” of manned space flight in NASA’s budget – something forecasted months ago, but, according to reports, now a step closer to reality – Dafydd ab Hugh sounds some familiar themes, fortissimo, from the HotAir Greenroom

Posted in Politics, Science Tagged with: , , ,

For the annals of familiarity breeding contempt…

I’m thinking I’ve been spending far too much time dwelling on the beams in conservatives’ eyes, and that it’s time I devote attention to the Left, so I can seem pissed off more equally. Any suggestions?

Posted in Politics

Fight Them All Together II: On Allahpundit’s questions

Citing the New York Post in a post at HotAir, Allahpundit discusses apparent links between Cordoba Initiative founder Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and the “Gaza flotilla.”  As AP is creditably careful to note, the linkage at this point remains tenuous: 

Posted in Politics, Religion Tagged with: , , , , ,

A time for not choosing

If only Barack Obama still functioned, we’d have someone in authority to tell us that George Will’s latest column on the need to choose, now – preferably by the time you’re done reading this post at the latest – between

Posted in Politics, US History Tagged with: , , , , , ,

…and take all our separate planets with us

If you’re going to declare someone else to be insane, your diagnosis will be easier to credit if it’s not couched in absurdities.  Here’s the conclusion of Gabriel Schoenfeld’s post today at The Weekly Standard blog: The outpouring  of condemnation from

Posted in Future History, International Relations, Politics, War Tagged with: , , ,

Some perspective, please…

“Memory Foundations” – from Studio Daniel Liebeskind’s master site plan for the rebuilding of the World Trade Center Site

Posted in Art, Politics, Religion Tagged with: , , , ,

Imam McCarthy’s newest fatwa

At NRO/The Corner, reliable anti-Islamist Andy McCarthy calls for opposition to Cordoba House today, recalling the protests that he believes helped stop plans to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Manhattan. That dissent was enough to forestall the trial, but it

Posted in Politics, Religion, War Tagged with: , , ,

A sounding…

Even a perfectly just man who wants to give advice to a tyrant has to present himself to his pupil as an utterly unscrupulous man. Leo Strauss, On Tyranny Thus, the voice of the Machiavellian – and the Sully-ite, too. 

Posted in Books, Politics Tagged with: , , ,

Endless Unstoppable Flows of Bad Ugly Stuff That No One Seems To Be Able To Do Anything About

This post isn’t really about the BP oil disastrophe – not that anyone yet seems quite sure how much of a disastrophe it is, even politically.  This post is just here to ask whether the cloudy ominous unstoppable confusion of

Posted in Economics, Politics Tagged with:

The Marriage of Heaven and Hell in Manhattan

I don’t see a good reason to be against the building of a mosque/cultural center two blocks from Ground Zero. In fact, the arguments in favor sound quite reasonable to me.  But, then again, I don’t hate and fear Islam. 

Posted in Politics, War Tagged with: , , , ,

From the Featured Archives

Noted & Quoted

TV pundits and op-ed writers of every major newspaper epitomize how the Democratic establishment has already reached a consensus: the 2020 nominee must be a centrist, a Joe Biden, Cory Booker or Kamala Harris–type, preferably. They say that Joe Biden should "run because [his] populist image fits the Democrats’ most successful political strategy of the past generation" (David Leonhardt, New York Times), and though Biden "would be far from an ideal president," he "looks most like the person who could beat Trump" (David Ignatius, Washington Post). Likewise, the same elite pundit class is working overtime to torpedo left-Democratic candidates like Sanders.

For someone who was not acquainted with Piketty's paper, the argument for a centrist Democrat might sound compelling. If the country has tilted to the right, should we elect a candidate closer to the middle than the fringe? If the electorate resembles a left-to-right line, and each voter has a bracketed range of acceptability in which they vote, this would make perfect sense. The only problem is that it doesn't work like that, as Piketty shows.

The reason is that nominating centrist Democrats who don't speak to class issues will result in a great swathe of voters simply not voting. Conversely, right-wing candidates who speak to class issues, but who do so by harnessing a false consciousness — i.e. blaming immigrants and minorities for capitalism's ills, rather than capitalists — will win those same voters who would have voted for a more class-conscious left candidate. Piketty calls this a "bifurcated" voting situation, meaning many voters will connect either with far-right xenophobic nationalists or left-egalitarian internationalists, but perhaps nothing in-between.

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Understanding Trump’s charisma offers important clues to understanding the problems that the Democrats need to address. Most important, the Democratic candidate must convey a sense that he or she will fulfil the promise of 2008: not piecemeal reform but a genuine, full-scale change in America’s way of thinking. It’s also crucial to recognise that, like Britain, America is at a turning point and must go in one direction or another. Finally, the candidate must speak to Americans’ sense of self-respect linked to social justice and inclusion. While Weber’s analysis of charisma arose from the German situation, it has special relevance to the United States of America, the first mass democracy, whose Constitution invented the institution of the presidency as a recognition of the indispensable role that unique individuals play in history.

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[E]ven Fox didn’t tout Bartiromo’s big scoops on Trump’s legislative agenda, because 10 months into the Trump presidency, nobody is so foolish as to believe that him saying, “We’re doing a big infrastructure bill,” means that the Trump administration is, in fact, doing a big infrastructure bill. The president just mouths off at turns ignorantly and dishonestly, and nobody pays much attention to it unless he says something unusually inflammatory.On some level, it’s a little bit funny. On another level, Puerto Rico is still languishing in the dark without power (and in many cases without safe drinking water) with no end in sight. Trump is less popular at this point in his administration than any previous president despite a generally benign economic climate, and shows no sign of changing course. Perhaps it will all work out for the best, and someday we’ll look back and chuckle about the time when we had a president who didn’t know anything about anything that was happening and could never be counted on to make coherent, factual statements on any subject. But traditionally, we haven’t elected presidents like that — for what have always seemed like pretty good reasons — and the risks of compounding disaster are still very much out there.

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