The House Freedom Caucus is routinely described as conservative, by its members, by the mainstream media, by Wikipedia. The caucus, which draws together 45 Republican Party members of the House of Representatives, is the furthest to the right of any major political formation in the United States. The most extreme and flamboyant politicians in America,… Continue reading They’re Not Conservatives, They’re Extremists
The problem with the current pandemic is that we don’t know if we’re coming or going. It’s as if we’re swimming far from shore, overwhelmed by one wave after another, and we’re unsure if we’re heading toward land or away from it. China was the early face of COVID-19, but it hasn’t faced many infections… Continue reading What’s Up with the Herd?
Germany faces a major crisis. The German birth rate is considerably below what’s needed to replace the population. German seniors, meanwhile, are living longer and drawing more on state resources for their pensions and health care. There are basically two ways out of this demographic crisis. First of all, Germany could boost its birth rate.… Continue reading Immigrants to the Rescue
In his first foreign policy speech as president, delivered at the State Department on February 4, 2021, Joe Biden laid out his vision of America’s engagement with the world. In its conventional combination of the stick of military power and the carrot of diplomacy, Biden’s address heralded a return to the foreign policy status quo of the… Continue reading How Biden Looks at the World
Caligula was by all accounts a nasty piece of work. During the nearly four years that he ruled over the Roman empire in the first century CE, Caligula was notorious for sexual predation and extravagant spending. Never one to sell himself short, he proclaimed early on that he was a god. He held the Senate… Continue reading The Claudius Presidency
The Biden administration has promised to promote unity when it takes office later this month. That’s an excellent message after four years of deliberate provocation and polarization coming from the Trump administration. But the incoming administration must also draw a clear line between what is and is not acceptable political behavior. And the best way… Continue reading Knives Out: Boycott, Purge, and Prosecute
The United States began as a glint in the eyes of an English mob of oddballs, dissenters, and criminals let loose on what they considered virgin territory. Once secure in their new digs, they administered rough justice to the original Americans and any colonist who fell afoul of community rules. Eventually, casting aside their imperial… Continue reading America and the Mob
The presidential election wasn’t close. Joe Biden won the popular vote by more than 7 million votes, which translates to a margin of 4.5 percent. His Electoral College victory was larger than either of George W. Bush’s. Yet, Donald Trump still refuses to concede. The soon-to-be-ex-president tried to pressure Republican legislators to overturn the election… Continue reading America’s Destructive Denialisms
The 2017 film Bushwick begins like a lot of zombie flicks. An unsuspecting couple is walking through a subway station in the working-class neighborhood of Bushwick in Brooklyn. The station is eerily empty. They hear gunfire outside. The boyfriend goes out to investigate, and you know from the conventions of a zombie film that this… Continue reading Who Needs Zombies When We Have Republicans?
You know about the five-second rule. According to conventional wisdom, food that has dropped on the floor can be safely eaten if retrieved within five seconds. Some scientists have even set up experiments to confirm this folk saying. Of course, all bets are off if your toast falls on the floor buttered side down and… Continue reading U.S. Democracy: The Four-Year Rule?