Donald Trump is all about boundaries. At a personal level, he doesn’t like touching strangers for fear of infection. Politically, he makes no long-lasting close alliances. And geopolitically, he obsesses over strong borders: big walls, more stringent immigration requirements, tariffs on foreign imports. But Trump is nothing if not a walking contradiction. For a guy… Continue reading Making America Unsafe Again
In fantasy sports, participants draft their own dream teams out of the rosters of existing players. That’s what Donald Trump has done with Ukraine. He and his advisors have created a fantasy team involving a number of key players, including the Ukrainian president, the former U.S. ambassador, and the former vice president’s son. Then they’ve… Continue reading Trump’s Fantasy Ukraine
A month after he won the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump gave a speech in North Carolina where he declared that “we will stop racing to topple foreign regimes that we know nothing about, that we shouldn’t be involved with.” It’s still commonplace for foreign policy analysts of the left, right, and center to distinguish Trump from his predecessors by pointing… Continue reading For Trump, Regime Change Begins at Home
The United States witnessed three mass shootings in one week recently in California, Texas, and Ohio. There have been more than 250 mass shootings so far in 2019, more than one a day. This year in America, more than 33,000 shooting incidents have killed more than 8,700 people. America is the richest country in the world, but… Continue reading Is America Crazy?
Less than a month ago, the candidate leading in the polls in the Brazilian presidential election was a jailed ex-politician who technically couldn’t even run for office. It gets even weirder. Brazilian voters have put corruption near the top of the list of their concerns this political season. Yet Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the… Continue reading Why Is the Radical Right Still Winning?
Marty Byrde has a problem. His partner at the financial services firm has been skimming off the top of the money-laundering service they’re providing a Mexican narcotrafficker. The drug dealer responds by killing Marty’s partner. He’s just about to put a bullet into Marty as well when, in desperation, the financial planner comes up with… Continue reading Trump’s Dirty Money
In a surprise announcement in early March, President Donald Trump said that he would meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un within two months. The preparations for the meeting were hampered by the lack of North Korea expertise within the administration, the short-staffed State Department, and the mercurial temperament of the president. The North Korean… Continue reading How Those Trump-Kim Talks Might Go: A Transcript
Don’t kid yourself: 2016 was a revolutionary year in the United States. Yes, I know, the United States is a deeply conservative country. Americans don’t engage in periodic attempts to overthrow the system. There is no viable political party that threatens the status quo. When protesters gather in Washington, they have no intention of storming… Continue reading The Insurrectionists
In 1993, I arrived one fall evening in the Romanian city of Cluj. The railway station was mysteriously full of people, and the city outside was crowded and frenetic. I was mystified. Why did this rather obscure Transylvanian outpost suddenly seem like New York City? My contacts in Cluj eventually provided me with an explanation.… Continue reading The President Is a Ponzi Scheme
During rush week, aspiring frat boys endure all manner of indignities. They all want to join the exclusive club, and they’re willing to pay the steep initiation fee of risk and embarrassment. One day, they too will be seniors who can haze the newbies all they like. Such are the perks of following orders, rising… Continue reading The Anti-Corruption Revolution