Columns

The First Postmodern Pandemic

Column: The only predictable fallout of coronavirus? Partisanship.

ChinaThe pundits are having difficulty settling on a historical analogy for the COVID-19 coronavirus. Will the spread of the disease be President Trump's Katrina, or his financial crisis? Will it be similar to the H1N1 Avian flu pandemic in 2009, or will it be politicized like the Ebola outbreak in 2014?

Battle of the Boroughs

Column: And the fall of the political establishment

Bloomberg Trump SandersThere are 329 million people in the United States of America. They are spread across 3.8 million square miles. The presidential race will be determined by the actions of three of them: Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, and Michael Bloomberg. Each one is a New Yorker. Each hails from a different borough. Trump was born in Queens, Sanders in Brooklyn, and Bloomberg, a native of Massachusetts, has worked and lived in Manhattan since 1973.

The Era of Limbaugh

Column: Why Rush Limbaugh matters

Rush LimbaughFlorida governor Ron DeSantis spoke to Rush Limbaugh last fall at a gala dinner for the National Review Institute. The radio host was there to receive the William F. Buckley Jr. award. "He actually gave me one of the greatest compliments I've ever had," Limbaugh told his audience the next day. "He listed five great conservatives and put me in the list." DeSantis's pantheon: William F. Buckley Jr., Ronald Reagan, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Limbaugh.

Whatever Happened to the Democratic Primary?

Column: Iowa's holding a caucus—and nobody cares

Joe BidenThe Fox News website highlights "hot topics" at the top of the page. As I write, the topics are: "Kobe Bryant dead," "Trump impeachment," and "Coronavirus." Compelling—and in the last case terrifying—stories. But something is missing: The Democratic primary.

The Never-Ending Impeachment

Column: Efforts to remove Trump didn't start with Ukraine. And won't end there.

Maybe Nancy Pelosi held on to the impeachment articles because she was waiting for her pens to arrive. The fancy commemorative ball points, featuring the speaker's name engraved in gold, that Pelosi gave to colleagues at Wednesday's engrossment ceremony quickly became the subject of mockery. Republicans saw them as emblematic of Democratic partisanship and triviality. "Nothing says seriousness and sobriety like handing out souvenirs," said Mitch McConnell. "As though this were a happy bill-signing instead of the gravest process in our Constitution."

How McConnell Outplayed Pelosi

Column: The Republican leader unified his caucus by relying on precedent

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnell was clear when he addressed the Senate December 18: Any impeachment trial of President Trump would follow the precedent established by the trial of President Clinton 20 years ago.

Trump Calls the Ayatollah’s Bluff

Column: And scores a victory against terrorism

Trump KHameneiReciprocity. That is the key to understanding Donald Trump. Whether you are a media figure or a mullah, a prime minister or a pope, he will be good to you if you are good to him. Say something mean, though, or work against his interests, and he will respond in force. It won't be pretty. It won't be polite. There will be fallout. But you may think twice before crossing him again.

How Trump Won 2019

Column: Thank his opponents

US President Donald Trump watches the game with members of the Navy during the Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on December 14, 2019. (Photo by Andrew CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP) (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)President Trump ends 2019 in a better position than when he started. The year began with the swearing in of Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House. The Mueller probe dragged on. The legislative agenda of Trump's first two years in office had petered out. The Democratic frontrunner, Joe Biden, was beating him by double digits in the polls. A little more than halfway through the year, bond prices signaled recession.

Present at the Demolition

Column: The post-WWII order is ending—and nothing has replaced it

This grab made from a video shows Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (L), French President Emmanuel Macron (front), British Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R) and Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (back-C) as the leaders of Britain, Canada, France and the Netherlands were caught on camera at a Buckingham Palace reception mocking US President Donald Trump's lengthy media appearances ahead of the NATO summit on December 3, 2019 in London. - US President Donald Trump cancelled on December 4, 2019 a planned final news conference scheduled for after the NATO summit, following two days of sharp disputes with allies. (Photo by - / NATO TV / AFP) (Photo by -/NATO TV/AFP via Getty Images)Economists at the World Bank and International Monetary Fund must feel pretty lucky these days. They work for just about the only institutions set up in the aftermath of Word War II that aren't in the middle of an identity crisis. From Turtle Bay to Brussels, from Washington to Vienna, the decay of the economic and security infrastructure of the postwar world has accelerated in recent weeks. The bad news: As the legacy of the twentieth century recedes into the past, the only twenty-first century alternatives on offer come from an authoritarian surveillance state.

Medicare For All: Progressive Campaign Killer

Column: Harris and Warren fell for the fool's gold of socialized medicine

Kamala HarrisPundits have a ready explanation when one of their favorites loses or ends a campaign: The voters just didn't get to know the candidate the way media do. He or she was too wonky, or eager to please, or insular, or revealing, or uncertain for the masses. The electoral process made it impossible for him or her to connect with voters. The classic example is Hillary Clinton, who has re-introduced herself to the public umpteen times over the decades. A friend who knows her once told me I would like Clinton if only I got to meet her informally. I had a good laugh at that one.