Gentleman Boss

“His political experience had been restricted almost exclusively to one state, and his knowledge of national and international affairs was limited to what any reasonably curious New Yorker might cull from local newspapers.” “His nomination had been entirely unexpected, and was commonly interpreted as a device for placating the most opprobrious forces within the GOP.”… Read more Gentleman Boss

Who I’m With

Just over a year ago, I was lying on a hotel bed in Peoria, Illinois, after a day of attending sessions at a library conference, and planned to finish off my evening reading. But instead I turned on the TV (always a big mistake) and was immediately thrust into the Select Committee on Benghazi’s marathon grilling… Read more Who I’m With

Thousands

Tonight I was standing in a private room of a restaurant for a party when a middle-aged Asian woman in a kimono entered the room and approached me. She was holding a stack of leaflets and shoved one in front of me. “I’d like to talk to you about who to vote for on Tuesday,” she… Read more Thousands

160 Years Later

Reading Robert Strauss’s Worst. President. Ever.: James Buchanan, the POTUS Rating Game, and the Legacy of the Least of the Lesser Presidents, which quotes this passage from Robert Merry’s Where They Stand: The American Presidents in the Eyes of Voters and Historians: Funny how the man elected to the presidency in 1856 can sound so similar to… Read more 160 Years Later

I Don’t Get It

If you put a gun to my head and told me that I had to vote for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, I would but whisper, “Goodbye cruel world.” But if my family somehow managed to convince me to stick around, in preference to Trump I would vote for Hillary. Or John Kerry, or… Read more I Don’t Get It

Lest We Forget

Daniel Larison at The American Conservative remembers what we ought never forget: People that now panic about incipient caudillismo and the dangers of a nationalist demagogue didn’t care when Bush expanded the security state, trampled on the Constitution, or launched an unnecessary war of aggression, and people that yawned at the steady expansion of government and creation… Read more Lest We Forget

Crunchy Cons

In Station Eleven, survivors of a global pandemic and subsequent post-apocalyptic chaos decamp to an abandoned airport in Michigan and eventually establish a Museum of Civilization, comprised of assorted artifacts from life before “year zero,” when the pandemic paralyzed the world and rendered much of the stuff that had comprised their lives useless. The Museum… Read more Crunchy Cons

How to Win My Vote

My first presidential vote was in 2008 for Barack Obama. It’s a vote I will never regret, despite the mixed results of the Obama administration. But in 2012 I didn’t vote to re-elect Obama, despite being generally supportive of his presidency and against the prospect of Mitt Romney. I voted for the libertarian candidate Gary Johnson—largely for the reasons… Read more How to Win My Vote