WASHINGTON -- The word “inappropriate” is increasingly used inappropriately. It is useful to describe departures from good manners or other social norms, such as wearing white after Labor Day or using the salad fork with the entree. But the adjective has become a splatter of verbal fudge, a weasel word falsely suggesting measured seriousness...Read more
WASHINGTON -- With the end of Fidel Castro’s nasty life Friday night, we can hope, if not reasonably expect, to have seen the last of charismatic totalitarians worshiped by political pilgrims from open societies. Experience suggests there will always be tyranny tourists in flight from what they consider the boring banality of bourgeois society...Read more
WASHINGTON -- At this shank end of a shabby year, Americans still can be thankful: They do not have the problem of nothing to grumble about. As we steel ourselves for Thanksgiving’s obligatory routs and revels -- does anyone really like turkey? or Uncle Ralph, who keeps turning up, like a bad penny? -- Americans are cudgeling their ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Many undergraduates, their fawn-like eyes wide with astonishment, are wondering: Why didn't the dean of students prevent the election from disrupting the serenity to which my school has taught me that I am entitled? Campuses create "safe spaces" where students can shelter from discombobulating thoughts and receive spiritual balm ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Seventeen days before President Donald Trump, his spoken oath of office still lingering in the wintry air, lifts his left hand from Scripture (a leather-bound edition of "The Art of the Deal"), the Republican-controlled Congress will begin working. Fittingly, on Jan. 3 the First Branch of government will go first, flexing its ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- The Republican Party resembles the man who told his psychiatrist, "I have an identity problem, and so do I." The party's leader is at best indifferent to, and often is hostile to, much of the party's recent catechism: limited government, the rule of law, a restrained executive, fiscal probity, entitlement reforms, free trade,...Read more
EDITORS: George F. Will's Sunday column will be sent Friday, a day later than usual.
WASHINGTON -- At dawn Tuesday in West Quoddy Head, Maine, America's easternmost point, it was certain that by midnight in Cape Wrangell, Alaska, America's westernmost fringe, there would be a loser who deserved to lose and a winner who did not ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Tuesday evening, after Election Day's tranquility, new clamors will erupt as analysts with agendas tickle portents and lessons from the torrent of election returns. Herewith some developments to watch.
-- In the 17 elections since World War II, the winner has averaged 385.4 electoral votes, the loser 145.1. In six elections (1952,...Read more
You Shall Know Our Names (The Judah Halevi Journals) (Volume 1)Ezekiel Nieto Benzion
When Ezekiel Benzion's grandfather handed him the dusty journals written by Doctor Judah Halevi Nieto, he begged, "Before I die, tell me why our family protected these for two hundred years. Who were these men? And why were they revered?" The search for answers led to ...
WASHINGTON -- As the presidential campaigns sink to the challenge of demonstrating that there is no such thing as rock bottom, remember this: When the Clintons decamped from Washington in January 2001, they took some White House furnishings that were public property. They also finished accepting more than $190,000 in gifts, including two coffee ...Read more
MANCHESTER, N.H. -- in 1936, President Franklin Roosevelt defeated Kansas' Gov. Alfred Landon in 46 of the 48 states, thereby creating the jest, "As Maine goes, so goes Vermont." Eight decades later, New England has gone from the Republicans' last redoubt in a bad year to their least receptive region in any year. Its six states have made 36 ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- When told that the New England transcendentalist Margaret Fuller had grandly declared "I accept the universe," the Scottish philosopher Thomas Carlyle dryly remarked: "She'd better." Much ink and indignation has been spilled concerning whether Donald ("I am much more humble than you would understand") Trump will "accept" the ...Read more
MILWAUKEE -- In 49 states, when you order breakfast in a restaurant you might be asked if you would like pancakes or an omelet. In Wisconsin, you are asked if you would like pancakes with your omelet. Ron Johnson would, thank you. This Republican U.S. senator, who is burning prodigious amounts of calories campaigning for a second and final term,...Read more
WASHINGTON -- A specter is haunting academia, the specter of specters -- ghosts, goblins and "cultural appropriation" through insensitive Halloween costumes. Institutions of higher education are engaged in the low comedy of avoiding the agonies of Yale.
Last October, the university was rocked to its 315-year-old foundations by the wife of a ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Another small step was taken last week on the steep and winding ascent back to constitutional norms. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, the nation's second-most important court, did its judicial duty by reprimanding Congress for abandoning constitutional propriety.
The court declared unconstitutional the unprecedented...Read more
"Freedom's just another word for nothin' left to lose."
-- "Me and Bobby McGee," Janis Joplin
WASHINGTON -- What did Donald Trump have left to lose Sunday night? His dignity? Please. His campaign's theme? His Cleveland convention was a mini-Nuremberg rally for Republicans whose three-word recipe for making America great again was the shriek "...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Vladimir Putin's serial humiliations of America's bewildered secretary of state regarding Syria indicate Putin's determination to destabilize the world. Here is an even more ominous indication of events moving his way: On just one day last week, Italian ships plucked 6,055 migrants from the Mediterranean.
What has this to do with ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- The "quiet catastrophe" is particularly dismaying because it is so quiet, without social turmoil or even debate. It is this: After 88 consecutive months of the economic expansion that began in June 2009, a smaller percentage of American males in the prime working years (ages 25 to 54) are working than were working near the end of ...Read more
"Lots o' folks confuse bad management with destiny."
-- Kin Hubbard
WASHINGTON -- The good news, a commodity in short supply, is that Americans are about to get a respite from the inundating Niagara of candidates' blather. The bad news is that the respite will be a tsunami of Cubs Gush, which will slosh from sea to shining sea. So, brace ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Looking on the bright side, perhaps this election can teach conservatives to look on the dark side. They need a talent for pessimism, recognizing the signs that whatever remains of American exceptionalism does not immunize this nation from decay, to which all regimes are susceptible.
The world's oldest political party is an ...Read more
AURORA, Colo. -- Here on the High Plains, where the deer and the antelope once played, Denver's suburbs roam toward the Rockies' front range and the nature of today's polyglot politics is written in the local congressman's campaign schedule. One day last week, Republican Mike Coffman went from a Hispanic charter school in a strip mall, to ...Read more