Robert J. Samuelson / Politics

The Happiness Curve

WASHINGTON -- We all want to be happy, don't we? Well, if you're dissatisfied, frustrated or downright miserable, cheer up. There's apparently a cure for you. Even better, it will materialize automatically. Just sit and wait; the very anticipation...

Understanding the Oil Crash

WASHINGTON -- The great oil bust of 2014 is something to behold.

Since mid-June, crude prices have dropped roughly 40 percent, from $115 a barrel for the Brent benchmark to about $70 a barrel now. U.S. gasoline prices have fallen almost a dollar ...

Echoes From the 1920s

"The nation of which [Warren G.] Harding became president was not happy, and forces were underway which seemed likely, unless arrested, to bring more serious unhappiness."

-- journalist Mark Sullivan, 1935

WASHINGTON -- As Harding took ...

America's Giant Welfare State

WASHINGTON -- We Americans pride ourselves on not having a "welfare state." We're not like Europeans. We're more individualistic and self-reliant, and although we may have a "social safety net" to protect people against unpredictable personal and ...

Climate Realities

WASHINGTON -- The United States-China agreement on climate change is a huge political triumph, possibly "historic," as its supporters say. Whether it much alters the world's climate is a more open question.

Recall the agreement's outlines. By ...

The Twilight of Democratic Capitalism?

WASHINGTON -- It must be obvious by now that we are experiencing something greater than the routine frustrations of the business cycle and the normal political discontents of democracies. There is, as political scientist William Galston writes in ...