From the Left



Will Trump spark a kindness backlash?

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- If you are appalled by the chaos, division and meanness of the Trump presidency, if you are tired of the lies he and his apparatchiks tell, take heart. Most of your fellow Americans feel the same way.

There is a condescending habit in the nation's capital of seeing voters as detached and indifferent to the day-to-day workings of ...Read more

Trump accidentally discovers a truth

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- There is a reason bipartisan government is so hard these days. It's not because "both parties" are intransigent or because "both parties" have moved to the "extremes." It's because what were once widely seen as moderate, commonsense solutions are pushed off the table by a far right that defines compromise as acquiescence to its ...Read more

Michael Wolff and the end of denial

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The most astonishing aspect of the response to Michael Wolff's book is that anyone is surprised. President Trump's unfitness for office was obvious long before he was elected. Once he moved into the White House, the destructive chaos of his administration was there for all to see. Future historians will scratch their heads to ...Read more

Rushing toward the breaking point

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Can our government function normally when President Trump tweets about his "button" being bigger than that of an armed adversary? Can there be business as usual when the word "insane" is being applied with increasing frequency to his actions, and when one of his most loyal supporters has called a meeting between Russian operatives ...Read more

The word for 2018: Enough

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- With New Year's resolutions and almost everything else in life, it's essential -- and often extremely difficult -- to set priorities. This applies especially to politics, now dominated by the provocations and outrages that emanate daily from President Trump and his White House.

In 2018, Trump's abuses of power, his indifference to...Read more

Praying for democracy

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

My New Year's wish is for the health and resurgence of democracy. What follows is a slightly edited version of a morning prayer I offered last month at the Appleton Chapel of the Memorial Church at Harvard University.

Let us say a prayer for democracy. But let us do more than pray. Let's ask ourselves what it means to live by a ...Read more

Christmas turned the world upside down

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- When you ponder what Christmas celebrates, the holiday's claim is staggering.

N. T. Wright, the widely read biblical scholar and former Anglican bishop, captures its import by noting that the Gospels do not cast Jesus as "parachuting down from a great height to dispense solutions to all problems nor zapping everything into shape ...Read more

A tax cut that forgets the forgotten

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- December 20, 2017, will live on as a day of disgrace and dishonor.

It will be remembered as the date when a government of, by and for the people became a government of, by and for wealthy campaign donors -- and of, by and for wealthy Republican politicians themselves.

We thought the corruption, self-dealing and social ...Read more

The tax bill: Not just bad, but corrupt

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The tax bill the GOP is trying to foist on the country is not only an unfair and deficit-bloating hodgepodge written on the fly. It is also deeply corrupt. No matter how much they wring their hands ahead of time, all Republicans who vote for this bill will be joining their party's festival of corruption.

Corruption is not a word ...Read more

Sweet home of progress

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

Alabama. Who knew it would become one of the most beautiful words in American politics?

It turns out there could have been no better place to test the limits of indecency, the limits of Trumpism, the limits of Republican partisanship and, yes, the limits of racial subjugation. If the angry ideology of the far right cannot make it in one of our ...Read more

Our institutional crisis is upon us

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Our democratic republic is in far more danger than it was even a few weeks ago.

Until this point, there was an underlying faith in much of the political world that if Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian collusion in the election of Donald Trump turned up damning material about the president, Republicans in Congress would ...Read more

Roy Moore and the conscience of conservatives

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Just how disordered have our politics become? And how off-the-rails is the Republican Party?

The good people of Alabama will help answer these questions in next Tuesday's special election for the U. S. Senate. The whole world will be watching them decide whether party and ideology trump decency and moderation; whether there is ...Read more

How Trump lost his cover

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Dec. 1, 2017, will be remembered as the day when the vast majority of Americans fully grasped the consequences of the 2016 elections. They installed a man in the White House "likely to be under investigation for criminality for a very, very long time to come." And they gave power to a Republican Party whose only purpose is to ...Read more

Government by the reckless, for the few

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Students often leave term papers to the last minute. Repair folks frequently arrive at the far end of the time they promised. And some basketball players don't turn it on until the fourth quarter.

But the stakes in all these close shaves are relatively low. Not so with Republicans in Congress. They are reordering large parts of ...Read more

Who will challenge Trump's enablers?

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Great nations and proud democracies fall when their systems become so corrupted that the decay is not even noticed -- or the rot is written off as a normal part of politics.

President Trump has created exactly such a crisis. He has not done it alone. The corrosion of norms and values began long before he propelled the nation past ...Read more

Will John McCain leap into the breach?

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

Does our country face a big problem with deficits? Is it a mistake to add to them?

House Speaker Paul Ryan certainly thinks so. Or he used to. In 2010, he told Fortune magazine that the nation was "sleep-walking toward a debt crisis," and he foresaw calamity on a grand scale. "Within a few years, a sale of government bonds will fail," he said. ...Read more

Giving thanks for, yes, journalism

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Thanksgiving is a splendid holiday, but also a useful one. It reminds us that gratitude is a virtue. We owe the most satisfying parts of our lives to others and fool ourselves if we imagine otherwise.

We usually begin, rightly, by thanking our families since they are (if we are lucky) both the original and ongoing sources of love ...Read more

A fight more pressing than Democratic squabbling

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Sometimes, the Democratic Party amazes me. And not in a good way.

Here is a party fresh off a series of big election triumphs all over the country. The nation faces an unprecedented challenge brought on by President Trump's breathtaking irresponsibility. Republicans are pushing through the most reactionary tax bill since the...Read more

Who will stand up to unforgivable recklessness?

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The GOP bill that should be called the Cut Taxes on President Trump and Other Very Rich People Act of 2017 always had a secondary purpose: to jack up the deficit so Republicans could later cry out in horror, "Look at that awful debt!" They'd then use the pools of red ink they created to justify deep cuts in social programs.

But ...Read more

Trump's real constituency: The Super Rich

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The focus on President Trump's political strength among white working-class voters distracts from a truth that may be more important: His rise depended on support from rich conservatives, and his program serves the interests of those who have accumulated enormous wealth.

This explains why so few Congressional Republicans denounce ...Read more


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