Whether or not you enjoyed watching Carl Levin question witnesses during U.S. Senate hearings depended entirely on where you were sitting while he was doing it. If you were a Senate committee staffer sitting behind the senator from Michigan while he eviscerated arrogant or dissembling corporate executives whose weeks of preparation with high-...Read more
At moments of historic national crisis, America has had a knack for getting lucky. The first month of Joe Biden's presidency suggests that, thank goodness, we have gotten lucky once again.
When the nation split in two in 1860, there was no reason to expect that Abraham Lincoln was suited to the herculean task of restoring the Union. "There is...Read more
No American with an ounce of patriotism could have watched the video of the animals who overtook the nation's Capitol without being revolted by what former President Donald Trump has done to the country we love. But plenty of Americans who profess to be patriots have watched this Trump impeachment trial not merely stone cold to the evidence, ...Read more
Black History Month 2021 arrived just in time to cap a year in which white Americans' eyes have been opened in a new way to the burdens endured by communities of color. In the year since the pandemic broke into the open, a particularly harsh spotlight has shone on race in America, shattering the false confidence that allegations of systemic ...Read more
The cliche of the moment is that the Republican Party is not only "divided" but "fractured," that an internecine war has split the party in two.
The truth is that the Republican Party is now officially the party of choice for political nut cases, including some genuinely dangerous ones. The overwhelming majority of Republicans ...Read more
Israelis do not "do" royalty, to put it mildly. They are famously irreverent, deeply skeptical and distinctively if not scathingly critical of their leaders.
But if Israel recognized royal families, surely Isaac Herzog, known to Israelis as "Bougie," would qualify as a prince. His Irish-born father, Chaim Herzog, fought with the British Army ...Read more
Donald Trump's presidency involved no Holocaust, no concentration camps, no gas chambers. There was no genocide and no threat of one.
But what it did feature was bad enough -- more than bad enough for America to stop, search its soul and commit itself to declaring, "Never again."
It featured a narcissistic sociopath of a president, a ...Read more
The neo-fascist mob that bashed in Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick's skull with a fire extinguisher, wielded lead pipes, ransacked Congress and terrorized members of Congress have a plausible claim that they were only following orders -- those of the president of the United States. Donald Trump had told them it was their duty to come to ...Read more
The video gone viral of New Year's Eve at Mar-A-Lago with Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump and assorted Trumpettes dancing while a lounge lizard sang "Play That Funky Music (White Boy)" seemed certain to take first prize as the perfect coda of the Trump years. It was merely cringeworthy, however, and was quickly overtaken by a ...Read more
In the reunion classic "The Big Chill," a criminal defense lawyer played by Mary Kay Place tries to find the words to convey to her old college friends just how awful her clients are and settles on the phrase "extreme repulsivos." Asked who she imagined she would be representing, Place replies, "I just didn't think they would be this guilty."
It's been disclosed that the White House will be fumigated before Joe Biden moves in, and one hopes that the chemical agent will be extra-strength. It's unclear whether mere fumigation will be enough to remove the disease that Donald Trump has spawned in the American people's house. Even if one round suffices to rid the White House of COVID-19, ...Read more
When Alexander Kutik and his wife, Alla Zernitskaya, fled the Soviet Union in 1990, the two Belarussian musicians took with them two young sons, two suitcases and a shared faith in the power of music. Alexander was a trumpeter; Alla taught violin to children. The anti-Semitism that has forever been a poisonous fixture in Russia had given them no...Read more