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Politics

In blocking abortion legislation, Democrats will display their cultural extremism

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- What would America's abortion policy be if the number of months in the gestation of a human infant were a prime number -- say, seven or eleven? This thought experiment is germane to why the abortion issue has been politically toxic, and points to a path toward a less bitter debate. The House of Representatives has for a third time ...Read more

Trump is turning and turning in a widening gyre

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- With eyes wide open, Mike Pence eagerly auditioned for the role as Donald Trump's poodle. Now comfortably leashed, he deserves the degradations that he seems too sycophantic to recognize as such. He did Trump's adolescent bidding with last Sunday's pre-planned virtue pageant of scripted indignation -- his flight from the ...Read more

The auto industry has a glamorous past but an opaque future

From the Right / George Will /

DETROIT -- Bending metal, slapping on chrome and marketing an empowering product and status marker that mesmerized 20th-century America, the automobile industry typified the Old Economy, of which General Motors was emblematic. As was its bankruptcy. Today, GM's CEO Mary Barra is wagering that the industry soon will be manufacturing New Economy ...Read more

Detroit is home to one of America's most accomplishing politicians

From the Right / George Will /

DETROIT -- With biblical succinctness, and foreshadowing a resurrection, Mike Duggan said, "Let there be light!" and 65,000 LED streetlights replaced the 40 percent of the city's streetlights that were broken when he took office in 2014. They are among the many reasons that on Nov. 7 he, the first white mayor here in 40 years, will win a ...Read more

Bikini-clad baristas serve up a lesson in free speech

From the Right / George Will /

SEATTLE -- Amazon, which has made this city the epicenter of a retailing revolution, is not the Northwest's only commercial disrupter. In the nearby city of Everett, Liberty Ziska and some other bikini baristas, giving new meaning to coffee as a stimulant, have provoked the City Council to pass, unanimously, ordinances requiring baristas to be ...Read more

Will the Supreme Court fall into a political thicket?

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- On Tuesday, the Supreme Court will hear arguments tempting it to plunge into an impenetrable political thicket. It will consider a lower court's ruling that, if allowed to stand, will require the judiciary to determine whether and when partisanship in drawing electoral districts -- something as old as the Constitution -- is ...Read more

Unsatisfied with facts, Seattle's city council turns to interpretations

From the Right / George Will /

SEATTLE -- In this city, which is a petri dish of progressivism, a prevailing theory is that when you raise the price of something, people will buy less of it, except when they do not. Another, and related, theory is that constitutional and statutory texts should be construed in the spirit of Friedrich Nietzsche: There are no facts, only ...Read more

America's engine is being slowed by complacency

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- It was an epoch-defining decision to place in Westminster Abbey, among statues of monarchs, priests and poets, a large one of James Watt, inventor of the separate-condenser steam engine. The statue's inscription says Watt ranks among the world's benefactors because he "increased the power of man." The economist and historian ...Read more

The steep cost of cheap speech

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- At this shank end of a summer that a calmer America someday will remember with embarrassment, you must remember this: In the population of 325 million, a small sliver crouches on the wilder shores of politics, another sliver lives in the dark forest of mental disorder, and there is a substantial overlap between these slivers. At ...Read more

A hilarious and elementary lesson on the burdens of progressivism

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- Life is exhausting -- and daily choices are unbearably burdensome -- for some Americans who are so comfortably situated that they have the time and means to make themselves morally uncomfortable. They think constantly about what they believe are the global ripples, and hence the moral-cum-political ramifications, of their quotidian...Read more

Will Congress be stirred from its slumber?

From the Right / George Will /

"Congress has been dropping in relative power along a descending curve of 60 years' duration, with the rate of fall markedly increased since 1933. ... The fall of the American Congress seems to be correlated with a more general historical transformation toward political and social forms within which the representative assembly -- the major ...Read more

Trump is threatening war with North Korea. But what kind?

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Air Force "sniffer plane" was collecting air samples off Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula on Sept. 3, 1949, when it gathered evidence of radioactivity, confirming that the war-shattered Soviet Union had tested a nuclear device. The Soviets' Aug. 29, 1949, test had come faster than expected.

Dating from the detonation at ...Read more

Football's enjoyment is on a fade pattern

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- Autumn, which is bearing down upon us like a menacing linebacker, is, as John Keats said, a season of mists and mellow fruitfulness and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Actually, Keats, a romantic, did not mention that last part. He died before the birth of the subject of a waning American romance, football. This sport will ...Read more

Yale offers a tutorial in social descent

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- Summer brings no respite for academics committed to campus purifications, particularly at the institution that is the leader in the silliness sweepstakes, Yale. Its Committee on Art in Public Spaces has discovered that a stone carving that has adorned an entrance to Sterling Memorial Library since it opened 86 years ago has become ...Read more

Trump, the novice protectionist

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- Sooner or later, and the later the better, the president's wandering attention will flit, however briefly, to the subject of trade. So, let us try to think about the problem as he seems to: Wily cosmopolitans beyond our borders are insinuating across our borders goods that Americans, perhaps misled by British economist David ...Read more

Laws that subvert the rule of law

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- When John Adams wrote into Massachusetts' Constitution a commitment to a "government of laws and not of men," he probably assumed that the rule of law meant the rule of laws, no matter how many laws there might be. He could not have imagined the modern proliferation and complexity of laws, or how subversive this is of the rule of ...Read more

The GOP's Southern Gothic page-turner

From the Right / George Will /

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Southern Gothic is a literary genre and, occasionally, a political style that, like the genre, blends strangeness and irony. Consider the current primary campaign to pick the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions. It illuminates, however, not a regional peculiarity but a national perversity, ...Read more

Our diminished trust in government can be traced to the bungles in Vietnam

From the Right / George Will /

One day [Marine Theodore Wallace] saw an officer casually aim his rifle and try to shoot a Vietnamese boy in the distance.

"Sir, what are you doing?" he'd asked.

"He's probably supplying the [North Vietnamese Army]," the officer said. "What's he doing out here anyway?"

"It's his country!" said Wallace.

-- Mark Bowden, "Hue 1968: A ...Read more

When a diminishing president is a good thing

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- Looking, as prudent people are disinclined to do, on the bright side, there are a few vagrant reasons for cheerfulness, beginning with this: Summer love is sprouting like dandelions. To the list of history's sublime romances -- Abelard and Heloise, Romeo and Juliet, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy -- add the torrid affair between ...Read more

The slovenly institution that is Congress

From the Right / George Will /

WASHINGTON -- In January 1988, in Ronald Reagan's final State of the Union address, he noisily dropped on a table next to the podium in the House chamber three recent continuing resolutions, each more than a thousand pages long. Each was evidence of Congress' disregard of the 1974 Budget Act. Reagan fumed:

" ... budget deadlines delayed or ...Read more

 

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