This is a tale of two governments. Both were faced with a potential disaster -- a new and deadly epidemic. Both made choices that the world will judge.
China. The virus made its first appearance in a Wuhan "wet market," an emporium (apparently common in China) that featured live and newly slaughtered animals in close proximity. SARS and Avian ...Read more
We are facing one discrete problem in the mass of chaos surrounding this pandemic that we can and must address immediately -- the security of November's election.
Voting in the traditional way requires us to do the very thing that epidemiologists and public health authorities have forbidden us to do -- gather in large groups for prolonged ...Read more
"Let's blow it all up." That was the sentiment that animated any number of Republican primary voters in 2016. The "it" was (take your pick) the Republican Party, the "establishment," the country. There were many good reasons for voters to be dissatisfied with the state of things in 2016. There were also any number of able candidates who could ...Read more
Sweet relief. Super Tuesday was the worst setback for left-wing populism since Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party crashed and burned. But while the voters have handed Joe Biden another chance, it's important to recognize why they've had doubts.
From the start of this election cycle, majorities of Democrats had signaled that their highest priority was...Read more
According to CNN, Bernie Sanders "has been consistent for 40 years." Some find this reassuring. Sanders is not a finger-in-the-wind politician who tacks this way or that depending upon what's popular. On the other hand, if someone has never changed his mind throughout 78 years of life, it suggests ideological rigidity and imperviousness to ...Read more
The pre-Nevada Democratic debate was a gift to Donald Trump. Instead of training their fire on the incumbent, or on the vulnerable front-runner, Bernie Sanders, the candidates tore Mike Bloomberg to shreds while saving plenty of darts for one another. That nice young man Pete Buttigieg became that supercilious egoist needling Amy Klobuchar over ...Read more
Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative (cough) Union, which hosts the annual CPAC conference, tweeted that he was disinviting Mitt Romney from the confab this year because he "could not guarantee his physical safety" after the senator voted to convict Donald Trump in the impeachment trial.
A number of commentators on the left have ...Read more
During his floor speech explaining his vote to convict Donald Trump, Mitt Romney was overcome by emotion and paused to compose himself. The intense moment came when he spoke of his devotion to God, saying: "I am profoundly religious. My faith is at the heart of who I am." Lump in throat. Long pause. "I take an oath before God as enormously ...Read more
Attending a meeting near Union Station in Washington, D.C., requires me to park a few blocks away and then walk under a bridge to an office building. People in business attire, like me, step carefully around the homeless men and women who have pitched tents under the bridge. They look filthy and miserable, especially in winter.
The persistence ...Read more
In July 2018, Commentary published an article by Yuval Levin that caused everyone who thinks about the balance of power among the branches in Washington, D.C., to say: "Of course! That's it exactly!" It had long been observed that Congress had, over the course of several decades, relinquished its powers to the executive and the courts. That wasn...Read more
When the economy shows signs of weakness, Wall Street analysts expect to see what they call a "flight to safety." Investors sell stocks and buy bonds or gold. The same phenomenon can sometimes be found in politics. Understanding that George W. Bush was riding high in 2004, after what was perceived as a successful response to the 9/11 attacks, ...Read more
There's an old story -- apocryphal, as the best stories always seem to be -- that Richard Nixon asked Chinese premier Zhou Enlai what he thought about the French Revolution, and Zhou said, "It's too soon to tell." At first blush, the minicrisis between Iran and the United States appears to have ended well for the U.S., but it may be too soon to ...Read more
When I emailed Mary Ellen Bork that our mutual friend, Gertrude Himmelfarb, aka Bea Kristol, had passed away at 97, she replied, after expressions of sadness, "Now she and Irving can resume their conversation."
Irving was Irving Kristol, Bea's husband of 67 years. It was one of the great marriages of our time -- two towering intellects who ...Read more