Make America Good Again

“Make America Great Again” is the slogan for Donald Trump’s phenomenally popular presidential campaign. With it, Trump has tapped a deep well of frustration among American conservatives about the direction of the country under President Barack Obama. This longing for lost greatness especially concerns American foreign policy (although upon close examination Trump’s actual statements are … Continue reading “Make America Good Again”

No Peace Through Politics

They were supposed to be different: Republicans for peace, conservatives against empire, leading a grassroots insurrection to overthrow the neocons and restore the Republic. It was Mr. Libertarian goes to Washington. Mr. Frodo goes to Mordor. Yet, when the chips were down in a crucial contest, they all folded. Senator Rand Paul and the entire … Continue reading “No Peace Through Politics”

Dateline: Election Day 2012

Misty water-colored memories: The August 2011 GOP debate in Ames, Iowa For the better part of two years the campaign saga has pounded the surf of our daily lives like a relentless black tide. Now, in a matter of hours, polling places at last will close, with either President Barack Obama or Mitt Romney emerging … Continue reading “Dateline: Election Day 2012”

Before the Election:
A Pattern of Provocations

The news that the administration has agreed to one-on-one talks with Iran will no doubt be brought up at the upcoming foreign policy debate, with Mitt Romney averring this is yet more evidence of the Obama administration’s “weakness.” Talking, you see, is weakness: killing is proof of strength. That’s the Republican approach to foreign affairs. … Continue reading “Before the Election:
A Pattern of Provocations”

Imperialism as Spectacle

In Rome, the spectacle of gladiators fighting in the great Colosseum was a popular outlet for plebeian energy, allowing the masses to give full-throated expression to their frustration and anger by projecting it into the arena. In between bouts they would throw a few Christians to the lions, to keep the crowd’s bloodlust at the … Continue reading “Imperialism as Spectacle”

Karen Kwiatkowski’s Primary Mission

At first blush, Karen Kwiatkowski might read like a puzzle: she spent over twenty years in the military, but today is one of its biggest critics. She is running as a Republican, but can’t stand what the party has become. She wants to represent her conservative Virginia district in the House of Representatives, but she … Continue reading “Karen Kwiatkowski’s Primary Mission”

Corruption and the Citizen, American-Style

I have long nurtured this thoroughly depressing conviction that the United States, far from being a shining city on the hill, has become one of the most corrupt of nations. Why does America have more lawyers than the rest of the world combined? It is because the corruption has been institutionalized at every level of … Continue reading “Corruption and the Citizen, American-Style”

Running Against Islam

Every political season has its hot-button issues. There’s race, abortion, lunar colonies. But the hottest hot-button issue these days, judging from comments by Republican presidential hopefuls as well as what happened during the 2010 midterm elections, is Islam. Islam dominated the headlines during the summer of 2010. Remember Terry Jones and his pledge to burn … Continue reading “Running Against Islam”