A combination of early presidential maneuvering and internal policy debate is feeding yet another iteration of that media perennial: the great Republican crackup. This time it's tea-party insurgents versus get-along establishment fogies fighting principally over two things: national security…
If there's an iron rule in economics, it is Stein's Law (named for Herb, former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers): "If something cannot go on forever, it will stop."
"No justice, no peace" chants the telegenic mob. In a civilized society, however, where the mob doesn't rule, justice is defined by the verdict that follows a fair trial. It's the best that humans can do.
The conventional wisdom evolves. Yesterday, Washington was merely broken, gridlocked, dysfunctional. The passive voice spread the blame evenly. Today it's agreed that Republican obstructionism is the root of all evil - GOP resistance having now escalated to nihilism and indeed sabotage.
The economy stagnates. Syria burns. Scandals lap at his feet. China and Russia mock him, even as a "29-year-old hacker" revealed his nation's spy secrets to the world. How does President Obama respond? With a grandiloquent speech on climate change.
Under the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal government does not recognize same-sex marriages even in states that have legalized it. This week, the Supreme Court ruled DOMA unconstitutional.
The war in Syria, started by locals, is now a regional conflict, the meeting ground of two warring blocs. On one side, the radical Shiite bloc led by Iran, which overflies Iraq to supply Bashar Assad and sends Hezbollah to fight for him. Behind them lies Russia, which has stationed ships off…
Thirty-five years ago in United States v. Choate, the courts ruled that the Postal Service may record "mail cover," i.e., what's written on the outside of an envelope - the addresses of sender and receiver.
Qusair fell Wednesday to the Bashar Assad regime in Syria. Qusair is a strategic town that connects Damascus with Assad's Alawite heartland on the Mediterranean, with its ports and Russian naval base. It's a major strategic shift. Assad's forces can now advance on rebel-dominated areas in ce…
"This war, like all wars, must end. That's what history advises."
"Horrible customer service." That's what the newly fired IRS commissioner averred was the agency's only sin in singling out conservative political groups for discriminatory treatment.
Terrorism is speech - speech that gathers its audience by killing innocents as theatrically as possible. Nineteenth-century anarchist Paul Brousse called it "propaganda by deed." Accordingly, the Boston Marathon attack, the first successful terror bombing in the U.S. since 9/11, was designed…
Washington has rediscovered the beauty of the boring. It's called "regular order," using the normal, routine, constitutional process to arrive at, for example, a budget.
"I honestly believe that if any Israeli parent sat down with those (Palestinian) kids, they'd say I want these kids to succeed."
The proposition that entitlement curbs are the key to maintaining national solvency is widely accepted, though not by many congressional Democrats. President Obama, however, has endorsed it on various occasions. And he could make it happen.
Sequestration is not the best time to be doling out foreign aid, surely the most unpopular item in the federal budget. Especially when the recipient is President Mohammed Morsi of Egypt.
The president suggested he would hold off introducing his own immigration bill as long as bipartisan Senate negotiations were proceeding apace - until his own immigration bill mysteriously leaked precisely as bipartisan Senate negotiations were proceeding apace.
For the first time since Election Day, President Obama is on the defensive. That's because on March 1, automatic spending cuts ("sequestration") go into effect - $1.2 trillion over 10 years, half from domestic programs, half from defense.
"This is my last election. After my election, I have more flexibility."
The rout was complete, the retreat disorderly. President Obama got his tax hikes - naked of spending cuts - passed by the ostensibly Republican House of Representatives. After which, you might expect him to pivot to his self-proclaimed "principle" of fiscal "balance" by taking the lead on re…
Every mass shooting has three elements: the killer, the weapon and the cultural climate. As soon as the shooting stops, partisans immediately pick their preferred root cause with corresponding pet panacea. Names are hurled, scapegoats paraded, prejudices vented. The argument goes nowhere.
Let's understand President Obama's strategy in the "fiscal cliff" negotiations. It has nothing to do with economics or real fiscal reform. This is entirely about politics. It's Phase 2 of the 2012 campaign. The election returned to him to office. The fiscal cliff negotiations are designed to…
WASHINGTON - Why are Republicans playing the Democrats' game that the "fiscal cliff" is all about taxation?
They lose and immediately the chorus begins. Republicans must change or die. A rump party of white America, it must adapt to evolving demographics or forever be the minority.
"Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not and in a way that Bill Clinton did not." That was Barack Obama in 2008. And he was right. Reagan was an ideological inflection point, ending a 50-year liberal ascendancy and beginning a 30-year conservative …
Fight night at Hofstra. The two boxers, confined within a ring of spectators - circling, feinting, taunting, staring each other down - come several times, by my reckoning, no more than one provocation away from actual fisticuffs, of the kind that on occasion so delightfully break out in the …
It was the biggest rout since Agincourt. If you insist, since the Carter-Reagan debate. With a remarkable display of confidence, knowledge and nerve, Mitt Romney won the first 2012 debate going away.
In the week following 9/11/12 something big happened: the collapse of the Cairo Doctrine, the centerpiece of President Obama's foreign policy. It was to reset the very course of post-9/11 America, creating, after the (allegedly) brutal depredations of the Bush years, a profound rapprochement…
There are two positions one can take regarding the Iranian nuclear program: (a) it doesn't matter, we can deter them, or (b) it does matter, we must stop them.
There are few foreign-policy positions more silly than the assertion without context that "deterrence works." It is like saying air power works. Well, it worked for Kosovo; it didn't work over North Vietnam.
Either Israel is engaged in the most elaborate ruse since the Trojan Horse or it is on the cusp of a pre-emptive strike on Iran's nuclear facilities.
Vice presidential picks are always judged by their effect on the coming election. They rarely have any.
There are two ways to run against Barack Obama: stewardship or ideology. You can run against his record or you can run against his ideas.
At the outset of his recent foreign trip, Mitt Romney committed a gaffe. In answer to a question about the Olympics, he expressed skepticism about London's preparations. The response confounded and agitated Romney supporters because it was such an unforced error. The question invited a simpl…
A generation ago, it was the three I's. A presidential challenger's obligatory foreign trip meant Ireland, Italy and Israel. Mitt Romney's itinerary is slightly different: Britain, Poland and Israel.
"If you've got a business - you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."
Post-revolutionary Libya appears to have elected a relatively moderate pro-Western government. Good news, but tentative because Libya is less a country than an oil well with a long beach and myriad tribes. Even if the government of Mahmoud Jibril is able to rein in the militias and establish…
Though overshadowed by the shocking Supreme Court decision on health care, the court's Arizona immigration decision, issued three days earlier, remains far more significant than appreciated.