The Atlantic »

Secular Democrats Are the New Normal

March 15, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Were a Democrat from the Clinton, Bush, or Obama eras to watch the presidential-announcement video that Beto O’Rourke released on Thursday, they would likely be struck by how it ended. Or, more specifically, by how it didn’t end. O’Rourke did not close with any mention of God.

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The Atlantic »

How Bigotry Made a Dove Out of Tucker Carlson

March 13, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

In the Trump era, some on the anti-interventionist left have developed a tolerance for, even a grudging appreciation of, Tucker Carlson. The reason: He’s a caustic critic of hawkish foreign policy. The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald, the historian Stephen F. Cohen, and the author Max Blumenthal—all of whom agree with Carlson that the Trump-Russia scandal is fueling a new cold war—regularly appear on his show. After Carlson last month savaged William Kristol and Max Boot as “professional war peddlers,” Democratic Representative Ro Khanna—one of the most creative and influential doves in Congress—praisedCarlson on Twitter for offering “a devastating critique [of] interventionism” that shows “there is an emerging, left right coalition of common sense for a foreign policy of restraint.”

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The Forward »

Why Does Congress Care More About Jewish Feelings Than Palestinian Rights?

March 8, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Late last month, in between the firestorm over Congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s comments about AIPAC’s influence being “all about the Benjamins” and the firestorm over her comments about “allegiance to a foreign country,” the United Nations issued a report into Israel’s killing of 189 Palestinians — some of whom were journalists and health workers, and 35 of whom were children — and injuring of more than 9,000 during protests last year in the Gaza Strip.

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The Forward »

Debunking The Myth That Anti-Zionism Is Anti-Semitic

February 27, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

It’s a bewildering and alarming time to be a Jew, both because anti-Semitism is rising and because so many politicians are responding to it not by protecting Jews but by victimizing Palestinians.

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The Atlantic »

It’s Foreign Policy That Distinguishes Bernie This Time

February 21, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

The conventional wisdom is that Bernie Sanders is a victim of his own success. His “populist agenda has helped push the party to the left,” declared The New York Times in its story about his presidential announcement. But in 2020, he may lose “ground to newer faces who have adopted many of his ideas.”

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The Atlantic »

What Will Trump Do If He Realizes He’s Lost the Shutdown Fight?

February 14, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Donald Trump has again folded in his negotiations with congressional Democrats—accepting a second budget deal that includes nothing close to the $5.7 billion in funding for a border wall that he demanded. This outcome was entirely predictable. The sequence of events that led here has occurred again and again when Trump negotiates. Think of it as a play in four acts.

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The Forward »

The Sick Double Standard In The Ilhan Omar Controversy

February 12, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

The following two things are true. First, Representative Ilhan Omar was wrong to tweet that the American government’s support of Israel is “all about the Benjamins.” Secondly, she’s being judged by a grotesque double standard. Her fiercest critics in Congress are guiltier of bigotry than she is.

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The Atlantic »

Cory Booker Is Damned If He Does, Damned If He Doesn’t

February 7, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

There are important differences—and even more important similarities—between Barack Obama’s announcement for president in 2007 and Cory Booker’s announcement last week. The similarities could sink Booker’s chances of winning the Democratic nomination.

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The Atlantic »

Trump Shows Why He Can’t Be Counted Out

February 6, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

If a successful State of the Union address inspires your side to clap enthusiastically while making it difficult for your opponents not to join in, Trump’s was a success. It contained many lies, of course. And it falsely and viciously equated undocumented immigration with murder, as usual. But it offered a preview of how Trump, despite his unpopularity, could campaign effectively in 2020.

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The Atlantic »

The Threat of Threat Assessments

January 31, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

On Tuesday, the intelligence community published its “Worldwide Threat Assessment,” which concluded—in sober, measured tones—that President Donald Trump is lying: North Korea is not abandoning its nuclear weapons, Iran has not violated the nuclear deal it signed under President Barack Obama, and America’s southern border does not pose a national-security crisis. Trump responded by ranting, “They are wrong! … Perhaps Intelligence should go back to school!” And America’s top newspapers covered the melee as yet another round in the battle between Trump and Washington’s grown-ups.

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