America’s Carnival Barker

Tom Wolfe died yesterday at age 88, after a long and colorful career as America’s carnival barker. I don’t mean that in a pejorative sense. The carnival barker has a certain reputation for brazen dishonesty in overselling his product. (We’ll get to that in a moment.) But he is also our enthusiastic guide to a […]

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A Giant Effigy of Marx

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. Jaw-Jaw Is Better Than War-War I recently responded to a claim, reflecting the conventional wisdom of the Trump-era right, that “ideas and persuasion are insufficient” for the pitched culture war we are currently in. This is often expressed in the conviction that scribblers like me are useless […]

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The Art of Balkanization

I argued a while back that the increasingly dominant character of the art championed by our cultural elites is didacticism: “an absence of substantial or profound artistic content, compensated for by loud, didactic political messaging. We know what we’re supposed to feel, whether or not the work of art actually makes us feel it.” By […]

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Workingmen and Reformers

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. Fighting the Last Election The Republican Party just got through a difficult party primary day in which there were several local candidates who seemed like they might win by adopting a Trumpian style, but who had severe weaknesses as general election candidates. The chief of these was […]

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The Cold War with Iran Is Back

The Cold War with Iran is back. I don’t say this as a criticism of President Trump’s decision to cancel the Iran deal. That decision did not restart the conflict. Iran’s Cold War against the US never stopped. This decision just recognizes that fact and gets America back in to fight our side of it. […]

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The Virtual Civil War

Donald Trump has a unique ability to get people on the right to fight with each other. The latest internecine battle is an article by a pseudonymous writer, “John Ericsson,” in The Federalist, arguing that we should all get behind Donald Trump in order to fight the Politically Correct left—followed by a long, impassioned response […]

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Escape from Utopia

Five Things You Need to Read Today Here is your latest update, for subscribers only, recommending five stories that are worth catching. 1. “We’ve Always Known They Were Lying” So it turns out that Iran was lying the whole time when it made a deal with the Obama administration about its nuclear weapons program. I […]

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Communism Is Idealist

I’ve been puzzling for some time over the continuing hold of Communism on the minds of America’s intellectuals. How could a system fail so completely for so long, in so many different variations, leaving a trail of death and suffering in its wake—and still be regarded as “idealistic”? The answer is that Communism is “idealist” […]

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Green Tulip Mania

Elon Musk may finally be running out of other people’s money. That’s the upshot of a report on how Tesla is burning so much cash it may run out by the end of the year. This is a company that has raised more than $5 billion from its investors so far, and it is still […]

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Just “Imagine,” or Trust But Verify?

Five Things You Need to Read Today Here is your latest update, for subscribers only, recommending five stories that are worth catching. 1. Just “Imagine”–or Trust But Verify? So is this peace overture from North Korea for real? Well, maybe. But probably not. North Korea’s dictator Kim Jong-Un has visited South Korea–in itself a first–and […]

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