United States

The furore over Mr. Trump’s recent visit to Europe has mostly dissipated now. His return to the United States has been accompanied by yet another round of angry and unbalanced tweets excoriating his enemies and wondering aloud for the umpteenth time why it was that the FBI hadn’t seen fit to carry off the DNC’s servers. (More…)

Donald Trump does not exist. This is not to say that there isn’t a guy with the initials DT sitting around the White House in a Trump Tower bathrobe live tweeting Fox and Friends. But Donald Trump the individual human being is trivial, merely the avatar of the spectacular complex bearing the designation “Donald Trump, successful businessman.” (More…)

It’s about ten blocks. Six west on Reynolds to Dallas; south a couple of blocks; then right on Wilkins, up a steeply bending street past Linden School and the Five Points Bakery to the top of the rise. At Shady and Wilkins the land crests; from here, Squirrel Hill declines past Negley and the old Wilkins School eventually into Oakland. This is my route to work when I ride my bicycle. Exactly 1.3 miles from my garage, at the top of Squirrel Hill, is the Tree of Life synagogue, the point at which my 8.4 mile commute goes from climb to coast. (More…)

US President Donald Trump is vowing to deliver an early Christmas present to the anti-immigration right: voiding the natural-born citizenship clause in the constitution.  (More…)

The confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh for a seat on the highest court in the land is, in the current circumstances, roughly on par in terms of certainty with death and taxes. There is not that much to add at this point. It was a foregone conclusion as soon as Anthony Kennedy was convinced to retire. (More…)

The struggle over Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the US Supreme Court embodies a fundamental civil rights struggle, in which accusations of sexual assault are debated in relation to broader issues of personhood. Kavanaugh represents the proposition that the state may control women’s bodies if they want to exercise self-governance by deciding on an abortion. (More…)

After months of controversy and protest, Amazon has declared it will give some of its workers a raise. This should be the start, not the end of change. (More…)

Brett Kavanaugh – a man who stands accused of several instances of sexual battery — might be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, a position that one may hold for life, a position where one can cast decisive vetoes of both executive and legislative decisions, both federal and local. (More…)

After my mother-in-law passed away unexpectedly earlier this month, I tried to console myself with the idea that her suffering had ended. But the more I thought about what her life had been like, the more confused I became. She had spent so many years coping with pain, that it was impossible for me to imagine her being free of it. It had fused with her identity (More…)

America is once again deploying that odd pantomime which arises when it becomes necessary to simultaneously affirm and negate the humanity of women. Brett Kavanaugh’s path to a lifetime tenure on the highest court in the land seemed straight and free of obstacles only two weeks ago. (More…)

I’m a big tennis fan, and I’m an ardent leftist. The Serena Williams affair at the US Open final on September 8th has suddenly put me at odds with a lot of my brethren on the left. Many have taken up the Serena banner as the victim of a grave injustice; Serena, they say, was once again thwarted by sexism, or racism, or both. I don’t agree. (More…)

While the death of Arizona Senator John McCain has inspired heartfelt tributes from mainstream Democrats and Republicans alike, his long-time detractors have shown little reluctance to call his legacy into question. Here in Arizona, where he was regularly criticized for his tendency to seek positive coverage in the national media instead of the legislative results his constituents were hoping for, many conservatives expressed relief that he was finally out of the way. (More…)