Tag: Republican Party

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…)

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…)

The eminent jurist Learned Hand once wrote that “the spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure it is right”. This particular shade, always a rather anaemic presence in American public life is now well and truly dead. The question that one is tempted to ask in our current circumstances is how long will it be until the republic joins it in the grave. (More…)

Congressional Republicans have a Trump problem. Mr. Trump has made himself so toxic, conventional wisdom has it, that the losses normally suffered by the party that holds the White House in an off-year election will be so catastrophic as to rock the foundations of Republican hegemony. (More…)

When trying to understand the ways that the Trump Administration careens from crisis to crisis, one is reminded of a comment that Guy Debord makes early in The Society of the Spectacle. “The spectacle cannot be understood as a mere visual excess produced by mass-media technologies. It is a worldview that has actually been materialised, that has become an objective reality.” (More…)

Mr. Trump today signed his tariff order today, with much fanfare and a goodly measure of bewilderment among allies of the United States. The devotion to free trade has been talismanic among the political classes in this country for so long that Mr. Trump’s actions seem not just imprudent but heretical. (More…)

If it seems like there is another school shooting every week in the United States, it’s pretty much because there is. It’s a little hard to explain to people who don’t live here the numbed acceptance with which these things are greeted in the American public sphere. (More…)

The 18th Century French scholar Fontenelle is credited with noting that, “from the sublime to the ridiculous is only one step, from raillery to insult there is even less”.  One might be tempted to take this as a motto for the United States in the early 21st Century, were it not for the fact the instances of sublimity are in very short supply. (More…)

It came out last week that Mr. Trump had, via a lawyer, paid something like $130,000 in hush money to a porn star with whom he had had an assignation. Worse yet said the pearl-clutching pundits of the major media outlets, the incident in question had occurred only four months after his wife had given birth to their child. (More…)

One hears a lot of talk these days about the existential threat to Republican Party posed by Donald Trump, Steve Bannon, Roy Moore and a host of other figures who, in another political season, would have been considered well beyond the lunatic fringe. But claims about the imminent demise of the Republicans are, to say the least, overblown. (More…)

The American public sphere has spent the last couple of weeks transfixed by the special election in Alabama being held to fill the Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions. In the current climate, pretty much every election that happens, from local dog catcher on up the line, is characterized in the media as a referendum on Trumpism. (More…)

It is now nearly ten months since Donald Trump took up the reins of power in Washington. It is fair to say that this has been the oddest, and perhaps the most disturbing period since Watergate. Mr. Trump and his associates have been busy philosophizing with hammers, speaking as if they were making the word of their agenda flesh, but governing with a mixture of bluster and indecision. (More…)