Author Archives: politicaloptic

Creative Destruction, or Just Destruction?

The Trump administration’s efforts to disrupt the political world in recent months should be no surprise to anyone. After all, Trump promised to be disrupter-in-chief if elected and to “shake things up.” His supporters on the right were happy to … Continue reading

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Putin-philia on the American Right

Trump’s adoration for Putin is not an anomaly in today’s American politics. Such at least is the gist of Jeremy Peters’ recent article in the New York Times , which shows that figures on the American right have been lauding … Continue reading

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Why the Left Excels at Political Humor and the Right Not So Much

It is almost a cliché that political humor is owned by the left. One can’t help but be bowled over by the number of liberal-leaning comedians sucking up oxygen on the airwaves. For a long while it was people like … Continue reading

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Trump-Nixon Parallels: Is History Repeating Itself?

In the unfolding inquiry into the Trump campaign’s Russian connections, one can’t help but see Trump-Nixon parallels. Trump’s firing of James Comey in the middle of an ongoing investigation bears obvious similarities with Nixon’s firing of Watergate investigator Archibald Cox. Not only do we … Continue reading

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Asymmetric Warfare: How Is It Working for Trump?

As two recent commentators have observed, Trump is a master of asymmetric warfare. Asymmetric warfare is a term used to describe tactics adopted by a weaker force against a stronger one, normally in a military setting. The typical example is of a guerrilla … Continue reading

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Will Trump Exploit a Terrorist Attack for His Own Ends?

Because Trump’s tweets are spontaneous, they provide a useful indicator–a kind of Rohrschack Test–of his fundamental instincts. One recent tweet, reacting to the Federal Court’s  blockade of his immigration executive order, was nothing less than a wake-up call for concerned Americans. Trump tweeted: “Just … Continue reading

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Hillbilly Elegy: J. D. Vance’s Personal Take on White Working-Class America

J.D. Vance’s recent book, Hillbilly Elegy, puts a spotlight on the crisis of white working-class America. It is a memoir of a young man who grew up in a culture of poverty and dysfunction but who, with a little help and some grit, eventually … Continue reading

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