The Extraordinarily High Stakes in Syria

The case Trump must make.

U.S.-led retaliatory strikes on Syria are imminent. The president said so himself. On Twitter. In fact, he went into wildly imprudent detail about the forthcoming military action, describing the type of ordnance that would be used and confirming that Russia has threatened to target American assets in defense of its Syrian patron.

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The Extraordinarily High Stakes in Syria

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German Wobbliness on Russia Is Real

And it long predates Trump.

The latest NATO summit got underway in Brussels this week, and President Trump brought all of his signature rhetorical subtlety to the Belgian capital. Off the bat at a meeting Wednesday with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Trump accused Germany of being “captive” to Russia. The remark ruffled diplomatic feathers in the Western alliance and touched off a predictable freakout among reporters and pundits back home.

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The Kavanaugh Conspiracy

Trading sanity for energy.

Generally speaking, the Trump era has been defined by two contrasting phenomena: Republican disunity leading to occasional episodes of tactical incompetence, and Democratic discipline and reconstruction. When it comes to judicial appointments, however, the parties trade their roles. From non-governmental organizations, to media figures, to Congress and the White House, the right has been united, strategic, and remarkably effective at nominating and confirming originalist judges to federal court appointments. Democrats, meanwhile, have been tactically maladroit, schismatic, and irrational. Owing to their lack of foresight, Democrats are now stripped of the minority privileges that would allow them to effectively oppose Donald Trump’s overqualified nominee to the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh. Thus, in their impotence, they are left with one option: radicalize their voters.

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No One Is Overturning Roe v. Wade Anytime Soon

But the freak-out continues.

As Noah has pointed out, the left has made a fetish of abortion, as though it were a positive good, like the polio vaccine, instead of something that should be “safe, legal, and rare.”

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The Great Republican Forgetting

The cult of personality corrupts.

Pro-Trump constituents in the press have a peculiar preoccupation with the president’s conservative critics. Specifically, they’re concerned with the amount of credit Donald Trump receives for his achievements, which presumes those achievements are self-evident. Objective accomplishments—for example, how the Republican Party under Donald Trump has methodically nominated and confirmed originalist judges to federal courts—demand no hectoring from the credit police. Principled conservatives are as happy to heap praise upon Trump for his stewardship of the courts as are #MAGA brigades. It’s only the president’s more dubious feats that raise the hackles of Trump’s enforcers, and for a good reason; they’re not accomplishments at all.

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The Daily Beast Sounds the Alarm About a Papist Menace

Old-school anti-Catholicism.

“To be sure” is one of the slipperiest expressions in the journalistic lexicon. There are legitimate uses for it, to be sure. But an unscrupulous reporter will drop a “to be sure” just before he launches a nasty, underhanded attack on his subject, all while giving the appearance that he (the reporter) is all too sensitive to nastiness—that he is not making the claim he is plainly making.

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