Bad Advice from the Wall Street Journal

Can that be all there is?

On Monday, former FBI Director Robert Mueller’s probe released the first indictments of members of Donald Trump’s inner circle. Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and longtime Trump associate Rick Gates were charged with a variety of offenses involving money laundering and a conspiracy to mislead investigators. Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos pled guilty to meeting with a Russian-linked source that promised “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. He is working with prosecutors.

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Bad Advice from the Wall Street Journal

Must-Reads from Magazine

Embarrassing Persistence of Campus Speech Codes

Talk about an "embarrassment."

In the late 1980s, numerous colleges and universities designed and adopted speech codes to curtail racist and other discriminatory speech. You can’t say they weren’t provoked. The University of Michigan, for example, adopted its code in the wake of a number of incidents including the distribution of fliers peppered with disgusting racial slurs that declared an “open season” on blacks. But at least at public universities, which must respect the First Amendment as agents of the state, these speech codes have been constitutional losers.

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Can Trump Have a Bad Week Anymore?

They're with him.

Donald Trump traveled to Florida on Friday at the end of a nightmarish week for the nation. The shooting deaths of 17 people, many of them teenagers, has sent the nation reeling into an increasingly routinized cycle of grievance and recrimination. The familiar debate over what federal response, if any, could have prevented this atrocity or interdict future episodes of mass violence has, however, largely bypassed the president. Trump tweeted condolences, and he briefly addressed the nation, but his presence in the post-Parkland shooting national debate was almost apparitional. The response to this event has largely focused on the Republican majority in Congress. That is instructive; after a year of near ubiquity, Donald Trump might be relinquishing the hold he has had on the national imagination.

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So Now We’re Killing Russians

The stuff of nightmares.

Americans no longer have the luxury of throwing up their hands in frustration over the confused situation on the ground in Syria. As the Wall Street Journal’s Yaroslav Trofimov demonstrated, unpacking the bewildering complexity of the conditions that prevail on the ground now that the ISIS threat has receded leaves observers with the terrifying realization that great power conflict is not so difficult to imagine.

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Responding to Parkland: Amend the Second Amendment?

Podcast: How to respond to mass murder.

For those who want radical changes in the way the United States handles guns and shooters, what else can be done but amending the Constitution to supplant the Second Amendment? That’s the question I ask Noah Rothman and Abe Greenwald on this edition of the COMMENTARY Magazine podcast, which also addresses rising Republican fortunes in national polling. Give a listen.

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The Courage to Confront Campus Radicalism

Fear for the future.

When conservatives and conscience-addled liberals fret about the rising influence of censorious students on college campuses, the overwhelming response they get from skeptics is “who cares?” Those who do not outright defend creeping radicalism on campus are prone to minimize the threat of violence and fanaticism. While obtuse, this approach does have some immediate political utility. Dismissing events on campus as the antics of a few misguided kids casts those who care about such affairs as obsessive cranks who fixate on matters of no objective consequences. It goes without saying that not everyone is sincere who wonders aloud about the relevance of maximalist rhetoric, racial intolerance, and even violence on campus, but some are. They deserve an answer. Why should we care about rigidly enforced intellectual cloistering on campuses?

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