Perry Better Get Better

I don’t think Rick Perry lost the debate tonight, though he took obvious hits that might do him some harm on immigration and his handling of the Gardasil vaccine in Texas. He got off a bunch of good quick lines and jabs in the first half hour, though as was true in the last debate, he seemed to flag after the one-hour point and could barely compose a sentence without looking as though he might pass out from exhaustion. When pummeled by Michele Bachmann on Gardasil and the fact that he took a campaign contribution from Merck, he professed he was “offended” at the suggestion he would sell out for a $5,000 donation—apparently not understanding the implication that there was a price at which he might well sell out.

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Perry Better Get Better

Must-Reads from Magazine

Moral Panics and the Nation That Loves Them

Podcast: The great outing of sexual harassers.

On the first of this holiday week’s COMMENTARY podcasts, we delve into the question of what the sexual harassment scandals of the past seven weeks have in common with previous moments in American history. And we talk tax reform and where you can get a cheap cooked turkey. Give a listen.

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Reverse BDS

A shameful movement ashamed?

Since 2002, student activists have tried to pass anti-Israel divestment resolutions at the University of Michigan. This month, they succeeded on a 23-17 vote of the university’s Central Student Government. But opponents of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement should not be demoralized by this result.

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Iran’s Immoderate ‘Moderate’

Rouhani was never a reformer.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has now been in office for more than four years. Yet he hasn’t fulfilled any of the major domestic-reform pledges that got him elected in 2013 and re-elected earlier this year. Those pledges won him the decisive backing of urban, secular-minded, middle class Iranians–and plaudits in the West. Yet Iranians are no more free than they were four years ago, and the Islamic Republic is still the same security state that it was then.

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All Come Tumbling Down

Roy Moore, Al Franken, and taxes

audio: https://soundcloud.com/commentarymagazine/all_come_tumbling_down

In the second COMMENTARY podcast of the week, the crew (Noah’s still on vacation) makes sense of the continued allegations against Senate candidate Roy Moore, the new allegation against Senator Al Franken, the reemerging allegations against Bill Clinton, and the whole state of our post-Weinstein culture. We also reflect on the Republican tax-cut push and what its success would mean for Donald Trump. Give a listen.

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A Leftist Crank on Fox News

Tucker Carlson fetes an Israel-hater.

Strange ideological changes are afoot over at the Fox News Channel. The latest sign came Tuesday, with a Max Blumenthal appearance during prime time.

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