Walker’s Collapse Isn’t Trump’s Fault

It was only June when Scott Walker announced his formal intention to run for the presidency. His presidential bid was no surprise; the announcement was preceded by months of speculation and scrutiny. Walker was, after all, the prospective frontrunner in the GOP’s 2016 field. More so than any other candidate in the race, Walker had established a record of accomplishment in office. He had survived three statewide elections in the space of just four years, and had undergone the press vetting and built up the national fundraising network that accompanies such feats. Walker was the candidate to beat. On September 21, Scott Walker dropped out of the race. What couldn’t be accomplished in three years by an army of Democrats and all the money and muscle big labor could muster, the Republican primary voting base achieved in three months. But while it might be tempting to blame the Walker campaign’s implosion on the rise of Trump and political media’s myopic focus on the celebrity candidate, this would be a mistake. Like Rick Perry, Walker is primarily to blame for his collapse.

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Walker’s Collapse Isn’t Trump’s Fault

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But She Fights

A Trump of their own.

There were many arguments for opposing Donald Trump’s bid for the presidency, but the retort usually boiled down to a single glib sentence: “But he fights.”

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Politicians Need Free Speech Too

A lesson from Finland.

High-ranking politicians are entitled to freedom of speech and conscience. That shouldn’t be a controversial statement, but it often is, especially in European countries where the range of acceptable views is narrow–and narrowing. Just ask Finnish Foreign Minister Timo Soini, who spent the summer fighting off an investigation into his participation at an anti-abortion vigil in Canada. On Friday, Soini survived a no-confidence vote in Parliament over the issue.

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Planet Earth Dodges a Bullet

Banality and evil.

A week ago, I wondered what was going on in Sunspot, New Mexico. The FBI had swept into this mountain-top solar observatory, complete with Black Hawk helicopters, evacuated everyone, and closed the place down with no explanation whatever. Local police were politely told to butt out. It was like the first scene in a 1950’s Hollywood sci-fi movie, probably starring Walter Pidgeon.

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The Unprincipled Boycott of Israel

The demands of the politicized life.

John Cheney-Lippold, an associate professor of American Culture at the University of Michigan, has been the subject of withering criticism of late, but I’m grateful to him. Yes, he shouldn’t have refused to write a recommendation for a student merely because the semester abroad program she was applying to was in Israel. But at least he exposed what the boycott movement is about, aspects of which I suspect some of its blither endorsers are unaware.

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The Low, Low Price of Serfdom

Nothing ventured.

Convenience, wrote Columbia University law professor Tim Wu, is a tyrant. It makes our lives easier and more enjoyable, but everything comes with a price tag. We may not recognize that which we are sacrificing in the pursuit of convenience, but we are sacrificing nonetheless.

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