Government Can’t Create Value

The government cannot convey worth through funding.

For a document that amounts to little more than a positioning statement, President Donald Trump’s proposed budget has inspired an inordinate amount of passion. The dudgeon frenzy on the left over the president’s effort to curb and cut discretionary spending (e.g., the 40 percent of the budget that isn’t dedicated to entitlements, anti-poverty programs, or servicing the debt) has been predictably overwrought. There are specific complaints about the nature of Trump’s cuts that deserve thought and examination. To the extent that liberals offer a philosophical justification for their opposition to Trump’s proposal, though, it is based in their embarrassment over the fact that a budget is an expression of priorities—and America’s priorities, they contend, are all wrong. This is logic borne of a fallacy.

26
Shares
Google+ Print

Government Can’t Create Value

Must-Reads from Magazine

Come See the Commentary Podcast Live

Come see a show!

Come and see the COMMENTARY  podcast perform live on Monday, July 30, 2018, at 6 p.m. at The Comedy Cellar at The Village Underground in New York City. Tickets are available now.

0
Shares
Google+ Print

Will #NeverTrump Win in the End?

Trumpism is a disposition, not an ideology.

Since Donald Trump took the oath of office, he has vacillated between extremes. One day, he’s running a laudably conventional Republican administration. The next, he’s taking a sledgehammer to the conventions that define America’s national identity. Conservatives who opposed Donald Trump’s candidacy in 2016 can expect to be regularly berated by their right-of-center compatriots—justifiably on occasion—who cannot understand why they maintain their suspicion of this conventional Republican administration. But those Trump skeptics only have to wait for the inevitable heel-turn, when Donald Trump again acts like Donald Trump and the wisdom of their skepticism is confirmed. The Trump skeptic’s purgatorial torment is without end.

5
Shares
Google+ Print

Donald Trump Channels Noam Chomsky

The man knows his constituency.

President Trump’s joint news conference Monday with Vladimir Putin was a catastrophe. On that, all but the most servile of his apologists agree. Not even latter-day consul Publius Decius Mus, aka Michael Anton, could rouse himself to defend the president on CNN. Here was the putative leader of the free world giving voice to sophomoric nonsense better suited to a Noam Chomsky seminar.

31
Shares
Google+ Print

The Importance of Being Stupid

When the silly get serious.

Maybe geographic “sorting,” in which like-minded people tend to herd themselves into politically homogeneous communities, is to blame. Maybe social media and the caustic, stubborn posturing it rewards is at fault. Maybe it’s always been this way. Whatever the cause, it has become an undeniable fact that getting ahead in public life demands some deference to unmitigated stupidity.

30
Shares
Google+ Print

PODCAST: To Russia with Love

Podcast: Russia, Congress, and Mueller.

We try to figure out what on earth the president wants from or wants to give to Russia on this podcast. And what Congress is doing. And what Peter Strzok was doing. And we let you know how you can attend our first live podcast on July 30! Email podcast@commentarymagazine.com for tickets and information.

2
Shares
Google+ Print