The Problem

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly—and Which One Trumps the Rest

What can you say about a week that included Donald Trump naming the brilliant jurist Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court and ended with Donald Trump drawing for Bill O’Reilly a historical moral equivalence between the conduct of the United States and the behavior of Vladimir Putin? Even liberal legal types who do not like Gorsuch’s views and his jurisprudential frame cannot but recognize he is a very serious man and this is a very serious selection. For those conservatives who made their peace with voting for Trump because of the Supreme Court, their unsentimental long view must have seemed confirmed by the Gorsuch choice.

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The Problem

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In Memoriam: Michael Novak, 1933-2017

Celebrating the memory and work of an intellectual giant.

On Friday, the scholar and author Michael Novak passed away at the age of 83. COMMENTARY had the privilege of publishing his work on a number of occasions. His insights over the decades represent a vital contribution to America’s intellectual heritage. Novak’s 1989 essay on the competing ideologies of the 20th Century represents a work of considered thought that spans the generations. We commend it to your attention:

Related to enterprise is the more general virtue of creativity. For personal economic enterprise is not socially sustainable unless would-be entrepreneurs are supported by a social intelligence covering many areas—law, banking and finance, governmental administration, the arts, journalism, education, scientific and industrial research, and even religion and philosophy.

Novak, an American Enterprise Institute scholar, is remembered by AEI President Arthur Brooks. We extend our condolences to the Novak family and mourn their, and our, great loss.

The American Enterprise Institute mourns the loss of our colleague, Michael Novak, who passed away this morning at the age of 83. Michael was an AEI scholar for three decades until his retirement in 2010, and remained a close friend of the Institute.