The Real Risk Behind Trump’s Taiwan Call – The New Yorker

Evan Osnos:

For a piece I published in September, about what Trump’s first term could look like, I spoke to a former Republican White House official whom Trump has consulted, who told me, “Honestly, the problem with Donald is he doesn’t know what he doesn’t know.” It turns out that is half of the problem; the other half is that he has surrounded himself with people who know how much he doesn’t know. Since Election Day, Trump has largely avoided receiving intelligence briefings, either because he doesn’t think it’s important that he receive them or because he just doesn’t care about them. George W. Bush, in the first months of 2001, ignored warnings about Osama bin Laden. Only in our darkest imaginings can we wonder what warnings Trump is ignoring now.

Source: The Real Risk Behind Trump’s Taiwan Call – The New Yorker


Live and die by the identity sword


The whitelash thesis…

…absolves liberals of not recognizing how their own obsession with diversity has encouraged white, rural, religious Americans to think of themselves as a disadvantaged group whose identity is being threatened or ignored. Such people are not actually reacting against the reality of our diverse America (they tend, after all, to live in homogeneous areas of the country). But they are reacting against the omnipresent rhetoric of identity, which is what they mean by “political correctness.” Liberals should bear in mind that the first identity movement in American politics was the Ku Klux Klan, which still exists. Those who play the identity game should be prepared to lose it.

Source: The End of Identity Liberalism – The New York Times


Nice comment from one Des Johnson on David Brooks latest:

HRC has been demonized, and here I plead the use of a word common in Ireland when I was young–she has been blackguarded in the extreme for thirty years or more. David may come to admit that, but in the meantime, I suggest he has a duty to direct his comments to those of his party, yes HIS PARTY, who promise dysfunction and chaos.

Source: The Banality of Change – The New York Times

Change agent

David Brooks this morning:

If you wanted to design a personality type perfectly ill suited to be a change agent in government, you would come up with Donald Trump: solipsistic, impatient, combative, unsubtle and ignorant. If you wanted to design a personality type better suited to getting things done, you might come up with James Baker, Robert Gates or Ted Kennedy, but you might also come up with Hillary Clinton.

Source: The Banality of Change – The New York Times