Tag Archives: politics

Trumpery and fantasy

There’s something disconcerting about a presidential candidate whose wife has been photographed in the nude, who has himself been painted in the nude (albeit critically). A single election cycle ago, naked selfies of a political spouse would have doomed a candidate. However, one can’t be embarrassed if one feels no shame. Since that’s how many of us […]


The state of Maine’s population is about the size of the Buffalo-Niagara metropolitan district. What that meant in human terms was brought home during this weekend’s caucuses. Imagine the sense of duty behind volunteering as a poll watcher in one of the places that returned two votes. Did they take turns filling out their ballots […]

Commissions you never get anymore

As the nation argues about super-delegates, it’s worth remembering that the powerful have never ceded power voluntarily. From Charlemagne to the Reformation, the primus inter pares of the European nobility was the Holy Roman Emperor, securely Catholic and crowned by the Pope. Along came Martin Luther and his pesky ideas, which percolated among the German nobility […]

Entering the silly season

Daniel Dennett is an American philosopher and cognitive scientist. In his Intuition Pumps And Other Tools for Thinking, he offered these four steps to critical commentary, which ought to come in useful as we enter the next round of America’s quadrennial silly season: You should attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly, and fairly that […]