“In my country the people can do as they like, although it often happens that they don’t like what they have done.”
WASHINGTON — In the carnage of American civic culture, some of the damage is obvious: the dehumanization of political opponents, the devaluation of truth, the rise of conspiracy thinking. But other less evident shifts are no less troubling. One concerns the use of the word “authenticity.”
BERLIN — In one of contemporary history’s intriguing caroms, European politics just now is a story of how one decision by a pastor’s dutiful daughter has made life miserable for a vicar’s dutiful daughter. Two of the world’s most important conservative parties are involved in an unintended tutorial on a cardinal tenet of conservatism, the law of unintended consequences, which is that the unintended consequences of decisions in complex social situations are often larger than, and contrary to, those intended.
One by one they leap — or are pushed — from the foundering USS Trump, each offering a variation of the same plea: Don’t blame me.
In the days before Christmas 2018, President Donald Trump was alone in his home/office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Someday, future historians will picture Trump sitting at his desk and perhaps commiserate if he felt those oval walls of his famous office were closing in on him.