Recent Commentaries

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Last week, President-elect Donald Trump held his first press conference since being elected. While the meeting was supposed to allow Mr. Trump to lay out his proposal on how he will unravel himself from his many conflict of interest issues, the conversation quickly turned to an intelligence briefing for Mr. Trump – specifically a 2-page synopsis of a 35-page report...
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January 16, 2017
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The Media: 1770 and 2016 – Conclusion
No one in modern American politics has used social media to influence an audience better than Donald Trump. His tool of choice: Twitter – the technological equivalent of a 1770 broadside. Long before he ran for president, Trump would use social media to preen before a television appearance. “Be sure to tune in and watch Donald Trump on Late Night...
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January 13, 2017
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The Media: 1770 and 2016 – Part 2
In his 1997 introduction to his screenplay, All the President’s Men, writer William Goldman makes this prescient observation. “The scariest thing about hype today is this: as the hype artists get more and more skilled, and they are, pretty soon hype is going to be accepted as truth.” “If Russia, or some other entity, was hacking, why did the White...
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January 11, 2017
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The Media: 1770 and 2016
Without a doubt, last year was the year the news media and politics fused into a kind of “Kardashian” alt-reality of over-the-top, dramatic nonsense that turned logic on its head. However, I want to go back in time, revisiting an event that took place in Boston, because I think there are some interesting parallels to the 2016 presidential campaign. On...
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January 9, 2017
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Dear Mr. Baker
Gerard Baker is The Wall Street Journal’s editor in chief. You have a strangely nuanced view of what is or is not a lie when it comes to the utterances and tweets of President-elect Trump. Here’s what you said (Trump, ‘Lies’ and Honest Journalism): “[A] ‘Lie’ implies much more than just saying something that’s false. It implies a deliberate intent...
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January 6, 2017
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It’s Accountability, Stupid!
Like millions of voters, I awoke Tuesday to news that – absent public debate or even advance notice – Republican Congressman Robert Goodlatte and others decided that they were going to gut the power of The Congressional Office of Ethics. Front page of The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 3): “House Republicans, meeting as a group Monday night, approved an amendment...
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January 4, 2017