Discourses

It seems that voters did not, in fact, repudiate Republicans at the ballot box this week—at least to the extent that electoral projections based on off-year history and media hopes for a “blue wave” failed to materialize.

Even so, Nancy Pelosi and #resist-fueled Democrats will control the House of Representatives at least for the next two years. This gives them control of the crucial congressional committees from where they are poised to begin investigations meant to harass and hobble the Trump administration. On the menu will be RussiaGate, the emoluments clause, hunting for tax returns and, as Raymond Chandler once put it, “all the usual vices, besides those they’ve invented for themselves.”

As the party of the administrative state and the one that benefits from its sympathetic accomplices in media, Democrats’ abilities to wage political war on their domestic enemies will be at their peak. When I first arrived in Washington, I learned that, in general, GOP staffers do their time on the Hill before decamping on K Street; Democrat committee staffers, on the other hand are enthusiastic lifers—they know where the bodies are buried and are experts in using leaks offensively. It will get ugly, and fast. Look for non-stop campaigns and audacious information operations run from Capitol Hill committees as far as the eye can see.

On the other side of Capitol Hill, the GOP’s gains in the Senate are substantial, and especially useful with regard to judicial confirmations. In recent years, Ruth Bader Ginsberg has become the kind of media and pop culture icon only an unabashed progressive can now be—but, despite the superheroine memes and fawning press coverage of her strenuous workouts, she remains mortal; at age 85, she must be nearing the end of her judicial career. If that end comes while Donald Trump occupies the White House, Republicans will be in a good position to prevail in what will surely be the most bitter, hysterical and overheated nomination fight in recent American history. This, too, will be exhausting.

is Senior VP at Security Studies Group. A longtime consultant in national security and political warfare, he is a 2011 Claremont Institute Lincoln Fellow.

More Thoughts

discourse

Cosmic & Biological Teleology

We appreciate Professor Arnhart’s notice of, and comments on, our essay at his blog. As we note, we are in broad agreement with those Straussians—including Roger Masters, the early Leon Kass, and Arnhart himself—who argue that modern science does not refute the possibility of natural right.  We differ with Arnhart, however, in a few particulars. …

discourse

Thanksgiving Grace: An Old Scottish Blessing

My late husband’s favorite grace, recited with a Scottish burr and good whiskey in hand: A Selkirk Grace  Some hae meat and cannae eat. Some nae meat but want it. We hae meat and we can eat and sae the Lord be thankit. Translated: Some have meat and cannot eat. Some no meat but want…

discourse

Our Shared Debt of Gratitude

Thanksgiving is one of two quintessentially American holidays. The other, of course, is the Fourth of July. Thanksgiving is first in order of time. July Fourth is first in order of principle. July Fourth marks the time of our common cause and dedication to the idea that all men are created equal. It marks what…