The Good and “You’ve Got to Be Kidding” of John Bolton

Now that John Bolton is going to be Donald Trump's third national security adviser in a little over a year(!), it behooves us to consider what we might expect during Bolton's tenure. The position of national security adviser is exceptionally influential--especially given the recent tendency over the span of several administrations to concentrate significant amounts …

Anatomy of Craziness–Monday Night Massacre Edition

Today, Monday, January 30, 2017, has seen yet more insanity perpetrated on the country by the Trump administration, which continues to be determined to prove itself the worst thing to have ever happened to American politics. First off, let it be noted that the Trump travel ban/Muslim ban was both stupid and evil: Let’s start …

Social Media: Not the Place to Go for Sober-Headed Legal Analysis

There has been a lot of debate about the letter sent by 47 Republican senators to the Iranian regime regarding the negotiations over nuclear energy use--likely for weapons--by Iran. I happen to think that sending the letter was a bad idea; foreign policy has been found to be the province of the executive branch, with …

A Long Overdue Goodbye to Andrew Sullivan

Andrew Sullivan was one of two big-time bloggers--the other being, of course, Glenn Reynolds--to have helped put me on the blogospheric map. For that, I shall always be grateful. He was also--as Ross Douthat pointed out--extraordinarily influential in advancing the cause of same-sex marriage. Anyone who is the least bit concerned with fundamental human rights …

I Pity the Fool Who Becomes the Next Secretary of Defense

More evidence--as though any were needed--that while Chuck Hagel is leaving the Pentagon, bad governance practices designed and implemented by the Obama White House will remain. And those practices have been around for a while: On a trip to Afghanistan during President Barack Obama's first term, Defense Secretary Robert Gates was stunned to find a …

Chuck Hagel Is Leaving, But Problems with the Obama Administration’s National Security Apparatus Will Remain

Let there be absolutely no doubt that Chuck Hagel was at best, an inconsequential secretary of defense, and at worst, a terrible one. But while we ought to be relieved that Hagel has been shown the door, we also ought to be concerned that a completely dysfunctional national security apparatus will remain long after Hagel …

I Told You So (Chuck Hagel Edition)

Chuck Hagel was never cut out to be secretary of defense. I wrote as much. Repeatedly (just scroll down, and you will see). Hagel was selected because he was deemed the ideal secretary of defense to preside over declining Pentagon budgets and a declining American presence on the world stage, and astonishingly enough, he was also …

If Barack Obama Were a Republican, There Would Be Shrieks and Hollers about “Neocons” Right about Now

The president who promised he would take us out of Iraq, the president who took us out of Iraq prematurely because his administration was too incompetent at arranging for American troops to stay in Iraq longer, is now getting us more and more enmeshed in Iraq: A senior military official says that American military advisory teams …

The Very Inconvenient Leon Panetta

This is just devastating: After resigning as secretary of defense last year, Leon E. Panetta watched with growing dismay at what he perceived as a president losing his way. Instead of asserting American leadership on the world stage, Mr. Panetta concluded, President Obama was vacillating and overly cautious. “He was concerned about the frustration and exhaustion of the country …