206 Items

A protest outside the Catholic Diocese of Covington, KY, after the behavior of several Covington Catholic High School students provokes a huge backlash online, January 22, 2019.

John Minchillo (AP)

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

In Our "Emocracy", Emotions Rule

| Jan. 28, 2019

What really happened with those Covington Catholic High School students as they stood on the steps outside the Lincoln Memorial? Historian and Belfer Center Senior Fellow Niall Ferguson argues that the backlash to the Covington Catholic controversy shows the United States has become an "emocracy", where emotions, not reason, have the most weight.

A helicopter is seen monitoring the U.S.-Mexico border in Tijuana, Mexico, December 23, 2018.

Daniel Ochoa de Olza (AP)

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Trumpman's Winning Wall

| Jan. 14, 2019

As so often, “South Park” saw it coming. In “The Last of the Meheecans”— which first aired back in October 2011 — the obnoxious Cartman joins the US Border Patrol, only to find himself facing the wrong way as hordes of disillusioned Mexican workers seek to flee the economically depressed United States back to Mexico.

Undaunted, Cartman makes it his business to stop them leaving. After all, without Mexican labor, the US economy would grind to a halt.

Very often the Trump presidency feels as if it’s being written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the comic geniuses who created “South Park” more than 20 years ago. In this week’s episode, Trump/Cartman shuts down the federal government in retaliation for the Democratic Party’s leaders’ refusal to approve the border wall he campaigned for in 2016.

The net result is that the government employees responsible for controlling the vastly larger flow of people into the United States through airports don’t get paid. Desperate to end the shutdown, for which he is being blamed, Trumpman declares a national emergency under legislation that permits redirection of Department of Defense construction funds, provided it’s for purpose of military defense.

Trumpman’s attempt to use Defense money to build his wall is challenged and struck down in the courts, but he goes ahead anyway, only to run into a shortage of construction workers. The episode ends with the arrival of the “caravan” of Central American asylum-seekers (last seen in the November midterms episode), who gratefully accept jobs to build Trumpman’s wall.

A sign warns of smuggling and illegal immigration in Sasabe, Arizona on May 11, 2016

AP Photo/Gregory Bull

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Empathy, But Also Realism, are Necessary in Facing Immigration

| June 25, 2018

To those of you contentedly living in the country where you were born, I address a plea for empathy and also realism. A world without cross-border migration would be a poorer world in multiple ways. The question is not whether to stop migration but how to manage it. But from those of you who regard any regulation of immigration as somehow unjust — who want illegal immigrants to be treated the same as those who follow the rules — I plead for rationality.

President Donald Trump walks to the White House as he arrives on the South Lawn, Monday, Aug. 14, 2017, in Washington. Trump is returning from a vacation to Bedminster, N.J. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad President Builds an Empire

| June 11, 2018

For two years, the people with at least two university degrees (PALTUDs) have been gnashing their teeth about Trump’s every utterance and move. To the foreign policy experts, he is a bull in a china shop, trampling the “rules-based international order” underfoot. To the economics establishment, he is a human wrecking ball, smashing more than a half-century of consensus that free trade really works better than protectionism.

Harvard University students Anwar Omeish, of Fairfax, Va., center, and Salma Abdelrahman, of Miami, right, chant slogans as they protest a scheduled speaking appearance of author Charles Murray on the campus of Harvard University, Wednesday, September 6, 2017, in Cambridge, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

(AP Photo/Steven Senne)

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Why I Called on Conservative Students in a Free Speech Fight

| June 04, 2018

One of the attractions of university life to me was precisely that academic jobs were not like real jobs. At Oxford, my tutors inhabited large studies with towering bookcases. They wore not suits but well-worn tweed jackets. During the vacations, they were free to do as they pleased, so long as they occasionally published books. I resolved to join these happy eggheads.

A man watches a television screen showing U.S. President Donald Trump, left, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during a news program at the Seoul Train Station in Seoul, South Korea.(AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon, File)

AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon, File

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Face it: Trump has Been Right About Iran and North Korea

| May 14, 2018

The greatest gunfight in the history of cowboy films is in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.” It’s a three-cornered shoot-out between Clint Eastwood (Blondie), Tuco (Eli Wallach), and Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef). The crucial point is that before the shooting starts, Blondie has emptied Tuco’s revolver of bullets.

To members of Washington’s foreign policy establishment, regardless of party affiliation, President Trump’s decision to exit one nuclear deal (with Iran) only to enter another nuclear deal (with North Korea) is beyond baffling. They clearly never saw “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.” Like Eastwood’s Blondie, Trump understands that only one of his antagonists has a loaded gun.

The Twitter app is shown on an iPhone, in San Jose, Calif. Nov. 4, 2013. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press) Keywords: Twitter, iPhone

Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Analysis & Opinions - The Sunday Times

I Live in Dread of the Web's New Wheel of Fortune

| Apr. 22, 2018

In the old days you had to deal with a finite number of reviews of the book, of which perhaps five really mattered. Today the feedback is incessant. Has your Amazon ranking slid from three digits to four? Has your number of followers or subscribers gone up? How many "likes" did your latest utterance elicit? This would be bad enough in itself. But the worst feature of the Online Age is not the frequency and precision of the ratings. It's the vicious atmosphere that pervades every online forum.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg sits as he arrives to testify before a joint hearing of the Commerce and Judiciary Committees on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 10, 2018, about the use of Facebook data to target American voters in the 2016 election. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Zuckerberg's Trip to Washington was Classic Sci-Fi

| Apr. 16, 2018

I stopped reading science fiction when I turned 17. I thought reading history would give me better insights into the future. The trouble with sci-fi is that it always predicts 10 out of the next three technological innovations. The future is never as weird in reality as it is in sci-fi.

Donald Trump is pictured in New York. August 1, 1984. (Marty Lederhandler/Associated Press). Keywords: Donald Trump, New York, 1980s

Marty Lederhandler/Associated Press

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

The Revenge of the '80s

| Apr. 09, 2018

It was on Sept. 2, 1987, that Trump took out a full-page newspaper advertisement with the headline: “There’s nothing wrong with America’s Foreign Defense Policy that a little backbone can’t cure.” In it he called on the United States to cease spending money on Middle Eastern peace-keeping that mainly benefited the Saudis and Japanese, to “end our vast deficits by making Japan and others who can afford it pay,” and to “reduce our taxes, and let America’s economy grow.”