It Won’t Be Different This Time

After the Las Vegas shooting I wrote a will called “If I’m Killed in a Mass Shooting.” In it I made two claims: There is no gun debate. Despite the patina of rationality, the NRA slate of arguments is so transparently terrible that it makes a mockery of the whole concept of public discourse. What’s… Continue reading It Won’t Be Different This Time

Facebook Should Shut Itself Down

The more I read and think about Facebook, the more I am convinced that it is deeply terrible for the world—and, as a corollary that few people accept, the more obvious it is to me that Facebook should no longer exist. So I am calling on Mark Zuckerberg to do the right thing: shut Facebook… Continue reading Facebook Should Shut Itself Down

A Letter to Single-Issue Abortion Voters

For many conservatives I know, and many Catholics in particular, abortion is a “litmus test” political issue. During the 2016 presidential campaign, the commitment to vote only for pro-life candidates tortured scores of my family members and friends. Many of them were appalled by Donald Trump’s oft-demonstrated arrogance, ignorance, and insensitivity. Some openly doubted his… Continue reading A Letter to Single-Issue Abortion Voters

Disqualified: 12 Forgotten Trump Absurdities

The speed and spin of the news cycle makes it difficult to grasp the true absurdity of much that Trump and his administration does. Many commentators think this is intentional: as long as we are constantly off balance, egregious mind-breaking absurdities start to feel normal. Eventually people give up trying to track down facts and… Continue reading Disqualified: 12 Forgotten Trump Absurdities

Trump and Pence’s Shared View on Women

During the 1990’s Clinton administration, then-First Lady Hillary Clinton reached out to Rev. Billy Graham to arrange a private luncheon meeting. Graham, an influential evangelical minister who routinely met with U.S. Presidents and other world leaders, turned her down. Graham wasn’t worried about the political optics of meeting with a liberal like Hillary. Graham routinely… Continue reading Trump and Pence’s Shared View on Women

Do We Want Our Predictions to Fail?

A version of this article first appeared on Quartz. In her 1951 book The Origins of Totalitarianism, in the section on propaganda, Hannah Arendt discusses a concept she calls “infallible prediction”: The chief qualification of a mass leader has become unending infallibility; he can never admit an error. The assumption of infallibility, moreover, is based… Continue reading Do We Want Our Predictions to Fail?