WASHINGTON — There is hope! I am speaking of the envisioned memorial of Dwight D. Eisenhower here in Washington, D.C. Admittedly, its design by the crank architect, Frank Gehry, has been pretty much accepted by the memorial commission, and the chairman of the House committee that has control of the funding, Ken Calvert, seems to be going along.
It looks like former President Obama's national security adviser Susan Rice will get a reprieve. With all the hullabaloo from President Donald Trump's military action last week in Syria's ... do we call it Syria's civil war or a massacre? ... it now appears that Rice's mishandling of surveillance is going to subside from the headlines temporarily.
WASHINGTON — Have you been keeping up with the news from Washington, D.C.? If you have, doubtless you know that there are congressional investigations of Russian interference with our recent presidential election. It's possible you even suspect that agents of the diabolical Donald Trump were in contact with those dastardly Russians. Oh, yes, and there was something in the news about Russian bankers talking with Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law, a real estate developer who now sits in an office right down the hall from Trump and can pop in at anytime.
WASHINGTON — The trials of Judge Neil M. Gorsuch before the Senate Judiciary Committee, as he is almost certainly en route to his place on the Supreme Court, reveal one of my favorite findings regarding modern politics, to wit: The Democrats are the extremists; the Republicans are mainstream. The Democrats are the ideologues; the Republicans usually base their policies and political judgments on philosophy.
What are more important to the health of an intellectual movement: writers and academics, or investors and philanthropists? That thought occurred to me when I was informed of the death of Chuck Brunie, the former longtime chairman of the board of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research and chairman emeritus of The American Spectator. Of course, an intellectual movement needs brains, but it also needs money -- prudently spent money.
WASHINGTON — I was wondering when it would happen. For over 30 years, I have been anxiously awaiting the backlash. What backlash have I been awaiting, you ask? Why, the backlash to the most self-important, morally superior, narcissistic generation to cast a shadow across this republic in its history: the baby-boom generation. Had the generation just been designated "the babies" and left at that, America would have been on the right track.
WASHINGTON — The average American is understandably perplexed as to why Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and, of course, the runner up in last year's Democrat primaries, Sen. Bernie Saunders, are so lathered up over the Republicans' recent overtures to the Russians. They are calling for the impeachment of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
WASHINGTON — As I find myself happily on the far side of middle age, I had assumed that I was now exempt from at least some of the cultural battles roaring through American society. How wrong I was. I recently found myself, despite my utter insouciance toward gender politics, suddenly hauled onto the battlefield, notwithstanding I am a full-bodied adult male somewhat advanced in years. Let me explain.
WASHINGTON — “Not since Lincoln has there been a president as fundamentally shaped — in his life, convictions and outlook on the world -- by reading and writing as Barack Obama," said Michiko Kakutani, the literary critic of the famed New York Times. Did you know this? Frankly, I did not know President Obama was so wedded to books and the printed word as to be compared to President Abraham Lincoln, author of the Gettysburg Address and the magisterial second inaugural address and devotee of Shakespeare.
WASHINGTON — For me the football season begins in mid-December (when everyone becomes serious) and ends at the Super Bowl (when everyone becomes deathly serious). This year it ended with the longest Super Bowl in history. Though I am the epitome of punctuality, I let the season go into the first overtime in Super Bowl history without turning off the television, so I could see whether President Donald Trump's prediction would be vindicated.
WASHINGTON — This is supposedly the week of multitudinous demonstrations in Washington, D.C. The hordes are getting more media attention than the hundreds of thousands of President-elect Donald Trump supporters who are also coming into town. Whether the demonstrations will be as multitudinous as anticipated by the media, I cannot say. Certainly, they are getting plenty of publicity already, though their actual numbers as of Tuesday night are disappointing.
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will leave office after eight years of strutting even while sitting down, preening even while standing up, swanking while playing 18 holes. Yet he remains the first president in American history to cast no shadow. President Jimmy Carter cast a pale and minuscule shadow. President Lyndon Johnson cast an obscene shadow. But Obama leaves absolutely no shadow, even in the moonlight.
WASHINGTON — Around Thanksgiving time, I noticed portents of this Christmas season being different. I noticed it when people unbidden would wish me Happy Thanksgiving. There seemed to be a note of exultance in their greeting. Not everyone would say "Happy Thanksgiving," but enough did that it got me to wondering. Was this Thanksgiving different, and if so, would this Christmas be any different?
WASHINGTON — Recently, a voice of the conservative media did what he is supposed to do, to wit, tell the rest of the story. The mainstream media only tells America part of the story. They tell us how they perceive the world and leave it at that. This is why so much of recent American journalism — and indeed, history — is so unsatisfactory to sentient observers. Journalism and history are told exclusively from the left's point of view, and those of us who do not share the left's point of view get the feeling that something is missing.
WASHINGTON — Over the weekend some pathetic wretch — obviously a casualty of the Nov. 8 election — writing under the pen name Paul Farhi filed a column in the Washington Post lamenting that after an extensive search of the newspapers of this great country, he could hardly find any pro-Trump columnists.
WASHINGTON — When I heard that Bob Dylan had received the Nobel Prize for literature, I was mildly surprised. He writes music -- popular music. As did George Gershwin and Irving Berlin, both of whom almost certainly wrote better music. I have nothing against Dylan's music, except that it was written by a scruffy young man who has remained a scruffy young man all his life. At least that is an achievement.
WASHINGTON — Well, it is over! The most poisonous, slanderous, hate-filled American election of all time is now history, and the pity is that there is no historian living in this great Republic who is capable of doing it justice.
WASHINGTON — Is it just me, or are there others out there in my audience who find it odd that Hillary Clinton, the inevitable presidential candidate of the Democratic Party, would continue to have at the highest level of her staff a woman married to a man who has repeatedly embarrassed himself, his wife and the Democratic Party? Anthony Weiner is a pervert.
WASHINGTON — As I have been saying, the sexual revolution of the 1960s is now over. We can thank Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton's gang of angry women (which Trump either knew or did not know years ago) for that. I think it is a contribution to the moral life of the republic, but I might be wrong.
LONDON — I am in jolly old London for a Spectator debate about America's presidential candidates, Donald Trump and What's Her Name. London is resplendent as ever, and at this point in the election cycle my wife is patrolling my behavior, lest I hazard our bank account by popping into Anderson & Sheppard to order another suit or seeking psychiatric refreshment.