Recently at The Bulwark:
CHARLIE SYKES: Trump's Treason.
THE NEXT LEVEL: Ginni and Will and Hunter. 🔐
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TIM MILLER: Will Hurd’s Dangerous Wishcasting.
I admire someone with a sweet and sunny outlook on life. Hoping for the best sure beats manifesting the worst.
But as with any sweet treat, you can overindulge on hopium. Having Ho Hos for breakfast every day is not going to yield a positive outcome. Neither is wishcasting your way through a shitstorm.
And after reading Tim Alberta’s latest Atlantic profile of former Rep. Will Hurd, it appears as if Hurd is mainlining so much saccharine that he requires a shot of adrenaline right though the breastplate in order to come to.
So I feel obligated to give it to him.
The Supreme Court’s recusal standard isn’t just for a concrete conflict of interest. It’s also for the appearance of a conflict, and Justice Thomas is clearly in that zone. Plus, the never-ending story of the people who won’t tell Trump “No.” Adam White joins Charlie Sykes today.
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TOMORROW! Save the date for TNB.
This week Amanda Carpenter, Tim Miller, and Will Saletan join JVL to discuss
Lollapalooza Brasil and American Greatness… er, Supreme Court spouses behaving badly, Judge Carter’s ruling on the Jan 6 Committee’s subpoena for documents from John Eastman and much more. But only for Bulwark+ members!
Did you miss this week’s The Focus Group? Benjamin Ginsburg and Sarah Longwell talk about voters’ perspectives on The Big Lie. Here’s some of what Benjamin had to say:
I spent 38 years doing Election Day operations for Republican party committees and candidates, so I have watched polls and done sort of roving squads, encompassing many precincts on Election Day. I've done the nationwide boiler rooms. And we're always vigilant. We always tried to find that. The truth was we never did. And you have to be honest about the evidence, which is why I took exception to what Donald Trump was saying. But it points up a fact that there needs to be a lot of educating about the election system and the safeguards in it. The truth is you could not possibly commit fraud in the way that they're saying, on a nationwide basis or even on a statewide basis. It would require an unbelievable number of people keeping a secret, which goodness knows we never do in this country about anything, let alone about stealing an election.
MONA CHAREN: Is It Racist to Help Ukraine?
Ukrainians might think back on that intervention and ask, “Why did Kuwait’s plight merit a military response while we’ve had to make do with aid and sanctions?” There is an answer, but it has nothing to do with the race or religion of the victims, i.e., Iraq did not possess an arsenal of nuclear weapons (thanks in part to Israel’s timely visit to the Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981).
It’s not true that the Western world is indifferent to the suffering of black and brown-skinned people.
In 1992 and 1993, a civil war had devastated Somalia’s agricultural system putting 4.5 million Somalis in danger of starvation. A UN humanitarian relief operation had run aground due to continued violations of the ceasefire by the warring factions and widespread looting. President George H.W. Bush offered to send 25,000 U.S. troops to keep order so that the humanitarian aid could be distributed. What followed under the Clinton administration was the infamous “Black Hawk Down” episode in which 19 Americans were killed and 70 injured by Al Qaeda-trained militants. Americans saw the bodies of dead special operators dragged through the streets of Mogadishu. The revulsion at this was thought to have influenced the Clinton administration to refrain from injecting American troops into Rwanda six months later (a dereliction Clinton later cited as his greatest regret).
CATHY YOUNG: Freedom and Democracy in Russia, Then and Now.
In the United States, where he came in 1974 with his wife Maya Rusakovskaya and their two children, Litvinov resumed his work as a physics teacher (he taught at the Hackley prep school in Tarrytown, New York for over 20 years until retiring in 2007) but also continued to be active in human rights advocacy with a particular focus on the USSR. Unlike many other ex-Soviet dissidents and émigrés, he did not feel compelled to embrace conservative politics as a natural extension of his anti-Soviet views; while Litvinov has spoken of Ronald Reagan—with whom he met at a White House lunch along with seven other exiled Soviet dissidents in 1982—as a great president for his policies toward the Soviet Union, he has also strongly praised Jimmy Carter for his stance on human rights. In a 1977 CBS News interview, asked by Dan Rather what his political views were, Litvinov replied that they were very simple: “I believe in democracy and freedom.” Much later, in a 2015 interview to the independent Russian website Colta.ru, he said that he tended to avoid the word “anti-Communist” because of encounters with far-right types who used it to demonize social democrats. A self-styled proud liberal, Litvinov campaigned for Barack Obama and was active in an internet group of Russian Americans against Donald Trump—decidedly a minority view in the Russian émigré community.
Boycotts and lies… Did Dave Rubin forget that the internet is forever? He is now boycotting Disney+ for the second time!
As goes Ohio… So goes the GOP.
Racing against the clock… Another dispatch from Scott English, former Chief of Staff to Gov. Mark Sanford, about the Appalachian Trail incident.
Targeting TikTok… How a GOP firm helped Facebook go after its Chinese competition.
Madison Cawthorn and unforgivable sins… He really could be in trouble.
Charlie Kirk and trans athletes. This clip doesn’t seem like the far right is proposing anything other than escalation.
How Ukraine used the rope-a-dope… Against Putin’s Russia.
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