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National Columnists

Warren Harding’s real scandal was his conservatism

Mark Twain said history doesn’t repeat but it rhymes. The life of Warren G. Harding rhymes with the presidential politics of our time. Harding died 100 years ago this week — Aug. 2, 1923. Historians often rank him among America’s worst presidents. Yet this says more about them than ...

Uncertain future: Social unrest in democracies growing

On my national talk radio show, on social media and in person, I encounter more and more people who feel like something bad is coming. People seem convinced of it. The better off among us are more dismissive, but even some of them are fretful. The Christians refer to the “birth pangs” ...

What Israel’s protests are really about

Many Israelis have once again taken to mass protests in the streets, both in the lead-up to and in the aftermath of the Benjamin Netanyahu-led government’s successful passing on Monday of one tiny sliver of the broader judicial reforms that it had previously floated earlier this year. But any ...

Why we’re asking the wrong question

Proponents of the ongoing push for national industrial policy, whether they come from the left or the right, frequently argue that we need to promote certain sectors or technologies to create a manufacturing boom. This boom, we’re told, is necessary to create more high-paying jobs. But I beg ...

Proximal origin of scientific fraud

"We do not believe that any type of laboratory-based scenario is plausible.” That’s the key sentence in an article published in Nature Medicine on March 17, 2020, titled “The Proximal Origin of SARS-CoV-2.” It’s also a prime example of eminently credentialed and ...

Tony Bennett: More than a ‘crooner’

It was in the early ‘60s. I was a copy boy at NBC News and the overnight disc jockey for the local radio station called and asked if I’d like to go on a boat ride down the Potomac River with his guest, Tony Bennett. For several hours we cruised past some of Washington’s most famous ...