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Reflections on an Inaugural Address

I watched President Obama’s second Inaugural Address with my seven-year-old daughter. She had just completed a letter to the President—something she had been composing all week. She was glued to the TV. I found myself tearing up at times, as I do and should do at all such events. “The Star Spangled Banner” by Beyonce…Read more Reflections on an Inaugural Address Posted on 22 January 2013 | 11:31 am

The President’s Failure and His Challenge.

I spoke with my daughter this morning. She is seven. I asked her what she thought of Mitt Romney’s speech. She answered: “Both he and President Obama tell lies simply to get elected.” Now I know she is to some extent parroting what she hears around our dinner table and the playground. But there is…Read more The President’s Failure and His Challenge. Posted on 31 August 2012 | 3:50 pm

Redefining “Liberal”

I am not usually hanging out on the Archbishop of Canterbury’s website, but a former student and current Arendt Center Intern alerted me to his Reverence’s recent review of Marilynne Robinson’s newest book, When I Was A Child I Read Books. It turns out the Archbishop and I share a fondness in brilliant contemporary authors:…Read more Redefining “Liberal” Posted on 24 August 2012 | 12:26 pm

Miracles and Politics

In one of the Facebook comments responding to my post about Paul Ryan, a friend suggested I read Jon Rauch’s book Government’s End. The specific Facebook friendly recommendation read: “does the most cogent job of explaining why the US is stuck in rut.” I tend to take such recommendations seriously, so I did. The first…Read more Miracles and Politics Posted on 17 August 2012 | 3:48 pm

Does Paul Ryan Matter? On the Limitations of the Rhetorical Presidency

One week ago this was the most important and yet the most boring election in history. No longer. Ryan’s selection adds a jolt of seriousness and consequentialness to the next 90 days of electioneering. Or at least so we are told. Why? Because Ryan has been, over the last year, one of the very few…Read more Does Paul Ryan Matter? On the Limitations of the Rhetorical Presidency Posted on 13 August 2012 | 2:56 pm

The Courage to Lead

Since our recent weekend read from Roberto Unger regarding the upcoming presidential election is generating so much discussion, we thought we would re-run this “Quote” of the week from Roger Berkowitz that was originally posted in February.  “The Courage to Lead” seemed an apt follow up . “Whoever entered the political realm had first to…Read more The Courage to Lead Posted on 25 June 2012 | 12:47 pm