What the Coronavirus Says About Us

A crisis, according to self-help and leadership books, reveals much about a person’s character. The same can be said of a nation’s character. Since the latest pandemic began to spread out of China in 2020, countries responded in very different ways to the challenge. There was ingenuity, inflexibility, incomprehension, and sheer incompetence. Diversity can be a beautiful thing. But not when it...
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Coronavirus: Cooperation vs. Quarantine

Pathogens don’t know anything about borders. They don’t care about history or ethnicity. They are interested in just one thing: reproduction.  They are constantly in search of places where they can be fruitful and multiply. Trade and war have been the great facilitators of the plagues that have periodically decimated the human race. Soldiers and merchants, by traveling from place to place,...
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The President as Political Hit Man

Donald Trump filed his paperwork to run for reelection only hours after his inauguration in January 2017, setting a presidential record, the first of his many dubious achievements. For a man who relished the adulation and bombast of campaigning, it should have surprised no one that he charged out of the starting gate so quickly for 2020 as well. After all, he’d already spent much of the...
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Will the Coronavirus Kill Globalization?

At a dinner party in mid-February, an architect told me that he was having a problem finishing his building projects. It was the carpets. Most wall-to-wall carpeting for big construction projects in the United States, he explained, comes from China. The coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan — and the subsequent shutdown of many Chinese factories — was having a ripple effect across the global economy...
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Making America Unsafe Again

Donald Trump is all about boundaries. At a personal level, he doesn’t like touching strangers for fear of infection. Politically, he makes no long-lasting close alliances. And geopolitically, he obsesses over strong borders: big walls, more stringent immigration requirements, tariffs on foreign imports. But Trump is nothing if not a walking contradiction. For a guy who shies away from shaking...
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Cleaning Up Trump’s Global Mess

The next presidential election will not likely hinge on foreign policy. Americans will go to the polls in November to express their fervent support, or disgust, for Donald Trump. The candidates’ positions on the issues — on any issues — matter only to a dwindling number of voters who have somehow managed, over the last three years, to remain undecided about the current president’s fitness...
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