WASHINGTON — In a Republican presidential debate in the fall of 2015, moderator John Harwood of CNBC asked Donald Trump about some of his more outlandish claims, such as making another country pay for a border wall and enacting huge tax cuts that wouldn’t increase the deficit.
One of the most confounding — and dangerous — aspects of the six-year-conflict in Syria is that its roster of combatants continues to broaden. Russia and Iran are helping Syrian President Bashar Assad run down U.S.-backed rebels. Islamic State has been routed from most of its territory but still holds pockets of the Euphrates River valley. NATO member Turkey recently began attacking U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish fighters in the country’s north, the same Kurdish fighters that helped defeat Islamic State.
We don’t do enough thinking about catastrophe, so let’s pause to note that everything on our national political stage — tax reform, immigration, health care, the Mueller investigation — and in our private lives, for that matter, occurs against two apocalyptic backdrops: climate change and nuclear war.
U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, a Kentucky Republican, was right to put his foot down and call hypocrisy by its name. He briefly forced a government shutdown early Friday by delaying a Senate vote required to advance the government’s spending authority. Paul was making a point that needed to be made.