The main purpose of the modern political convention is to produce four days of televised propaganda. The subsidiary function, now that nominees are invariably chosen in advance, is structural: Unify the party before the final battle. In Cleveland, the Republicans achieved not unity, but only a rough facsimile.
Political conventions are echo chambers designed to generate feelings of invincibility, sending forth the party faithful with a spring in their steps and hope in their hearts. Who would want to be a wet blanket at such moveable feasts?
Back in early days of the presidential nominating process, weeks ago, I wrote that this Donald Trump fetish was entertaining and all, but if he ever becomes president and does what he promises to do, woe to us. We can expect to see our largest industry eviscerated, its overseas markets destroyed, its workforce carried off in chains, employers required to test prospective employees electronically, a fence erected and military police deployed on the borders, our largest trading partners vilified, legal immigration reduced, etc.
Years from now, bright-eyed children will look up at Grandma or Grandpa and ask, “Where were you when they nominated Donald Trump?” Far too many prominent Republicans will have to hang their heads in shame.
We should have expected the sudden rise of a commercial marijuana industry would bring conflicts. The new farms, and the heavily invested growers, were bound to collide with residents who could never imagine such things rising in their sight. Add the unanticipated pungent odor of ripening marijuana, and the bright lights of state regulation and you have the makings of a land-use showdown.
What a relief. Congress has passed what would be a wholly unjustified and unnecessary food labeling law in order to avoid state-by-state chaos in the supply chain. Soon, within years, we will know what plant breeding technique produced our high fructose corn syrup and soy lecithin. That is, if we are interested.
“The most significant reinforcement of our collective defense any time since the Cold War,” President Obama called it. A bit of an exaggeration, perhaps, but it was still an achievement: Last week’s NATO summit in Warsaw ordered the deployment of troops to Eastern Europe, the alliance’s most serious response yet to Russia’s aggression and provocations on its western frontier.
LOS ANGELES — The mills of justice grind slowly, but life plunges on, leaving lives blighted when justice, by being delayed, is irremediably denied. Fortunately, California’s Supreme Court might soon decide to hear — four years after litigation began — the 21st century’s most portentous civil rights case, which concerns an ongoing denial of equal protection of the law.
A full-page ad that appeared in The Wenatchee World on Fourth of July weekend, paid for by Hobby Lobby and affiliated companies, was headlined by the words “Under God.” It purported to show that the United States was from its founding a “Christian nation.” The page was peppered with quotations from the Founding Fathers in an attempt to somehow prove that.
We may criticize the government without asking permission. We can go so far as to question the policies and judgment of elected officials without registering and disclosing our financial resources. I would go so far as to say that we could buy an advertisement expressing our discontent, and like-minded people could chip in, without filing our names in the government database.