From Vice, the latest on a running guide to Donald Trump's highly abnormal presidency: Trump overrules his NSA chief on minor staffing decision because Bannon and Kushner said so. Inside Trump's Breitbart brain: Bannonism will remain integral to Trumpism no matter what happens to Steve Bannon himself. As the Trump administration careens from one screw up to the next, it's becoming clear that White House Counsel Donald McGahn is responsible for a lot of it. Prerequisite for key White House posts: Loyalty, not experience. Paranoia seizes Trump's White House: Staffers are leaving their phones at home, using secret apps and monitoring each other's social media. The roots and risks of Trump's dysfunction: The administration is consumed by paranoia and feuds — it could be the president's undoing.
Republicans are divided on the best way to deprive millions of their health-care coverage, but they are a cohesive pack when it comes to ganging up on the federal workforce. Trump lets key offices gather dust amid "slowest transition in decades". A president without an administration: Trump isn't actually running anything. Yes, Trump is being held accountable: Don't despair — our constitutional system is working as it's supposed to. Is the system working to constrain President Trump? Let's explore a few op-eds arguing that Donald Trump is being tamed by the system and not vice versa. How Baby Donald slew the imperial presidency: He deserves one good cheer for burning the throne and trashing the crown.
Scientists are conspicuously missing from Trump's government. Donald Trump's science denial is becoming national policy. If you liked the Inquisition, you'll love the House Science Committee. Republicans' war on science just got frighteningly real. The scientific community is facing an existential crisis: An interview with Rush Holt on Donald Trump, the increasing politicization of science, and what his community needs to do next. John Holdren, Obama's top science adviser, on a guide to navigating the Trump era: "We can be in for a major shift in the culture around science". What is our moral duty as scientists? Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, Sarah Tuttle, and Joseph Osmundson are scientists against a fascist government.
In age of Trump, scientists show signs of a political pulse. Emily Atkin goes inside the scientists' quiet resistance to Trump. Professor Smith goes to Washington: In response to the new president's stances on a range of issues, more scientists are preparing to run for political office. Do scientists lose credibility when they become political? A new study suggests that, contrary to common fears, the answer is no. Why scientists are planning their own march on Washington. Is the March for Science bad for scientists? "Numbers numb, stories sell" is the key messaging lesson from Trump's win: Why scientists and progressives must embrace narrative in their messages and marches. Why Trump will lose his war on science.
Iason Gabriel (Oxford): The Problem With Yuppie Ethics. The return of the Sultan: What is happening in Turkey shows distinct traces of an earlier phase of Islamic-minded autocracy in the country's history. Teresa Fazio on what civilians don't understand about military sexual harassment. Neil Gorsuch has web of ties to secretive billionaire Philip F. Anschutz. President Trump may be in for a fight with the Federal Reserve. A profile of David Cay Johnston, the man behind Trump's tax return. How a wonky national-security blog hit the big time: When Donald Trump tweeted about a Lawfare post — without realizing it was highly critical of him — he sent its readership skyrocketing. Scott McLemee reviews I Love My Selfie by Ilan Stavans.
Trumpcare is the opposite of freedom: The Republican alternative to Obamacare only gives Americans the freedom to work until they die. Sarah Kliff and Ezra Klein on the lessons of Obamacare: What Republicans should have learned, but haven't. Republicans may be ready to redefine success on Obamacare.
Martin Beckstein (Columbia) and Francis Cheneval (UZH): Conservatism: Analytically Reconsidered. Presenting American Affairs, the only antidote to elitism. From the inaugural issue of American Affairs, Michael Anton on America and the liberal international order; Clyde Prestowitz on the new shape of globalization; Julius Krein on James Burnham's managerial elite; and Gladden Pappin on the anxieties of conservatism. Trump's willing scholars: Two thinkers on the Left offer a guide to navigating the stormy seas of modernity: Daniel Oppenheimer reviews The Shipwrecked Mind: On Political Reaction by Mark Lilla and The Reactionary Mind: Conservatism from Edmund Burke to Sarah Palin by Corey Robin.
American Nakba: Joseph Heath on David Frum's How We Got Here: The '70s and one of the sources of contemporary conservative anti-intellectualism. Milo Yiannopoulos, Donald Trump and the rise of reactionary camp: Ideology has become an afterthought, an improvisational wardrobe for the playacting that constitutes contemporary conservatism. Ayn Rand is dead — liberals are going to miss her: With Trump comes a truly illiberal conservatism, and that may be worse than old fashioned Objectivism.
Donald Trump's worst deal: The President helped build a hotel in Azerbaijan that appears to be a corrupt operation engineered by oligarchs tied to Iran's Revolutionary Guard. Businesswoman who bought Trump penthouse is connected to Chinese intelligence front group: The president's company won't explain this $15.8 million deal. Ivanka Trump is complicit in her dad's mission to get rich at the US's expense. Ivanka Trump's bitter scent: The president's daughter wants all of the perks with none of the blame. Without the AMT, Donald Trump's 2005 tax rate would have been just 3 percent: Unsurprisingly, Trump wants to get rid of the alternative minimum tax — we need to reform it instead.
Scandal fatigue and the Trump ethical swamp: The president and his family repeatedly conflate policy and profit — please don't just ask, "what else is new?"
From Confluence, a symposium: "Is Reason a Neutral Tool in Comparative Philosophy?"; Michael Levine (UWA): Does Comparative Philosophy Have a Fusion Future?; Marietta Stepanyants (RAS): On the Way to Intercultural Philosophy; James W. Heisig (Nanzan): Philosophy on a Bridge; Christiana Idika reviews Atuolu Omalu: Some Unanswered Questions in Contemporary African Philosophy, ed. J. O. Chimakonam; and Mechthild Nagel reviews Postkoloniale Theorie: Eine kritische Einfuhrung by M. do Mar Castro Varela and N. Dhawan. The inaugural issue of the Journal of World Philosophies is out, including a symposium: "How (If at All) is Gender Relevant to Comparative Philosophy?"; and from comparative philosophy to fusion philosophy: Elise Coquereau reviews Comparative Philosophy Without Borders, ed. Arindam Chakrabarti and Ralph Weber. Are SOAS students right to "decolonise" their minds from western philosophers?
From The Rumpus, Andrew Harnish on Mark Greif's Against Everything and the arbitrary nature of success in Trump's America. Trump has sold out his voters for Corporate America: The president's early policies benefit corporations and the rich at the expense of everyday Americans. Thread: "Can we talk about working-class Trump voters for a minute? Will they ever realize or admit how completely they were scammed?" Yes, Trump scammed many of his working-class supporters — this new analysis leaves little doubt. Fear of diversity made people more likely to vote Trump — and economic populism might not win them back.
What are we to think about individuals who vote against their manifest self-interest? Robert Paul Wolff on are three classical answers to this question, which are customarily associated with Bentham, Rousseau, and Marx. Why I'll never sympathize with regretful Trump voters: They brought this disaster on themselves — they must own it.
Noe Cornago (UPV): Diplomatic Knowledge. From Foreign Affairs, good foreign policy is invisible: James Goldgeier and Elizabeth N. Saunders on why boring is better. How wealthy donors drive aggressive foreign policy: As the influence of high-dollar donors grows, so too will our bellicosity. Trump's alpha male foreign policy: Susan Glasser spoke with three of the Alpha Ladies of national security, and they are not impressed. Do women matter to national security? The men who lead U.S. foreign policy don't think so. Trump takes on The Blob: Washington's foreign policy elites are used to battling America's adversaries; now they have a new common enemy — the president. The Trump White House's plan to starve the foreign policy establishment.
Inside the media war at the State Department: Why is Rex Tillerson so scared of the spotlight? Rex Tillerson might be the weakest Secretary of State ever: There are five avenues to power at Foggy Bottom, and they're all blocked to the current man in charge. A weaker State Department could cause problems for national defense. White House seeks to cut billions in funding for United Nations: U.S. retreat from U.N. could mark a "breakdown of the international humanitarian system as we know it". Eric Rosand on why Trump needs the United Nations.
Jan Zienkowski (Navarra): Reflexivity in the Transdisciplinary Field of Critical Discourse Studies. Yes, humans are capable of creating a happy and successful liberal society: The Netherlands. Margaret Hartmann on what you need to know about the Dutch election (and more). Europe has started to enshrine Islamophobia into law — history tells us this can't end well. Why won't Steve King assimilate and embrace American values? The Iowa Republican retains an Old World outlook on race and ethnicity that is anathema to those who support the principles of the American founding. Molly Ball on Kellyanne's alternative universe: Will the truth ever catch up with Trump's most skilled spin artist? The psychedelic miracle: How some doctors are risking everything to unleash the healing power of MDMA, ayahuasca and other hallucinogens.
From Vox, the CBO's nonpartisan report on the Republican ACA replacement plan, explained in 6 charts. Here are 4 big things missing from the CBO report on Republicans' health-care bill. As health care debate intensifies, GOP takes aim at empiricism. Unless you've lived without health insurance, you have no idea how scary it is. Will "repeal and replace" implode? Republicans just proposed a $12,900 annual premium increase on low-income 64-year-olds — a shambolic performance. The CBO's other bombshell: The Affordable Care Act isn't imploding. David Leonhardt on the original lie about Obamacare. Is Trump sabotaging Obamacare? The record is mixed, but he sure keeps hinting at it.
The health-care mess could screw up everything Republicans are trying to do this year. Paul Krugman on populism and the politics of health. Jared Bernstein can think of no other explanation for this plan than this: Republicans looked out at the country and concluded that the wealthy had too little after-tax income and the poor had too much health care. The GOP health plan is an act of class warfare by the rich against the poor. The incredible cruelty of Trumpcare: Republicans are willing to cause a humanitarian crisis just to give permanent tax cuts to millionaires.