Today's Standard

• January 22, 2017

Trumpism Corrupts: Spicer Edition

9:05 PM, Jan 21, 2017
The first official White House press conference is on Monday, but Sean Spicer called a Very Special Presser Saturday evening. Why? He had something he wanted to get off his chest. “[P]hotographs of the inaugural proceedings were intentionally framed in a way, in one particular tweet, to minimize the enormous support that had gathered on the National Mall," he said. After trotting out some scientific-sounding numbers, he then insisted that "This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration—period —both in person and around the globe." And that "These attempts to lessen the enthusiasm of the inauguration are shameful and wrong." Read more

Repackaging Sisterhood for an Intersectional Age

A morning among the anti-racist contingent of the Women's March.
8:35 PM, Jan 21, 2017
“Don't try to divide us," said Gloria Steinem, the reigning queen of second-wave feminism, now 81, who first rose to fame for going undercover as a Playboy bunny. She'd come to help rally a crowd reportedly surpassing 500,000 women, male allies, and acquiescent children—all of whom find a common enemy in our new president.

Hours earlier, the anti-racist contingent of the Women's March on Washington met in the far corner of the undercroft at St. Mark's Church on Capitol Hill. Down the hall from a nearly-empty meeting room set aside for a niche gathering of another sort ("Catholics for Choice," read the sign on the door), I found protesters for whom racial injustice is a more pertinent fighting cause than misogyny.

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Trump's Speech: Too Dark, Too Populist, Too 'Trump'

Hosted by Michael Graham.
8:08 PM, Jan 21, 2017
Editor at large William Kristol's weekly Kristol Clear podcast, on why he didn't like president Trump's inaugural address, and why he's not too happy about writers on the right defending it. Read more

Prufrock: New Mark Twain Story and How the Bald Eagle Became a Nuisance

9:30 AM, Jan 21, 2017
The best in books and arts from around the web, including: A classic essay from Joseph Epstein on academic freedom, the CIA and The Paris Review, 3D model of Palmyra, and how Snowden happened. Read more

Trump: Promises and Uncertainty

6:35 AM, Jan 21, 2017
The symbolism of President Donald Trump’s pre-inaugural appearance before the Lincoln Memorial was part of his effort to show that he is sympathetic to the aspirations of the black community even though one of its leaders declared him "illegitimate" and added a boycott of Friday's swearing-in to his boycott of George W. Bush's inauguration. But it also reminded us of the ability of the republic to survive a contentious transfer of power, more contentious even than yesterday's, which saw hoodlums burning cars and trash cans in the streets of D.C.: seven states seceded even before president-elect Lincoln took the oath of office. We witnessed an American president whose vindictiveness is exceeded only by his vanity turning over power to a new president whose ignorance is exceeded only by his self-confidence. Not a combination likely to make their respective enemies eager to let bygones be bygones and come together to get on with the job of governing the nation. And anyone who hoped that our new president would offer an olive branch to the establishment against which he campaigned, had only to hear his first speech as president to know that such hopes will not be realized. Read more

To Boo Schumer Was To Boo Trump

Partisanship is alive and well.
9:56 PM, Jan 20, 2017
It was an odd time for the inauguration goers to sing the boos. Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer, a liberal Democrat, had just delivered a few lines that could have easily prompted applause had they been uttered by President Donald Trump, the populist Republican most people in attendance were there to celebrate. Read more

Mattis, Kelly Sail Through Senate Confirmation

Trump cabinet picks get little resistance.
6:40 PM, Jan 20, 2017
Two key members of President Donald Trump’s national security apparatus sailed through Senate confirmation votes Friday afternoon, as retired Marine Gens. James Mattis and John Kelly earned overwhelming support in the upper chamber to become the first cabinet picks of the new administration to win approval to their posts. Read more

On Day One, Trump Declares War on the Washington Establishment

3:59 PM, Jan 20, 2017
Perhaps there are a few relevant historical touchstones, but President Donald J. Trump—typing those words still feels surreal—delivered an inaugural address unlike any any other. Inaugural speeches are typically vehicles for unity and uplift. Even Abraham Lincoln, on the verge of civil war, appealed to "the better angels of our nature." Donald J. Trump was sworn in, stepped up to the microphone, and with his very first sentence, he declared war (metaphorically) on the the Washington establishment. Read more

GOP Senators on Inaugural Speech: Trump Doesn't Have to Get to Everything Just This Second

3:05 PM, Jan 20, 2017
Republican senators hedged their responses to President Donald Trump's inaugural address Friday, pairing praise of the speech with an acknowledgment that Trump could not touch on every topic in just 17 minutes. Read more

Trump Inaugural Goes Heavy on the Populism

And Republicans should be ready when he goes light on the conservatism.
2:42 PM, Jan 20, 2017
President Donald J. Trump gave an aggressive, combative inaugural speech today, heavy on the populism and economic nationalism that energized his campaign, and virtually devoid of the themes and principles that have defined the Republican party and the conservative movement at its heart. Read more

Trump's Speech: A Surprising Call for Government Action

Big government conservatism.
2:15 PM, Jan 20, 2017
That Donald Trump’s inaugural speech was patriotic, nationalistic and populist – that was no surprise. What was unexpected, at least by me, was his call for government action. And not just what government can do to unleash the economy and incentivize Americans to work, save, and invest Read more

Trump Quiet on Obamacare and Health Care in Inaugural Address

1:24 PM, Jan 20, 2017
Donald Trump has said repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act should be done “very quickly"—but the issue was nowhere to be found in the president's inaugural address at the U.S. Capitol Friday. Trump's speech, which struck populist themes on trade, immigration, foreign policy, and democracy, had little to say about what America might expect the new administration to implement on health care. Read more

Trump Sisters Appropriate the White Pantsuit

Hillary Clinton's "sartorial armor" - the "color of the suffragette movement."
12:13 PM, Jan 20, 2017
Months after Labor Day, three of the inagauration's top billing women came out in white suits. Hillary Clinton and the Trump sisters Tiffany and Ivanka were all wearing the color of sisterhood, according to CNN's Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash who noted the significane of Clinton's styling. Read more

Obama Quips to Trump: 'I'm Always on the Left'

10:30 AM, Jan 20, 2017
While cable news broadcast the live video feed, President Obama could be overheard saying "I'm always on the left" to Trump as he took his position in the photo to the left of the president-elect. The two exchanged additional comments and both laughed. Read more

Left-wing Protesters Bring Obama Presidency to Fitting End

10:11 AM, Jan 20, 2017
After enduring eight years of a community organizer as president, perhaps the chaotic scene outside the National Press Club in Washington DC on the eve of Inauguration Day represented a fitting coda to the Obama era.

NBC's Washington affiliate was on the scene and reported smoke bombs were set off in the midst of the crowd assembeled outside the DeploraBall event.

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Prufrock: In Defense of Personal Property, How Chess Became a Science, and the Divine Dante

9:30 AM, Jan 20, 2017
The best in books and arts from around the web, including: The fall of BitTorrent, the best Sherlock Holmes, the aging Beckett, and more. Read more

Ben Sasse On the Awesome Wonder of America's Inauguration

"Because we're obsessed with freedom."
7:50 AM, Jan 20, 2017
Senator Ben Sasse was no fan of Donald Trump during the primary and general elections of 2016. The idea that Trump is the person being sworn in as the 45th president of the United States probably fills the Nebraskan with more trepidation and anxiety than joy and hope. That's what makes his video message about the awesome wonder of the American presidency and the peaceful transfer of power so powerful. Read more

Farewell to 'The Clintons'

From the January 30, 2017 issue of THE WEEKLY STANDARD
6:12 AM, Jan 20, 2017

Picture The Clintons as a top TV series that made its debut in January 1992, as Bill and Hillary appeared on 60 Minutes on Super Bowl Sunday to refute charges that Bill had had a fling with a chanteuse called Gennifer Flowers. It peaked in 1998 with the gigantic impeachment debacle (a loser for everyone except Hillary), was renewed for 16 more seasons after Bill left office, sustained by the ongoing, aspirational “President Hillary" saga, and then wrapped up in a sensational six-hour special, featuring a stunning reversal of fortune that tied it all up with a bow.

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President Trump, Day One: A Schedule of Events, Price's Obamacare Conundrum, and Alone Time With Stuart Smalley

Keeping a watch on the White House's first 100 days.
5:00 AM, Jan 20, 2017
Today is Inauguration Day, so it seems fitting to kick things off with the inaugural edition of this new feature here at THE WEEKLY STANDARD. For the first 100 (or so) days of the Donald J. Trump administration, look to this space for inside coverage of our 45th president, his White House, and his departments and agencies. I’ll be reporting on the who, what, and why of the big decisions and major initiatives of the Trump presidency. Be sure to send tips to me at, and be on the lookout soon for a chance to sign up and get this report delivered every morning to your inbox. Read more

Obama's Foreign Policy Farewell--And Not a Minute too Soon

Hosted by Michael Graham.
5:48 PM, Jan 19, 2017
The WEEKLY STANDARD Podcast with senior editor Lee Smith, on Obama's abysmal foreign policy record on Israel, Russia, and Iran. Read more

Celebrating 100 Years of the National Parks Service

Safety Not Guaranteed

Yellowstone in the age of the helicopter parent

By Jonathan V. Last

The Bluest Blue

Crater Lake National Park, a volcanic jewel

By Geoffrey Norman

Mountains Alive

At Glacier National Park

By Geoffrey Norman

High Peaks and Splendid Walks

The pleasures of Rocky Mountain National Park

By Geoffrey Norman

The Most Beautiful Star

On gazing into the Grand Canyon

By Geoffrey Norman