May 21, 2019

Welcome to the Post-Liberal Order

“From the voting booths of Brazil, where the far-right Jair Bolsonaro was recently elected, to the boulevards of Paris, where throngs of protesters smashed windows, overturned cars, and set fires this past weekend, fury against the parties, politicians, and ideas that have reigned supreme for the past generation is spreading across the Western world and gathering intensity along the way.

The target of this ire is “the establishment” — and the establishment is, broadly speaking, liberal. It favors the free movement of money and people, and believes these policies will generate economic growth sufficient both to give people hope for the future and to pay for social services generous enough to help those struggling to keep up. That was the deal: Elect liberals of the center-left or center-right, and they will manage the economy and the welfare state, technocratically tweaking it a little this way and that, raising or cutting taxes a little here and a little there, while for the most part getting out of the way so that the market can perform its magic, enriching us all over time.

It didn’t work. In country after country, the policies embraced by the liberal establishment produced aggregate growth but benefits that were enjoyed only by some — namely, by the relatively well-educated residents of major cities and their surrounding suburbs, very much including the major cities where each country’s political and economic elites live and work. Elsewhere, people have struggled to keep up or fallen badly behind.”

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JJ Editor's Daily Picks

"The biggest topic in British political circles on Monday wasn’t the country’s impending departure from the European Union. It was milkshakes..."

"I often disagree with Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich., but I've been disturbed by the idea that he should be run out of the Republican Party just because he believes President Trump committed impeachable offenses."

"The Icelandic band Hatari, whose members are quite vocal in their animosity towards Israel, held up Palestinian flags... Madonna, likewise, had two of her performers wear Israeli and Palestinian flags on their costumes."

"To celebrate the 10-year anniversary of Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds" premiering at the Cannes Film Festival, I turn to movie critic Roger Ebert's old review of "Raiders of the Lost Ark." (Trust me on this one.)"

"The money is already here—and has been for years. In the midst of a housing crisis, an injection of cash into the superheated real-estate market seems likely to cause an uptick in evictions and displacement."

"Parents concerned about YouTube debate whether to let their children have their own channels; some forbid it, others send them to summer camp..."

"‘I Had Completely Lost the Knack for Staying Alive..." Warmer weather brings daffodils, rhubarb at the farmer’s market — and, for some, despair."

"With his new book, Howard Stern proves that his rightful place is among the prophets and moral visionaries, not the ‘shock jocks’"

"I’m terrified of parenting in the anti-vaxxer age: Anti-vaccine propaganda isn’t just harmful to children. It threatens to erode our entire sense of community."

"...doctors are starting to think more about specific nutrients that feed tumor cells. That is, how what we eat affects how cancers grow..."

"...it represents an impressive achievement: a victory of humankind against the chaos that pervades the universe."

"If trends continue, in 20 years the majority of the world’s Jews will be living in Israel. The United States will see a continuing decline in overall numbers, with a growing observant Jewish population..."