Emergency!

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Is Donald Trump’s national emergency actually an emergency? Let’s take an unemotional look at that. Trump has declared a national emergency to get access to funds originally designated for other purposes so he can build his border wall. There are any number of analyses of whether this is legal, and certainly congressional Democrats and others … Continued

Trump’s border wall as a platonic ideal

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We’ve heard a lot about the border wall in the last week — especially since Donald Trump has shut down the government until he gets funding for it. The messaging around the wall reveals that to Trump and his administration and his followers, it is a philosophical worry-stone, not a physical construct. For Trump to … Continued

Donald Trump, negotiator or brinksman?

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Donald Trump says he is a great negotiator. But he’s actually a brinksman — a master of brinksmanship. This works great in business, where the government can bail you out. But if you crash the government, there’s no one to save you. I’ve studied negotiation with the Harvard Negotiation Project (the originators of “Getting to … Continued