Jeff Jacoby
Jeff Jacoby
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 

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'Declaration of Independence' preserves the patriots' faces

July 5, 2015  •  The Boston Globe

IT IS THE classic American history painting, instantly familiar to millions as the image of that fateful moment in 1776 when history turned on its hinge, and a nation conceived in liberty was born. For nearly two centuries, it has hung in the Rotunda of the Capitol in Washington, an icon of the American founding by an artist who lived through the Revolution and personally met most of the men depicted in his painting. And yet John Trumbull's Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776 captures a scene that never occurred.

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How judges corrode the rule of law

July 2, 2015  •  The Boston Globe

DURING HIS Supreme Court confirmation hearings in 2005, then-Judge John Roberts emphasized his strong belief in judicial modesty. "Judges are like umpires," Roberts famously said. "Umpires don't make the rules; they apply them." If confirmed as chief justice, he promised, "I will remember that it's my job to call balls and strikes and not to pitch or bat."

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It'll take more than tanks to keep Putin from the Baltics

June 28, 2015  •  The Boston Globe

DURING A VISIT to Estonia on Tuesday, Defense Secretary Ash Carter made it official: The United States is sending a combat brigade's worth of tanks, armored vehicles, and other military equipment to six NATO allies in the Baltics and Eastern Europe. For the first time since the fall of the Iron Curtain, Washington will station heavy weaponry on territory that was once under Moscow's boot. Along with plans for a new NATO rapid-response force, as well as a series of large-scale military exercises this month, the pre-positioning of equipment in the former Soviet satellites is part of what is being called "the biggest reinforcement of NATO forces since the end of the Cold War."

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A moral world requires moral violence

June 25, 2015  •  The Boston Globe

POPE FRANCIS had harsh words for the arms industry on Sunday, condemning as "two-faced" those who claim to be Christian while manufacturing weapons or investing in companies that produce them. "It is hypocritical to talk about peace and make weapons," the pope told an audience of young people in Turin. "Doing one thing and saying another. What hypocrisy!"

It's not the first time Francis has blasted the defense industry. In May, he denounced the arms business as an "industry of death," run by people who "don't want peace" because "they make more money from war." In February, he labeled weapons dealers "merchants of death" and blamed them for "furthering a cycle of hate, fratricide, and violence."

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From beyond the fringe, it's Donald Trump

June 21, 2015  •  The Boston Globe

IT SPEAKS well of Republicans that most of them have no use for Donald Trump. The real-estate mogul and reality-TV personality proclaimed himself a presidential candidate on Tuesday, with a bizarre and rambling announcement in the lobby of the Trump Tower in Manhattan that drove the needle on the crazy-meter way into the red zone. I used to think that Trump was about as plausible a GOP candidate as Rufus T. Firefly. I realize now that I owe Firefly an apology.

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