Donald J. Trump on Saturday in Portsmouth, N.H. In a radio interview on Monday, he said that the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton are too aggressive against President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.
"I recently found myself returning to an essay from 2000 by Yuri Levada, a pioneering Russian sociologist, called 'The Wily Man.' The essay was Levada’s attempt to understand why so many pathologies of the Soviet era — the propensity for double-think and an adaptive, accommodating response to power — persisted so powerfully in modern Russia. In Levada’s telling, the wily man or woman 'not only tolerates deception, but is willing to be deceived.' Indeed, says Levada, he even 'requires self-deception for the sake of his own self-preservation.'"
"Even before Giuliani’s most recent incarnation, I had been spending a lot of time thinking about him for a book I’m writing about New York in the 1980s, a sort of sequel to my earlier history of the city in the 1970s. To me, the answer to the question ‘What happened to Rudy?’ had come to seem obvious: Nothing. Rather, Giuliani’s latest role — as the president’s letting-it-all-hang-out, unabashedly dishonest personal lawyer and shadow secretary of state — is more like a culmination, the purest expression of Rudyism yet. What has changed is that Giuliani’s style has become the dominant mode of American — and, really, global — politics."
"Jesse and Pat and Donald and Ross would be nowhere without the new media and their need for in-your-face outrage. But even a pop-culture candidate can have an idea or two worth wrestling with.
"Language is utterly meaningless. Everything is placed into its category in the tribal war and who its real victims are: Donald Trump and his minions. Poor little billionaire president who can’t catch a break. It’s incredible. Are we all just extras in this guy’s movie? But I do feel as if his approach has worked for him his whole life... He’s a man who has suffered no consequences. His is a recklessness born of experience. He’s like a malevolent Mr. Magoo."