You might have seen Daniel Penny, the subway guardian, give a video interview over the last weekend. This marks a departure from the traditional media strategy for a man in his position, which was to keep your head down and trust the justice process. As TAC print editor Helen Andrews observes in a review of Joe Sexton’s new book about the deaths of Jake Gardner and James Scurlock, “That was a rule for yesterday. Gardner followed that rule.” A reminder: Gardner killed himself on September 20, 2020.
Politically charged indictments are in the news, too, obviously. There was always a question of whether Special Counsel Jack Smith would go so far as to indict a former president, but now that he has indicted Donald Trump, the situation is clear enough. As Frank DeVito writes, “If the special counsel can provide witnesses to actually prove the allegations made in this indictment, then this case is distinct from the endless politically motivated hit jobs. This case has real important facts, real questions of law, and raises real issues around our understanding of the Constitution, the unitary executive, and the precedent being set by filing criminal charges against a former president of the United States.” None of that makes it not a politically motivated hit job, only distinct from the others.
And in our first piece from the latest issue of the magazine to be featured on the website, Michael Knowles reviews Patrick Deneen’s Regime Change: Toward a Postliberal Future. Deneen’s star has risen far since I reviewed his collection Conserving America? Essays on Present Discontents for the Wall Street Journal in 2017. Why Liberalism Failed received a recommendation from former President Barack Obama. As Knowles concludes, “At this rate of persuasion, one half-expects Deneen to launch his next book next to a president.”