George F. Will

John Nash's Renunciation

A quaint ceremonious village" is how an elderly villager, Albert Einstein, described Princeton. There, in 1948, a first-year graduate student from West Virginia dropped by Einstein's office to suggest improvements to the great man's understanding of quantum theory.

2001: Ring The Bells Backward

On the morning of September 11, commuters heading for World Trade Center offices read New York Times front-page headlines about the arrest of a person charged with hijacking an airliner from Canada to Cuba 30 years ago, and about rumored smuggling of nuclear materials in Central Asia.

The Waning Of 'Terror Chic'

Radiating ripples from September 11 washed over a Los Angeles courtroom last week when an American pleaded guilty to terrorism. She was charged with attempting, 26 years ago, to kill Los Angeles police officers by attaching pipe bombs to two patrol cars--bombs stuffed with heavy nails.

War, The Health Of The State

It is just 10 years since the senate barely passed, 52-47, the resolution authorizing the use of force to expel Iraq from Kuwait. Tom Daschle, now majority leader; Joseph Biden, now chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, and Carl Levin, now chairman of the Armed Services Committee, were among the 47.

About Cocaine And Bananas

Asa Hutchinson cannot be accused of skating across the pond of life in search of easy jobs. While a congressman from Arkansas, he was a manager of the House impeachment case against a popular president from Arkansas.

A Surplus Of Surplus-Fetish

What we have here is a difference of opinion. Last week the Bush administration announced that, primarily because of the economic slowdown, the budget surplus for this fiscal year--which ends in five weeks; Congress has passed none of the 13 appropriations bills for this year--would be $158 billion rather than the $281 billion projected four months ago.

Bush's America Is Working

Washington's conventional wisdom, which often is the wishful thinking in its media culture, is that George W. Bush's presidency is floundering. But as he passes the six-month mark, only one eighth of the way through his term, his serenity seems grounded in some favorable developments.The two most important votes Congress will cast this year have gone as Bush wished and the media did not.

'We Have Been Here Before'

Columbus, an Italian, arrived in the new World with a crew of less than 100 composed of Spaniards, Portuguese, some Jews who had been expelled from Spain, some convicts and an Arab brought along to translate anticipated conversations with Chinese and Japanese--remember where Columbus thought he was going.

'Moderates' V. Madisonians

During the Second World War the allies used "bomber streams," sending so many bombers so rapidly over a particular point on the ground--sometimes 40 or more per minute--that German air defenses were overwhelmed by the profusion of targets.

James Madison Remembered

There is no monument to James Madison in Washington. There is a tall, austere monument to the tall (6"2"), austere man for whom the city is named, a man of Roman virtues and eloquent reticence.

The Ultimate Emancipation

Immediately after his confirmation by the senate, during which he was pilloried as racially "insensitive," John Ashcroft crossed First Street NE to the Supreme Court to be sworn in as attorney general by a friend, Justice Clarence Thomas.

'Let Us...'? No, Give It A Rest.

Come Saturday, on the Capitol's west front, the 43d president, immediately after becoming such, will look out, figuratively speaking (and as F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote at the conclusion of "The Great Gatsby"), toward "the dark fields of the republic" rolling on, and will unburden himself of his inaugural thoughts.

'Peace Psychosis' In The Mideast

Bill Clinton may have saved his very worst for last. With remarkable--even for him--self-absorption, as he tap-dances toward the exit he is pursuing as his crowning legacy something that only the cynical or delusional could call a "final" Middle East "peace agreement." In three weeks Clinton will be gone, leaving intensified Middle East chaos for others to cope with.Israel's Ehud Barak has resigned as prime minister, triggering Feb. 6 elections that polls indicate he will lose in a landslide.

Y2k: You Must Remember This

The Florida peninsula, the last part of the continental United States to emerge from the ocean, has been called a geological afterthought. This year caused many Americans to curse geology and wish that the afterthought had gone unthought.

'Had 'Em All The Way!'

NEW YORK (AP)--The New York Mets announced today that they are going to court to get an additional inning added to the end of Game 5 of the World Series. "We meant to hit those pitches from the Yankee pitchers," said the Mets batting coach. "We were confused by the irregularities of the pitches we received and believe we have been denied our right to hit." Another portion of the Mets legal claim stated that, based on on-base percentage, the Mets had actually won the World Series, regardless of...

Hearing With Your Third Ear

The period for a new election of a citizen to administer the executive government of the United States being not far distant... --The opening words of President Washington's farewell address, 1796Time was, that is how presidents were understood--modestly, as administrators who executed the will of others.

Oh, Swell: New York Wins Again

Only in America. in a year in which presidential politics is a Horatio Alger story, proving that a Yale-educated son of a president can grow up to run for president against a Harvard-educated son of a senator, the national pastime is proving that two teams from New York, each with a payroll the size of the GDP of a medium-size Third World nation, can get to the World Series.

A Question For Gore Next Week

Mr. Vice President, do you favor passage of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, or do you believe, as your supporters at the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL) do, that a woman who seeks an abortion has an indefeasible right to a dead baby, no matter what?" Here is the story behind that question, which George W.

The 158-Game Winning Streak

In 1971 Cubs rookie pitcher Bill Bonham, after failing to retire any of the four Cardinals he faced in his first major league appearance, said, "I guess I was due for a bad outing." In 1982 the Cardinals' Kelly Paris, after scoring the winning run in his first major league game, said, "I'd have to say, looking back, this is the high point of my career." Keeping one's perspective is important in baseball.Two years ago Commissioner Bud Selig appointed a Blue Ribbon Panel to put baseball's...

Politics In A Macaroni Era

In January 1946 Charles de Gaulle, fresh from his heroic role as France's liberator, and disdaining the banal normality of peacetime administration, abruptly resigned as president of the provisional government.

Cheshire Cat, Cheddar Man

"Alice's Adventures in Wonderland"London--about Prime Minister Tony Blair, architect of "New Labour" and apostle of the "Third Way" (American-style capitalism blended with European statism), the question is, what is there besides his grin?

At The Table On The Road