Tevi Troy
Tevi Troy
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 

Latest Articles

The Underestimated: George H.W. Bush, R.I.P.

December 1, 2018  •  City Journal

George H. W. Bush was always being underestimated. Though he was successful at almost everything he did—Yale student, baseball team captain, fighter pilot, oil executive, politician, and father—people always seemed to think that he was missing something. Peter Flanigan, the Nixon aide who dangled in front of Bush a senior job in the Nixon White House, seemed to typify this uncharitable and inaccurate view when he told him, "Well, you know, George, you'd have to work hard if you took this job." Bush, ever gracious, held his tongue at the insult, prompting his impressed wife Barbara to marvel, "How George kept his temper, I'll never know." Bush went on to serve in a multitude of high-level positions in the Nixon and Ford administrations, including head of the Republican National Committee, UN ambassador, liaison to China, and CIA director. This array of positions served as a launching pad to the vice presidency and then the presidency. Flanigan tried and failed to become ambassador to Spain. Fooled by his quiet resolve, those who underestimated Bush—from Flanigan to Bob Dole to Michael Dukakis to Saddam Hussein—found themselves astounded when Bush bested them. They shouldn't have been. Beneath his gracious, even goofy, WASP exterior was a real warrior.

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Learning to Like Ike
The strategic savvy of an underestimated leader

May 4, 2018  •  The Weekly Standard

Dwight Eisenhower appears to be having a moment. A popular president who was nevertheless looked down on by the media and the smart set in his time, Ike has grown in historical reputation and is now seen as one of our greatest presidents. Similarly, the 1950s have come down in popular perception as a dull time, but they were a time of peace, prosperity, and American success—and a period in which America made significant social progress.

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How Blockchain Will Disrupt Colleges, the Media, and Unions, Too

January 26, 2018  •  The Weekly Standard

As the technology empowering Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, blockchains have been in the news a lot lately. Bitcoin, of course, has both roiled markets and is making world governments nervous about the possible creation of an alternative currency while simultaneously thrilling investors in crypto markets. Blockchain, however, is about so much more than just enabling digital currencies. It can be applied to everything from dating to contract law. And blockchain might even upending politics.

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2017: The Year in Books

December 26, 2017  •  National Review Online

For my reading in 2017, I was hoping to get a handle on what was going on in our strange political environment. I have always felt that conservatives have had a healthy skepticism of the accepted conventional wisdom as they seek to understand what is going on beyond Washington, D.C., and the blue urban centers on both coasts. Unfortunately, this skepticism was not penetrating enough in 2016, argue my friends Chris Buskirk and Seth Leibsohn in American Greatness: How Conservatism, Inc. Missed the 2016 Election and What the D.C. Establishment Needs to Learn. Both Leibsohn and Buskirk come from the West Coast Straussian Claremont orbit, and they have little patience for misinterpretations of Strauss. As they put it in a nice turn of phrase, confusing "Straussianism" with neoconservatism is "a confusion or blending no student of Leo Strauss' would ever imagine." More broadly, the two acknowledge that the media are dominated by the Left, but they argue that such dominance does not let conservatives off the hook for failure to get their message out. The conservative establishment that we have counted on until now needs to do more, and better, if conservatism is to thrive in the future.

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Heritage's New President Faces a Challenge

December 19, 2017  •  The Atlantic

As Kay Coles James prepares to begin her tenure as head of the Heritage Foundation, she faces an immediate opportunity—and challenge. She inherits a storied American institution, which currently holds the title of—to quote the former and interim Heritage president Ed Feulner—"Donald Trump's favorite think tank." This privileged status brings with it significant advantages in terms of PR and access, but it also carries danger should the administration and the think tank diverge from one another. This is the delicate task that lies ahead of James—striking a balance between influence and independence in the work that Heritage will do.

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Books by Tevi Troy

Cover of Shall We Wake the President? Cover of What Jefferson Read, Ike Watched, and Obama Tweeted Cover of Intellectuals and the American Presidency

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