Tevi Troy
Tevi Troy
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 

Latest Articles

The Bitter Month

October 19, 2020  •  First Things

Last night, the Hebrew month of Cheshvan began. In a Jewish calendar filled with holidays, fasts, and special observances, Cheshvan is the only month with none of these days. For this reason, it has the unfortunate nickname of Mar Cheshvan, or "bitter Cheshvan." For those who seek to put their faith at the center of daily life, Cheshvan feels different from the other months of the Hebrew year.

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How COVID-19 Is Changing American Judaism

October 9, 2020  •  Tablet

The High Holidays this year brought home to me the many ways in which Jewish ritual practice may be changing because of COVID-19, in ways that may not change back after the pandemic threat is no longer with us. Outdoor tents replaced indoor synagogues. Sukkot brought socially distanced family gatherings in people's backyards in place of a communal sukkah. Friends in non-Orthodox denominations stayed home entirely, and watched services on Zoom. Combined, the likely result of these changes, both big and small, seem likely to further disintegrate the cohesiveness of non-Orthodox communities while widening the divide between different streams of American Judaism.

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Battle of the Preppers
Getting nominees ready for presidential debates has evolved into a complex and sometimes bruising process.

September 28, 2020  •  City Journal

Donald Trump and Joe Biden will take center stage for the presidential debates that begin on Tuesday, but the real work will be done by a small but influential group of experts and consultants who specialize in preparing them to enter the arena. For 43 months out of every 48, these individuals live their lives as lawyers, academics, politicians, and consultants. But for five crucial months, from June through October of a presidential election year, they shift gears and become the researchers, writers, trainers, and coaches for the American gladiatorial spectacle.

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review of The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III

September 25, 2020  •  The Wall Street Journal

A first-term White House chief of staff faces three great tasks: avoid scandal, get the president re-elected and leave without getting fired. It is remarkable how few chiefs of staff, over the past several decades, have accomplished all three. But James A. Baker managed to do so, guiding Ronald Reagan's White House in the early 1980s and going on to powerful cabinet positions under Reagan and George H.W. Bush. In "The Man Who Ran Washington," veteran reporters Peter Baker (no relation) and Susan Glasser, a husband-and-wife team, offer an illuminating biographical portrait of Mr. Baker, one that describes the arc of his career and, along the way, tells us something about how executive power is wielded in the nation's capital.

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Yogi Berra and the presidency

September 25, 2020  •  The Washington Examiner

Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra died five years ago on Sept. 22, 2015. A great baseball player, a well-regarded manager, and an often unintentionally hilarious philosopher, Berra was a regular on the presidential circuit. Babe Ruth famously met or interacted with every president from Wilson to Truman, six presidents over a 33-year span. Berra doubled up on the Babe. Over a 68-year period, Berra met or interacted with every president from Truman to Trump.

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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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