Donald Trump‘s inauguration heralds the end of an era in politics. Let’s call it the end of the post-Cold War era. It was an era in which both major political parties and their high-minded intellectuals pursued a few political goods tenaciously: namely, multi-party trade deals and mass immigration. It was an era in which America’s policy elite was committed to a unipolar moment in the life of the world, in which U.S. military supremacy sought to deter other nations from even aspiring to be great regional powers.
This era had some real virtues. And where Trump departs from those virtues, his ascent is frightening. For instance, the post-Cold War era was sheathed in a terror of using nuclear weapons. Trump is flippantly fascinated by them.
But the post-Cold War era had some serious defects as well, and it is in beginning to correct those defects that all my hope for Trump’s administration lies.