George Blecher

George Blecher is a former professor at the City University of New York. He is a writer, journalist and translator. His articles appear in, among others, the New York Times, Eurozine, New Republic, Christian Science Monitor, as well as Visegrád Insight and the Danish daily Information. He is a member of the Eurozine Advisory Board.


Cover for: Running scared

Biden’s State of the Union speech seems to have proved that he could survive another four years in the White House. But doubts remain whether he can defeat the man whose supporters clearly care little about actual policy.

Cover for: The old man scores some points

The faith in American unanimity that Joe Biden expressed in this year’s State of the Union speech sounded genuine. But how realistic is it in a country dominated by social fragmentation and a flood of alternative realities?

Cover for: It could have been worse

The red tide never surged but the re-election of numerous brazen careerists and hardline crazies is bad news for the next two years and beyond, particularly since the Democrats have little idea about how to oppose this new breed of politician.

Cover for: In the shadow of Putin, Trump and a divided America

Amidst bipartisan solidarity with Ukraine, Joe Biden’s State of the Union address focused on unity and reconciliation. But in reality, deep rifts remain not just between the parties, but within them too. The jockeying for 2024 has already long begun.

Cover for: Fragments from a broken mirror

Pessimists fear that the Trump phenomenon has not so much derailed American democracy as revealed long-standing problems in the system itself. But if the causes of the crisis are apparent, prospects of a way out are lacking in a country bitterly divided.

Cover for: The Confused States of America

The Confused States of America

The first month of the pandemic in the US

The Trump administration’s failing response to COVID-19 has prompted governors and mayors to step up and even form shadow federations to coordinate their efforts. Lifelong New Yorker George Blecher reflects on the first phase of the coronavirus crisis in the US.

Cover for: Torn-up texts and Mini Mike

Torn-up texts and Mini Mike

Trump’s 2020 State of the Union address

In the midst of a predictably partisan impeachment trial, Donald Trump said not a word about the ongoing process or his abuse of power that led to it. Democrats may not be able to capitalize on Republicans’ exposed lack of morals in this year’s elections, facing deep fragmentation themselves, chaos in their primary processes and a problematic bid for the presidential nomination from an upbeat billionaire.

Cover for: The shelf-life of democracies

The shelf-life of democracies

An interview with George Blecher on US politics in the age of Trump

Media acceleration puts enormous emphasis on speed, creating a pressure on politics that the elaborate procedures of cross-party cooperation cannot withstand. Modelled after Roman democracy, modern liberal democracies may as well have an expiration date, George Blecher argues.

Cover for: Old soldiers and women in white

Old soldiers and women in white

The state of the union after the shutdown

Donald Trump’s achievements thus far have been rhetorical. But whether Democrats can take advantage of his weakness remains doubtful. Following the longest government shutdown in US history, Trump is now threatening to declare a national emergency – a move dreaded by even his supporters.

Cover for: Trump at mid-term: Bare knuckles from here on in

Despite Democrat gains in the mid-terms, the party is no closer to winning back the ‘silent majority’ that was once its core support. In the public sphere, divisions are becoming ever more entrenched. As things stand, Trump’s position remains secure, according to George Blecher.

Cover for: A sign of the times?

A sign of the times?

Michael Bloomberg and the US presidency

As Donald Trump appals and captivates the world in equal measure, another New York businessman is quietly positioning himself for power. American democracy might face even more of a threat from a figure with a record of real success in business and politics, argues fellow New Yorker George Blecher.

Cover for: Making enemies, losing ground: Trump’s first year

Democrats have forgotten whatever promises they made to listen to their opponents, establishment Republicans have been left aghast, and not even Trump’s core support has seen much in the way of reward. As Trump’s star begins to wane, the polarization will increase, predicts George Blecher.

Cover for: From apprentice to emperor

From apprentice to emperor

Trump at six months

Half a year in, the furious tempo of the Trump presidency is being maintained – and even heightened – with ever more baroque cast members rotating through the White House. George Blecher attempts to make sense of it all – with a little help from Tacitus and Suetonius.

Cover for: The sorcerer’s apprentice

Trump’s recent military adventures had the world worried, but it wasn’t clear if that was the result of an over-zealous press or genuine amateurishness on the part of the US president. At any rate, the randomness of the past month suggests he is not completely comfortable in his job.

Cover for: Learning the hard way

Trump’s most likely reaction to the defeat of his healthcare bill will be to seek revenge on his political opponents. But if he takes his role seriously, he may decide to rally cross-party support for some of his more positive campaign promises, writes George Blecher.

Cover for: Shattering the decorum of democracy

Constitutional conflicts, foreign policy upheavals and media spats: one frenetic month into the Trump presidency, Americans are still in a state of shock. With the madness set to continue, it’s time for a petrified opposition to start making some noise.

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