When, in the early 1990s, I first arrived in Washington, D.C. as a student from the newly free Czechoslovakia, the Republican party was a beacon of hope. It steadfastly advocated for liberty, both political and economic. It harbored no illusions about Cuba and other totalitarian states. It largely understood the importance of a strong American role in the world. I became an honorary Republican. More generally, I was impressed by American political culture and the professionalism of the news media. They presented a sharp contrast to Central Europe’s post-Communist mess, in which vicious smears, naked lies, and corruption were our daily bread. I remember how much I wished Czech and American media and politics were alike. And now they are. A significant portion of U.S. politics and media slid down the sewage to be as bad as ours were back then.