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home : opinion : editorial May 26, 2020

Some of our most faithful troops
While serving as a sentry with French forces in the Argonne Forest in 1918, a black American private fought off German attackers. Unfazed by his wounds, he hurled grenades until they ran out, shot his rifle until it jammed, used his rifle as a club until it broke, and finally used a bolo knife until reinforcements arrived.  

The French recognized Henry Johnson's heroism with a Croix de Guerre, while the U.S. gave him the Medal of Honor -- posthumously, almost a hundred years later. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Jeff Sessions defends himself, but stays loyal to the president
It hasn't been in the news much, but former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, now in a tight Republican primary to win back his old Alabama Senate seat, has been talking a lot about his time in the Justice Department and the issue that made him a persona non grata in Trumpworld: his March 2017 decision to recuse himself from supervising the Trump-Russia investigation.
Saturday, May 23, 2020

Biden's most ridiculous veep prospect
Stacey Abrams has another distinction to add to her resume -- she's among the most preposterous potential vice-presidential candidates ever.  

Her attempt to leverage a failed Georgia gubernatorial bid into a spot on the Democratic ticket is so brazenly absurd that it's hard to think of precedents. 

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Coronavirus doesn't just kiill people -- it's white!
I guess now it's OK to identify viruses by where they came from. Lately, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been calling COVID-19 the "European virus" 1 million times per press conference.

Here's Cuomo at a single briefing last week: "... the virus that had attacked us from Europe ... the virus came from Europe ... the virus was coming from Europe ... New York is where the European flights were coming in ... Virus came from Europe ... we had this European virus attack us ... we had people coming from Europe bringing the virus."

So "European virus" it is!

Friday, May 22, 2020

To tax or not to tax? Pritzker's graduated tax fails on all counts
The only major, contested issue on the ballot this fall in our Blue State will be whether to enact Gov. JB Pritzker’s proposed constitutional amendment to allow graduated income tax rates. I think the Pritzker approach — not the concept — is wrong-headed. I try to explain here.
Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Pandemic makes end-of-life care harder
I just lost a dear elderly friend to cancer. Home hospice workers kept him comfortable. He spent his final weeks watching spring unfold in the outdoor Eden he had nurtured for decades. He died peacefully at night with me present.
Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Don't Stay Home! Die!
Or, to be fair, you may not die; you may just be the type who kills other people.

Sound like government playing God? Making life and death decisions? Just what conservative orthodoxy has insisted for years government must never do? Yes.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Liberal privilege in two tweets
This week, we'll look at two tweets that encapsulate everything that's wrong with the "white privilege" narrative consuming our nation.
Saturday, May 16, 2020

What we still don't know about the Flynn case
The Michael Flynn case will soon be over. It began on Jan. 24, 2017, just four days into the Trump administration, when two FBI agents went to the White House to interview Flynn, then the brand-new national security adviser. Ignoring protocol, they questioned him about a phone call he had a few weeks before, during the transition, with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. By the end of the year, Flynn had pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in that interview.
Saturday, May 16, 2020

When believing all women leads to evil
The hashtag #BelieveWomen stemmed from an era when women claiming to have been sexually assaulted were broadly dismissed. That is, if you ignore the history of white women falsely accusing black men of rape. Those women were largely believed and the accused often summarily tortured and hanged by the neck from a tree.
Friday, May 15, 2020

Fauci is not the villain
For his critics, Dr. Anthony Fauci cemented his status as the Rasputin of public health with his Senate testimony the other day.
Friday, May 15, 2020

It happened in New York
New York is the greatest city in the world. It also is uniquely suited to the spread of the coronavirus.  

As the national debate over re-opening continues and the political blame game intensifies, it's worth considering the scale of New York's outbreak. There is nothing like it anywhere else in the country, and almost nothing like it in the rest of the world. 

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Trump trolling for fun and profit
In 2003, during the George W. Bush administration, the columnist Charles Krauthammer coined the phrase "Bush Derangement Syndrome" to refer to some of the president's more unhinged critics. It was funny, and given Krauthammer's background -- he was a medical doctor specializing in psychiatry -- it had the ring of truth.
Monday, May 11, 2020

Everyone deserves to live under the Biden standard
Why should Joe Biden get due process, but not others accused of sexual misconduct?  

That's the question raised by the progressive reaction to Tara Reade's accusation against Biden on the one hand, and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos' new rules for handling sexual harassment cases on college campuses on the other. 

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Apologies to Helen
"When you're a mother, you'll understand."

How many times did my mother say that? And how many times did I think, "No, I won't, because I'll be a better mother"?

Saturday, May 9, 2020

More than comfort, 'Golden Girls' could be our future
No surprise that Americans have spent much of their lockdown watching TV -- nor that one of the most-watched shows has been "The Golden Girls." First aired in 1985, the sitcom portrays four older women, three widows and one divorcee, sharing a house in Miami.

They're "sheltering in place" in that they don't have outside jobs to go to. They do venture out to restaurants, volunteer work and hospitals, but almost all their activities take place at home. The enemy scratching at their windows is not a virus but the indignities of old age, which they shoo away with biting humor.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Lab theory of Wuhan virus cooked up in a neocon lab
Just because the media say something doesn't necessarily mean it's not true. In the case of Trump's claim that COVID-19 originated in a Wuhan lab -- or as I call it, the All Cultures Are the Same! Theory -- the media are probably right.

Granted, whatever the truth is, it will somehow become an argument for more immigration and more war. Still, the lab theory sounds a lot like what we were told before going to war in Iraq and Afghanistan. We need to liberate the poor Afghans and Iraqis from their vile leaders! They're just like us!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Lockdown extremism is a vice
We will be in a fight against the coronavirus for months, if not years, and yet it is time to declare mission accomplished on one very important goal.  

Now, the rhetoric around the shutdowns has shifted, and not very subtly -- flattening the curve and saving the hospitals are "out," and not allowing any additional cases to emerge is "in."

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

50 years ago, America heard the drumming in Ohio
Four dead in Ohio.
It was a newspaper headline before it was a Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young lyric. Ripped from the headlines about an event 50 years ago Monday, the song and the moment it commemorated were seared into the memory of a generation, much the way Picasso's 1937 antiwar painting "Guernica" came to symbolize the Spanish Civil War.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Northwestern engineer think he's found a better way to farm
Since I was a boy growing up in rural Illinois post-World War II, American agriculture has achieved momentous productivity increases, from about 45 bushels an acre of corn back then to an average of 180 today, with farmers in my area sometimes getting 300 bushels per.
Saturday, May 2, 2020

No, science can't tell us how to respond to the coronavirus
If you thought the coronavirus presented difficult policy questions, don't worry -- we have science. 
Saturday, May 2, 2020

Federal appeals court in Chicago nixes withholding aid from sanctuary cities
CHICAGO (AP) — A sharply worded ruling by a federal appeals court in Chicago on Thursday said the Trump administration policy of threatening to withhold grant money from so-called sanctuary cities to force them to comply with its more stringent immigration policies violates the separation-of-powers provisions enshrined the U.S. Constitution.
Friday, May 1, 2020

Illinois attorney general asks Supreme Court to weigh in on Bailey's lawsuit
SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois attorney general’s office asked the state’s highest court to consider arguments in a state representative’s case challenging the governor’s authority to oversee the COVID-19 pandemic.
Friday, May 1, 2020

Slowed COVID-19 spread leaves 1,000s of makeshift beds in Illinois empty
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Illinois has spent tens of millions of dollars building makeshift field hospitals to prepare for an anticipated flood of coronavirus cases, but so far hasn’t had to use the thousands of extra beds. That was exactly the plan.
Friday, May 1, 2020

Q & A on Wuhan virus
As you can well imagine, my mailbox has been overflowing with questions about the coronavirus from precisely ZERO readers. So I decided to write my own questions. I know this is what you would be asking if you were not standing in line, outside, 6 feet apart, to purchase a quart of milk.
Thursday, April 30, 2020

After COVID, will we want what we wanted?
When Germany let smaller stores reopen, the expected didn't happen. Officials thought that shoppers would burst out of their five-week lockdown and spend, spend, spend. They were wrong.
Thursday, April 30, 2020

When would Joe Biden reopen the country?
The most pressing problem facing Americans today is how and when states and local areas reopen after the coronavirus lockdowns. President Trump, stressing the terrible economic damage the lockdowns have done, has (mostly) pressed for reopening sooner rather than later. He has released detailed guidelines for officials in the states to consult when deciding when to reopen.
Wednesday, April 29, 2020

The hospital crisis of our making
We had to destroy the hospitals to save them.  

You could be forgiven for thinking that's the upshot of the coronavirus lockdowns that have suspended elective surgeries and generally discouraged people from going to hospitals. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Coronavirus pandemic identifies fault lines that must be addressed
The coronavirus crisis has exposed critical fault lines in our nation’s bedrock, which must be addressed. I identify three below, but there are others, such as fiscal sufficiency for Social Security and Medicare, both programs taking a hit from the virus and our spending to combat it.
Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Amidst viral threat, Canada looks askance at U.S.
Chalk up another victim to the coronavirus that has swept across the globe: the decades-old amity that tied Canada to the United States in cross-border marriages and commercial relationships, that deepened during World War II, that took the form of three landmark 20th-century free-trade agreements, and that burst into full flower when Canada welcomed American jetliners and their passengers to Newfoundland after the 2001 terrorist attacks.
Monday, April 27, 2020

About the homeless
What about them? They have started dying. It would be surprising if they didn't. What hasn't happened -- but will -- is the numbers becoming concentrated. We'll see television anchors not only in skid row but also on streets full of well-protected neighbors who will not react well to being told that the sidewalk actually belongs to the person who pitched his tent there, and that drug laws cannot be enforced in these tents because they are "homes."
Saturday, April 25, 2020

Social distancing isn't a religion
Forgive Jacksonville, Florida, for it has sinned.  

The largest city in Florida partly reopened its beaches, and it became something of a national scandal. CNN ran a disapproving segment, and the hashtag #FloridaMorons trended on Twitter.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

As virus rages, leaders keep dodging blame
Why are some leaders so reluctant to admit that in the early days of the coronavirus crisis, they were slow to realize the seriousness of the threat?

That's the charge leveled against President Trump daily. Just look at the number of times various critics have said he has "blood on his hands." Trump has denied responsibility, and has argued that rather than being slow off the mark, he was actually quick to respond.

There is much angry debate on that point. What is clear now is that more than a few officials around the country were slow to act. And some of them in high positions -- not as high as president of the United States, but quite powerful -- are reluctant to admit it.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Can the Earth breathe deeply as oil use crashes?
The bizarre collapse in oil prices reflects a world largely shut at home. People are no longer driving much or flying at all. Factories are silent. The supply hasn't changed radically in the past month. It's the demand that's crumbled.

Environmentalists, hold that thought.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Trump and China: A love story
Liberals claim to be appalled that Trump didn't issue his stay-at-home protocols for the Wuhan virus back in January or early February.  

What do you think the media's reaction would have been if Trump had started babbling about a viral pandemic in the middle of his impeachment trial?

Thursday, April 23, 2020

The ventilator crisis that wasn't
At a coronavirus task force briefing at the beginning of April, White House adviser Jared Kushner explained the approach that would -- as events proved -- get the country through its ventilator crisis.

He was relentlessly pilloried, mocked and distorted in the press for it.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

In the time of the virus, grooming takes a hit
A friend closed in his northern Italian apartment for almost six weeks emailed me saying that his wife says he looks like a "clochard." That's French for street bum. This from a man who once was a walking advertisement for fine Italian tailoring.
Monday, April 20, 2020

Four governors who are getting it right
Calvin Coolidge's stance at the Boston Police Strike of 1919 catapulted him to national prominence, to his party's vice presidential nomination a year later, and eventually to the presidency. Herbert Hoover's achievement in feeding starving Europeans after World War I gave him the heroic status that led to the White House.
Saturday, April 18, 2020

The absurd case against the coronavirus lockdown
An irony of the coronavirus debate is that the more successful lockdowns are in squelching the disease, the more vulnerable they will be to attack as unnecessary in the first place.
Friday, April 17, 2020

Liberalism, like the Wuhan virus, will never die
The media are outraged that President Trump is talking about re-opening the country, following their previous position that he sure was taking his sweet time at opening up the country.

Fortunately, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's death forecasts from the Wuhan coronavirus have shrunk from 1.7 million Americans in mid-March; to 100,000 to 200,000 two weeks ago, provided there were massive suppression efforts; to -- most recently -- 60,000.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

COVID-19: Pearl Harbor -- or War of the Worlds?
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams warned that this week of mounting death from the novel coronavirus could be "our Pearl Harbor moment." He was referring, of course, to the surprise 1941 Japanese attack on the U.S. Navy base in Honolulu, which pulled the nation into World War II.
Monday, April 13, 2020

Passover's social justice message resonates through the ages
For two full minutes, he stood amid the flowers and the palms and a handful of American flags, absorbing the applause, exhilarating in it, and when finally the clapping subsided, when a silence fell in the room, Theodore Roosevelt spoke about the meaning of the Jewish holiday of Passover, and about the wealth gap that yawned wide more than a century ago.
Saturday, April 11, 2020

Is Joe Biden weaker today than Hillary Clinton was in 2016?
The polls show Joe Biden leading Donald Trump in the presidential race. Looking at the last 10 surveys in the RealClearPolitics average of polls matching Trump vs. Biden, Biden is leading in every one of them -- by anywhere from 3 to 10 points. Biden's average lead, in those 10 polls, is 5.5 points.
Saturday, April 11, 2020

Blaming China and WHO isn't scapegoating
President Donald Trump slammed the World Health Organization at a news briefing this week and was immediately accused of scapegoating.
Friday, April 10, 2020

I'll have the chicken testicle soup - hold the deadly virus
It's probably a coincidence, but I notice that as businesses go under, jobs are lost, careers are ended and trillions of dollars are drained from the economy, the people most avidly pushing the coronavirus panic are doing quite well.
Thursday, April 9, 2020

We need to make more of our own drugs
A country learns about itself in a crisis, and one revelation in the coronavirus emergency is that we can't make our own penicillin.

The first patient successfully treated with the antibiotic was a woman suffering from sepsis in a Connecticut hospital in 1942. Her treatment took up half the country's supply. Yet in short order we figured out how to mass produce the medicine, saving the lives of countless soldiers in World War II. Once, factories throughout the country made the stuff. 

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The newest federalism
It's "federalism time" again in Washington. No, don't get your "Federalist Paper No. 10" (my favorite) out yet. Federalism time rarely involves a serious debate about the balance of power between the federal government and the states, although that is technically what American federalism is about. It's about politics, pure and simple. It's about who gets what -- in this case, tests, masks and ventilators, among other things -- and who gets blamed, the president or the governor. Every time President Donald Trump assigns one of these imperatives to the governors, as he has done repeatedly during the coronavirus pandemic, he covers for himself and sets the states up for blame. Federalism is the cover story for what can't or won't be said. It's the history many of us learned about as children and unlearned as adults: redemptive but wrong.
Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The ultimate in social distancing
Some of us are obsessed right now with President Trump. Some are drawn to Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York. Others are preoccupied with Dr. Anthony Fauci. I can't stop thinking about Jessica Meir and Andrew Morgan.

Jessica Meir? Andrew Morgan?

Monday, April 6, 2020

When will the impact of coronavirus hit state budgets like Illinois?
State officials nationwide fear that a substantial decline in tax collections as a result of the coronavirus pandemic will throw their budgets into turmoil. But they will have to wait for the first hard data on how big the decline might be.
Saturday, April 4, 2020

State lawmakers adapt to new reality during COVID-19 pandemic
SPRINGFIELD – State Rep. Martin Moylan and his staff thought they were ahead of COVID-19.
Saturday, April 4, 2020

In a crisis, everyone turns to borders as first line of defense
When President Donald Trump announced a restriction on travel from Europe in a mid-March Oval Office address, European Union officials erupted in outrage.
Friday, April 3, 2020

The bill for globalism has arrived
When the after-action report on the current pandemic is being prepared, I'm going to ask the guy with the notepad to write down: "China" and "globalists."
Thursday, April 2, 2020

Justice Dept. inspector finds additional failures in FBI wiretap investigations
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Justice Department inspector general has found additional failures in the FBI’s handling of a secretive surveillance program that came under scrutiny after the Russia investigation, identifying problems with dozens of applications for wiretaps in national security investigations.
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

The #President Cuomo fantasy
How nervous are some Democrats about Joe Biden's chances against President Trump this November? Nervous enough to entertain the notion that another Democrat -- New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo -- might swoop in and save the day.
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

How will we vote? Outbreak revives the national debate on voting by mail
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - As the coronavirus pandemic knocks primary election after primary election off schedule, Democrats argue the outbreak shows the country needs to move toward one of their longtime goals - widespread voting by mail - to protect the November election.
Tuesday, March 31, 2020

A crisis is a terrible thing to manufacture
On Jan. 20, the United States confirmed its first case of the coronavirus. The nation's political and media elite obsessed over Mitch McConnell's just-announced resolution governing the impeachment trial of Donald Trump.
Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Jenny for VP
The novel coronavirus has made clear who in this country actually runs things.

It should be, and occasionally is, the president.

But in this instance, President Donald Trump has mostly been a cheerleader, often cheering for the wrong side -- the side that thought the virus was just a hoax, that there's nothing to worry about here, and that it would disappear. But he's not the one issuing the orders. That would be the governors and mayors. It's the governors who are out there fighting to buy masks and ventilators in a free-for-all triggered by the president. It's the governors and mayors telling us what we can and can't do. It's the governors who, struggling to restrain the virus, are directing where and when hospital beds can be built. I see Gov. Gavin Newsom every day. I see Gov. Andrew Cuomo every day. I haven't seen Sen. Kamala Harris since she dropped out. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, not at all. I'm sure they are voting with Sen. Chuck Schumer.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Speak Out
Saturday, March 28, 2020

Rainbows Behind the Virus Crisis
Milan is the V-8 engine of Italy's economy. Known as an industrial and financial powerhouse, Milan is also famous for its foul air. Now the city and its region, Lombardy, have become the epicenter of Europe's coronavirus pandemic. To stop the virus' spread, factories, offices, restaurants and bars are closed. People are ordered to stay at home. The traffic is gone.

And the air is much cleaner. Satellites report a dramatic drop in the region's air pollution. Since the lockdown started on March 9, the levels of nitrogen oxide in northern Italy have plunged dramatically. NO2 is a toxic gas that can cause inflammation of the body's air passages. Clean air has been a bright spot in the region's immense suffering.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

The robot rule
What if?

The novel coronavirus' fatality rate is highest in men over 70. All three men left in this presidential race are over 70. I am certainly not the only one who has thought about this.

Friday, March 27, 2020

The cipher as presidential candidate
What William McKinley was to the front-porch campaign, Joe Biden is to the basement campaign.  

Sidelined and confined to his house by the dictates of coronavirus social distancing, the former vice president has been limited to intermittent appearances from a makeshift studio in his basement. They have been awkward and low-energy, but that doesn't really set them apart from most other Joe Biden appearances. 

Friday, March 27, 2020

The togetherness of social distancing
As the coronavirus stops normal life, trapping more Americans in their homes, some have raised the specter of another health threat: loneliness. Before this crisis seized our anxieties, much discussion centered around the dangers of perceived social isolation and feeling cut off from others.
Thursday, March 26, 2020

How do we flatten the curve on panic?
If, as the evidence suggests, the Chinese virus is enormously dangerous to people with certain medical conditions and those over 70 years old, but a much smaller danger to those under 70, then shutting down the entire country indefinitely is probably a bad idea.
Thursday, March 26, 2020

Biden fails to lead on virus fight
Give Joe Biden some credit. On Jan. 27, he published an op-ed in USA Today recognizing that the coronavirus outbreak could become a big problem. But he devoted nearly the entire piece to bashing President Trump -- who was then fighting off impeachment from Biden's old Democratic colleagues on Capitol Hill -- and nearly none of it to explaining what he, Joe Biden, would do to fight the pandemic.
Wednesday, March 25, 2020

This is not sustainable
Countries have experienced economic depressions before, but not usually as a matter of choice.  

The nationwide coronavirus shutdowns over the past two weeks have ground parts of the country to a halt. We have probably never before in our history seen so much economic activity vaporize so quickly -- within days or even hours. The Great Depression and the panics of the 19th century are the only possible analogues. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Tale of two families explains our pulling apart
At a recent dinner party, it was wondered why our society appears to be pulling apart. I observed that sometimes unfortunate consequences flow from otherwise benign changes. I illustrated with a "tale of two families," both known to me in my rural central Illinois setting.
Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Only the 'crooks' can save us now
A specter haunts progressive America -- the possibility that a company might make too much money solving the world's coronavirus problem.
Monday, March 23, 2020

The anger piece
I'm old enough to know that anger is sure to harm only one person: the one who is angry. I know because I've done it. So I have learned as best I can to put my anger in a black box, not in my poor stomach.
Monday, March 23, 2020

History's crises lend us guidance and perspective
It turns out that the Greatest Generation left us the greatest example of how to proceed in the greatest health threat of our time.
Saturday, March 21, 2020

Cheap TVs, damn expensive flu
Here's a thought: While self-quarantining with their families in multimillion-dollar Manhattan co-ops, Wall Street wives ought to have a chat with their Master of the Universe husbands about China, globalism and political correctness. Those are the vectors of their robber-baron wealth.
Thursday, March 19, 2020

HIPAA Wasn't Meant for This
HIPAA was a great law for its time. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act protects the privacy of your personal medical records. You don't have to tell anyone about underlying diseases. That's your business, not theirs. For years, it has protected Americans with AIDS and cancer and everything else from discrimination, private or official.
Thursday, March 19, 2020

Caring for the elderly just got more stressful
 We who oversee the care of elderly friends or family know what stress is all about -- in normal times. It's a hard job, physically and mentally. Even for those who can hire others to help out, there remains worry about paying good wages to keep good people, and coordinating doctor visits and prescriptions.
Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Trump's coronavirus response isn't the work of a dictator
What happens when the supposed dictator won't dictate? This is the conundrum confronted by the harshest critics of President Donald Trump who have gone from warning he is a budding despot to complaining he hasn't done enough to impose his will during the coronavirus crisis. 
Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Alone, together
We used to worry about a country where people were bowling alone. Now we have ample reason to worry about going bowling at all.

The phrase "bowling alone" entered the American lexicon 25 years ago after the Harvard political scientist Robert D. Putnam published a landmark essay bearing that title. In that essay, later expanded into an important book, Putnam argued that civic engagement -- membership in religious, veterans', labor, fraternal, voluntary and parent-teacher organizations -- had dramatically dropped and that late-20th-century Americans increasingly were isolated from each other.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Three reasons Joe Biden will never be president
Joe Biden was sworn into the United States Senate on Jan. 3, 1973. He remained in the Senate until Jan. 15, 2009 -- a span of 36 years. If history is any guide, that alone is a disqualifier in Biden's quest for the White House.

What does 36 years in the Senate say about a politician? It says he is a senator -- not a president.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

AOC Must Choose Between the Future and the Political Abyss
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hitched her star to Bernie Sanders -- and vice versa. AOC brought a young, hip Latina vibe to the elderly Sanders' rallies. Photogenic and enjoying a massive social media presence, she joined Bernie in the far left's crusade to take over the Democratic Party.
Saturday, March 14, 2020

How to talk to your children about Elizabeth Warren
Some people see Elizabeth Warren's poor showing on Super Tuesday as just another Democratic hopeful losing her bid.

I see something darker. I see the ugly heart that beats beneath our supposed "democracy." Frankly, I'm afraid.

Friday, March 13, 2020

On coronavirus, the nationalists aren't nationalist enough
A foreign threat, emanating from China and requiring border controls and the exercise of government power to protect Americans, has arrived in the United States.  

Yet President Donald Trump spent the initial weeks minimizing the threat and talking of it magically disappearing, despite being a nationalist who has long emphasized the importance of borders and the danger of China.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Identity politics didn't work for Warren, either
Was being a woman Elizabeth Warren's problem? That's the wrong question. Here's a better question: Was playing the protector of all damsels from that infamous rake, Mike Bloomberg, her problem? It was one of them, for certain.
Thursday, March 12, 2020

Calling the Wuhan virus 'the Wuhan virus' isn't racist
The coronavirus outbreak is the first pandemic of the woke era, and as such it's not surprising that there is a fierce debate over how to refer to it without offending against social justice. 
Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Watering plants is actually good for you
I know this is an outlier story. It's about Brooklyn brownstone couples who pay over $2,000 for professionals to choose and care for their houseplants. Houseplant designing is actually a service being offered to the urban and suburban gentry. One such "Plant Doctor & Stylist" charges an hourly rate between $125 and $175. Those are psychotherapy prices.
Tuesday, March 10, 2020

The stark cultural differences inside the Democratic party
Yes, Democrats are divided over Bernie Sanders' revolution versus Joe Biden's restoration of status quo Obama. Yes, they are divided over what that means in terms of policy, like Sanders' Medicare for All versus Biden's tweaked Obamacare.
Monday, March 9, 2020

Why must a woman be perfect?
Elizabeth Warren checked every box. Brilliant. Tough. Prepared. A Harvard Law professor who didn't go to a fancy private law school. Married young, followed her husband, made it to the United States Senate by dint of hard work, determination and courage.
Monday, March 9, 2020

Honey, we blew up the presidency
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The primary in this battleground state that has provided a vital margin in two of the five elections this century is a little more than a week away, and already voters here are confronting a new political reality.
Saturday, March 7, 2020

Clean and coal: Many interests at play in Illinois energy overhaul discussions
SPRINGFIELD — One day after hundreds rallied at the Capitol in support of a sweeping clean energy reform package, a Senate committee heard hours of testimony on the intricacies of the state’s energy landscape Thursday.
Friday, March 6, 2020

Bernie is still Trump's nightmare
The Democrats' sudden discovery of 77-year-old eminence grise Joe Biden has the electric feeling of Republicans settling on George H.W. Bush in 1992. (The Iowa Republican Party actually canceled the caucuses that year so as not to embarrass President Bush.)

It's Democrats convincing themselves in 2004 that John Kerry was the "safe" choice.

Proposed Biden campaign slogan: OK, I Guess He'll Do.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

The candidate of the nonbelievers
Once upon a time, Bernie Sanders would have had another political vulnerability besides his socialism -- namely, his atheism. 
Wednesday, March 4, 2020

The White House shouldn't downplay the coronavirus
The White House has been walking into a coronavirus trap.  

By pooh-poohing worries about the virus and saying everything is under control, it is setting itself up for the charge, if things get even a little bad, that it was self-deluding and overly complacent. It will be accused of making mission-accomplished statements before the mission truly began. 

Monday, March 2, 2020

Playing politics with a pandemic
On Dad's favorite morning show, Junior was asked whether he was "surprised the way they've been handling the coronavirus situation, meaning Democrats."

Put aside all the problems with the question itself -- put aside fair and balanced, much less smart and stupid -- because the answer is so much more.

Saturday, February 29, 2020

Real rape
"Did you know him?"


"Oh, then you were really raped."

Friday, February 28, 2020

Experience Sanders couldn't buy, even with Bloomberg's money
Mike Bloomberg was elected New York mayor two months after the outrage of Sept. 11, 2001. He took over a city reeling with grief and suffering economic losses tied to the terrorist attacks. Rather than lay off public workers who had performed gallantly in the crisis, he raised taxes on the well-to-do.
Thursday, February 27, 2020

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