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home : opinion : editorial March 23, 2019

Periodic Table, now 150 years old, evolves and ages gracefully
There are only a few developments that have organized the way we see the world. There is the classification system of the life sciences, which separated the natural world into kingdoms. There is the Constitution of the United States, which created a delicate system of checks and balances.
Saturday, March 23, 2019


US existing-home sales jumped 11.8 percent in February
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. home sales soared 11.8 percent in February, aided by accelerating wages and falling mortgage rates that are improving affordability.
Friday, March 22, 2019

Are the racists on viral videos mentally ill?
Most everyone who spends time on social media has come across videos in which a white person is screaming racial insults, usually at a Latino or African-American. A recent example shows a woman at a ShopRite in East Haven, Connecticut, barraging a black man with racist invective.
Thursday, March 21, 2019

Anita Hill and Senator Biden
If you watched it, at least if you watched it like I did, it's almost impossible to forget.
Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Democrats look forward by looking inland
In Texas, most politicians used to worry only about the primaries. Once they won their party's endorsement, candidates would coast to victory in November. Journalists still refer to Texas as "ruby red," meaning Republicans rule the roost. That is no longer reality. Texas is barely red, and some argue it's already purple. For statewide office, general elections now matter greatly.
Wednesday, March 20, 2019

The SPLC designates itself
The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated itself an organization hostile to women and people of color.
Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Don't break up Big Tech
The worst ideas in Washington are often bipartisan. Big Tech is about to learn this lesson, if it hasn't already.
Monday, March 18, 2019

The confounding story of Kitty Genovese
It began with a lunch at a place called Emil's, not far from police headquarters in New York, and the trigger was a six-word sentence. "That Queens story," the police commissioner said to A.M. Rosenthal, then the metropolitan editor of The New York Times, "is something else."
Saturday, March 16, 2019

Generational Politics
The conversations are taking place when our kids come back to California, especially if they're coming from New York.
Thursday, March 14, 2019

Pelosi is right on impeachment. Not now and probably never
Nancy Pelosi has urged Democrats not to dive into impeaching President Donald Trump. Democrats, listen to her.
Thursday, March 14, 2019

Yes, Trump is target of 'presidential harassment'
President Trump often complains that he is the victim of "presidential harassment" -- or, as he sometimes puts it, "PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!"
Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Scant economic joy in Mudville
The American people have been ordered to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the economic recovery. Note the lack of balloons, however, and that the marching bands have their feet up.
Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Yes, there's a crisis at the border
We interrupt the talk of the president "manufacturing" a crisis at the border with this hair-raising report about the crisis at the border.
Monday, March 11, 2019

Media Magic: How a Democrat pedophile became a 'Trump scandal'
Strangely, the media have suddenly taken an intense interest in the case of pedophile and major Democratic donor Jeffrey Epstein.
Saturday, March 9, 2019

2020 election begins to take on its unique shape
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- With a president like no other, in an atmosphere of political discord like no other, in an environment of social media like no other, it should be no surprise that the nation is confronting a presidential election like no other.
Saturday, March 9, 2019

Ohio city to pay $1M to estate of man fatally shot
CLEVELAND (AP) — A city outside Cleveland has agreed to pay $1 million to the estate of an unarmed man fatally shot by a police officer after a vehicle chase in March 2017, an attorney for the estate confirmed Thursday.
Friday, March 8, 2019

House Dems send message: Impeachment is on
The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee says there is no doubt President Trump has obstructed justice.
Friday, March 8, 2019

House approves sweeping ethics, election overhaul package
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Democratic-controlled House has approved legislation aimed at reducing the role of big money in politics, ensuring fair elections and strengthening ethics standards. But it stands little chance in the Republican-run Senate.
Friday, March 8, 2019

Taping mouths at Harvard
It was inevitable that the #MeToo movement, started with valid anger at sexual harassment, would open the door to bizarre accusations. It's just surprising to see it go off the deep end at Harvard University, where rational thinking tied to principle is supposed to be a requirement for admission.
Thursday, March 7, 2019

In defense of women's sports
We're going to need the cisgendered Olympics.
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Why Canadians rule the cannabis business
President Trump routinely waves his fist at alleged unfair trade practices, including at the hands of our good neighbor Canada. But what about playing fields that are uneven because the U.S. government makes them so? Witness the cannabis industry. It's enjoying explosive growth worldwide, but Canadians are running away with the profits because Washington has shackled their American competitors.
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Early bird John Delaney hoping to catch more than worms in Iowa
What do you do if you want to be president and no one has heard of you?
Monday, March 4, 2019

Don't root for a Trump primary challenge
The race for 2020 is taking shape, although there are still significant unknowns, including whether Donald Trump will get a serious primary challenge.
Saturday, March 2, 2019

The Fixer
I have to admit I was a little insulted when Michael Cohen explained that his job as Donald Trump's lawyer was to be his "fixer." For more than a decade, I was widely known around my old law firm as the firm fixer.
Saturday, March 2, 2019

Hush little porn star, don't say a word
I gather I was supposed to gasp when Michael Cohen said during his testimony before Congress on Wednesday, "The president of the United States thus wrote a personal check for the payment of hush money as part of a criminal scheme to violate campaign finance laws."
Friday, March 1, 2019

Privacy will belong to a new top 1 percent
Why did Jeff Bezos, founder of tech giant Amazon, send gushy texts to his paramour, it appears, without using encryption?
Friday, March 1, 2019

Is Trump especially vulnerable to primary challenge?
It has become a common talking point for NeverTrump Republicans seeking to defeat President Trump in the 2020 GOP primaries: Polls have found that a substantial number -- maybe 40 percent -- of Republican voters say they would be open to a primary challenge to the president. Those surveys, the NeverTrumpers argue, show that Trump is particularly weak and vulnerable to a serious primary challenge.
Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Why the Robert Kraft bust matters
Robert Kraft's name will now long be associated with one of the most despicable scourges of modern life, and rightly so. 
Tuesday, February 26, 2019

I Don't Really Own That Ridiculous Muscle Car. Let Me Explai
My older brother in Florida owns a 2007 Ford Mustang Shelby. It has 500 horsepower and a six-speed manual transmission. Color: gimme-another-ticket red. When I visited, he let me drive it.
Monday, February 25, 2019

Trump sets up abortion obstacles, barring referrals
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration on Friday set up new obstacles for women seeking abortions, barring taxpayer-funded family planning clinics from making abortion referrals. The new policy is certain to be challenged in court.
Saturday, February 23, 2019

R&B singer R. Kelly expected in Chicago court to face sex abuse charges
CHICAGO (AP) — R. Kelly, the R&B star who has been trailed for decades by allegations that he violated underage girls and women and held some as virtual slaves, is due in court Saturday after being charged with aggravated sexual abuse involving four victims, including at least three between the ages of 13 and 17.
Saturday, February 23, 2019

Will urgency be enough for Democrats in 2020?
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- For three-quarters of a century, the Airliner has been a popular Clinton Street haunt, full of University of Iowa flags, beer signs, photo tributes to the Hawkeyes' famous 2005 last-second 30-25 bowl victory over LSU, and massive televisions tuned to college basketball games. The fries are fat, the meat-craver pizzas legendary. The special the other night was a steaming plate of wings for $4.99.
Saturday, February 23, 2019

Trump's failing, don't ask me to lie about it
For decades, voters have been lied to by politicians promising to crack down on immigration. We vote and we vote and we vote, and nothing ever changes. Wage-lowering, culture-destroying policies manage to appear in every bill Congress passes.
Friday, February 22, 2019

The unbearable whiteness of Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders catalyzed the Democratic Party's post-Barack Obama move to the left, and if he were elected president in 2020, it would represent a truly historic swing in the country's orientation.
Friday, February 22, 2019

Kentucky teen at center of viral encounter in Washington sues overstories
CINCINNATI (AP) — The Kentucky teen at the heart of an encounter last month with a Native American activist at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington is suing The Washington Post for $250 million, alleging the newspaper falsely labeled him a racist. His attorneys are threatening numerous other news organizations, including The Associated Press.
Friday, February 22, 2019

Bernie Sanders, it's over
Before the 2016 presidential race, Bernie Sanders exuded some charm as an unapologetic lefty with a Brooklyn accent. But when his campaign gained traction, the authoritarian took over. Unwilling to concede that Democratic primary voters preferred Hillary Clinton to him -- she had amassed nearly 4 million more votes -- he continued to undermine her all the way up to the party convention. Without a doubt, he helped elect Donald Trump.
Thursday, February 21, 2019

Much talk that something's up with Mueller, too bad nobody knows
There are two diametrically opposed lines of thinking about Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. The first is that he is winding down his probe and is unlikely to allege that the Trump campaign and Russia conspired to fix the 2016 presidential election. The second is that he is still going strong, with the biggest charges, perhaps including the fabled collusion allegation, yet to come.
Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The FBI is not a separate branch of government
It's too early to take away any clear lessons from the Trump era, except one: Whatever you do, never fire the FBI director.
Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Trump and the long-term implications of history
One of the many casualties of the modern age is the substitution of Presidents Day for the annual celebration of the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln on Feb. 12 and of George Washington on Feb. 22 -- two dates that every American schoolchild once knew, marking the births of two presidents every American schoolchild once revered.
Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Sherrod Brown is not an idiot
The day has arrived in the Democratic Party when Sherrod Brown is a kind of moderate.
Monday, February 18, 2019

And the winner Is ...
It used to be that people complained that the process for selecting the nominee was starting earlier and earlier -- straw polls over a year before the inauguration!
Saturday, February 16, 2019

Guest columnist: Why we must have a border wall
On account of the president's cowardly retreat from the wall, Ann Coulter is too angry to type. In her place, we present a guest columnist outraged at the president's capitulation.
Saturday, February 16, 2019

Time for Democratic pushback on radicals
Outsize attention has been paid to outlier Democrats making outrageous remarks. They are a small handful of House Democrats, though you'd never know it, given all their headlines.
Friday, February 15, 2019

Trump tax returns: Dems ready for ultimate fishing expedition
Yes, Democrats want to start a new investigation into already-under-investigation Trump-Russia allegations. And yes, they want to investigate Trump associates like Michael Cohen, Roger Stone and others. But by far the biggest thing Democrats want, now that they have the majority in the House, is to get their hands on the president's tax returns
Thursday, February 14, 2019

A travesty in New York
There were two victims in the horrific attack earlier this month on Jennifer Irigoyen in New York City. But the state's law recognizes only one of them.
Tuesday, February 12, 2019

American politics are 'unusually effervescent'
In the middle of the first presidential impeachment trial, of Andrew Johnson in 1868, Walt Whitman wandered over to Capitol Hill to witness the proceedings. "Our American politics," the poet told a friend, "are in an unusually effervescent condition."
Monday, February 11, 2019

Opioids and me
I know.

I know the heartache of mothers who lose their sons, children who lose themselves.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Roberts' swing vote role: To keep the court from moving far right too fast
(AP) — Chief Justice John Roberts broke with the Supreme Court’s other conservative justices and his own voting record on abortion to block a Louisiana law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.
Saturday, February 9, 2019

'The View' host Joy Behar the latest to be under fire for the use of blackface
NEW YORK (AP) — Joy Behar and ABC were silent Thursday after an old photo resurfaced of “The View” co-host using makeup to darken her skin for a Halloween costume, the latest flashpoint in a series of blackface scandals making national headlines.
Friday, February 8, 2019

Hey Commander! Start commanding!
It's great that members of Congress have located specific legislative language permitting the president to build a border wall, but I'm wondering: Has anybody read the Constitution?
Friday, February 8, 2019

Can moderate Dems talk Pelosi out of extreme border position?
As things stand now, a House and Senate conference committee is the only hope that Democrats and Republicans can reach agreement on border security and avoid another government shutdown. The negotiations -- such as they are, for a committee that has met briefly only once in more than a week -- are ostensibly between Republicans and Democrats. But well-informed Republicans believe it is another set of talks -- internal talks among Democrats -- that will determine whether the committee succeeds and a shutdown is averted.
Thursday, February 7, 2019

Do we really need so many foreign tech workers?
Americans don't usually think of technical professionals as "guest workers," yet at any one time, there are more than a half-million foreigners holding tech jobs in the U.S. They are here thanks to the H-1B visa program. H-1B, so the official spiel goes, addresses an alleged shortage of "highly skilled" Americans to fill jobs "requiring specialized knowledge."
Wednesday, February 6, 2019

An irrational political culture, about to get more so
Ralph Northam deserves his current friendless state. 
Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Kamala Harris and the implausibility of 'Medicare-for-all'
Sen. Kamala Harris committed a most unusual gaffe at her CNN town hall the other night -- not by misspeaking about one of her central policy proposals, but by describing it accurately.
Monday, February 4, 2019

State of the Union arrives with deadline looming
Tuesday night Donald J. Trump, in an ancient and revered ritual, will stride through the center of the chamber of the House of Representatives, stop and greet the lawmakers who arrived early enough to claim prized aisle seats, and then will perform one of the few specific duties set out for the president in the Constitution. He will assess the state of the union and then set out his priorities for the coming year.
Saturday, February 2, 2019

Who benefits from immigration? Not you!
Assiduous readers of my column know that I have frequently made the point that America's immigration policies benefit only three groups of people: 1) rich Americans with a lot of employees, 2) the immigrants themselves, and 3) their grandmothers back in Chiapas.
Friday, February 1, 2019

In defense of assimilation
The worst thought crime is the one you don't realize you're committing. 
Friday, February 1, 2019

The deep meaning of Groundhog Day
Saturday is Groundhog Day. It is the day when many eyes will turn to Gobbler's Knob, a wooded hill a couple of miles outside Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. A man in a top hat will pull a hibernating groundhog out of a simulated tree trunk. If the rodent sees his shadow, then we'll have six more weeks of winter. If not, then spring comes early. Either way, Punxsutawney Phil (the groundhog) may bite the handler. It's happened.
Thursday, January 31, 2019

In border talks, a new fight for barrier deniers
A House-Senate conference committee is beginning work on a package of border security policies that, it is hoped, can win the support of both Democrats and Republicans. The final product is certain to include several measures that already have full, bipartisan approval: more immigration judges, more technology to detect illegal drugs at ports of entry, more humanitarian aid for migrants in custody, etc.
Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Shutdown hit a wall of truth evasion
It's hard to count the half-truths, warped symbolism and abuse of logic that plunged our country into a government shutdown. Sure, blatant lies will do it, but these other players are worse because they are sneaky.
Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Eric for President?
The teachers strike in the second-largest school district in the country ended Tuesday, so, according to local media, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has returned his attention to running for president.
Monday, January 28, 2019

Chefs and truck drivers beware: Artificial intelligence is coming for your job
(AP) — Robots aren’t replacing everyone, but a quarter of U.S. jobs will be severely disrupted as artificial intelligence accelerates the automation of existing work, according to a new Brookings Institution report.
Saturday, January 26, 2019

Eric for President?
The teachers strike in the second-largest school district in the country ended Tuesday, so, according to local media, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has returned his attention to running for president.
Saturday, January 26, 2019

A new culture of the deal
What Washington needs now is a New Deal culture -- or, more precisely, a new culture of the deal.
Saturday, January 26, 2019

How Democrats came to love "co-equal"
The divided government of 2019 is a mirror image of the divided government of 2011. Back then, Democrats controlled the White House and Senate, while Republicans had recently taken control of the House with a big victory in the 2010 midterms.
Friday, January 25, 2019

Are people ignoring Trump or just bored by him?
It started during the midterm campaign. Democrats stopped talking about Donald Trump all the time. Now presidential hopefuls are doing the same. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, once a relentless sparring partner on Twitter, all but ignores Trump's goading comments.
Thursday, January 24, 2019

Break ground, not promises
Several months into the Trump administration, I started running a daily "Border Wall Construction Update" on Twitter, announcing how many miles of the wall had been completed that day and how many miles since the inauguration. It was always the same numbers: 0 and 0, respectively.
Thursday, January 24, 2019

Anti-vaxxers spread a plague of Ignorance
An outbreak of measles four years ago at Disneyland focused attention on a growing health menace -- the refusal of parents to vaccinate their children. The threat has gone international. The World Health Organization has just named the anti-vaccination movement among the 10 biggest global health crises.
Monday, January 21, 2019

Finding common cause with Nixon in the new age
He was, like Calvin Coolidge, an introvert. He was, like Theodore Roosevelt, a battler. He was, like Bill Clinton, a policy wonk. He was, like Donald Trump, a polarizing figure. He was, like Warren Harding, a scoundrel. He was, like John F. Kennedy, a dreamer. He was, like Lyndon Johnson, a prisoner of Vietnam. He was, like Woodrow Wilson, a student of the presidency. He was, like George H.W. Bush, an experienced master of government. He was, like William Howard Taft, a reluctant practitioner of the political arts. He was, like Herbert Hoover, a tragic figure.
Saturday, January 19, 2019

Hello, Dolly
She was my daughter's godmother. She was my friend. We knew her from politics, not Hollywood: She was close to "Lady Bird" Johnson and her legendary press secretary, Liz Carpenter. We had no family in California. And she fell in love with my beautiful baby.
Friday, January 18, 2019

On drug prices, Americans are the real suckers
Drugmakers rang in the new year by raising prices on hundreds of products -- American prices, that is. Americans focused on the celebrations weren't paying attention.
Friday, January 18, 2019

White supremacists ate my homework
By finally returning to the issue that won him the election, President Trump once again has a winning hand. That's why we're hearing so much about "white supremacy" this week.
Thursday, January 17, 2019

Democrats want 'technological wall' that won't keep anybody out
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border would be "immoral." Instead, she favors something she calls a "technological wall." Another top House Democrat, Rep. James Clyburn, calls it a "smart wall."
Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Are we truly one paycheck from disaster?
The partial government shutdown has forced some federal workers to move money around to pay for food and rent. No surprise there. What's shocking is the many who don't have the money to move. They have no financial cushion to cover even one month's worth of ordinary expenses.
Monday, January 14, 2019

A state that extols outsiders considers an insider for president
TWIN MOUNTAIN, N.H. -- When, 120 years ago, the New Hampshire poet Edna Dean Proctor saluted this state's "cliffs, her meads, her brooks afoam" and spoke elegiacally of the "white-robed heights" of its mountains, she identified perhaps the mostly enduring characteristic of New Hampshire -- its worship of the outside.
Saturday, January 12, 2019

No, don't declare an emergency
President Donald Trump is playing with the idea of declaring a national emergency to build a border fence despite congressional opposition. 
Saturday, January 12, 2019

Media throw everything at the wall to see what sticks
Now that Trump has finally turned to the campaign promise that won him the election -- build a wall and deport illegals -- the Democrats, the media and even most Republicans are hysterical.
Friday, January 11, 2019

Resolution
It is our collective frayed nerves that worry me. Christmas cheer has been replaced by dirty snow, unclean toilets, clogged roads and unpaid bills.
Thursday, January 10, 2019

Foreigners shape up Americans
The kids are bratty, the parents fighting, the homes a mess. It's remarkable how American domestic life can breed so much dissatisfaction amid so much plenty.
Thursday, January 10, 2019

What, precisely, do Democrats want to impeach Trump for?
Newly sworn-in Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib electrified progressives with her passionate declaration that she and her colleagues will "impeach the motherf---er" -- the "motherf---er," of course, being President Trump.
Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Millennial socialism 101
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's so-called Green New Deal makes the obligatory nod to the original New Deal, but FDR's handiwork is much too modest an antecedent. 
Tuesday, January 8, 2019

If Trump really wanted to enforce immigration, he'd open the government
We who follow immigration policy closely know that the wall is a dumb idea. Closing much of the government over it is dumber still.
Monday, January 7, 2019

New Hampshire prepares for 2020
"In our town, we like to know the facts about everybody."
Saturday, January 5, 2019

The irrational allergy to the wall
It's a wonder that Democrats haven't staked out a negotiating position demanding the destruction of already-existing barriers along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Friday, January 4, 2019

Please no more 'border security'
The media are trying to convince Trump that if he abandons the wall, he'll be a statesman, so that as soon as he folds, they can start making fun of him as an untrustworthy liar.
Thursday, January 3, 2019

Are we brave enough for the new world of reproduction?
A new medical device may change almost everything we think about making babies. It may also sweep away the current controversy over abortion while creating new ethical dilemmas. We speak of the artificial womb.
Wednesday, January 2, 2019

When Democrats embraced the 'southern border fencing strategy'
In 2006, Congress passed the Secure Fence Act, which mandated the construction of multilayer pedestrian fencing along about 600 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. It passed with big, bipartisan majorities: 283 votes in the House and 80 in the Senate. Some top Democrats who are still in the Senate today supported the fence: Charles Schumer, Dianne Feinstein, Ron Wyden, Debbie Stabenow and Sherrod Brown.
Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Is the President Above the Law?
The Constitution establishes impeachment as the means of removal of the president by Congress. As we discover each time we go down this road, "high crimes and misdemeanors" means pretty much whatever the House and Senate think they do, which is to say it is a political standard.
Monday, December 31, 2018

An appreciation of history
Saturday, December 29, 2018

Trump should chill about the stock market
Donald Trump may watch the stock market more closely than any day trader.
Saturday, December 29, 2018

Stop obsessing over Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
The right can't stop talking about the incoming youngest member of the House, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The left isn't much better.
Friday, December 28, 2018

The Grinch's heart problem
There’s no stopping the Grinch. The latest film adaptation of the Dr. Seuss classic has been cleaning up at the box office, despite justifiably mixed reviews.
Thursday, December 27, 2018

The Self-Destruction of US Farmers
Not long ago, agriculture was a crown jewel of America's export economy. Then President Trump happened.
Thursday, December 27, 2018

Court: Justice Ginsburg leaves hospital after cancer surgery
WASHINGTON (AP) — A spokeswoman for the Supreme Court says Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has been discharged from the hospital after cancer surgery.
Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Bad headlines for Trump also means rough stretch for Hannity
NEW YORK (AP) — The drumbeat of bad news for President Donald Trump hasn’t been good for his most prominent backer in the media.
Wednesday, December 26, 2018

The Grinch's heart problem
There's no stopping the Grinch. The latest film adaptation of the Dr. Seuss classic has been cleaning up at the box office, despite justifiably mixed reviews. 
Monday, December 24, 2018










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