From the Left



What's Next for Trump's War With the Media?

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Since facts tend to be very flexible things in the custody of President Donald Trump, one wonders what comes next with his self-declared "running war with the media."

His constant cries of "fake news" to any news that does not blow him a kiss ratcheted up to a more threatening tone when he sent this Friday afternoon tweet:

"The FAKE NEWS media...Read more

Trump's Reality TV Presidency Needs to Get Real

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Why is President Donald Trump still trying to turn the media into the bad guys of his reality TV show, er, I mean presidency?

If media bashing is the last refuge of scoundrels, as I often say, Trump had better save some for a rainy day. He's having plenty of those already.

Sure, media bashing is easy. At his Thursday news conference marking ...Read more

Dear White People: Don't be Snowflakes

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Everybody loves free speech, it seems -- and just about everybody also knows someone who they wish would just hush up.

That's an old saying that I just made up. It came to mind amid some of the protests that have been busting out all over Donald Trump's America.

Back in the 1960s, progressive college students campaigned for free speech. Today ...Read more

Chicago Still Eager to Hear From You, Mr. Trump

From the Left / Clarence Page /

As one who loves Chicago, I hope President Donald Trump is not toying with my affections.

So far, the native New Yorker had been treating Chicago like the weather; he can't stop talking about it, but is there really much he can do about it?

He's been talking about Chicago's violence epidemic since a June 29, 2015 meeting with ...Read more

'Fake News?' Look Who's Talking

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Is it too early to declare outright that our current American president is a serial liar?

I think we have waited long enough. It turns out that President Donald Trump's bogus challenge to President Barack Obama's birth certificate was only the beginning of the former reality TV star's whoppers.

For weeks, political journalists and their ...Read more

Why President Trump Needs a History Lesson

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Here's a tip, if you're going to speak at a Black History Month event: It helps to know a little black history.

President Donald Trump overlooked that advice as he delivered a rambling Black History Month address before engaging in a "listening session" with African-American professionals at the White House.

It didn't take long for the real ...Read more

How a 'Chaos Candidate' Becomes a Disaster President

From the Left / Clarence Page /

President Donald Trump has done an unexpected favor to former President Barack Obama's legacy. The bumpy rollout of Trump's travel ban makes the botched rollout of Obama's Affordable Care Act look smooth as silk.

Putting aside for a moment the critical question of whether the ban will make Americans safer (spoiler alert: probably not), the too-...Read more

Political Sniping Won't End 'Carnage' in Chicago

From the Left / Clarence Page /

I don't want to judge too hastily. Something good may come of President Donald Trump's offer to "send in the Feds" if Chicago authorities can't curb the city's homicide crisis.

Something good may result from a Trumpian White House intervention, either because of it or in spite of it.

But I might be more inclined to think that sending in "the ...Read more

'Alternative Facts'? Pick Your Own Reality

From the Left / Clarence Page /

White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway said more than a little bit when she described President Donald Trump's press secretary as offering "alternative facts."

That may well be the most startling description of our new president's promotional style that I have heard since his best-selling "The Art of the Deal" said his most useful ...Read more

How to Cover Trump? Literally and Seriously

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Facing the looming realities of President Donald Trump, media outlets have been chewing nervously on an unusual question: How do we cover this guy?

Of course, although one would be hard-pressed to name any president who has made the reporter's life easy, none until now have been known to taunt the press -- and urge their supporters to join them...Read more

Call it Payback for That Birther Business, Mr. Trump

From the Left / Clarence Page /

If you're going to play the victim, make sure you're really victimized.

That's the lesson that I hope conservative CNN commentator and radio host Ben Ferguson learned after criticizing Rep. John Lewis for describing Donald Trump as an "illegitimate president."

Ferguson said it was "unprecedented" for the Georgia Democrat and civil rights icon ...Read more

Why Politicians Don't Make Great Art Critics

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Congress has a lot of touchy issues to deal with these days, including one that boils quite literally beneath their feet.

A painting, entitled "Untitled #1," by former Missouri high school student David Pulphus, has been on display in the busy underground walkway between the Cannon House Office Building and the Capitol since June 2016...Read more

A Note of Gratitude for Meryl Streep

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Thank you, Meryl Streep.

I often have been annoyed by Hollywood stars who use award shows to make political statements, although I have made exceptions for those who support causes that I also happen to support. Call me human.

I would have been delighted by Streep's pitch for press freedom and the Committee to Protect Journalists even if -- ...Read more

A Kidnapping Reopens Our Racial Wounds -- If We Let It

From the Left / Clarence Page /

It didn't take long for the emails to arrive, as I expected.

"Chicago hate crime today against Trump!" said one. "Let's see your column justify that one."

He was writing about the big news of the day, the "Facebook torture case," as some called it. It involved the kidnaping and torture -- streamed live on Facebook -- of a white teenager with ...Read more

As Obama Leaves, Battles Over His Legacy Begin

From the Left / Clarence Page /

As President Barack Obama's two terms near an end and we talk of his legacy, we cannot ignore the grand come-together vision of unity he expressed in his 2004 debut on the national stage -- and wonder what happened to it.

We are not "red states" and "blue states" but "the United States of America," he said to vigorous applause.

After the ...Read more

Why Has the Homicide Epidemic in Chicago Been Left to Spread?

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Chicago, the nation's third largest city, ends 2016 with the more homicides than the two larger cities -- New York and Los Angeles -- put together. Everyone is shocked but not everyone is surprised.

More than 750 people were killed in Chicago in 2016, the highest total since 1997, and more than 3,500 were wounded by firearms.

Dr. Gary Slutkin,...Read more

Taking 2016 'Literally,' but Not All 'Seriously'

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Our long wait is over. The time has come to honor the most quotable quotes, in my opinion, from a bizarre political year that many of us wish we could forget.

I call my award, which includes no prize other than a firm handshake, "the Earl." That's my salute to the late Earl Bush, long-time press secretary to the late Chicago Mayor Richard J. ...Read more

The First Family for Sale

From the Left / Clarence Page /

While Mr. Page is away, Bill Press is filling in for him.

Tacky. There's no other word to describe it.

Tacky. That adjective best sums up the self-serving behavior exhibited by almost the entire Trump family so far -- father, daughter, and both sons -- all busy finding ever more creative ways to sell themselves off to the highest ...Read more

The Creeping Tyranny of Donald Trump

From the Left / Clarence Page /

While Mr. Page is away for the holidays, Robert Reich is filling in for him.

On the evening of Dec. 7, minutes after a local Indiana union leader, Chuck Jones, criticized Donald Trump on CNN for falsely claiming that he had kept 1,100 Carrier jobs in the United States, Trump tweeted, "Chuck Jones, who is President of ...Read more

Remembering John Glenn, a Down-to-Earth American Icon

From the Left / Clarence Page /

Mr. Page is on vacation. The following column is by Jules Witcover.

WASHINGTON -- John Glenn, a former Marine combat pilot and the first American astronaut to orbit the earth, died last week at age 95. He was a genuine national hero who represented the eternal youth of his country's adventurous spirit.

I got my first glimpse of him at a...Read more


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