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Politics

Seeking gun sanity after Parkland

WASHINGTON -- As pressures mount for Congress to "just do something" about mass shootings, Americans would do well to seek solutions closer to home.

City by city, state by state, people have every right and reason to enact their own strict gun laws rather than wait for federal lawmakers to abandon their preferred pretzel poses.

Some states and...Read more

Going Hogg wild

WASHINGTON -- It was a profoundly poignant image: Thirty to 40 teens huddled together in a small dark room, their downturned faces illuminated by cellphones as they learned about an active shooter prowling their school.

Via news apps, these survivors of Wednesday's murderous rampage at a Parkland, Florida, high school, where 17 were killed and ...Read more

Invasion of the bots

WASHINGTON -- If you want to know whether Democrats will take back the House and/or Senate in November, just ask Russia.

Or rather, ask the Russian trolls who have triumphed in disseminating real "fake news" to influence U.S. elections. They credibly did so in 2016 by creating a more-favorable electoral environment for Donald Trump. And, ...Read more

Governing with the enemy

WASHINGTON -- When White House staff secretary Rob Porter resigned Wednesday amid allegations that he abused his two ex-wives and a former girlfriend, he parted the curtains on a Trumpian-scale personnel and security disaster.

Bottom line: You don't keep people in the White House who've been credibly accused of domestic abuse. I'd be the first ...Read more

Karma loves football

WASHINGTON -- The delirium over the Philadelphia Eagles' victory over the New England Patriots seems to have been matched by delight in Tom Brady's defeat and the phantom throw of the century.

There he was, arguably the greatest quarterback ever to caress the pigskin, about to throw a crucial pass in the final few minutes -- and the ball ...Read more

#Fairness

WASHINGTON -- Just minutes before the start of President Trump's State of the Union address, Hillary Clinton dumped a mea culpa onto her Facebook page, explaining why, a decade earlier, she hadn't fired a campaign staffer accused of sexual harassment.

In the same week, former PBS talk-show host Tavis Smiley, who was fired for allegations of ...Read more

Can Trump sustain newfound aura of gravitas?

WASHINGTON -- It was a good speech.

Calm down. I said good.

Despite talking for an hour and 20 minutes, the longest speech since Bill Clinton's much-mocked 2000 stem-winder, Donald Trump's first State of the Union address did exactly what it needed to do: nothing.

It wasn't strident; it wasn't provocative; it wasn't alienating; it wasn't ...Read more

From 'fake news' to witch hunt

WASHINGTON -- Conspiracies. Secret societies. Witch hunts.

During the past year, we've heard reference to all of the above to explain away any suggestion of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia in the 2016 presidential election.

Allegedly, there's a secret society within the Federal Bureau of Investigation aimed at deposing Trump. ...Read more

A matter of time

WASHINGTON -- It was probably only a matter of time before some unbalanced person decided that he needed to take out a few members of the "fake news" media.

And it was inevitable that his actions -- in this case, his threats -- would be placed at the feet of Donald Trump, who has spent a considerable amount of time and energy demonizing the ...Read more

Paging personnel

WASHINGTON -- If the name Taylor Weyeneth rings a tiny bell in your head, then you might be related to him. Otherwise, the 24-year-old was until a week ago an unknown if powerful member of the Trump administration: deputy chief of staff in the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Weyeneth's qualifications for the job, which falls under the ...Read more

Can there be a charitable reading of "s---hole"?

CAMDEN, S.C. -- While recently perusing unread books gathering dust on my shelves, one tome caught my eye and, upon being loosed from the grip of neglect, fell open to a random page from which leapt the following sentence: "The ancestors of a critical and growing mass of present-day Americans existed in dung heaps of humanity amidst rotting ...Read more

Like a child

WASHINGTON -- I'm almost beginning to feel sorry for him.

Donald Trump, that is.

Having previously posited that it's wrong to make fun of the mentally deficient, I'm reluctant to further highlight recent revelations from author Michael Wolff, whose new book, "Fire and Fury," reports on what can only be described as insanity at 1600 ...Read more

Queen Carlson wins again

WASHINGTON -- If karma is a b----, justice is a beauty queen.

After recent revelations that the CEO of the Miss America Organization and its pageant scriptwriter were talking trash about past winners, the board fired them both and installed Gretchen Carlson, a former Miss America 1989 and Fox News anchor, as its new chairwoman.

Carlson, you ...Read more

In a time of "fake news," darkness settles when people can no longer tell the difference

WASHINGTON -- As a functional obsessive-compulsive, I'm never happier than at year's end when I get to make lists. Herewith, my picks for the most important stories of 2017:

This year my list is short: "Fake News" -- from which all cursings flow.

Not only has the president's frequent "fake news" defense against any story he dislikes helped ...Read more

Words that weren't banned and those that should be

WASHINGTON -- The recent excitement over an incredible story about the government trying to ban certain words -- that wasn't really quite true -- reminded me of all the words and phrases I despise and wish were banned.

For the sake of getting on with it, briefly: The Washington Post reported Friday that officials at the Centers for Disease ...Read more

Collateral damage of "credibly accused"

WASHINGTON -- As the #MeToo movement gained momentum the past several weeks -- and more than a dozen powerful men accused of sexual misconduct were suspended, fired or banished into the outer darkness, it was reasonable to wonder where it would all end.

On Wednesday afternoon, it ended for Kentucky state Rep. Dan Johnson on a remote bridge, ...Read more

Women's rage unleashed

WASHINGTON -- That special place in hell everyone keeps talking about is getting mighty crowded.

The ball got rolling in 2016 when former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright quipped that there was a "special place in hell for women who don't help each other." At the time, she was introducing Hillary Clinton at a New Hampshire campaign event. ...Read more

The martyrdom of Al Franken

WASHINGTON -- With quavering voice and a tinge of stubborn denial, Sen. Al Franken announced that he would resign from office.

The Minnesota Democrat's remarks on Thursday marked the culmination of exactly three weeks during which eight women -- half of them anonymous -- alleged sexual misconduct by the former "Saturday Night Live" star. By the...Read more

Michael Flynn's holiday cheer

WASHINGTON -- At least three people must have celebrated the news that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his conversation with a Russian ambassador.

First to pop a champagne cork was surely Matt Lauer, whose Icarus imitation put to shame all others recently accused of sexual misconduct in ...Read more

Fake news will out

WASHINGTON -- The phrase "the truth will out" has always been at home in American newsrooms where journalists dedicate their days to making it so.

Sometimes Truth needs a little nudge, as was the case recently when an anti-media organization, absurdly named "Project Veritas," apparently invented a story intended to impugn The Washington Post (...Read more

 

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