Archive

Date

May 14th, 2015

Coddling the Rich

    Question: How much did Congress save taxpayers last year when it cut food stamp benefits for 16 million poor children?

    Answer: Less than the windfall Congress is trying to bestow on a few of the richest American families by ending the federal estate tax. The House has already approved a bill to do this, and the Senate is poised to follow suit.

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Can Republicans keep clowns off debate stage?

    Honk if you aren't running for the Republican presidential nomination.

    With Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina and Mike Huckabee tripping over one another's announcements this week, we now have 15 declared candidates, 10 who are exploring a run and five who could jump in, including the Harold Stassen of vanity candidates, Donald Trump.

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Campaigns amid the ashes of unrest

    Riots can bring out the best in politicians -- and the worst.

    The Watts riots in Los Angeles 50 years ago, among other civil disturbances of that period, led President Lyndon B. Johnson to pass the Fair Housing Act of 1968. They also led him secretly to look for possible communist conspiracies behind the uprisings.

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British vote marks decline of ambition and influence

    Britain's sense of purpose in the world is trending downward. Indisputably, Thursday's election marks a new low in national ambition, and it's likely to be followed by a further, perhaps accelerating, decline. British voters seem to think the country's global standing no longer matters. The truth is, they're right.

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Bill Clinton's damaging self-defense

    Oh, Bill. There you go again. We knew you were going to pop off, but did it have to be so soon -- and so tone-deaf?

    The Clinton deal is "two for the price of one," as Bill Clinton famously promised in 1992. But 23 years later, that bargain comes with different baggage attached.

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Beyond the Demon Sheep

    Do you want the next president to be somebody who brags about not being a politician?

    Think about that for a minute. "Politician" isn't a popular term right now. But claiming that you're not one when you run for president is a little like applying for a job as brain surgeon by announcing, "I am not a physician."

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Anybody can be president?

    The old adage that every mother's son can grow up to be president -- now revised to include her daughter -- is being put to the test with a vengeance in this current election cycle.

    The latest batch of Republicans -- businesswoman Carly Fiorina, retired surgeon Ben Carson and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee -- joins three freshman senators, Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida, in the 2016 race.

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Let the States Make Drug Law

    Howard Wooldridge, a Washington lobbyist, is a former detective and forever Texan on an important mission -- trying to persuade the 535 members of Congress to end the federal war on marijuana.

    Liberals tend to be an easier sell than conservatives. With liberals, Wooldridge dwells on the grossly racist way the war on drugs has been prosecuted.

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Germany, the Green Superpower

    A week at the American Academy in Berlin leaves me with two contradictory feelings: One is that Germany today deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, and the other is that Germany tomorrow will have to overcome its deeply ingrained post-World War II pacifism and become a more serious, activist global power. And I say both as a compliment.

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Catholicism Undervalues Women

    Like a Pringles vendor sounding an alarm about obesity, Pope Francis fashioned himself a feminist last week.

    You are not reading The Onion.

    It was an epic mismatch of messenger and message, and I say that as someone who is thankful for this pope, admires him greatly and believes that a change of tone even without a change in teaching has meaning and warrants celebration.

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