Columns

Leader of free world is threat to democracy, world

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s end-of-year interview with The New York Times at his Florida golf club has kicked off 2018 in a particularly disturbing way. Beyond his repetitious insistence that there has been “no collusion” between his 2016 campaign and the Russians, it is his ...

Button, button, who’s got button?

In the early evening of Jan. 2, the president of the United States tweeted this boast: “North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.’ Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear ...

Accusers must answer/To tell you again/Who’s mad?

“Everybody’s got to believe in something. I believe I’ll have another beer.” — W.C. Fields Having lost an election they thought they would win and unable to get over it; having been staggeringly wrong about their predictions that a Trump presidency would be the end of global ...

Trump made some accomplishments

Contrary to what many predicted, President Trump's end-of-year accomplishment list isn't that skimpy. That's an analytical observation. For many, particularly liberals and Democrats, Trump's first year hasn't been merely bad. It's a great evil, a grievous wound to the American body ...

Don’t start dancing on Bannon’s grave just yet

President Donald Trump's official statement about Steve Bannon -- the lack of exclamation points made it seem as if it might not be 100 percent his own words - is welcome. The president distanced himself from his former aide and included this dig: "We have many great Republican members of ...

Make new year’s resolution to own every second

The Church of the Resurrection was filled past capacity. The attendees were a who’s who of the community, from educators to engineers, from the communities of Houghton/Hancock to Calumet and back to L’Anse, elementary students to retirees. If I were a stranger arriving late, I would have ...

Trump making little progress on promises

Almost one year in, it’s time for another update for Trump voters on his election promises: 1. He told you he’d cut your taxes, and that the super-rich like him would pay more. You bought it. But his new tax law does the opposite. By 2027, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, ...

2010s more like Trump’s ideal America than Obama’s

One of my favorite Christmastime presents is the Census Bureau's release of its annual population estimates for all of the states. Comparison of the April 1, 2010, Census Bureau enumerations and the June 30, 2017, estimates for the states shows how each state fared in the Obama years, seeing as ...

New York Times covering over-regulation is news

It may not be exactly the coming of the Messiah, but seeing a front-page story in The New York Times about over-regulation certainly feels like a breakthrough of note. Titled “One Apple Orchard and 5,000 Government Rules,” the story focuses on the Indian Ladder Farms apple orchard in ...

Beauty 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 ...

President unable to destroy enemies by making friends

During his winning campaign to capture the White House, Democrat Barack Obama was harshly critical of the White House record of his predecessor George W. Bush. But once in office, Obama — like nearly all presidents before him — heeded the sage advice of a great chief executive also from ...

Odds not always right but fun to watch

President Trump is up 3 percent! I refer to the betting odds. Gamblers (mostly in Europe because political bets are legal there) now give the president a 53 percent chance of finishing his first term. That’s it — they barely think he’ll complete four years. This must seem wrong to ...

Inequality created by power elite is feeding America

Inequality doesn’t just come out of the blue; it’s intentionally created by decisions that elites make — usually behind closed doors, so those knocked down don’t know what (or who) hit them. Take America’s 4 million fast-food workers, whose average pay hovers around a miserly $300 a ...

Source of weirdness is ignorance

Ever since Donald Trump touched the Orb, praise be upon it, I’ve been making “This is what you get when you touch the Orb” jokes. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I’ll tell you: On his trip to the Middle East in May, President Trump, along with the Saudi king and the ...

Immense challenge looming with coming of new year

WASHINGTON — The nation faces a new year with an immense challenge. It is somehow to find a way to restore faith in its political system and leaders after one of its most divisive and bitter years, marked by a breakdown in the national conversation. Radical changes in the means of ...

Treading Gently Into New Year

In the first hour of Christmas Eve, our 9-year-old grandson and his parents arrived here in Ohio after two long flights from their home in hurricane-ravaged St. Croix. His recent life included 10 weeks without electricity in the U.S. territory full of U.S. citizens. In advance of his visit, ...

Try little tenderness in ’18 to change hearts, minds

DUBLIN, Ireland — “Try a Little Tenderness” is a song written by Jimmy Campbell, Reg Connelly and Harry M. Woods. According to Wikipedia, it was first recorded on Dec. 8, 1932, by the Ray Noble Orchestra (with vocals by Val Rosing). Probably these names are as unfamiliar to us today as ...

Consequences of Embracing Secularism

ANGLESEY, Wales — The UK Daily Mail has again published a story about a subject that has become a recurring theme this time of year. No, not Christmas, but rather drunkenness, though the holiday is used as its primary excuse. Pictures accompanying the story show young people collapsing in ...

Team effort needed to rebound from disheartening year

Terror attacks on American soil, mass murders in church, widespread serial sexual assaults, unwarranted police shootings, continued gang activity in major cities, nationwide political schisms — 2017 news headlines were both frightening and disheartening. Will 2018 be any better? The truth ...

Special Kind of Giving

Several years ago, we had a problem with a merchant. We declined to pay a disputed bill and got a call from a collection agency. The caller was both aggressive and cagey, declining to tell me who he was. I handed the phone to my lawyer husband, who listened for a minute or two and then turned ...