Columns

Trump’s delusions wreak havoc in own administration

WASHINGTON -- When the late Muhammad Ali repeatedly proclaimed himself "the greatest," referring to his supremacy as a prizefighter, he backed it up with his fists. Over more than a decade, he held the world heavyweight championship three separate times. But in the field of braggadocio, ...

It’s bad out there, but you’re not alone

The young cashier smiled as she requested my driver’s license to prove I was old enough to buy cabernet in Columbus, Ohio. I complied and thanked her for making my day. Something shoved against me, hard, and I teetered. I looked down at the grocery cart pressed against my hip and then at ...

Shocking but not surprising

It should surprise no one that when it comes to sexual harassment, members of Congress and their staffs are treated differently from the rest of us. The Washington Post notes a law in place since 1995 under which anyone accusing a lawmaker of sexual harassment can file a lawsuit, but only if ...

Clintons are just not that into you

I’m still trying to make sense of the news that the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign were the forces behind the infamous “Steele Dossier,” a dodgy document full of hearsay about Donald Trump that was put together by an even dodgier outfit called Fusion GPS, which has ...

When is ‘sexual assault’ not sexual assault?

Let’s look at two pictures side by side and see if we can tell how they’re different. In one panel, we see a famous TV political analyst who apparently had the charming habit of pressing his erect, if clothed, penis against the bodies of young women who worked with and for him. That was ...

How to end crony capitalism

The largest corporations and the richest people in America — who donated billions of dollars to Republican candidates for the House and Senate in the 2016 election — appear on the way to getting what they paid for: a giant tax cut. Speed and secrecy are critical. The quicker Republicans ...

Both parties trying even harder to defeat themselves

Three weeks ago, I wrote a column about how both parties seem determined to lose the next elections. Since then, the pace has accelerated. The clamor is more visible — and more assiduously reported by mainstream media — among the Republicans. George W. Bush and John McCain, who have ...

What’s in a name?

WASHINGTON -- If there's any redeeming news this week, it's that no one will ever forget La David Johnson's name. Johnson, of course, was one of the four U.S. soldiers recently killed in Niger. Apparently his name seemed to slip President Trump's mind when he called Johnson's widow to offer ...

The Holiday That Scares Adults

Editor's Note: Mark Shields is off. The following column is by Lenore Skenazy. “Trick or treat! Trick or treat! Give us something lethal to eat!” That's not the actual rhyme, but from all the warnings about Halloween, you just might think it was. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics ...

A Private Military

We've fought in Afghanistan for 16 years now. Are we making progress? After 9/11, we invaded, overthrew the Taliban, killed Osama Bin Laden and -- stayed. Afghanistan is now America's longest war, ever. President Trump's solution? He'll send several thousand more soldiers. Erik Prince ...

The transformation of Gen. Kelly

Editor’s note: After a bit of a ‘Twilight Zone’ moment yesterday, here is the real column for this week. WASHINGTON -- When retired Marine Corps Gen. John F. Kelly took the job of White House chief of staff, he was widely perceived as a kind of monitor of the erratic behavior of ...

Donald Trump, the poster boy for white privilege

Perhaps you remember Barack Obama's so-called “patriotism problem.” It was that some people said he didn't have any. The claim was based on the flimsiest of evidence: his failure to wear an American flag pin on his lapel and a picture, widely circulated online, that purported to show him ...

Look for Obama to assume a central campaign role

WASHINGTON -- As the presidential campaign heads into its final month, President Obama will be on the trail in behalf of his first-term secretary of state, Hillary Clinton. But in a real sense he also will be stumping for his own legacy. A political clichÈ holds that presidential campaigns ...

‘He Didn’t Even Remember His Name’

His name was La David T. Johnson. His wife's name is Myeshia Johnson. The congresswoman from Florida is Frederica Wilson. You would know none of this from Donald Trump's public statement Wednesday: “I had a very nice conversation with the woman, with the wife, who sounded like a ...

Hashtag MeToo: My daughter and granddaughter, too

While trying not to indulge in schadenfreude over those hypocritical Hollywood elites who've claimed to stand for “women's rights,” only to be accused of sexually harassing them, I noticed a “hashtag MeToo” Twitter account. At hashtag MeToo, women who have been sexually harassed are ...

Bannon only dances during cloudbursts

A Washington lobbyist once told me that the first rule of rainmakers is: “If it starts to rain, dance!” In other words, if you're hired to get something done, by all means take credit for it if it happens, even if you had nothing to do with it. Another version of the same principle is ...

Harvey Weinstein and Feminism

What makes Harvey Weinsteins? The chief of Amazon studios, Roy Price, has now resigned in the wake of allegations that he made lewd comments and propositioned a producer. Lists of accused sexual predators in Hollywood and journalism are circulating on social media. President Donald Trump's ...

Is Trump beginning to unravel?

Last week, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, charged in an interview with the New York Times that Donald Trump was treating his office like “a reality show,” with reckless threats toward other countries that could set the nation “on the ...

Democrats yelp as Trump upholds Constitution

Donald Trump is criticized, often justly, for misstatements of facts and failure to understand the details of public policy. But in two of his most recent controversial actions, he has taken stands upholding the rule of law and undoing the lawless behavior of his most recent predecessor. The ...

#MeToo: Tipping point, or outrage du jour?

WASHINGTON — Depending upon one’s distance from all things Twitter, recent revelations of sexual harassment in Hollywood are either the tipping point we’ve been waiting for — or just another shark attack until the next one. If you’re former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson, whose ...