Other Commentaries

No king but Caesar

In September 1862, a group of Chicago ministers sent a “memorial” (or long letter) to President Abraham Lincoln in which they made a theological argument for the elimination of slavery. Lincoln had also heard from Southern clergy who used the same scriptures to justify slavery’s ...

Don’t cry for outgoing Sen. Al Franken

In the wake of a growing pile of sexual misconduct accusations, Sen. Al Franken, Comedian of Minnesota, was pressed by a majority of Senate Democrats to resign. When the number of accusers reached a critical mass, “They turned on one of their party’s most popular figures with stunning ...

Francisco Franco and the 2018 Republicans

To understand the discouraging plight for Republicans heading into the 2018 midterm elections, it might help to recall a joke popular in Spain in 1975, when Generalissimo Francisco Franco, that nation’s long-ruling and ruthless dictator, lingered for endless weeks on his ...

Israel: Trump puts fact ahead of fiction

The most exhausting thing about the Middle East — except for the bloodshed, poverty, tyranny, etc. — is that it refuses to conform to how it’s described in the West. It’s like journalists, diplomats and politicians want to announce a football game, but the players keep insisting on ...

Jerusalem: The Eternal City

We are told that President Trump is ready to move the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The threats from around the world, including locally, are pouring in faster than a burst dam. How absolutely ridiculous! Every country in the world gets to name its capital. Jerusalem has ...

Brian Ross should be fired

When you’re the source for “breaking news” but it turns out to be “faking news,” you’re in trouble. ABC News “chief investigative correspondent” Brian Ross reported on retired Army Gen. Michael Flynn’s plea deal with special counsel Robert Mueller by claiming that Flynn is ...

Politicians selective on when debt, deficits matter

If you’re a normal person who pays attention to politics, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Washington can’t decide whether deficits are bad or not. Well, I have one easy trick that will help you make sense of it all. In Washington, when you hear people complain that this or that ...

The nutball the Neocons wanted in NATO

Even interventionists are regretting some of the wars into which they helped plunge the United States in this century. Among those wars are Afghanistan and Iraq, the longest in our history; Libya, which was left without a stable government; Syria’s civil war, a six-year human rights ...

The real target of Republican tax bills: Feds, Eds and Meds bloat

Are the current Republican tax bills, passed by the House and Senate and being reconciled in conference committee, an attack on “feds, eds and meds”? That’s a reference to the government, health care and education jobs that local Democrats in Dayton, Ohio, told Sen. Sherrod Brown have ...

Woman was first to disclose Pearl Harbor

There are events in history that no one alive will ever forget. But time moves on and those who will never forget eventually leave this earth. The rest of us know it only from the history books. One of those events was the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Only a handful of Americans alive ...

The general and the president

This is a tale of FBI power misused and presidential trust misplaced. Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump’s confidant on matters pertaining to national security from June 2015 to February 2017 and his short-lived national security adviser in the White House, pleaded ...

Memo to Jared Kushner

President Trump’s son-in-law and designated Middle East peace envoy, Jared Kushner, told the Brookings Institution’s Saban Forum that a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians is key to solving larger goals, such as stopping Iranian aggression and Islamic extremism. If he ...

Pyongyang on the Prairie

A criminal justice system that operates in the dark is arbitrary, unjust and criminal. In Oklahoma this year, a Kafkaesque set of sealed motions, secret orders and closed-door hearings completely shut out a criminal defendant, his public defenders and the public. A trial judge served as ...

Starving the beast

One way to kill a predatory animal is to deny it sustenance. The tax-cut bill passed by the Senate, if it clears a conference with the House and President Trump signs it, may be the first step toward starving the big government beast. Reporting on the Senate vote early Saturday morning ...

No, Michael Flynn didn’t violate Logan Act

In December 2016, Michael Flynn was three weeks from becoming the national-security adviser to the next president of the United States. This is a pertinent fact in evaluating the conduct underlying his plea deal with Robert Mueller. Flynn admitted to lying to FBI agents about his contacts ...

‘What-aboutism’: The Art of the Spiel

Growing up in Mt. Carmel, my friends and I were masters at diverting attention from our own failures, simply deflecting them to the real or imagined ones of others. For example, when I dropped a perfectly thrown pass in the end zone just inside the fire hydrant that served as an end zone ...

End collusion between state, special interests

Should state government help special interest groups collect political campaign donations? Most Pennsylvanians would instinctively answer “no.” In fact, using government resources for political purposes is illegal for almost everyone. But behind the scenes, government union leaders ...

Understanding Republicans and their marriage to tax cuts

It’s important for us to remember that even though President Lyndon B. Johnson, a Democrat, successfully lobbied the nation and eventually signed into law the historic civil rights laws a half-century ago, a higher percentage of congressional Republicans than congressional Democrats voted for ...

Trump presidency better than Twitter feed

The president of the United States wakes up some mornings seemingly determined to convince as many people as possible that he’s unsuited to high office. Fortunately for him, he has a Twitter account allowing him to act on this impulse immediately and without any filter. Recently, Trump ...

NY Times does a super PAC imitation

It was crazy last week, so you might have missed the news that The New York Times decided to operate like a super PAC. Here’s what happened. The Times’ editorial board changed the bio on the opinion section’s Twitter account to inform the public that it was “temporarily taking over” ...