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Other Commentaries

The press — the people’s best friend

Thomas Jefferson was a severe critic of the newspapers of his time. Still he said: “Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.” I agree. Our free press is not ...

Waving a red flag in Dixie

COLUMBIA, S.C. — As the entire nation reeled from the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, South Carolinians were met with news that a local teen had made violent, racist videos and threatened to shoot up his high school. Red flags don’t come much brighter. In conversations across ...

Polluting the social environment

“It is remarkable by how much a pinch of malice enhances the penetrating power of an idea or an opinion. Our ears, it seems, are wonderfully attuned to sneers and evil reports about our fellow men.” — Eric Hoffer WASHINGTON — It is 1,218 miles from the Aaron Bessant Park ...

Neither left nor right

America is sick. Just about everybody recognizes it, and we didn’t need two more mass shootings to convince anybody of anything. Most Americans think the country is on the wrong track, despite a roaring economy. You can blame Donald Trump, but Americans have been unsatisfied with the ...

Debates show Obama’s presidency has shrunk

Whatever happened to Barack Obama? For a while there, no modern figure was supposed to be as consequential. It’s difficult to describe the hype in the early days of the Obama era. Time, Newsweek and countless deep thinkers cast him as a 21st century Lincoln or FDR. Some literally saw a ...

A necessary ingredient of political success

Nationalism has a bad name. For many Americans, mention of the word summons up visions of Hitler and Nazism. Some condemn nationalism as thoughtless bragging that your nation is better than others, which should be discouraged just as second graders are told not to brag, lest they hurt ...