Category Archives: National Columnist

Column: Ben Carson’s version of himself

Ben Carson, who formally announced his run for the presidency Monday, is a brilliant surgeon, gifted storyteller and charismatic speaker. But modesty is not among his talents. The retired Johns Hopkins professor’s launch video, nearly five minutes long, positions the aspiring Republican presidential nominee right alongside Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. “We can… Continue Reading

Painful ironies in race, politics and lies

Among the many painful ironies in the current racial turmoil is that communities scattered across the country were disrupted by riots and looting because of the demonstrable lie that Michael Brown was shot in the back by a white policeman in Missouri — but there was not nearly as much turmoil created by the demonstrable… Continue Reading

Clinton’s Democratic opponents need to smoke her out

By DANA MILBANK Hillary Clinton has had some bad luck lately with revelations about her secret email server and foreign contributors to the Clinton Foundation. But in one crucial area, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination has been blessed with abundant good fortune: her opponents. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont on Thursday became the… Continue Reading

Column: Men wielding power in hellish times

“Wolf Hall,” the Man Booker Prize-winning historical novel about the court of Henry VIII — and most dramatically, the conflict between Thomas Cromwell and Sir Thomas More — is now a TV series (presented on PBS). It is maddeningly good. Maddening because its history is tendentiously distorted, yet the drama is so brilliantly conceived and… Continue Reading

Column: Anti-Trust Law and Lawlessness

We all make mistakes and some of us learn from them. What is even better is to learn from other people’s mistakes, where they pay for those mistakes while we learn free of charge. Many Americans who say that we should learn from other people, especially Europeans, mean that we should imitate what they did.… Continue Reading

Column: A Graham candidacy’s fun factor

In 1994, Lindsey Graham, then a 39-year-old South Carolina legislator, ran for Congress in a district that he said had not elected a Republican since Union guns made it do so during Reconstruction. He promised that in Washington he would be “one less vote for an agenda that makes you want to throw up.” He… Continue Reading

Column: The TPP is an abomination

No, President Obama, Elizabeth Warren isn’t wrong. Obama told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on Tuesday that the populist Democratic senator from Massachusetts is in error in opposing a free-trade agreement his administration negotiated with 11 other Pacific nations. Warren is right: The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is an abomination — not because of the deal itself, and… Continue Reading

Column: Obama’s Nixon doctrine: anointing Iran

In December, President Obama said that he wished to see Iran ultimately become a “very successful regional power.” His wish — a nightmare for the Western-oriented Arab states — is becoming a reality. Consider: — Gulf of Aden: Iran sends a flotilla of warships and weapons-carrying freighters to reinforce the rebels in Yemen — a… Continue Reading

Column: When bootleggers and Baptists converge

Smoking, said England’s King James I in 1604, is “loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, dangerous to the lungs.” Three years later he planted a colony in Jamestown. Its tobacco enhanced the royal treasury until Virginia produced a bumper crop of revolutionaries, including the tobacco farmer George Washington. King… Continue Reading

Column: Chaos in the primaries

Painful as it is to realize that both the Democrats and the Republicans will still be holding their primaries a year from now, that is one of the high prices we pay for democracy. Seldom does the initial “front-runner” in either party’s primaries end up being the actual candidate when election day rolls around. However,… Continue Reading

Column: Mr. Hughes goes to Washington

When postal worker Doug Hughes — otherwise known as the gyrocopter dude — landed his gizmo on the West Lawn of the Capitol, he wasn’t worried about being shot down, he says. He must be a believer in miracles because he might have been shot down — and probably should have been. Horrible as this… Continue Reading

2016 Presidential race: The woman trap

By KATHLEEN PARKER Here we go. If you’re a woman who might prefer someone other than Hillary Clinton as the next president of the United States, you’re a self-loathing, anti-woman traitor. Already, women I know report that they’re feeling the heat from their more-liberal friends. Not a Democrat for Hillary? Good luck leaning forward, at… Continue Reading

America’s new cycle of partisan hatred

By DANA MILBANK After a political rally last week in which Democrats criticized the Obama administration for siding with Republicans on trade, I had a talk about the future of the party with Rep. Alan Grayson, a Florida Democrat who is one of the most ferocious partisans in the House. It does no good, he… Continue Reading

Column: The queen, Hillary, travels by van

See Hillary ride in a van! Watch her meet everyday Americans! Witness her ordering a burrito bowl at Chipotle! Which she did wearing shades, as did her chief aide Huma Abedin, yielding security-camera pictures that made them look (to borrow from Karl Rove) like fugitives on the lam, wanted in seven states for a failed… Continue Reading

Column: The GOP push for a permanent aristocracy

Give credit to Republicans in Congress. They’ve discovered, belatedly, that income inequality is a problem, and they’re no longer proposing to give tax breaks to the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans. Now they are proposing to give tax breaks to the wealthiest two-tenths of 1 percent of Americans. On Tuesday afternoon, the House Rules Committee… Continue Reading

Column: Rolling Stone gathers dirt — on itself

“As we asked ourselves how we could have gotten the story wrong …” Thus read a Rolling Stone editor’s note attached to a post-mortem story on the false story it published last fall about an alleged gang rape by members of University of Virginia’s Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. Such statements extract all the oxygen from… Continue Reading

After another tragedy, signs of progress

By DANA MILBANK It began as yet another sickening case of a black man gunned down by a white cop, shot dead as he ran away after being stopped for a broken taillight. But something very different happened this time: The authorities got it right. After a video surfaced of Officer Michael Slager’s vile actions,… Continue Reading

Containing Iran’s nuclear intoxication

By GEORGE F. WILL This week brings a constitutional moment illustrating a paradox of Barack Obama’s presidency. The catalyst of the drama is legislation proposed by Sen. Bob Corker, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, asserting Congress’ foreign policy responsibilities and prerogatives. The paradox is this: Obama’s disdain for constitutional etiquette — his contempt for… Continue Reading

Column: The Iran deal: What we’ve given up

“Negotiations … to prevent an Iranian capability to develop a nuclear arsenal are ending with an agreement that concedes this very capability …” — Henry Kissinger and George Shultz, The Wall Street Journal, April 8 It was but a year and a half ago that Barack Obama endorsed the objective of abolition when he said… Continue Reading

Column: When everything is a crime

What began as a trickle has become a stream that could become a cleansing torrent. Criticisms of the overcriminalization of American life might catalyze an appreciation of the toll the administrative state is taking on the criminal justice system, and liberty generally. In 2007, professor Tim Wu of Columbia Law School recounted a game played… Continue Reading

Column: Confessions and born-again parenting

For a variety of reasons, I gave up alcohol Jan. 4. I have your attention, don’t I? This is because people who enjoy drinking are always curious about people who stop. I know I always am. And this is so because most regular imbibers, especially us wine drinkers — and especially mothers — worry that… Continue Reading

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