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Trump will quit the race rather than reveal details of his finances

Shortly before Donald Trump jumped into the race for the Republican presidential nomination, I predicted — wrongly, as it turned out — that he wouldn’t run. But that mistake does not deter me. I’m fearlessly ready with another prediction: The Donald will drop out long before the first primaries and caucuses. The reason for Trump’s impending withdrawal is rather simple: He doesn’t want to disclose details of his financial empire. Philip Bump of The Washington Post puts it THIS WAY: The odds that Donald Trump...

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George Will muses on the possibility that Donald Trump is a Democratic mole

Conservative pundit George Will said this yesterday on Fox News Channel:  If Donald Trump were a Democratic mole placed in the Republican Party to disrupt things, how would his behavior be any different? I don’t think it would be. There’s all this loose talk, there’s something to it about the Republican brand. Put him on stage in Cleveland [at the first GOP debate]. He says something hideously inflammatory, which is all he knows how to say, and then what do the other nine people on stage do? Do they either become complicit...

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Too many Americans think they’re more patriotic than most other Americans

As the 4th of July draws near, this seems a perfect time to reflect on some of the more curious aspects of what we call American patriotism. Most of us — 60 percent, according to a poll of a few years ago — consider ourselves just as patriotic as the next guy. But fully one-third of Americans say they are more patriotic than most other people. Forty-three percent of Republicans in general and 51 percent of self-described Tea Party types in particular feel that way. This sense of superior patriotism is also far more common among senior...

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If the GOP loses the culture wars, its tricks on economic issues will be laid bare

Here are the trends: President Obama is rising in the polls. Americans generally approve of recent Supreme Court rulings on gay marriage and Obamacare. The Confederate flag has fallen into great disfavor, and Americans are more sensitive to the persistence of white racism in our society. Donald Trump’s wild disparagements of immigrants have made him a pariah. Much of the populace is laughing at the clown car full of GOP presidential candidates. Yes, these and other developments are evidence that the long-term right-wing offensive in the...

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Respectable conservative sees Christianity in decline, prescribes a new awakening

New York Times columnist David Brooks is a moderate conservative who’s generally sympathetic with the cause of American Christianity. He’s definitely not the kind of fire-breather so common among the worst elements of the Religious Right. Even if you disagree with Brooks, as I often do, he’ll usually make you think. His stuff is not as easily dismissed as the rants you hear from some of the loud-mouths on the right-wing fringe. The latest piece from Brooks suggests that he’s feeling at least a little down about what he...

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It used to be that time was God’s way of keeping everything from happening at once

The headline above sounds like a joke, but it might not be. The rush of events in the 21st century seems perceptibly faster, doesn’t it? The world’s storehouse of knowledge multiplies at an ever faster rate these days. And the pace of change — social, political, scientific and otherwise — actually is gaining speed. Variations on this theme are on the minds of lots of people in these waning days of June, 2015. Events of the past few weeks — beginning with the Charleston Massacre and ending with the Supreme...

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OK, I admit that I dissed Justice Scalia simply because he dissed my blog

  You’re probably aware by now that Justice Antonin Scalia waxed highly indignant, if not at least a little insane,  in his dissent this past Friday from the Supreme Court ruling that legalizes gay marriage in all 50 states. But you may not have noticed that Scalia’s dissent included his claim that the majority opinion in the case at issue was “pure applesauce.” Well, I noticed it — and I took great umbrage. When I launched this blog seven a half years and 12,000 posts ago, I named it Applesauce. The...

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Conservatism has more branches than a forest full of trees

From time to time, this blog receives comments that wrongly label certain right-wingers as “neo-conservatives” — but I rarely bother anymore to correct such mistakes. Not all conservatives are neo-conservatives. Wikipedia says this: “The term ‘neoconservative’ refers to those who made the ideological journey from the anti-Stalinist left to the camp of American conservatism. Neoconservatives frequently advocate the promotion of democracy and promotion of American national interest in international affairs,...

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Justice Scalia is perhaps even more crazy than you had feared

Through most of Antonin Scalia’s 29-year tenure as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, I’ve tended to admire his intellect — even when I disagreed with his votes and opinions. But lately, I have to wonder if he hasn’t flipped his proverbial wig. The anger and lack of cogent reasoning in Scalia’s bizarre dissent last week from the majority opinion in the gay-marriage case has more than a few people buzzing about whether he has taken leave of his senses. Take, for  example, his claim that the court is...

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Chief Justice John Roberts seems to forget that justice delayed is justice denied

In his dissent from the Supreme Court’s majority opinion that legalizes gay marriage in all 50 states, Chief Justice John Roberts suggests that minority rights in this country should be withheld until most people find them acceptable. One shudders to think how long landmark court rulings in cases involving blacks, women and other minorities would have been delayed if Roberts’ attitude had prevailed all along. Roberts said this: Indeed, however heartened the proponents of same-sex marriage might be on this day, it is worth...

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So much for the myth that Obama is a Muslim

President Obama spoke this morning in celebration of the Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states. But wait! There are still millions of Americans who suspect or firmly believe that Barack Hussein Obama is a Muslim. And don’t Muslims strongly oppose homosexuality? This doesn’t add up, does it? How can our supposedly Muslim president celebrate the legalization of same-sex marriage? I eagerly await efforts by the crazies to explain this...

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An outbreak of revolutionary rhetoric from the far right seems likely soon

On his Facebook page, U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, an Illinois Republican, expressed disappointment today with the Supreme Court ruling upholding Obamacare. Nothing surprising in that. Kinzinger took care to note that he respects the high court. And his comments were not exactly rabble-rousing — at least, they apparently weren’t intended to be. Unfortunately, at least one of the comments Kinzinger received mentioned the possibility of armed revolt against the government. The guy put it this way: “[I]t’s time for the...

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