|

Cheer up! The happy season is at hand

  Have the prospects of a Donald Trump presidency bummed you out? Has the rise of the alt-right movement brought on a wave of the blues? Have you become convinced that American politics are on the verge of terminal madness and that society is on the brink  of collapse? Well, social research suggests that relief, temporary though it may be,  is on the way. Happy days will soon be here again, political trends not withstanding. Studies show that the three major holidays of the season — Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s...

read more

Reminder: The War on Christmas starts this Friday

    The day after Thanksgiving is not just Black Friday, the start of the holiday shopping season. It’s also opening day of the annual War on Christmas — or perhaps I should call it the War on the War on Christmas. There is no actual War on Christmas, at least none that should concern us. But there is a fevered battle against an imaginary War on Christmas, with Fox News Channel leading the charge. Phony as it is, I love the War on Christmas. It lays bare the persecution complex among certain Christians who seem to think...

read more

No, we need not respect Donald Trump’s presidency

  A conservative panelist on one of the cable news channels — CNN, I think it was — said the other day that all good Americans should “respect” Donald Trump’s impending presidency. Sorry, pal, but “respect” is exactly the wrong word. I’ll only acknowledge that Trump will soon be inaugurated as our 45th president, but I’m not ready to respect him in any way, shape or form — and with plenty of good reason. For starters, he finished second to Hillary Clinton in the popular vote, by...

read more

Should I apply for a job with the Trump team?

  You may have noticed that a few people who have denounced Donald Trump in no uncertain terms — Mitt Romney, for example — are now under consideration for appointment to important jobs in the new administration. Last spring, Romney called The Donald “a fraud” and “a phony,” among other things. But now the Mittster is said to be a possible appointee to the post of secretary of state. Certain other erstwhile critics of Trump are similarly situated. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who bad-mouthed the...

read more

Don’t expect an especially snowy winter this year

  Without bothering to check the weather forecasts for the coming winter season here in the nation’s heartland, I’m guessing that we won’t see the heavy snows so many of us remember from decades ago. We’re in the latter half of November now, and I’m sure the news wires are carrying plenty of official and semi-official predictions of the weather we can expect once winter arrives. But I’m studiously avoiding such stuff. Rather, I’m looking only at the big picture in trying to make a point...

read more

My war against “media” as a singular is all but lost

  On several occasions over the years, I’ve written here about the ungrammatical and misleading use of the word “media” as a singular rather than a plural. But the misuse has become so widespread that it’s now considered acceptable in some, perhaps even most, quarters. Well, it’s not acceptable to me. “Media” is a Latin word, and it’s plural. Using the word as a singular (“the media is…”) only invites the notion that the media are a monolith. They’re not. There are all kinds of media, many...

read more

Donald Trump has few, if any, firm beliefs

  Trying to figure what Donald John Trump will do in the White House is a daunting task, to put it mildly, and likely will become more so as his presidency becomes a reality. The fundamental problem here is that Trump frequently changes his mind — and usually without bothering to explain the changes. In the 17 months since he announced his presidential candidacy, his positions on everything from immigration to taxes to the minimum wage have shifted and then shifted again. And when he’s questioned about these shifts, he often...

read more

Regarding guns and constitutional realities

    Barack Obama has about 10 weeks left in his presidency, which means time is running short for him to repeal the Second Amendment and seize everyone’s guns, as the National Rifle Association has been warning us for nearly eight years. Or perhaps that’s never been Obama’s intention. The president recently said this: “First of all, the notion that I or Hillary or Democrats or whoever you want to choose are hell-bent on taking away folks’ guns is just not true. And I don’t care how many times the NRA says it. “I’m...

read more

This crazy election was…well, just plain crazy

  A political pundit trying to write a thorough analysis of the 2016 presidential election faces the same dilemma as a mosquito in a nudist colony: Where to begin? Perhaps the greatest irony is that post-mortems on this affair will depend at least in some part on polls — y’know, surveys conducted by the same people who are said to have missed the mark in their pre-election efforts. I haven’t got the time or space available to me to attempt an exhaustive recap of this election or the campaign that preceded it. Still,...

read more

What? More people voted for Hillary, but Trump won?

  If what happened to Hillary Clinton in the presidential election had happened to Donald Trump, he would be howling that the system is rigged. In fact, it IS rigged — by the Electoral College. But Trump seems not to mind, so long as it works to his benefit. This year’s presidential election is the fifth time in American history that the candidate with the second-largest total of popular votes — Trump, in  this case — has been declared the winner. It happened in the 2000 election, when Democrat Al Gore received...

read more

Will Canada build a wall to keep us out?

  The joke in the headline above is a purely defensive measure. If I can’t laugh at the results of the presidential election, I don’t know what I’ll do. As one who has spent much of his life in battle with the establishment, I now find myself discomfited by the fact that I’m actually part of the establishment that proverbially took it in the shorts in yesterday’s election. My fellow victims, if I’m allowed to refer to them in overlapping terms, include the political establishment, the liberal...

read more

For me, Election Day is especially reminiscent

  My first lesson on the importance of Election Day was learned on my father’s lap a few days before my 6th birthday. It was November of 1948, and my dad, a railroad laborer and union man, was listening to presidential election returns on the radio. Incumbent Democrat Harry Truman was widely expected to lose to Republican challenger Tom Dewey. But as I remember it, my dad never doubted that the president would prevail. When my mother and four siblings arose in the morning, I was asleep on my dad’s lap. I later pretended that...

read more
Share: