Scott Rasmussen from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Mon, 11 Dec 2017 06:42:23 -0800 Scott Rasmussen from Creators Syndicate a6a20fd90caf7b227136fcacea72b45b It Was A Woman Who First Addressed the Nation About Pearl Harbor for 12/07/2017 Thu, 07 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>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.</p> <p>One of those events was the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Only a handful of Americans alive today actually remember the day President Franklin Roosevelt said would forever live in infamy. Even fewer remember that the first Administration spokesperson to address the nation that day was not the president, but First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 07, 2017</p> 744f4b285eaf42fc0f454909e34e0c4c What If Roy Moore Wins? for 11/23/2017 Thu, 23 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0800 <p>When Donald Trump appointed Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to serve as Attorney General, it was widely assumed that his permanent replacement would be a Republican. But the scandals and allegations surrounding Republican nominee Roy Moore have challenged that assumption.</p> <p>It would be a stunning turn of events for a Democrat to win in a state Donald Trump won by 28 percentage points. If that happens, as I noted last week, Democrats might win control of the Senate in 2018.</p> <p>But what would it mean if Roy Moore wins?<p>Updated: Thu Nov 23, 2017</p> 72910a34350431e4e7bd1362bde71ed0 Democrats Have a Clear Path to Senate Majority in 2018 for 11/16/2017 Thu, 16 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Until recently, it looked like Republicans were almost certain to retain control of the U.S. Senate following the 2018 mid-term elections. Many commentators noted that Nancy Pelosi's team might have a shot at winning control of the House. But the Senate was different. Only a third of the Senators stand for election each cycle and the GOP was protected by a very favorable electoral map.</p> <p>Only one GOP Senator (Nevada's Dean Heller) is running for re-election in a state won by Hillary Clinton. The only other soft spot in the GOP lineup is Arizona, where Senator Jeff Flake's fights with President Trump made it impossible for him to win re-election. Flake dropped out and there is an open seat in this toss-up state.</p> <p>But, Republicans assured themselves, even if the Democrats win both Arizona and Nevada, they still end up only with a 50-50 tie in the Senate. In that case, Vice President Mike Pence would cast the tie-breaking vote to keep the GOP in charge.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 16, 2017</p> cc125b3098020920ddd9e04afca09858 Will Trump Become Fourth Consecutive President To Lose Congress? for 11/09/2017 Thu, 09 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Tuesday's election results suggest that Democrats have a reasonable chance of winning control of the House in 2018. If that happens, Donald Trump would become the fourth consecutive president to enter the White House with his party in control of Congress and then lose Congress during his tenure.</p> <p>In some ways, this seems to be the new normal. After all, it's a pattern that has existed for a full generation since a young Bill Clinton won the White House in 1992. But, it's truly extraordinary in the longer arc of American history. In fact, prior to 1992, it had never even happened twice in a row.</p> <p>Obviously, there's no certainty that the Republicans will lose control of the House in 2018. And, of course, it's not just Trump. Many Republican voters reserve a special level of hatred for the GOP establishment headquartered in Congress. Regardless of who they blame, the reality is that Republicans promised a lot would happen if voters put them in charge. And it hasn't. They couldn't even repeal Obamacare, despite seven years of promises to do just that.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 09, 2017</p> 7091db3a224c294ec87117d020dc3638 America's Founding Ideals Are Worth Fighting For for 11/02/2017 Thu, 02 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>These are tough times to be optimistic about America. Terror attacks in New York City, mass shootings in Las Vegas and campus violence against targeted speakers fill the news. Rather than addressing the problems, partisan politicos act as if each tragedy is merely a platform for their own talking points.</p> <p>Despite this, I am optimistic about America's future. Pessimistic about our politics, to be sure, but optimistic about our nation.</p> <p>There are two core reasons for this optimism. The first is that politicians don't lead the nation. There are countless more effective ways that we can work together in communities and create a better America. Community problem solving is all around us, although we rarely pause to consider its power.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 02, 2017</p> c44c3d53d18872b21a87c19669eb8290 Freedom of Speech Does Not Guarantee Understanding for 10/26/2017 Thu, 26 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Daily Beast columnist Jay Michaelson is unhappy with America's football fans.</p> <p>In a thoughtful column, he argues that "kneeling for the anthem is a sign of respect, not disrespect, for our country and the values it stands for." He adds that "To protest &#8212; for whatever cause, left or right wing &#8212; is to make real the best ideals of America: freedom of speech, democracy, the rule of law. Protesting brings those ideals into reality." <p>Updated: Thu Oct 26, 2017</p> dc7d5a4c7ceea005e69d9c42138c8368 Trump Proving Politicians Not As Important As They Think They Are for 10/19/2017 Thu, 19 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Shortly after World War II, Congress passed a law requiring the federal government to assume responsibility for managing the economy. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy claimed that government stewardship was responsible for the post-War economic boom. In those heady days, there was even talk about how economists had learned to fine-tune the economy.</p> <p>Looking back, the hubris of the 1960s governing elite seems laughable. Studies have shown that the best economic models of that era failed to predict most of what actually happened. We know today that the post-War boom had more to do with pent-up demand and America's global dominance than government policies. By the 1970s, government policymakers seemed unable to understand or address the combination of high inflation and growing unemployment.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 19, 2017</p> 2af13973ed20d1c9637e7f3b05ac4360 The Gun Control Debate is Not About Guns for 10/12/2017 Thu, 12 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Every time a horrific event like the Las Vegas massacre takes place, it is followed by a frustrating and futile debate about the merits of gun control. People on both sides of the debate trot out talking points and talk right past each other without listening.</p> <p>Much of the frustration comes from the fact that everybody would like to do something to prevent such disasters from every happening again. But, the overwhelming desire to do something is matched by the pragmatic reality that no new law, policy initiative, or government program could have prevented the gruesome events of Las Vegas. As a result, the discussion moves on to other forms of gun violence with the same sense of frustration.</p> <p>The ongoing frustration stems from the fact that the debate is not really about guns. It's about who you trust.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 12, 2017</p> 596d1193b56f832aacdf345c3a0ba2dc That Helpless, Hopeless Feeling for 10/05/2017 Thu, 05 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Horrific, sickening and tragic are just a few of the words I've heard used to describe the news from Las Vegas. But none of them really capture the reality that such acts are utterly beyond comprehension. As I write this, official sources are still looking for a motive, but no rational motive can possibly exist. Whatever made the killer take 59 lives made sense only in some delusional world most humans can't come close to understanding.</p> <p>After the words and the images sink in, it still doesn't seem real. But we want to know why &#8212; who or what can we blame? What can we do to prevent this sort of thing from ever happening again?</p> <p>That's when the hopelessness sets in. We want an easy answer, but there isn't one. In fact, while it's hard to admit, there probably aren't any answers at all. It's happened before and will happen again. Humans have done terrible and sickening and horrific things to others throughout recorded history.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 05, 2017</p> 0fcee7fbffb9c4030eaaaa2b8ac2d6d1 There is No Proper Mix of Government, Community and Business for 09/21/2017 Thu, 21 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>I grew up in suburbia, and have spent various parts of my life in small towns, a Southern city and in rural Indiana. Moving may be a hassle, but new experiences in new locations provide wonderful opportunities to learn and explore. That's certainly true as I adjust to life in New York City, a vastly different environment than anything I've tried before.</p> <p>Living in the city, my wife and I have encountered government as never before. We rely on the subway to get around, enjoy strolls through Central Park, routinely see police officers and traffic cops and have heard about city regulations on just about everything we ask about. Many of the rules and regulations (but not all) make sense.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 21, 2017</p> 3c6f4fe0607e388ea48b122eb8cabc9d There's More to Governing Than Government for 09/14/2017 Thu, 14 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>There is a mistaken notion deeply embedded in our national political dialogue that society is naturally divided into public and private sectors. The public sector is thought of as the vehicle for governing society and looking out for the common good. The private sector is where people merely look out for themselves.</p> <p>Not surprisingly, this view is promoted aggressively by those in the public sector. In this false view of the world, governing is the responsibility of government alone. The vast majority of Americans who work and live in the private sector are told they should study the issues, get involved in campaigns and vote. After that, the political elites want us to get out of the way and let the so-called experts run things.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 14, 2017</p> 5925f3bc1486223df4a98391fe22ea60 The Freedom To Walk Away Holds Politicians Accountable for 09/07/2017 Thu, 07 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>This weekend, the Rasmussens are moving to New York City. While the process of moving is horrendous, the thrill of anticipating a new chapter in our life is exhilarating.</p> <p>Moving to a new home is an all-American activity. Roughly one out of nine people do it every year. Many stay within the same state, but we'll be among the nearly 5 million Americans who move across state lines to establish a new home.</p> <p>Some of our friends have been puzzled by the move. One noted that we managed to pick the only place that has a higher tax burden than our current home state of New Jersey. That's true, of course, but there are offsetting benefits in terms of career, entertainment and lifestyle opportunities. It may not be for everyone, but for us right now New York is the greatest city in the world.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 07, 2017</p> d86d6ff2671c42f71033dbc020ba3c9d The Deeper Currents of American Politics for 08/31/2017 Thu, 31 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Back when I was a pollster, I would explain that following the daily polls was like watching a heavy rainfall on the surface of a river. There's a lot of action and noise and splashing around, but nothing that gives you a real sense of where the river is going. For that, you must look beneath the surface where the current keeps moving steadily onward and the storm is barely noticed.</p> <p>The same logic applies to the state of American politics today. It's easy to get caught up in the sound and fury of the daily news cycle, but that tells us more about our dysfunctional political system than it does about the future of our nation. When you look a little deeper and explore the currents of American society, you quickly discover that most people are moving steadily onward with their daily lives and barely notice the political storms.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 31, 2017</p> 5a12fe63c03fdafbca06b2bc8993c901 By Obsessing About Extremes, Media Loses Touch With America for 08/24/2017 Thu, 24 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>The America portrayed on the evening news is unrecognizable to most Americans.</p> <p>Rather than reflecting the realities of a complex and dynamic nation, the national news media seems to treat real events as little more than a Rorschach test for measuring what the political activists think is going on. Then, in solemn tones, the television presenters pass on the absurd interpretations that become a national narrative.</p> <p>In TV-Newsland, America is presented as a hopelessly divided nation where hate-filled people battle over how they can get the government to give them what they want. Extremists of all political persuasions are presented as reflecting the real views of everyday Americans. It's a scary world in which every symbolic event can be used to demonstrate that most Americans are stupid, racist, socialist or whatever other condescending view the elites wish to project.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 24, 2017</p> 47427b212365d0e00744a369a0205985 To Move Our Nation Forward, Lift Up America's Founding Ideals for 08/17/2017 Thu, 17 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In the decade leading up to America's War for Independence, much of the drama took place in and around Boston. Sam Adams was the ringleader on the colonial side and public enemy number one to the British. He had been thinking about liberty and independence since he attended Harvard decades before. He was motivated partly because what we would now call the Regulatory State targeted his family because of their political views.</p> <p>Eventually, British troops were sent to occupy Boston and keep things from getting out of hand. Naturally, the occupying force was hated and the tension between colonists and Redcoats grew. Recognizing how angry the Bostonians were, Adams worked hard to keep them from erupting into an angry mob.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 17, 2017</p> 92edc66ca16ad62d0c7f6a2b9c9545c2 White Supremacists, America Was Never Yours for 08/14/2017 Mon, 14 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The White Supremacists who marched in Charlottesville seemed to think that their movement is committed to taking America back. They are mistaken. They cannot take America back because it was never theirs in the first place.</p> <p>It's true that the legacies of slavery and centuries of legalized racism have long tarnished our nation's history. That reality has always stood in conflict with our nation's founding ideals of freedom, equality, and self-governance. For too many years, white Americans simply ignored the contradiction that they didn't want to see.<p>Updated: Mon Aug 14, 2017</p> e41663eab84caa2d7611f044b52962c6 Regionalization of Democratic Party Benefits GOP in Midterm Elections for 08/10/2017 Thu, 10 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>The Democratic Party has, for the moment, become a regional party.</p> <p>Only 449 counties across the nation are reliably Democratic. Five times that many &#8212; 2,226 &#8212; are reliably Republican. The Democratic counties are generally found along the coasts and in large urban areas.</p> <p>Nowhere is the party's abandonment of rural America more apparent than in West Virginia. For most of the 20th century, this was a solidly Democratic state. In the first presidential election of the 21st century, however, George W. Bush carried the state and it's voted Republican at the presidential level ever since. Last year, Donald Trump won the state with a crushing 42-percentage point victory over Hillary Clinton.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 10, 2017</p> f7e3883cf1b5e18913efcff3aee2252a Automation is Nothing New for 08/03/2017 Thu, 03 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>In recent years, some people have become convinced that the digital revolution will lead to mass unemployment. The solution, they say, is to provide a Universal Basic Income so that every American receives enough money to live on whether they work or not. The hope of some UBI dreamers is that many people will use this freedom for intellectual and artistic pursuits.</p> <p>For most people, however, it is the fear of automation that drives discussion of the idea of a guaranteed income. And, make no mistake about it, automation is already reshaping the workforce on a daily basis. The next wave will be especially disruptive of entry-level positions and more. Research conducted by the Oxford Martin School estimates that 86 percent of food service jobs are at high risk of being automated by 2030. So are 75 percent of transportation and warehousing jobs; 67 percent of real estate, rental, and leasing jobs; 67 percent of retail jobs; and 62 percent of manufacturing jobs.</p> <p>What is lost in the discussion, however, is that we've been through this before. During the 20th century, 10 million farm jobs were lost due to technology and other innovations. It may not seem high-tech today, but replacing horses and mules with gas-powered tractors had a devastating effect on the job prospects for farm laborers. In 1910, fully one-third of Americans worked on a farm. That fell to just over 1 percent in the year 2000.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 03, 2017</p> d149ea8cc7befe9edce0685121c1b38d Will Trump's Low Approval Ratings Doom GOP in 2018? for 07/27/2017 Thu, 27 Jul 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In normal political times, a president with a 40 percent Job Approval rating would be a tremendous drag on his party in the midterm elections. But these are not normal times. A look back at what happened on Election Day last November suggests that President Trump's low ratings will not necessarily doom his party in 2018.</p> <p>To begin with, just 38 percent of voters had a favorable opinion of Donald Trump on the day he was elected. And, only 40 percent said they would be optimistic if he won the presidency. Yet, despite that distinct lack of enthusiasm, 46 percent of all voters cast their ballot to elect Donald Trump.<p>Updated: Thu Jul 27, 2017</p> c6663f1502ca6a838876269b6324fece Remembering Apollo 1 for 07/20/2017 Thu, 20 Jul 2017 00:00:00 -0700 <p>On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong famously took "one small step for a man" and "one giant leap for mankind." He and Buzz Aldrin stepped into the history books that day as the living embodiment of an amazing technological achievement. We'll hear a lot more about that trip in the coming years as we approach the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing.</p> <p>The story will be told of the U.S. responding to the Sputnik satellite and the fear that gripped many when Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit the earth. Our nation caught up when John Glenn took three trips around the earth in Freedom 7. After that, stunning breakthroughs became routine until the Apollo 11 mission than finally put two men on the moon.</p> <p>As the narrative unfolds, however, we're not likely to hear much about Apollo 1. And, it's a story that should be told as a reminder that great accomplishments come with great risks and a high cost.<p>Updated: Thu Jul 20, 2017</p>