Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Fri, 06 Dec 2019 15:22:59 -0800 Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate 1b768349468a3aab0b267af773c062be At the NATO Summit, Trump Indulges His Weird Obsessions for 12/05/2019 Thu, 05 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Donald Trump is a volatile personality with a penchant for creating chaos and uncertainty. His impulsive, irascible nature often makes it appear that the only logic to his presidency is whatever event or TV clip happens to grab his attention.</p> <p>But it would be a mistake to regard his presidency as a disorganized mess. It's an organized mess that follows a trio of consistent themes.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 05, 2019</p> 6bd38b2e50322b79b5694a2d1fabbaf8 Rewarding Bad Behavior Is a Recipe for Worse for 11/28/2019 Thu, 28 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Professional football involves systematic violence. On every play, men do things that would get them arrested in other contexts. What makes it a game &#8212; rather than a brawl, a riot or deadly combat &#8212; is that the violence is controlled.</p> <p>There's a penalty for "unnecessary roughness" because roughness must be kept within certain limits. Some types of brutal contact are allowed, but others are forbidden.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 28, 2019</p> c43b26127bd3ae1135e30c4f294b26cc An Option for Republicans: Censure Trump for 11/24/2019 Sun, 24 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>For Republicans who are weary of trying to deny the obvious about Donald Trump and his attempt to force Ukraine's president to give him ammunition against Joe Biden, there is another option. In Thursday's hearing, Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, tried it out.</p> <p>Trump's conduct was "inappropriate," "misguided" and "undermined our national security," Hurd said. But, he suggested, this "bungling" did not rise to the level of an impeachable offense, much less a justification for removing a president. <p>Updated: Sun Nov 24, 2019</p> 46daffcc426174e130b2886bc5994056 Legal Pots Meets the Not-in-My-Backyard Crowd for 11/21/2019 Thu, 21 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The effort to legalize recreational marijuana for adult use has been long, slow and arduous, but in recent years, 11 states have taken that step. The demonization of cannabis, however, has not stopped. It has merely shifted from the state level to the local level &#8212; as not-in-my-backyard activists mobilize to keep pot as far away as possible.</p> <p>In June, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a measure allowing recreational pot, something favored by two-thirds of Illinoisans. But while prohibitionists have lost credibility on the general issue of legalizing weed, they have managed to foment fears in individual communities.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 21, 2019</p> ec9de84d9a5480468775e01bf96216be Trump Was Combating Corruption in Ukraine? Don't Make Me Laugh for 11/17/2019 Sun, 17 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The House Intelligence Committee is called that for good reason: It oversees intelligence matters. And Trump's defenders on the committee think it's their job to insult our intelligence.</p> <p>One of their more novel defenses of how Donald Trump dealt with Ukraine is that he was implacably determined to root out corruption in that country. For sheer gall, that claim is hard to beat. It's as though Bill Clinton had rebutted allegations of an affair with Monica Lewinsky by claiming to be a virgin.<p>Updated: Sun Nov 17, 2019</p> b5cd75ab00f08803547e20f4567bd726 I Told You Obama Was a Moderate for 11/10/2019 Sun, 10 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Who would have ever thought that in his post-presidency years, Barack Obama would take a hard turn to the right? But lately he's earned praise from sharp-edged conservatives while getting the side-eye from progressives.</p> <p>"Good for Obama. (Not sarcastic!)" tweeted Ann Coulter. </p> <p>"What's really nice to hear is Barack Obama standing up for our rights and our values of the First Amendment," said Fox News commentator Tomi Lahren.<p>Updated: Sun Nov 10, 2019</p> 53bdfc12756959d3866edfede26e24d2 Ban Fracking? On Climate Change, Some Democrats Have a Better Idea for 11/07/2019 Thu, 07 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The Trump administration's formal notification that it will abandon the Paris climate agreement should be treated as a huge in-kind contribution to the Democratic Party. It's an emphatic message to anyone who cares about the planet: Do not, under any circumstance, vote Republican in 2020.</p> <p>The Democrats running for president could not be more starkly opposed to Donald Trump. He mocks climate change as a hoax, wants to dig coal until West Virginia is just a vast cavity in the ground, and thinks the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge should be a safe space for oil rigs. The Democrats recognize scientific reality, favor the Paris climate accord and are committed to curbing greenhouse gas emissions.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 07, 2019</p> 893697ae7d62ebe2670889a3382a15da Fiscal Abandon Is a Bipartisan Project for 11/03/2019 Sun, 03 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In 2020, Democrats and Republicans will highlight their differences on a long list of issues, from impeachment to climate change to health care. But they happen to be in perfect accord when it comes to being fiscally reckless. Our elected officials in Washington shower in red ink, douse their morning cereal with red ink and irrigate their lawns with red ink.</p> <p>The Democrats running for president take the view that anything that deserves federal money deserves federal money we don't have. The ante for the Democratic debates is not trillions of dollars; it's tens of trillions.<p>Updated: Sun Nov 03, 2019</p> b8a91a04e2acfd1121ee3fa699bcc12e Trump Makes Life Miserable for Republicans for 10/31/2019 Thu, 31 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Andrew Yang is running for the Democratic nomination for president, but he may have a unique understanding of what it's like to be a Republican member of Congress right now. </p> <p>After accumulating $120,000 in student loan debt to get a Columbia law degree, Yang went to work for a big New York law firm. He quit after "the worst five months of my life," he recently told The Washington Post. "Working at a law firm was like a pie-eating contest, and if you won, your prize was more pie."<p>Updated: Thu Oct 31, 2019</p> aa7786d5e296a5f1ab9416aa3dff7300 Trump Keeps Doing Favors for Putin for 10/27/2019 Sun, 27 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Under fire from both Democrats and Republicans in Congress, Donald Trump bitterly abandoned his plan to hold the next summit of the Group of Seven industrialized nations at one of his Florida resorts. But he has another idea for the meeting that he has not given up: inviting Vladimir Putin.</p> <p>It's one of those Trump ideas that address no obvious need and would yield no likely benefit. It's also one that pits him against most of the other members of the G-7. At the August gathering in Biarritz, France, the president insisted on pressing the issue: "I think it would be better to have Russia inside the tent than outside the tent."<p>Updated: Sun Oct 27, 2019</p> 7186fb251fb61836db21af858694d15f The Vast Deceptions of 'Medicare for All' for 10/24/2019 Thu, 24 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Elizabeth Warren took a pounding in the recent Democratic debate for her lack of candor on "Medicare for All." Asked whether it would require the middle class to pay more in taxes, she was a study in wriggly evasion. But that was no surprise. The selling of "Medicare for All" depends on a large amount of deception.</p> <p>The name itself is deeply misleading. The "for all" part may be accurate, but the "Medicare" is not.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 24, 2019</p> 546776e5731d78559388704b7166d383 Will the Supreme Court or Congress Ban Discrimination Against Gays? for 10/20/2019 Sun, 20 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>For 55 years, federal law has banned employment discrimination on the basis of sex. If you're a woman, you can't be denied a job because an employer thinks it's not suitable for women. The law hasn't always been obeyed or enforced as it should be, but the basic rule is clear.</p> <p>What isn't clear is a question now before the U.S. Supreme Court: whether the 1964 Civil Rights Act also applies to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Until now, it hasn't been interpreted that way. So a company can't refuse to hire someone because she's a woman, but it can refuse to hire her because she's a lesbian.<p>Updated: Sun Oct 20, 2019</p> e1e3a112e065fa66058868621b2a7f99 Bill Barr to Nonbelievers: Go to Hell for 10/17/2019 Thu, 17 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Attorney General William Barr believes fervently in the free exercise of religion &#8212; for religious believers, or at least for those who fall within the "Judeo-Christian" category. But for anyone whose exercise of religious freedom involves rejecting religion, he harbors a distinct hostility.</p> <p>He made his feelings clear in a recent lecture at the University of Notre Dame's de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture. Thomas Jefferson wrote that "it does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." Barr doesn't see things that way.</p> <p>Jefferson thought the government should not tell Americans how or even whether to worship. Barr, by contrast, has no reservation about using his Cabinet post to preach the indispensable value of Christianity and the bottomless evils of religious skepticism. He treats the absence of faith as a threat &#8212; not only to believers but also to our entire society and system of government.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 17, 2019</p> bdbb8cb597f1299d252389ea69c0a436 The Republican Betrayal of Ukraine for 10/03/2019 Thu, 03 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Not so long ago, congressional Republicans strenuously opposed the Russian conquest of Crimea, saw an urgent need to help Ukraine fight back and castigated the president of the United States for withholding the military aid it needed. What ever happened to those guys?</p> <p>Donald Trump's July 25 phone call has ignited a controversy over whether he abused his office by trying to coerce the president of Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden. A whistleblower reported getting "information from multiple U.S. government officials that the president of the United States is using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 U.S. election."</p> <p>Trump's effort to obtain incriminating material about Biden does not seem to concern GOP members of Congress. That isn't surprising. What is surprising is how indifferent they are to Trump's betrayal of a country whose territorial integrity and independence they once championed so fervently.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 03, 2019</p> 5d9ec492ea1eae255ee316e93e00bac0 Trump's Strategy: Fighting Dirty for 09/26/2019 Thu, 26 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>"Never wrestle with a pig," says the old maxim. "You both get dirty, and the pig likes it." That's the risk facing Democrats who hope to impeach and remove the president or defeat him at the polls. But sometimes, pig wrestling is a task that cannot be avoided.</p> <p>Donald Trump is not typical of politicians or human beings. When accused of wrongdoing that they actually committed, most of them would either deny the behavior or admit and repent of it. Trump is unusual because his defense is not that he didn't do it, or that it wasn't bad, but that there are no standards of good and bad that mean anything.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 26, 2019</p> 47e596b1edee7909345c64a4d1a39517 Beto's Boneheaded Call for Gun Confiscation for 09/22/2019 Sun, 22 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In an IQ contest with Beto O'Rourke, I would guess, Donald Trump would finish a distant second. But in tweeting Wednesday that, when it comes to gun legislation, "Dummy Beto made it much harder to make a deal," Trump actually had a point.</p> <p>The president was referring to O'Rourke's comments on AR-15 rifles during the Sept. 12 Democratic presidential debate. The general Democratic Party consensus is to forbid the sale, manufacture and import of "assault weapons," with the federal government offering to buy back those already in existence. But O'Rourke is not willing to stop there. He wants to require all current owners to hand them over.<p>Updated: Sun Sep 22, 2019</p> 914c6cd862cb3d77ac9ff45685d4e5d4 The US Should Not Fight a War for Saudi Oil for 09/19/2019 Thu, 19 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>From Donald Trump's comments on the attack on a Saudi oil facility, allegedly by Iran, it's not clear whether he's itching for a fight, leery of a fight or willing to take part in a fight if his friends in Riyadh want him to. He alternates between talking tough, waxing conciliatory and sounding as though he has no idea what to do.</p> <p>But the chance of U.S. military action can never be discounted, because, well, we're the United States and military action is our default option &#8212; under presidents of both parties. We are never short of reasons to put our forces in harm's way.</p> <p>The reason in this case would be that Iran is our enemy and stands accused of being responsible for a strike on a complex that normally puts out 5.7 million barrels of oil per day &#8212; some 5% of the world supply. We would be coming to the aid of the Saudi rulers, who buy our weapons, get along with Trump and share our hostility toward Tehran.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 19, 2019</p> b64be27571ed72f874b271d13948f2ff Trump Ended the Taliban Peace Talks, but Not the War in Afghanistan for 09/15/2019 Sun, 15 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The Taliban will not be guests at Camp David. The peace talks with them are history, and the Afghan government is relieved that it can proceed with the Sept. 28 presidential election without feeling irrelevant. There is only one problem: The U.S. war in Afghanistan continues on its interminable, ineffectual course.</p> <p>The president said the negotiations are "dead" because the Taliban carried out an attack that killed an American soldier. But the talks began in 2018, and 15 U.S. service personnel had died this year as they were going on. If Donald Trump's goal is to stop the Taliban from killing Americans, abandoning peace talks is a strange way to pursue it.<p>Updated: Sun Sep 15, 2019</p> 0faad8966f456ecdfe3300976424e0a9 If the Economy Tanks, It Will Be on Trump for 09/12/2019 Thu, 12 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Democratic political consultant James Carville once said that if he were reincarnated, he'd want to come back as the bond market because "you can intimidate everybody." Donald Trump is not intimidated by the bond market. On the contrary, its fear of him has caused yields to fall. </p> <p>What scares him is my profession. "The Economy is great," he tweeted last week. "The only thing adding to uncertainty is the Fake News!" If we in the news media industry had such power over the economy, we'd be directing it so our business would be booming, which it is not.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 12, 2019</p> a4a01e8af9265b2357333fcc1cd4a425 Do Americans Want Liberal or Conservative Policies? No. for 09/08/2019 Sun, 08 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>If you want to confirm the folly of liberal policies, Illinois is not a bad place to start. The total tax burden is the ninth-heaviest in the country. Its 2018 private sector job growth was among the worst in the country. </p> <p>It has a terrible credit rating because its debts are so enormous. And a lot of Illinoisans are losing hope and bailing out. The state population has declined for five straight years.<p>Updated: Sun Sep 08, 2019</p>