Susan Estrich from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Mon, 24 Oct 2016 08:04:48 -0700 Susan Estrich from Creators Syndicate a804108f606e27071bd1e1072b0dcf5a The Uncontrollable Man for 10/21/2016 Fri, 21 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>His daughter knew what to say. So did his running mate and his campaign manager. They all knew the question was coming. And the answer was simple: Yes &#8212; barring some extraordinary circumstances, such as what happened in the 2000 election, "Of course we'll accept." "Absolutely, we will."</p> <p>Will what? Abide by the Constitution of the United States. Accept the results certified by the states and then officially by the Electoral College.<p>Updated: Fri Oct 21, 2016</p> 8def9ca48ef18811a98ceaeeb88550ad Bad Doctors for 10/14/2016 Fri, 14 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>When I returned to practicing law full time 10 years ago, one of the biggest surprises was not the new technology of e-filing, or the new world of e-discovery, but the stunning number of bad lawyers I ran into on the other sides. I don't mean lawyers who disagree with me; that's what the adversary system is about. I mean lawyers who miss the best arguments for their client, miss the leading cases, lose arguments they should win and, in some cases, are barely able to put a sentence together. And I'm talking about the elite of Big Law &#8212; graduates of top law schools and members of well-regarded firms.</p> <p>Scary? A little. But most of my work is business litigation. While the issues are important and the stakes substantial, no one's life is on the line. In business litigation, no one dies or sees their life permanently ruined by a bad lawyer.</p> <p>What is really scary is that if there are this many bad lawyers, then could there also be this many bad doctors? And though I can tell the difference between a good and a bad lawyer, how does someone who is not a doctor know the difference between a good and a bad doctor? References? <p>Updated: Fri Oct 14, 2016</p> 9950946e22604700912ef250de1375a6 Is This What It Takes? for 10/12/2016 Wed, 12 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Does it really take the most vulgar, rude, offensive, racist, bombastic, insensitive, unqualified, disrespectful boor ever to be nominated by a major party in our lifetimes to finally get a highly qualified woman into the White House?</p> <p>Seems so &#8212; assuming we're lucky, of course, and we don't make complete fools of ourselves, merging the White House with the Trump Network and calling it the Trump House (where the Lincoln Bedroom will now be available to any billionaires, not just the ones who contribute).<p>Updated: Wed Oct 12, 2016</p> 964a69203e57c1597e01c3e0f46587f8 Three Ways for 10/07/2016 Fri, 07 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It was June of 1992, the Saturday night before the California primary. There was no more campaigning to be done for the night. It was the 50th birthday for Geoff Cowan, who would soon become the head of the Voice of America and later the Dean of the Annenberg School at USC. But the mood that evening was glum. Bill Clinton, one of the party guests, was running third in the national polls. It was only a month since Los Angeles exploded in violence.</p> <p>"Good news," our hostess informed me as we entered. The seat on Governor Clinton's right would be revolving, with different guests seated there through the evening. But he had chosen me to sit on his left for the whole night. I laughed. I knew exactly why. It was not my good looks. He was upset about the polls and he knew he could trust me. We had been through the unending frustrations of the 1988 campaign together (he as campaign chairman, me as campaign manager) and we had a strong background. In the years since, he was the one person who would consistently tell people that spending the whole month of August in Massachusetts was not my idea. I owed him.</p> <p>I was right about my prediction. Clinton was not a happy camper. Running third? How could he possibly be running third? He was polite and cordial to the person on his right. To me, he couldn't understand how the LA Times had run some big puff piece on Barbara Bush and nothing on Hillary. Where was George? George came running over? And how about that column by so-and-so? Had I read that? Completely unfair! And how about that one-sided piece in The New York Times? And so it went.<p>Updated: Fri Oct 07, 2016</p> 7a89dd85d1c22b969cf32aa8fc1e6c53 Politics, Anyone? for 10/07/2016 Fri, 07 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Oh, dear. I almost forgot what I was going to write about. And I don't think it's age.</p> <p>Heck of a vice presidential debate, I say to the man in front me of me in line. Actually, I don't say it. I'm afraid that even in my NPR-ish zip code, he'll still look at me like I'm out of my mind. And if I'm being honest, I'm not sure I could pick Mike Pence out of a lineup, not that anyone votes for vice president. Indeed, both nominees seem to be doing their traditional tasks quite well: Look good at the convention, emerge briefly at the debate, clean up any spills, like Muslims, that's a definite spill, and then disappear again.</p> <p>And then...<p>Updated: Fri Oct 07, 2016</p> da506fcb1a85d6754b5468f457afb1e4 The Question of Respect for 09/30/2016 Fri, 30 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p></p><p>I left the University of Southern California forum where I watched the debate Monday night with an overwhelming sense of unease. And I've been trying to figure out why.<p>Updated: Fri Sep 30, 2016</p> aa7aa57f9aa7d14fd121647de67e0691 The New Year for 09/30/2016 Fri, 30 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Monday, Oct. 3, marks the first full day of the new year, according to the Jewish calendar. It is the holiday of Rosh Hashanah &#8212; literally, "head of the year" &#8212; two days of prayer and family and apples and honey. As a kid, I loved Rosh Hashanah because you could eat, although my resolutions invariably had to do with doing less of it. The problem with Rosh Hashanah is that it is inevitably followed, 10 days later, by the most depressing holiday of the year, Yom Kippur, where we recount all our sins, and where, as I would recite with shivers every year, it is decided who shall live and who shall die. Did I mention that you cannot eat or drink all day once you've turned 13 &#8212; or, if you're a showoff like me who's a grade ahead, 12? Only later did I realize this is not the kind of activity you want to get a head start on.</p> <p>Neither, of course, is thinking about mortality, which literally lurks at the core of the Yom Kippur service. That's the Yizkor service, the service of remembrance, the service at Temple Israel in Swampscott in the 1960s that was only attended by people who had lost a parent or child or sibling. So my father and brother and sister and I would cut out, leaving only our mother praying for her mother who we had never known, and we'd pick up my grandfather, who pretended to fast but didn't, and head over to Dunkin's for coffee. Not a bad way to spend Yom Kippur. Looking back, it was paradise.<p>Updated: Fri Sep 30, 2016</p> 859cb011a625d389e56c71153dec9ac3 Are We Crazy or What? for 09/14/2016 Wed, 14 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>This should be a 10-point race, minimum. If this were an election governed by any of the rules of politics that all of us have been practicing and teaching and writing books about, this should be the biggest snoozer since 1984, when Germond and Witcover penned their aptly named "Wake Us When It's Over."</p> <p>He picked a fight with the family of a dead Muslim soldier. He didn't just start a fight; he kept the thing going.<p>Updated: Wed Sep 14, 2016</p> 3f2fa5d761055068aff6166a1f48c1ac Sitting on the Other Side of the Table for 09/09/2016 Fri, 09 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>My week has been consumed, more than I'd like, on the other side of the columnist's table, with me as the subject. I love writing: I just hate being written about. Usually, it's not good news when you're the subject of a column.</p> <p>In my case, the occasion is my representing a longtime friend who was sued for sexual harassment. Sexual harassment happens to be one of my "sweet spots," which is to say, one of the areas of law I know best. I write about it, teach about it, talk about it and even on occasion get involved in litigation. But I have never been involved on the defense side. Until now.<p>Updated: Fri Sep 09, 2016</p> 0510b86ca8e259f5704d1b3f30175690 About That Election for 09/07/2016 Wed, 07 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>There is an election tape playing somewhere in the background. I hear it in snippets on the radio or in passing, in newspaper boxes or on elevators. Occasionally, and I mean very occasionally, I may catch people talking about it in line at the grocery store. In such cases, I try very hard to avoid eye contact, so as to avoid recognition, so as to avoid, worst of all, being asked my opinion. Of course I have an opinion. I wrote a book 10 years ago entitled "The Case for Hillary Clinton." It was full of all kinds of good arguments that symbols &#8212; even if you dismiss them as that &#8212; matter, and that Clinton was much more than a symbol for women. Everything I said then applies tenfold today. I may have some copies in the garage. I went on tour for weeks. I don't know that I convinced a single voter.</p> <p>These days, most of the time, no one's asked me to try, and I've got plenty to worry about in the tracks playing in the foreground. I'm worried about my brother. Enough said. I am trying to figure out how to help my nephew. And I'm thinking about what's going on with a single mother I love who is struggling with two kids, not to mention all the usual stresses of family and work. I start each day with a prayer of gratitude, as do many people I know. Politics does not figure high on this list.<p>Updated: Wed Sep 07, 2016</p> e920cb490f8f648eed20167854d3e193 August for 08/19/2016 Fri, 19 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It took a long time, but every record must eventually get broken, and no one is happier about this one than me: Finally, a presidential campaign has had a worse August than we did in 1988. That year, Michael Dukakis came out of the convention with a lead a mile wide and an inch deep, only to turn his campaign plane around and head back to Massachusetts, where he spent August being governor while his lead disappeared.</p> <p>When I heard the chairman of the Republican National Committee say that Donald Trump would have been better off going on vacation after the convention, I realized the mark had been passed.</p> <p>Donald Trump has had the worst August of any modern nominee, God bless him.<p>Updated: Fri Aug 19, 2016</p> 9f159f8693b3a44270e843ebe3e22cf5 The Olympic Spirit? for 08/12/2016 Fri, 12 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>To watch some of the coverage, you might think that the Olympics proves that the greatest athletes of every country on the globe, plus the refugees, can come together and put aside the various religious, ethnic and historic rivalries that divide us.</p> <p>Not so fast.</p> <p>There was the incident of the Lebanese delegation not allowing the Israeli athletes.<p>Updated: Fri Aug 12, 2016</p> e1931a2b32fd82c34508b7923f313d44 The Nutty Nominee for 08/04/2016 Thu, 04 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Is the Donald really getting "nuttier"? That's what the New York Post said today, claiming insiders as their source. I don't actually know any Donald Trump "insiders," although I do know some of the beleaguered professionals who are trying to gain some measure of control over a hopelessly inexperienced candidate.</p> <p>But you don't need to know any insiders to understand why they're running for cover and leaking like sieves. What else can they do? They have a candidate who is totally out of control, and it is going to cost him, sooner or later. </p> <p>Believe me, none of Trump's advisers came up with the "idea" of picking a fight with the Muslim family of a dead soldier, a young man with a bright future who was fighting for his country, the United States of America. That had to come from Trump himself. If he ever mentioned it to advisers, I can assure you they would have spoken against it. Which means that either Trump is ignoring his advisers or, worse still, is just shooting from the lip.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 04, 2016</p> aefcab3c235ff7b3c9d15d9a365d1160 The Donald Uncensored for 07/28/2016 Thu, 28 Jul 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Apparently, the Republican nominee for president just can't stand being outside the spotlight. Or maybe he's been making such statements all along, only now they get more attention because he is the Republican nominee. </p> <p>Like his statement that America would not necessarily defend our NATO allies. Really? What message does that send to Vladimir Putin?</p> <p>And speaking of messages, what about his asking the Russians to hack into Hillary Clinton's server to find deleted emails? <p>Updated: Thu Jul 28, 2016</p> 0ec8b5d915ed13d787636888225bc3d1 Ginsburg v. Trump for 07/13/2016 Wed, 13 Jul 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>"I can't imagine what this place would be &#8212; I can't imagine what the country would be &#8212; with Donald Trump as our president," Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said in The New York Times this week.</p> <p>Trump responded in his usual unpresidential way, tweeting: "Justice Ginsburg has embarrassed all by making very dumb political statements about me. Her mind is shot &#8212; resign!"</p> <p>That is what our country would be like: vulgar and vicious, like Donald Trump himself. Justice Ginsburg has every right to be concerned, as does anyone who cares about this country. You do not lose your First Amendment rights when you join the Supreme Court, as the late Justice Antonin Scalia, the darling of conservatives, proved.<p>Updated: Wed Jul 13, 2016</p> 955f7348cd1389da540ff0c65ebd6163 What About Bernie? for 07/06/2016 Wed, 06 Jul 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It's strange how it happens almost overnight. One day, you've got television crews crowding for position, top correspondents big-footing out the juniors who were first assigned to what was viewed as a lost cause, and of course, crowds cheering.</p> <p>And now what? </p> <p>Did Bernie Sanders dream of pumping his own gas, driving his own car, looking for his loyalty card at the drug store, the joys of everyday life? Dream or not, they are back.<p>Updated: Wed Jul 06, 2016</p> 6dec4842c697de797bdc5dcfbbe95f23 Brexit, Clinton and the Barrage to Come for 06/29/2016 Wed, 29 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>I predicted it. </p> <p>I say this with pride, not because I was right and almost everybody else in the chattering elite was wrong, but because it demonstrates the dangers of knowing too much and thinking too much. </p> <p>I paid very little attention to the Brexit debate, mirroring what most Americans know about politics. I had other stuff to do. Nobody was paying me to comment on the EU. <p>Updated: Wed Jun 29, 2016</p> c2ed0c0cc65f641eca4c7b457a2fcfbb The Risk Factor for 06/22/2016 Wed, 22 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>The red phone is ringing. Donald Trump is doing something with his former-centerfold wife. It rings again. He picks up. "What?" he shouts with characteristic annoyance.</p> <p>Feeling reassured?</p> <p>If Republican leaders are having a hard time getting their heads around the idea that their ticket will be headed by a man who has brazenly insulted almost everyone in America, imagine how that makes voters feel. The "Republicans for Hillary" bandwagon is about to form, if it hasn't already. <p>Updated: Wed Jun 22, 2016</p> 4e9867071d0c7ec092fd64c3199671b8 Who Knew? The Trump Dilemma for 06/17/2016 Fri, 17 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Who knew that being a suspected terrorist might cost you a seat on that flight to San Jose &#8212; but not an assault weapon?</p> <p>We've all heard stories about famous people &#8212; the late Sen. Ted Kennedy was one &#8212; being wrongly placed on a no-fly list. Those much-maligned bureaucrats who do their part in the war to keep us safe every day have set up procedures whereby folks who have been mistakenly listed can have their names removed. </p> <p>Here's the NRA complaint: Not everyone on the watch list has been convicted of a crime. It's true; some have close ties to radical clerics, deep interest in jihad and extremism, but they've never been convicted of a crime. Want to sit next to him on your flight? Take a twirl around the dance floor?<p>Updated: Fri Jun 17, 2016</p> 1f920d22a9b1b348f831e0ea883d1e1c A Moment in History for 06/08/2016 Wed, 08 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It wasn't a very big-deal election in California, to say the least. I think one person asked me if I voted. And I got one email from an old friend, who said she was thrilled about Hillary Clinton but voted for Bernie Sanders. </p> <p>Not me. I voted for the first female president of the United States, for the first woman ever to be nominated by a major party. And I did so with a shiver of pride.</p> <p>Hillary Clinton is not a perfect person; nor is she a perfect candidate. People who don't know her find her stiff and defensive and unlikable, which is kind of funny, because while she has her faults, those are not them. If you asked me, she should have done a mea culpa on the emails on day one, gotten rid of the issue by taking political, not legal, responsibility. But then, I haven't been through the meat grinder she has, where any mistake she admits gets distorted and twisted beyond recognition before an organized group of bloggers and activists ties it around her neck. Some people are right to be paranoid.<p>Updated: Wed Jun 08, 2016</p>