Susan Estrich from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Fri, 15 Feb 2019 09:42:28 -0800 Susan Estrich from Creators Syndicate ac5b25f66ca7809f4c207a9a2a05184a And the Winner Is ... for 02/14/2019 Thu, 14 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>It used to be that people complained that the process for selecting the nominee was starting earlier and earlier &#8212; straw polls over a year before the inauguration!</p> <p>So, at least on the Democratic side (and since much of this is state law, the two systems have more in common than they should), we created something called "the window," which tried to confine the selection process to the election year and (with some reluctance) enshrined the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary as the first in the year, with the rest of the states following suit until the first week of June.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 14, 2019</p> 940e33acd4be9fc667901264143a6074 Opioids and Me for 02/07/2019 Thu, 07 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>I know.</p> <p>I know the heartache of mothers who lose their sons, children who lose themselves.</p> <p>I'm as enraged as anyone by the pain peddlers who hand out pills that get sold on the street, popped with abandon, shared among friends. <p>Updated: Thu Feb 07, 2019</p> cfbed4d3e3cecd5f64240dfa5c88a3d0 Trump's Time's Up Moment for 01/31/2019 Thu, 31 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>The man who claimed he could murder former FBI Director James Comey in midtown Manhattan and his base wouldn't care might still be right.</p> <p>If you're still with him right now, you'd probably be with him through anything.</p> <p>The problem for the president is that the base in shrinking. In the meantime, the Democratic base is growing.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 31, 2019</p> ccd4ff8a16d4c2613debb788ed637e36 Eric for President? for 01/25/2019 Fri, 25 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>The teachers strike in the second-largest school district in the country ended Tuesday, so, according to local media, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has returned his attention to running for president.</p> <p>Why not?</p> <p>It stopped raining. The ever-expanding population of young homeless druggies has returned from the shelters and is doing meth in their "home" on the beach (I kid you not; the police have been told they need a warrant). The formerly liberal homeowners have hired lawyers. The police patiently explain to a 94-year-old homeowner miles from the beach that she should try to look the other way when the kids are defecating in public behind the house she has lived in for 60 years. The cops put cuffs on a man who is masturbating in public and then take them off 10 minutes later, because what are they supposed to do? ... And Garcetti is running for president?<p>Updated: Fri Jan 25, 2019</p> e5c8108ab0fd9afb5825a2f356ee0618 Hello, Dolly for 01/17/2019 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>She was my daughter's godmother. She was my friend. We knew her from politics, not Hollywood: She was close to "Lady Bird" Johnson and her legendary press secretary, Liz Carpenter. We had no family in California. And she fell in love with my beautiful baby.</p> <p>We used to go to dinner once a month at Chasen's, the "hangout" for old Hollywood. In those days, Carol brought her own food, in silver Tiffany's containers of different shapes. The rest of us gobbled up seafood and chili. And Aunt Carol would carry my daughter around in her arms to meet the likes of Jimmy Stewart and Kirk Douglas. Pretty magical, I'd say.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 17, 2019</p> 0937204f3c4de3f490c522d8cef9d838 Resolutions for 01/10/2019 Thu, 10 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>It is our collective frayed nerves that worry me. Christmas cheer has been replaced by dirty snow, unclean toilets, clogged roads and unpaid bills.</p> <p>The sun is shining. But California is deceptive. Beneath the surface, even here, gloom lurks.</p> <p>In Los Angeles, the teachers are getting ready to go on strike.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 10, 2019</p> 8ff064b8b2cbf3e4b5379c92a91a5ad9 Is the President Above the Law? for 12/28/2018 Fri, 28 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p>The Constitution establishes impeachment as the means of removal of the president by Congress. As we discover each time we go down this road, "high crimes and misdemeanors" means pretty much whatever the House and Senate think they do, which is to say it is a political standard.</p> <p>But nothing in the establishment of a political standard for impeachment places the president above the law, as the Supreme Court has repeatedly held, and as we all held dear. Nothing in executive privilege immunizes the president or his agents from applicable criminal laws. High office is not a license to lie, cheat and steal &#8212; at least so long as you're in high office. Not in our system. As I recall, that was part of the point.</p> <p>The difference between impeachment proceedings and proceedings on an indictment is the difference between political theatre and the judicial process. I mean no disrespect to political theatre: It is the script for our democracy. And I am the last one to pretend that what goes on in the courtroom is not loaded politically, on all sides. But there is still a difference, one this president may not respect but is at the core of our democracy.<p>Updated: Fri Dec 28, 2018</p> ff17c02458656034f438712f7bc72f33 Tudy for 12/14/2018 Fri, 14 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p>We lived on the fourth floor during the Watergate Summer. We were Wellesley Washington interns, two Jews who looked like Jews (Karen and me), an Armenian girl who looked Armenian (Suzanne) and Tudy, the black girl. It didn't occur to us to call it the Penthouse. It was a walk-up, and it was 100 degrees every day. We called it the Ghetto.</p> <p>We were witnessing history, and we knew it. In the EOB, where I'd been assigned, my boss and her boss were both renegade Democrats, and we used to sneak around to watch the Sam Ervin's hearings. Back in the ghetto, we would talk endlessly. And eat. Sometimes we drove around in my little car. Karen's boyfriend and my teenage brother were, as I recall, our only male callers. It didn't matter. We had one another.</p> <p>If you happened by, Tudy was the jolliest person you would ever meet &#8212; a smile for everyone, a shoulder, a scarf, a hug, a song, a heart so big you might think it had never known sorrow. Her real name was Marilyn, but when she was a little girl, the story went, the only thing that calmed her was when her father pretended to be an engine, saying, "tut-tut." And so she became Tudy, except for years we called her Tutti, and she was too polite to correct us. Her father had died. She was the oldest of three. We all had money issues, but she had responsibilities we did not begin to understand. <p>Updated: Fri Dec 14, 2018</p> 6e20b96290d8cef84ae73e0b937bafc4 Mourning President Bush for 12/05/2018 Wed, 05 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>I spent more than a year working to beat him. I thought his campaign manager was about the most unethical person I'd ever met. I knew that the fish rots from the head. I was not a big fan of George H.W. Bush's.</p> <p>Until I &#8212; and much of America &#8212; came face to face with a president who lacks everything we took for granted in him. <p>Updated: Wed Dec 05, 2018</p> 14008d682c6bbb090df5324f3dac5fc5 You, Too, Redskins for 11/30/2018 Fri, 30 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>How low can you go?</p> <p>I'm not a huge fan of political correctness, but our capital's football team is the Redskins?<p>Updated: Fri Nov 30, 2018</p> 85d91185cd637962f4fc3458939c168c The Year of the Woman -- Under Attack for 11/22/2018 Thu, 22 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>"Lock her up" was the rallying cry a year ago, led by the newly elected president.</p> <p>"Lock her up," Democrats are saying now that senior White House adviser Ivanka Trump has committed the same (non-cardinal) prayer, having also used a private email server to maintain some small chance of privacy and security. <p>Updated: Thu Nov 22, 2018</p> 60b39e089f722aad04d5e60b8d432242 The End of the Crime Wars for 11/15/2018 Thu, 15 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Maybe it's fitting that only two weeks after running his own version of the 1988 "Willie Horton" ad &#8212; an ad that led a generation of politicians to compete to outdo one another in terms of their "toughness" on crime &#8212; President Trump announced his support for a bipartisan crime-reform bill that few politicians of either party would have gone near in the Horton years. In terms of wedge issues, few issues played as well and for as long as law and order. In 1968, that was Richard Nixon's rallying cry, as he turned the once-solidly Democratic (white) South into the solidly Republican (white) South that has only recently crumbled under the force of demographics.</p> <p>The stubborn correlation between race and crime has led to periodic, and sometimes entirely justified, attacks on crime politics as little more than race politics. Which did not necessarily make the attacks any easier to face, as then-Gov. Michael Dukakis discovered in 1988, when he was successfully tagged because a murderer on furlough committed a vicious rape in Maryland. It was the kind of horrible tragedy that every governor of a major state, including Ronald Reagan, has had to face. But rather than disown the program, which would be the political thing to do, Dukakis refused to condemn it.</p> <p>The supposed "lesson" was that there is no such thing as being too "tough" on crime, while it was nothing short of deadly to be considered too "soft."<p>Updated: Thu Nov 15, 2018</p> f4f4854aa8dee03bb0cfc3526554e1c1 The Age Problem for 11/08/2018 Thu, 08 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p>It's against the law to discriminate in employment. As an old lawyer, I firmly subscribe to the canon of young doctors and old lawyers. </p> <p>And old legislators, some of the time. Nicholas Pelosi would the King of the Hill, and no one would be commenting on his clothes. It should be called Obama-Pelosi Care. But Nancy Pelosi's still 78, an old House Speaker who needs some youthful consorts, or whatever it is appropriate to call them. I call them candidates. </p> <p>Ronald Reagan was 76 when he left office. And that was four years after that ride to nowhere up the California highway in the first presidential debate of 1984, where the press finally started raising the "age" issue. <p>Updated: Fri Nov 09, 2018</p> f02561c8370ff9bf5906b1dcdbabefda Of Willie and Luis, and the Politics of Hate for 11/01/2018 Thu, 01 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In 1988, Lee Atwater, George Bush's campaign manager, vowed to make "Willie Horton" (real name, William Horton) Michael Dukakis' running mate. And he did, with the help of Larry McCarthy and an ad that featured a terrifying mug shot of a black murderer who had been released from prison on a weekend furlough and gone to Maryland where he raped a white woman.</p> <p>Horton was a story in Massachusetts long before Atwater (who apologized before his death) turned him into a household name. And the ugly history of rape and racism was one we knew painfully well. We in the Dukakis camp were not caught by surprise. But Dukakis was a good man who refused to play race politics even when it was being played against him. Wouldn't do it. The irony was that his family had known first-hand the pain of violent crime. He had scruples.<p>Updated: Mon Nov 05, 2018</p> b931dbc159484fcf48befed73a11af63 The Post-Kavanaugh Snooze for 10/25/2018 Thu, 25 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Were you angry?</p> <p>Could you hardly believe those men?<p>Updated: Thu Oct 25, 2018</p> 5f2d670c6da764cda4b9753ae67752e8 No One's Perfect for 10/18/2018 Thu, 18 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>As someone who has been trying to get a woman on the ticket since 1984, <span class="column--highlighted-text">I'm glad that the Democratic Party has so many women stars, starting with Hillary Clinton and Sen. Elizabeth Warren. But in watching them both in action last week, I was pretty terrified, not for myself but for the Democratic Party.</span></p> <p>The two most visible women in the Party know their stuff. Ask them anything about health care or consumer protection or the environment and you'll hear more details than you wanted. But neither of them seems able to just admit a mistake and move on.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 18, 2018</p> df317c678899173213fdec1a44d3a059 Survivor for 10/11/2018 Thu, 11 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>I walked out of an alley more than 40 years ago, determined to fight. </p> <p>My mother told me not to tell anyone because no decent man would have me.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 11, 2018</p> 960d70c2043f874c1685053a944c85ed No Corroboration? for 10/05/2018 Fri, 05 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It was 40 years ago that Judge J. Skelly Wright wrote a decision for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit &#8212; Judge Kavanagh's Court &#8212; overruling the corroboration requirement in sexual assault cases. "This one's for you," he said, after reading the only bench memo I ever wrote for him. Three judges joined the opinion, but all nine on the court signed on. It's my heart, and his compassion, you'll find in that opinion. I had been raped three years earlier, and by the time we were done, every judge on the court knew it. And respected that.</p> <p>The gist of my argument to the judges 40 years ago was very simple: I was raped; I told the truth; but nobody saw it. No one ever does. People don't commit sexual assault in front of others who are sober enough and/or independent enough to get involved. If the man had been caught, a jury should have had the chance to hear me.</p> <p>The corroboration rule was one of the common law's answers to the male rape fantasy &#8212; the fantasy that he will be wrongly accused and unable to defend himself, because rape is a charge "easily to be made and hard to be proved, and harder to be defended by the party accused, though never so innocent." That was the English Lord Chief Justice Sir Matthew Hale. In the 17th century. One hundred years later, a much-cited Yale Law Journal article argued that women enjoy the struggle (the pseudo-Freudian view), and the Columbia Law Review was defending the corroboration requirement, saying, "Since stories of rape are frequently lies or fantasies, it is reasonable to provide that such a story, in itself, should not be enough to convict a man of a crime." That is what we set out to change by getting rid of a requirement that was applied only to the victims of rape.<p>Updated: Fri Oct 05, 2018</p> 74887eea901d2d36607adabc3e56d927 Don't Blame Dianne Feinstein for 10/04/2018 Thu, 04 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Kellyanne Conway made number what? I have since lost count. But everywhere you look, on television, in the papers, in celebrity gossip sheets and on media websites, familiar faces &#8212; and less familiar ones at the market and in protests &#8212; have emerged as survivors of sexual assault.</p> <p>If you're surprised, you shouldn't be.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 04, 2018</p> 0455a10c1c01fa9d11d907fdde2fd578 Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire for 09/28/2018 Fri, 28 Sep 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>President Trump was proud of his nominee, understandably so. His opening statement, reminiscent of Clarence Thomas' claim that his confirmation hearing was "a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks," could have been written or delivered by the president. But Justice Thomas was confirmed 27 years ago, when we survivors were still trying to convince people that no meant no. And this time, there is no racial issue to make an all-white Senate uncomfortable. Judge Kavanaugh was reduced to the usual Trumpian name-calling, attacking rather than explaining, turning himself into the innocent victim of a vast left-wing conspiracy.</p> <p>The problem is that his flat denials and depictions of himself as a choir boy who did not abuse alcohol changed the issue from what happened when he was in high school whether it mattered (a battle during which he could have made things murky enough to give Republicans cover) to a much simpler question: Did Dr. Christine Blasey Ford make the whole thing up?<p>Updated: Wed Oct 03, 2018</p>