William Murchison from Creators Syndicate https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Sat, 23 Feb 2019 21:30:27 -0800 https://www.creators.com/ http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss William Murchison from Creators Syndicate https://cdn.creators.com/features/william-murchison-thumb.jpg https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison 9c8ed8c9ed8d221c830378dc5d4e8fdb A Wall Too Far for 02/19/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/02/19/a-wall-too-far Tue, 19 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In case you hadn't noticed, everything is in crisis these days. Race relations, the climate, male behavior, government shutdowns, immigration...</p> <p>Except that immigration, as crises go, was pretty small beer until President Trump swooped down last week with his proclamation of an emergency requiring him, as he represented the matter, to build a southern border wall with funds designated by Congress for other purposes. Whereby he worsened prospects, dim enough already, for the composing of national differences over what to do about the seemingly bottomless desire to take up residence in the United States, legally or the reverse.<p>Updated: Tue Feb 19, 2019</p> dd365341baddd41c713209f98390355d Antisocial Socialism for 02/12/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/02/19/antisocial-socialism Tue, 12 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The quest to make sense of America's present political situation goes on ... and on ... and on ... and ...</p> <p>Oh, the heck (by which you know I mean something stronger) with it, inasmuch as what we see playing out before us &#8212; never mind the president or the House speaker or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez &#8212; has timeless qualities. The push to control in the face of resistance is the oldest chapter in the human narrative. Neither Bernie Sanders nor AOC invented it. They merely took the raw material of human existence and molded it for contemporary uses. <p>Updated: Tue Feb 12, 2019</p> 79dd6bc5b2815af53defbdd1a62855e3 A Study in Morals for 02/05/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/02/19/a-study-in-morals Tue, 05 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>"Moral authority." Hmm. Who shoe-horned that notion into the national conversation?</p> <p>According to former Vice President Joe Biden, moral authority is the property that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam forfeited when a photo from his 1984 medical school yearbook page came to light and he couldn't clearly say whether or not it depicted him in blackface or Klan costume &#8212; though, he conceded, he once blackened his face for a Michael Jackson costume. Calls for his resignation resounded. Biden chipped in with gusto. <p>Updated: Tue Feb 05, 2019</p> 85fba244e22525a44693a8a398d7acc7 Shut Down the Shutdowns! for 01/29/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/01/19/shut-down-the-shutdowns Tue, 29 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Gee whiz! Didn't we all get a lot out of the shutdown? Whether or not we sought it, we got the cynical attention of a cynical world, wondering what had possessed the crazy Americans this time.</p> <p>Donald Trump should have known better than to thump his chest over the coming capitulation of Nancy Pelosi, who &#8212; a serious egotist in her own right &#8212; understood the costs of capitulation to the man her constituents like least in the world. Couldn't Trump have figured this out instead of circling the woman who had just merrily knocked the chip off his shoulder? He wanted triumph; he instead got a poke in the nose.<p>Updated: Tue Jan 29, 2019</p> 10e35e41b55307aad4f0e8393f3faed5 We Don't Like Anybody, Do We? for 01/22/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/01/19/we-dont-like-anybody-do-we Tue, 22 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>As the luminous Texas writer John Graves observed a few years back:</p> <p>"The Unco Guid and the Rigidly Righteous, in one or another not necessarily religious hue, dominate our time as shrilly as they ever dominated (Robbie) Burns' Scotland. The conservative old and the arrogant young and the scratchily earnest of all ages are at one in this."<p>Updated: Tue Jan 22, 2019</p> 1492e5062460017889ff682864105339 The Middle Way for 01/15/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/01/19/the-middle-way Tue, 15 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>One unremarked side effect of the uproar that goes by the name of Donald Trump is the hardening everywhere of hearts and positions. Everything's got to be one way or the other &#8212; border wall or shutdown, impeachment or public demoralization, allies or enemies, war or peace.</p> <p>War: That puts on our plates, or should, the year's truly big issue, bigger even than immigration. <p>Updated: Tue Jan 15, 2019</p> 2454284037a411d893dbbc26b49aeccb Why Not a Conservative Woman President? for 01/08/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/01/19/why-not-a-conservative-woman-president Tue, 08 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>As if the Democrats lacked causes for nail biting &#8212; the shutdown, impeachment, Rashida Tlaib's big mouth &#8212; here comes a venerable ally, The New York Times, questioning the electability of the various women who aspire to run against Donald Trump in 2020.</p> <p>Could it be that none of them could beat him? "(T)here's a lingering doubt in some (Democratic) quarters," the Times reports, "about whether there is a risk involved in nominating a woman...." The memory of Hillary Clinton's defeat lingers, and Democrats recognize "that women in politics are held to a different standard than men on qualities like likability and toughness, and that voters have traditionally been more reluctant to elect women as executives than as legislators."<p>Updated: Tue Jan 08, 2019</p> 59afe513fd47d6c2df1801d6310ed200 Conservatives, Progressives and the Freedom Question for 01/01/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/12/18/conservatives-progressives-and-the-freedom-question Tue, 01 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Into my mailbox the other day fell the last issue of The Weekly Standard. Not that you likely care, gentle reader, that TWS's diminished supply of readers, gentle or otherwise, polished off a literate conservative magazine of considerable public worth. I take up the topic anyway on account of its relevance to who we are and how we vote. My thesis: We're still figuring it out, amid pain and high cost. As we go into the new year, no resolution seems likely. I see opportunity, nonetheless. Let us consider.</p> <p>Back to The Weekly Standard, of which I am &#8212; was &#8212; a charter subscriber. How come a magazine dedicated to entrenching the conservative vision went kersplat? The magazine business has been a major victim of the internet, but this particular magazine's big problem was that there isn't any unified conservative vision these days. Witness the stew our nonconservative president cooks up on a daily basis &#8212; some days doing conservative things (e.g. easing federal regulation, appointing conservative judges) and other days doing nonconservative things, certainly by pre-Trump standards (e.g. proclaiming himself "a tariff man" and acting like it, disabling the U.S. presence in the Middle East). The Standard editors were free with their criticism of President Trump. That inspired Trumpians to fling criticisms back at them. <p>Updated: Tue Jan 01, 2019</p> 67d3a0ca41894131596900ab28acd86b The Angelic Message: Hang in There! for 12/25/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/12/18/the-angelic-message-hang-in-there Tue, 25 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The religion, the faith, the belief-species owing its origin to the Babe of Bethlehem has experienced pangs and pains aplenty in the expiring year. </p> <p>Not necessarily in order: the mounting moral toll of revelations about clerical sexual abuse; the continued outflux of those who are bored, skeptical or, for one reason or another, just can't see the point; the continued deterioration of, shall we say, popular culture. Can you believe Donald Trump is today's main cheerleader for "Merry Christmas" as a seasonal anointing? It has come to that.<p>Updated: Tue Dec 25, 2018</p> 2be9a31b500786277f44c509f204a9d1 Baby, It's Crazy Outside for 12/18/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/12/18/baby-its-crazy-outside Tue, 18 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>As Cole Porter slyly reminds us: "In olden days a glimpse of stocking / Was looked on as something shocking / Now heaven knows / Anything goes ...."</p> <p>Well, you know, depending on the state of Puritan politics at a given moment. The Puritan habit of scolding &#8212; and gazing sourly upon &#8212; others for improper behavior is a human constant. And not just among long-faced conservatives, I beg to point out.<p>Updated: Tue Dec 18, 2018</p> 5f85c7e0b472c950368bde0497aef6d9 The Coming Collision for 12/11/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/12/18/the-coming-collision Tue, 11 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p></p><p>With Nick Ayers' withdrawal as prospective chief of staff to the president, the way opens for a candidate who will swear on his mother's grave to do just one thing. Namely, on the first day of the job, he must seize Donald Trump's cell phone &#8212; the one on which he tweets &#8212; and throw it out the window. Then, whenever the president opens his mouth to speak without a text, he, the chief of staff, will straightway stuff a gag into the boss' mouth. A quiet Donald Trump &#8212; however doubtful that prospect &#8212; would do more for the Trump presidency than the Trump who is playing a dangerous game by putting his own visceral reactions &#8212; and, shall we say, thoughts &#8212; at the center of practically everything.<p>Updated: Tue Dec 11, 2018</p> 1f45cb292d1372d021dd6272cc4838ab A Tale of Two Presidents for 12/04/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/12/18/a-tale-of-two-presidents Tue, 04 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>President Donald Trump and the first lady's graceful tribute to the late George H.W. Bush underscored, a little awkwardly, one reason for the tone and fragrance of all the obituary tributes we're reading. </p> <p>The Trumps praised &#8212; with unimpeachable dignity &#8212; Bush's "essential authenticity, disarming wit, and unwavering commitment to faith, family, and country," together with his "sound judgment and unflappable leadership." This string of attributes strikes many, I'm sure, as precisely the stuff some future president <i> won't </i> be saying about Trump. As if Trump &#8212; who knows exactly who he is and isn't &#8212; really cared!<p>Updated: Tue Dec 04, 2018</p> bcbffa565c6ad2d9c42ac4155877e50b Eyes on the Progressives for 11/27/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/11/18/eyes-on-the-progressives Tue, 27 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Says the cartoon boxer, lying flat on the canvas, to the towering, glowering brute who put him there: "At last. I gotcha where I wantcha."</p> <p>It could be like that &#8212; or maybe not, but let's speculate a bit &#8212; for the House Republicans who hand over legislative power to the Democrats in January, following the loss of three dozen seats. <p>Updated: Tue Nov 27, 2018</p> 87167d5222b95e17ce421d9ca20b087b Changes the GOP Should Love for 11/13/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/11/18/changes-the-gop-should-love Tue, 13 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>I first ran into Heracliltus, a great Grecian shedder of tears, while writing in college about the fearful subject of change. Heraclitus opined, in answer to my query about human disruptions, "There is nothing permanent except change."</p> <p>I can't say much has changed &#8212; as it were &#8212; in that department over the last 2,500 years. In the great Preston Sturges movie "The Palm Beach Story," we overhear Mary Astor telling Rudy Vallee, "Nothing is permanent in this world &#8212; except for Roosevelt." <p>Updated: Tue Nov 13, 2018</p> 26d6de6ac347b71a9c84efd70252217b Calling George Mason for 11/06/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/11/18/calling-george-mason Tue, 06 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>What we can all say with resonant voice and unflinching confidence about the Nov. 6 elections is that ... is that ... that most things aren't going to be very different on or after Nov. 6 with respect to life and social morale and public policy, for the very good reason that modern Americans can't decide what they want in terms of life and social morale and public policy. </p> <p>The state of both parties seems to me proof of this outrageous proposition. We're split: if not precisely down the middle, as some polls indicate, at least into portions equivalent in size. The Democrats think the government should direct or run most enterprises. The Republicans want less government bossing-around, more personal choice &#8212; until, that is, it comes to moral and religious matters. Here, the Democrats want more choice, the Republicans less. We don't fit together terribly well. We generally can't even talk to each other.<p>Updated: Tue Nov 06, 2018</p> 108a51ab7848e734dda43115cf3e7d5c War on the Jews -- Again for 10/30/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/10/18/war-on-the-jews-again Tue, 30 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Once more, the Jews are targets of unreasoning hatred.</p> <p>It's "unreasoning" in that the irrationality, like the barbarity, of attacking the Jews should be patent to anyone with half a brain cell switched on.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 30, 2018</p> da3ffa99be50f51882b5e793f1e2241b The Caravan Moves On for 10/22/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/10/18/the-caravan-moves-on Mon, 22 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>"We are going to reach the United States," declares one Erasmo Duarte, as he and a couple of thousand would-be Americanos hike northward through Mexico toward the Promised Land &#8212; with scant appreciation, I'm afraid, for the non-welcome in store for them at the Rio Grande border and points west. </p> <p>The marchers say they're coming. Donald Trump says they ain't. That pretty much settles things to Trump's advantage, without settling the vexed issue of cross-border access in an age unsure how much nationalism in human affairs is just the right amount of nationalism.<p>Updated: Mon Oct 22, 2018</p> f87eebf733beaf5cee1120421f501c56 Cruz'in Toward Victory for 10/16/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/10/18/cruzin-toward-victory Tue, 16 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>There are tides in the affairs of men, we are reliably assured, which, taken at the flood, lead on to fortune. Does that mean Texans may expect the ascent of Rep. Beto O'Rourke to the U.S. Senate, on a flood of antagonism toward Donald Trump? </p> <p>Hanged if I see any such prospect cresting out there in the political sea. I say so in spite of all the cash supposedly deluging O'Rourke's campaign organization.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 16, 2018</p> b6eb1a1ff4ae09930ddef62e9f9eaf30 Of Moral Messes -- and Traps for 10/09/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/10/18/of-moral-messes-and-traps Tue, 09 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>As for shaping the Brett Kavanaugh hash into a nutritious helping of moral meaning, I can suggest better ways of wasting your time &#8212; for instance, counting blades of grass in the backyard.</p> <p>As a partisan in this wretched affair, you'll get no intellectual satisfaction from shouting at partisans of the opposite persuasion: a "Shaddupyoumiserablejerk!" kind of outcome, each syllable a fully armed missile, encountering a blaze of return fire. You're talking to the back of each other's heads: "Did!" "Didn't!" "Will!" "Won't!" "Should've!" "Shouldn't've!" Nothing can be expected from such an exchange save remorse and stupefaction.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 09, 2018</p> e6203a119ff142df18eb3fa03f5dd1a9 Moving the Goal Posts for 10/02/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/william-murchison/10/18/moving-the-goal-posts-ef332 Tue, 02 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The point to bear in mind is that the Democrats are out to defeat Judge Brett Kavanaugh's nomination by any means.</p> <p>Fair they've tried, in a constitutional way &#8212; hearings, speeches, statements, votes. Foul is what they currently have in mind: vilification and ruinous delay furthered by the moving of goal posts.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 02, 2018</p>