Froma Harrop from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Thu, 12 Dec 2019 00:03:47 -0800 Froma Harrop from Creators Syndicate 73ad7ab4e5a61a8b2ae2d95ea396ff39 Raise Revenues, but Hold the Drama for 12/12/2019 Thu, 12 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Democratic candidates offer two basic approaches to raising revenues for public programs. One is grand opera &#8212; accusing the wealthy of greed (Bernie Sanders) and malice, that is, "leaving everyone else behind" (Elizabeth Warren). For this bad behavior, there must be punishment in the form of taxation. </p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">The other approach is to simply increase their taxes a reasonable amount and not get personal. Many rich people may not like it, but they won't feel under moral condemnation. </span>Some even back the idea. That is Joe Biden's approach. And it was the way Democratic Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton succeeded in raising taxes on the higher income.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 12, 2019</p> 5808d179286f4d972a8b57830387756a Paul Volcker Was a Great Man for 12/10/2019 Tue, 10 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Paul Volcker administered the tough medicine when the American economy badly needed it. It was 1980, and the inflation rate had passed 14 percent. OPEC, a cartel of foreign oil producers, had launched an oil embargo against the United States a few years before, causing prices to soar. Older Americans remember long lines of cars snaking to gas pumps. The country felt in crisis.</p> <p>President Jimmy Carter appointed Volcker chairman of the Federal Reserve Board to fix inflation. Volcker knew he had to raise interest rates to beat it down. He did and succeeded, but the cost was a sharp economic downturn. Workers lost jobs, and many regarded Volcker as the villain.<p>Updated: Tue Dec 10, 2019</p> 5486c597bb43ba1fb19816f4edb48602 Not Much Romance in Santa's Toy Warehouse for 12/05/2019 Thu, 05 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>A fixture of family Christmas movies is worldly-wise children recovering some of their innocence. "Miracle on 34th Street" (1947) provides an early example. </p> <p>The new animated film "Klaus" (on Netflix) does not stray from this theme. Children living on an icy island seek a workaround to their toyless Christmas, the work of mean, greedy adults. But one children's fantasy remains: that the toys would come from a shop in the woods run by a Santa Claus figure named Klaus. <p>Updated: Thu Dec 05, 2019</p> 606d2c8e2c6b9359385b871b61db45c2 Warren's Problems Go Beyond Health Care for 12/03/2019 Tue, 03 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Elizabeth Warren had great momentum for a while. Then her poll numbers leveled and fell. The standard explanation is that the Democrat's "Medicare for All" plan comes across as too radical &#8212; both the price and the part that would force over 150 million Americans off their employers' private coverage. </p> <p>But other negatives subtract from Warren's appeal as a presidential candidate. One is that she grates on us, another way of saying not likable. The other is she's not totally honest.<p>Updated: Tue Dec 03, 2019</p> f6b8af66b4b43ff729bb7090c2779bcb Astoundingly, the Republican Attack Machine Targets the Military for 11/28/2019 Thu, 28 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The focus here isn't President Donald Trump. He is a creature unto himself. Rather, this is about his spineless political party, which stands mute, or even supportive, as he breaks U.S. military discipline, morale and leadership. </p> <p>The GOP used to be the party of superpatriots, always saluting our men and women in uniform. It still playacts. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Some members of the Republican caucus continue to make a show of thanking soldiers for their service even as they savage the soldiers' reputations to advance the president's interests. </span>(Someday we'll get to the bottom of what those interests really were.)<p>Updated: Thu Nov 28, 2019</p> 5deab2ef5ba84b77872088e19f59473a The Zen of Thanksgiving for 11/26/2019 Tue, 26 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p><i style="background-color: initial;">Editor's Note: The following is a revised version of a column first published in November 2002.</i><br></p> <p>Thanksgiving is the most American of holidays. But there is something almost un-American about it. It is a day opposed to striving, to getting more. We stop adding up the numbers on the scorecard of life. We freeze in place and give thanks for whatever is there.<p>Updated: Tue Nov 26, 2019</p> 431ea15559b686e22f638fa91040b880 Do US Carmakers Want Us to Like Them? for 11/21/2019 Thu, 21 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Ask not why the Trump administration must dismantle America's environmental laws with such gusto. By now, that's a given. Instead, let's ask why some automakers, businesses that must plan years in advance, are siding with a president intent on sowing chaos in their own industry.</p> <p>The issue at hand is President Donald Trump's pointless crusade to strip California of its unique right to limit tailpipe emissions of vehicles sold there. You've got to wonder whether the companies backing these efforts &#8212; GM, Toyota, Fiat Chrysler, Subaru and Nissan &#8212; are out of their ever-loving minds. <p>Updated: Thu Nov 21, 2019</p> 1d846dc74a2acac8883be4170d3aa172 Partisan Lines Fade With the Right Candidates for 11/19/2019 Tue, 19 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>I think Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards meant it when he partly credited his reelection to LSU's and the Saints' winning season. That would be the football teams &#8212; Louisiana State University and the New Orleans Saints. </p> <p>"People are just in a better mood," the Democrat said. And he did have LSU coach Ed Orgeron vouching for him. <p>Updated: Tue Nov 19, 2019</p> 941dfd79d10b12762de44bb72c567b2c Bloomberg, Billionaires and Boobery for 11/14/2019 Thu, 14 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>I'd like to personally bop over the head the next Democrat who says that Michael Bloomberg shouldn't be running for president because he's a billionaire. Let's give thanks that a simple-minded dismissal of rich candidates didn't sink FDR's chances.</p> <p>Billionaires are not the enemy. If you believe that those raking in astronomical incomes should be paying higher taxes &#8212; and Warren Buffet and I do &#8212; that is a job for our elected representatives who write the tax code. <p>Updated: Thu Nov 14, 2019</p> 879726b8a9823423360ca5e6e4c34d13 New York Puts Trump in Rearview for 11/12/2019 Tue, 12 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The (mostly) charming family movie "Mr. Popper's Penguins" is about a divorced father living alone in his posh Manhattan digs. Unexpectedly, he receives two boxes of penguins, and chaos ensues. But the 2011 film has a not-very-subtle subtheme: the prominence of future President Donald Trump as the quintessential rich and heroic New Yorker. </p> <p>Popper (Jim Carrey) and the penguins go skating at Central Park's Wollman Skating Rink &#8212; excuse me, the Trump Wollman rink. You see TRUMP in gigantic letters appearing in almost every camera angle and no Wollman.<p>Updated: Tue Nov 12, 2019</p> db0e257c8bb651780f7e236dc6b1d6b1 Moderation and Good Manners Actually Win Elections for 11/07/2019 Thu, 07 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Moderation along with good manners delivered impressive victories to Democrats this week. Case in point was Andy Beshear's win over Republican incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin in the Kentucky governor's race. </p> <p>Beshear's margin was slim, it is true, but Kentucky is a state that backed Donald Trump in 2016 by 30 points. The president was so alarmed at the closeness of the race that he swooped down on the state the day before to tell his rallygoers that the race was about him.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 07, 2019</p> 3cfaf0560702e63621caf7f64cfb3048 Democrats Preside Over Stronger Economies for 11/05/2019 Tue, 05 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Are you worried that the economy grew by only 1.9% in the recent quarter? That's a pretty weak performance. But it would seem downright dismal if you believed Donald Trump's assertion during the 2016 campaign that 1.9% growth during one of Barack Obama's quarters signaled an economy "in deep trouble."</p> <p>Economists are now forecasting 1.8% gross domestic product growth in the fourth quarter. Things are most definitely slowing down. </p> <p>Clearly, Trump will not whip the economy into the 4% annual growth he bragged about during the campaign. Never mind 6%. And despite the economy's so-so October performance, Trump ended the month tweeting, "The Greatest Economy in American History!" But we're used to that.<p>Updated: Tue Nov 05, 2019</p> 4bdba9eef0b289b45bf21e353bb0f27a Betting Billions on Bizarre Entrepreneurs for 10/31/2019 Thu, 31 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p></p><p>What can you say about "sophisticated" investors who would pile billions into a startup whose 40-year-old founder walks the streets of Manhattan barefooted and says his company's mission is to "elevate the world's consciousness"? Did I mention that his enterprise has yet to turn a penny of profit? <p>Updated: Thu Oct 31, 2019</p> dcbc4aa99ebb32322deaecce7ad57060 Is Klobuchar the Heartland Moderate Democrats Need? for 10/29/2019 Tue, 29 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Beats me why heartland Democrats running for president haven't gained more traction. Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan just left the race despite his success in part of the industrial Midwest that delivered the presidency to Donald Trump. Montana Gov. Steve Bullock continues to just hang on, arguing that he's the only Democrat who won statewide office in a very red state. </p> <p>That leaves Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana. They remain serious contenders even though most reputable polls show them stuck in the single digits. Both are running vigorous campaigns in Iowa.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 29, 2019</p> b32d9450791a30fe1a077425ea445ad9 Details Are the Hobgoblin of Health Care Politics for 10/24/2019 Thu, 24 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>What can you say about a political party that argues endlessly about how much they'd have to raise middle-class taxes to pay for a leading candidate's proposal? Elizabeth Warren has run herself &#8212; and much of the Democratic Party &#8212; into this political ditch. </p> <p>Early on, the Massachusetts senator said, "I'm with Bernie on Medicare." Bernie Sanders' plan would raise federal spending by about $3 trillion a year, according to the Urban Institute. Warren now says she'll provide details on funding her "Medicare for All" plan in due course. Gosh, can't wait.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 24, 2019</p> 94c076811e88d7cee0183de4961e959e Identity Politics Are a Dead End for 10/22/2019 Tue, 22 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In her post-mortem on Hillary Clinton's failed candidacy, Donna Brazile noted that her students at Georgetown University truly disliked identity politics. </p> <p>"They thought that Hillary spent too much time trying to appeal to people based on their race, or their gender, or their sexual orientation," the Democratic strategist wrote in "Hacks," "and not enough time appealing to people based on what really worried them &#8212; issues like income inequality and climate change." <p>Updated: Tue Oct 22, 2019</p> a314d5e475decfbc89e8c68d7cbdaffc The Only Thing Over for Coal Country Is Coal for 10/17/2019 Thu, 17 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>There is economic life after coal, and the sooner America's coal country concedes that coal as a power source is about dead, the sooner it can move on to better days. This is the reality of coal. <span class="column--highlighted-text">It's on the way out whether President Donald Trump "digs" it or not.</span> </p> <p>Major U.S. coal companies are falling one by one. They've filed over half a dozen bankruptcies in the past year, according to The Wall Street Journal. Fueling this downturn is the growth of natural gas and renewable energy. Natural gas is cleaner and cheaper than coal. What electric utility in its right mind would prefer coal?<p>Updated: Thu Oct 17, 2019</p> 2947b94c67db33253ff7cdc4b10d891d Sanders Still Sees Democrats As the Problem for 10/15/2019 Tue, 15 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>On a recent "Saturday Night Live," Bernie Sanders (played by Larry David) exclaimed, "l'm so excited to be back and to ruin things a second time." The audience emitted a nervous laugh. </p> <p>The Vermont senator's fan base takes great offense at the notion that Sanders was a spoiler in the 2016 election who helped elect Donald Trump. But many Democrats believe that and remain bitter over his burnt-earth campaign against Hillary Clinton. This explains Sanders' frequent shoutouts these days about how he avidly supported Clinton's candidacy.<p>Updated: Tue Oct 15, 2019</p> 1d216e31d912b115320fe0416435e255 Are Supermarket Aisles Racist? for 10/10/2019 Thu, 10 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>BY FROMA HARROP</p> <p>FOR RELEASE: THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019</p> <p><p>Updated: Mon Oct 14, 2019</p> d6454c1d5ffc21d0c87d76f5b3609a51 Trump Invades the Democratic Party for 10/08/2019 Tue, 08 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>President Trump's path to reelection goes through the Democratic Party. Goal No. 1 is to get Democrats to eliminate his greatest threat: Joe Biden. </p> <p>It's not the Iowa and New Hampshire polls that freak out Trump. These contests are dominated by the white liberal gentry, not Biden's huge base of moderates and African Americans. The general election polls are what keep him up at night. They show the former vice president beating Trump like a drum. <p>Updated: Tue Oct 08, 2019</p>