Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Sat, 16 Feb 2019 02:19:47 -0800 Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate b1a6dce4d72785cf4435fd984208a423 The Many Flaws of the Democratic Candidates for 02/14/2019 Thu, 14 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>One Democrat after another has entered the 2020 presidential race, and, it grieves me to say, one after another has been found lacking in one respect or another.</p> <p>Elizabeth Warren falsely claimed to be Native American and isn't likable. Cory "I am Spartacus" Booker is a showboat. Kirsten Gillibrand turned her "A" rating from the National Rifle Association into an "F." Amy Klobuchar is the worst boss on Capitol Hill. As a prosecutor, Kamala Harris betrayed African-Americans by supporting harsh treatment of criminals.</p> <p>Revelations such as these raise serious doubts about the fitness of these candidates for the grave responsibilities that go with the nation's highest office. Yes, they do. And I'm El Chapo.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 14, 2019</p> 402aec712d4a4a05258f6c5afaa7f246 Trump's Attack on Socialism Is No Help to Capitalism for 02/10/2019 Sun, 10 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Socialism has always been a tough sell in the United States. While socialist parties won substantial support in many Western countries over the course of the 20th century, they were confined to the fringes here. In 1932, in the depths of the Great Depression, the Socialist Party presidential candidate got just 2 percent of the vote.</p> <p>But the outlook has brightened lately &#8212; as demonstrated by the electoral achievements of Bernie Sanders, who won 23 primaries and caucuses in the 2016 Democratic presidential campaign, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, elected to Congress last year.<p>Updated: Sun Feb 10, 2019</p> 20eb29960f85b7695705f150039ee0d0 Ocasio-Cortez's Plan to Punish the Rich Would Do More Harm Than Good for 02/07/2019 Thu, 07 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Every so often, a rising young Democratic star comes along with an idea that boldly challenges the status quo. Today, it's Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who wants to raise the top income tax rate. In 1982, it was Sen. Bill Bradley of New Jersey, who proposed an overhaul of income taxes that "seemed revolutionary and impossible," The Washington Post said in 1986.</p> <p>Bradley wanted to seal up loopholes that mainly benefited upper-income people while lightening the load on middle-income individuals and removing many low-income people from the rolls. The result was the historic 1986 tax reform, put together in negotiations with the Reagan administration.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 07, 2019</p> a58f9d55c7ff91c2d4e03d3cf081a6c7 Can Howard Schultz Help End Our Addiction to Government Debt? for 02/03/2019 Sun, 03 Feb 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>During his time as chairman of the Federal Reserve, William McChesney Martin said his job was "to take away the punch bowl just as the party gets going." Amid the rollicking fiscal Mardi Gras being enjoyed by both political parties in Washington, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz may volunteer to perform that unpopular task.</p> <p>Central to his potential presidential candidacy is his view that the federal government shouldn't continue running up vast budget deficits. Schultz argued in June that "the greatest threat domestically to the country is this $21 trillion debt hanging over the cloud of America and future generations." He opposed the 2017 corporate tax cut passed by the Republican Congress, despite the $425 million windfall it yielded for Starbucks last year. But he is not enamored of Democrats who favor a top personal income tax rate of 70 percent and "Medicare for all."<p>Updated: Sun Feb 03, 2019</p> dff026f2630c4edeeb362c7eb051151f The Dangerous Allure of 'Medicare for All' for 01/31/2019 Thu, 31 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Like an oasis shimmering before parched travelers in a sunbaked desert, "Medicare for all" holds a powerful allure for Democrats. It's a clear concept based on a beloved program, offering to achieve the long-standing goal of universal health insurance. It will be hard for any Democrat running for president to reject the idea.</p> <p>Sen. Kamala Harris made that clear when she not only endorsed the idea but also called for abolishing private insurance entirely. "Let's eliminate all of that," she said. By staking out a bold position so early in the campaign, she put pressure on other candidates to meet or raise her on the issue of single-payer, government-provided coverage.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 31, 2019</p> da54e901473ac84c8c87a05e6ab6f8d3 The Wall, the Shutdown and the Make-Believe Presidency for 01/27/2019 Sun, 27 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In 1989, a duo consisting of Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus achieved a historic first, hitting the top of the Billboard Hot 100 with three different songs from their first album. It sold 7 million copies in the United States, vaulted them to worldwide fame and won them a Grammy.</p> <p>Today, though, the artists known as Milli Vanilli are remembered only because they were total fakes. Morvan and Pilatus didn't do any of the singing on their album. When that significant fact came to light, their Grammy was revoked and their careers were over.<p>Updated: Sun Jan 27, 2019</p> 339f2130f46af5c02289c51225629eee Give the Covington Kids a Break for 01/24/2019 Thu, 24 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In my youth, I had all the makings of a future Donald Trump supporter. I grew up in Texas, attended segregated public schools and went to a conservative Presbyterian church every Sunday.</p> <p>I cheered Richard Nixon at a 1968 campaign rally. When I moved in to my freshman college dorm, I hung a Confederate flag on the wall. I subscribed to Human Events, a hard-right weekly that was the closest thing we had to Fox News.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 24, 2019</p> 72ef6385f8c9d30f89dc2c3b0958e335 A Victory for the Chicago Police Code of Silence for 01/20/2019 Sun, 20 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>When Chicago police fatally shot a 17-year-old boy on a Southwest Side street in October 2014, the slaying was a small local story that hardly anyone noticed. It gained national attention only the next year, after the release of dashcam video showing a cop abruptly shooting Laquan McDonald as he walked away, riddling him with 16 rounds.</p> <p>The evidence from that night was in many ways a credit to the police officers, several of whom had dutifully followed McDonald as he walked down the street holding a knife. Even when he stabbed the tire of a police car, these officers held their fire, striving to contain the offender without harm to anyone. Their conduct was a model of responsible, restrained policing.<p>Updated: Sun Jan 20, 2019</p> 6da5ddf4d4d567cf9b4c708c6daf89ce Trump Wants to Leave NATO? It's Not a Bad Idea for 01/17/2019 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In our personal lives, we know that many important ties are not necessarily permanent. Friendships end; marriages break up; once-loyal consumers stop shopping at one store in favor of a different one. If a relationship no longer serves the needs of one or more parties, it usually makes sense to move on.</p> <p>That logic holds for partnerships among nations. The 19th-century British prime minister Lord Palmerston said, "Nations have no permanent friends or allies; they only have permanent interests." But the United States government has often behaved as though our membership in NATO should be eternal.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 17, 2019</p> fa1f287962ef8ba205a6c63afe8a4a38 A National Emergency Might Backfire on Trump for 01/13/2019 Sun, 13 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>If you can't stop someone from doing something you dislike, you can always hope he or she will eventually overdo it. Icarus fell out of the sky not because he flew but because he disregarded a warning not to get too close to the sun.</p> <p>Donald Trump may not be familiar with the lesson of that story. He has raised the real possibility that, denied funds by Congress to build his border wall, he will declare a national emergency to do it anyway. On Thursday, he said, "If this doesn't work out, probably I will do it. I would almost say definitely."<p>Updated: Sun Jan 13, 2019</p> ed1809c48fb182ed251c8169bc94df7e On the Border, Trump Builds a Wall of Lies for 01/10/2019 Thu, 10 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Donald Trump's insistence that the nation faces a crisis of illegal immigration that requires a wall sealing off our southern border is notable for being false not only overall but in every particular. It brings to mind Voltaire's remark that the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.</p> <p>The president's Oval Office address Tuesday was the latest confirmation that on immigration, even more than on other topics, truth is his mortal foe. He doesn't contribute to the public debate; he pollutes it.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 10, 2019</p> 9f1e23f0f7f0efacef9b35fd08bcebca Elizabeth Warren and the 2020 Uncertainties for 01/03/2019 Thu, 03 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Elizabeth Warren's announcement that she will enter the 2020 presidential race evokes both hope and dread &#8212; hope that the campaign will deliver a better president than the incumbent and dread at the lengthy political ordeal that lies before us.</p> <p>The prospect is something like preparing for knee replacement surgery. It may deliver joy in time, but only after months of pain and tedium. As with knee replacements, a happy outcome is not guaranteed.</p> <p>Warren has assets that may serve her well, being a sharp-witted populist and a woman in a party whose voters are mostly women. It's easy to make the case that she's as likely a nominee as anyone.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 03, 2019</p> 7d73f5d73cfa367b7de0a695696bcda2 Trump's Incurable Incompetence for 12/30/2018 Sun, 30 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In May 2017, Donald Trump met in the Oval Office with the Russian ambassador and the Russian foreign minister and did something appalling: He tossed out highly classified details about an Islamic State plot provided by Israeli intelligence, which could have revealed the source of the information and how it was obtained.</p> <p>It was a major blunder, the product of a new president's bravado and unfamiliarity with the need to protect secrets. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker said, "There's some alignments that need to take place over there, and I think they're fully aware of that." The Israelis downplayed the leak. It was easy to see this as a rookie mistake that Trump would learn from.<p>Updated: Sun Dec 30, 2018</p> e49e84ca8643ba215f7290b2b1edaf59 On the Economy, Trump Is His Own Worst Enemy for 12/27/2018 Thu, 27 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>It was a long, slow climb from the depths of the Great Recession to the sunny meadows of prosperity, but in 2018, the U.S. economy reached it. A rare combination of strong growth, full employment, low inflation and rising wages combined to create a blissful sense of security and optimism.</p> <p>"Sweet spot" is the term that fit the moment. Through the course of the year, consumer confidence was the highest it had been since 2000. Businesses were making money; the stock market was soaring; taxes were down; and workers were finally getting raises. "We are the hottest economy in the world right now," exulted chief White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow in October. "We are crushing it."<p>Updated: Thu Dec 27, 2018</p> 380e3e80d2b6da1593da8534979598a5 Leaving Syria Beats the Alternative for 12/23/2018 Sun, 23 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>There are two established rules for withdrawing American troops from foreign conflicts. The first is: Don't do it now. The second is: Don't do it later.</p> <p>Donald Trump's reasoning and strategy in demanding a pullout of our forces from Syria suffer from his usual decision-making flaw: lacking both reasoning and strategy. The timing is also questionable. He says now is the right time because the Islamic State has been defeated, a judgment that is premature at best. And he disregarded the advice of Defense Secretary James Mattis, who promptly resigned.<p>Updated: Sun Dec 23, 2018</p> e5a35f8441709f342d785b97c66d4598 Kirsten Gillibrand Faces the Al Franken Backlash for 12/20/2018 Thu, 20 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>On Nov. 15, 2017, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand spoke at a news conference about a bill to reform the handling of sexual harassment allegations from Capitol Hill staffers. "There is a serious sexual harassment problem in Congress, and too many congressional offices are not taking this problem seriously at all," said the New York Democrat.</p> <p>The next day, she was faced with an authentic come-to-Jesus moment. Her Democratic colleague Al Franken was accused of forcibly kissing a woman during a USO tour in 2006. Over the next couple of weeks, several women came forward to say the second-term senator from Minnesota had groped or kissed them without their consent.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 20, 2018</p> 108c570c7badafa6a81cb7c0313c11bd The Surprising Truth About 'Gun Deaths' for 12/16/2018 Sun, 16 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>If you're thinking of venturing outside your home today, the news may change your mind. "Gun deaths in US reach highest level in nearly 40 years, CDC data reveal," blared Thursday's headline on A press release from Everytown for Gun Safety noted that "39,773 people were killed by gun violence in 2017 &#8212; approximately 1,100 more than were killed by motor vehicle accidents."</p> <p>The picture these announcements evoke is of mass shootings and random gun crimes that pose a mortal danger to every American. But that image is not quite accurate. The number of homicides actually declined last year &#8212; and is believed to have fallen again this year. Our streets have gotten safer.<p>Updated: Sun Dec 16, 2018</p> 6af256ff50d4a9a614be44fc8cfc8e6c How to Solve the Brexit Dilemma for 12/13/2018 Thu, 13 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>We've all had the experience of getting something we want and soon realizing that we really didn't want it. Maybe it was the dress that looked so much better in the store than at home, the car that kept breaking down or the treadmill that was never trod. It's called buyer's remorse. In the modern age, we can usually return any item we find disappointing.</p> <p>Could someone tell the Brits? In 2016, <span class="column--highlighted-text">they voted to abandon the European Union, taking their bangers and mash and retreating to splendid isolation</span>. But they have yet to decide how to do that. On Monday, Prime Minister Theresa May backed off from a pending vote on the deal she had reached with the EU. She then survived a no-confidence vote forced by rebels in her own party, but the future of Brexit remains murky.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 13, 2018</p> 87dcdba3c4761a4295484f498b8d9f69 Trump's Meddling Sows Economic Trouble for 12/09/2018 Sun, 09 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>One crucial test of leadership is knowing when to leave well enough alone. Fixing things that are going badly can be hard. What is easy is not screwing up things that are doing fine without your help.</p> <p>These are among the many presidential lessons that Donald Trump didn't learn before taking office and has ignored ever since. The virtues of silence and restraint are lost on him.<p>Updated: Sun Dec 09, 2018</p> 34fd8f09784a531f2f716318d75ce148 The Growing Republican Resistance to Trump for 12/06/2018 Thu, 06 Dec 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Congressional Republicans were once noted for their defiance of the executive branch, mobilizing regularly to block presidential proposals. But that was when Barack Obama occupied the White House. They changed with the arrival of Donald Trump, who had his own definition of Republicanism and induced GOP officeholders to alter theirs.</p> <p>Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan often evoke Winston Churchill's description of Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald as the "Boneless Wonder." But lately, some Republican members of Congress have given evidence of spines that they are capable of stiffening.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 06, 2018</p>