Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Mon, 22 Jul 2019 10:34:35 -0700 Steve Chapman from Creators Syndicate 06023d56135a10c5b2862274b4a8989b More New Citizens? It's No Credit to Trump for 07/21/2019 Sun, 21 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>By some baffling process, the Trump administration has acquired a reputation for not welcoming foreigners to our shores. This terrible misimpression grieves Ken Cuccinelli. He has offered a kinder, gentler approach intended to reassure every American who takes a positive view of legal immigration.</p> <p>In a Fox News interview, the acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services spoke of the "very moving experience" of the naturalization ceremonies he has attended, seeing people who come from all over the world take an oath of allegiance to this country. He said the administration has actually increased the number of people becoming citizens.<p>Updated: Sun Jul 21, 2019</p> 9ae0967cbffa1e5acbcdc33d6ccf1289 Trump, the Fed and Our Resilient Economy for 07/14/2019 Sun, 14 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>What sort of machine is the economy? The common conception is that it's a fragile and sensitive device, highly responsive to both good and bad government policies. Pessimists worry that one or two wrong moves from Washington will cause it to seize up. Optimists think the right change in tax or regulatory policy can supercharge it.</p> <p>The administration shares this general outlook. Early in Donald Trump's presidency, he and his economic advisers hailed what was coming. With Trump's policies, declared Stephen Moore, "4 percent growth can and should be the new normal in America." After the president signed his big tax cut, Lawrence Kudlow said, "We're on the front end of an investment boom." <p>Updated: Sun Jul 14, 2019</p> c2ff83b163f58c47234ad7c37a18de5c How Ross Perot Paved the Way for Trump for 07/11/2019 Thu, 11 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A nationally known tycoon with a boastful personality, a penchant for tough talk, an aversion to illegal immigration and free trade, and a contempt for Washington norms: Before there was Donald Trump, there was Ross Perot. His two presidential campaigns planted seeds that would bear poisonous fruit 20 years later.</p> <p>Perot, who died Tuesday, was the improbable candidate in 1992. Entering as a third-party challenger against President George H.W. Bush and Gov. Bill Clinton, he captured the spotlight and soon led in the polls. Despite pulling out in July, only to reenter in October, he got nearly 19% of the vote, the strongest showing by a non-major party candidate since 1912. Running in 1996 as the nominee of the Reform Party, which he founded, he got 8.4% of the vote.<p>Updated: Thu Jul 11, 2019</p> f7743bf6d0b96097f851d764f6f3201a Are Democrats Blowing Their 2020 Chance? for 07/07/2019 Sun, 07 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>It's the height of summer, and Iowans will cast the first votes in the presidential election in the snows of winter. But in the ranks of political punditry, the forecasts for 2020 are already dire and cloaked in certitude.</p> <p>The prevailing belief is that Democrats are courting disaster by veering left, spurning sober moderation and obsessing over the plight of groups divorced from the American mainstream. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Washington Post columnist Megan McArdle fears Democrats are signing "an electoral suicide pact." They could push working-class folks, suburban women and anxious independents into the small hands of Donald Trump.</span><p>Updated: Sun Jul 07, 2019</p> 5aba4b8a95eaa10c6e0cb3014e25ed29 Biden, Harris and the Dilemmas of Busing for 07/04/2019 Thu, 04 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>For Joe Biden, being called to account for his positions on busing in the 1970s must feel like being called to account for his fashion decisions in that era. Yes, he might admit, he made some bad choices, but at the time, it was hard to make good ones.</p> <p>Nearly half a century on, the controversy may seem a simple matter of choosing whether to support racial integration. But simple is one thing the issue was not.</p> <p>Let me be clear: School segregation was a hideous blight and a grievous injustice. There were many people who opposed busing out of ugly motives, and its supporters had the best of intentions.<p>Updated: Thu Jul 04, 2019</p> 697c56ba9f9d0069b2b2e1ab29c17ae5 Castro Knows That Criminalizing Immigration Is a Failure for 06/30/2019 Sun, 30 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>When Julian Castro advocated repealing the law making it a crime to cross the border without permission, he confirmed that in today's political environment, there is no safe harbor for common sense. Republicans gleefully accused him of favoring "open borders," as though he were going to eliminate all checkpoints and border agents.</p> <p>Even former Rep. Beto O'Rourke, whose Texas House district adjoins Mexico, wasn't willing to go along. When Castro challenged his fellow candidates to declare their support for repeal of Section 1325, as it is known, there was no stampede to join him. Cory Booker was notable for saying he had already endorsed it.</p> <p>In the second debate, though, something striking happened: Every candidate on the stage raised a hand in support of the idea. They know this criminal classification is what gave the Trump administration the power to separate migrant parents from children. If it were a civil offense, migrants would not be jailed, only fined and deported &#8212; removing the pretext for tearing kids away.<p>Updated: Sun Jun 30, 2019</p> d00760b00f8dec71e9a1322fa91206b0 What Reparations Opponents Get Wrong for 06/27/2019 Thu, 27 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Among many Americans, the founding of the republic and the drafting of the Constitution are as vivid and relevant as if they happened yesterday. When it comes to the Second Amendment, for example, they have no doubt what it means now: exactly what it did then. For the Constitution, the passage of 230 years changes nothing.</p> <p>Slavery is a different matter &#8212; so long ago, so far away, involving people we never knew practicing ancient customs. Thomas Jefferson speaks to us, but Sally Hemings is as silent as the grave.<p>Updated: Thu Jun 27, 2019</p> 3d88f42c6119920704fbd6b58da08801 Memo to the Next President: Hit the Hay for 06/23/2019 Sun, 23 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>George W. Bush made plenty of bad decisions during his presidency, but he began it with a very good one: He left the inaugural ball an hour ahead of schedule to get to bed. This was in keeping with his practice of getting plenty of sleep - often nine hours a night.</p> <p>His regular schedule fed the accusation that he was lazy. But given his record, it's hard to conclude that he would have been a better president had he been sleep-deprived.<p>Updated: Sun Jun 23, 2019</p> e9db4d348958521bcffe740a0136611b Trump's Clueless Iran Policy Blunders Toward War for 06/20/2019 Thu, 20 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>The Trump administration's unbending policy toward Iran was supposed to force the foe into submission. President Barack Obama's conciliatory caresses, we were told, had only emboldened the Iranians. President Donald Trump's strength and toughness would leave them no choice but to capitulate. </p> <p>Well, it was nice to think so. But now the administration accuses Iran of attacking tankers in the Gulf of Oman, and Tehran has announced plans to violate the nuclear deal that the U.S. renounced. Iran is not backing down. It's digging in and acting out.</p> <p>That response should confirm that Trump and his advisers don't know how to get their way. Curiously, the rulers in Tehran reject taking steps that make them look weak. They look for ways to show their resolve.<p>Updated: Thu Jun 20, 2019</p> 0f2bdb327acf0b0b09921ace533f96fa The Greatest Country Artist Ever for 06/16/2019 Sun, 16 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>I write about politics and government for a living, which means I am sometimes asked questions like, "Who's going to win the Democratic nomination?" and "Are we going to have a recession?" and "Is Lindsey Graham a garden gnome come to life?" And I have to make a wild guess or admit, "Dang if I know." What no one asks me, alas, is a question I can answer with utter certainty.</p> <p>Like every Texan, I am a natural-born authority on barbecue, college football and country music. Even so, I can't say with absolute confidence where the very best smoked brisket can be found, or whether Nick Saban's Alabama defense could stop the old Nebraska triple option. But when it comes to country music greatness, doubt is not a problem.</p> <p>As a baby boomer, I was weaned on Hank Williams and rocked to sleep by Patsy Cline. While my high school classmates were grooving on the Beatles and Jimi Hendrix, I was twanging out with George Jones and Tammy Wynette. I can chew over the merits of Willie Nelson and Reba McEntire till the Brangus come home.<p>Updated: Sun Jun 16, 2019</p> 0d877a0b46c659ad8eb2cd7c6e2ce7f1 Trump's Addiction to Conflict Sours Our National Mood for 06/13/2019 Thu, 13 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A decade ago, America was in crisis. The economy was battered by the worst downturn since the Great Depression. Seven million jobs had vanished. Our military was mired in two costly, futile wars, with no end in sight. Terrorism, a constant specter, erupted in a mass shooting that left 13 dead and 32 wounded at Fort Hood. </p> <p>Compared with that, the America of 2019 is the land of milk and honey. The economy has been growing for 10 years in a row. The unemployment rate is the lowest it's been in 50 years, matched with low inflation. We are almost entirely out of Iraq, and only 14,000 troops remain in Afghanistan, down from the peak of more than 100,000. Americans worry far less about terrorism than they used to.<p>Updated: Thu Jun 13, 2019</p> d973d301de97e993fc6e0a892c82c9cc Are Americans Ready to Decriminalize Prostitution? for 06/09/2019 Sun, 09 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>America was once a land of prohibitions. Half a century ago, in most of the country, gambling was illegal. Marijuana use was illegal. Abortion was illegal. Pornography was illegal. Homosexual relations were against the law &#8212; and same-sex marriage was beyond imagination. Even heterosexual sodomy was forbidden in many states.</p> <p>Now, these activities are all allowed everywhere or in much of the country. The change happened so slowly that it's hard to remember how far we've come.</p> <p>A couple of common beliefs have driven this broad shift. One is that if adults want to indulge in behavior that many regard as immoral or unhealthy but inflicts no direct harm on others, it's strictly their business.<p>Updated: Sun Jun 09, 2019</p> 82a350a696910bf05f44403f189743cd Trump's Bad Neighbor Policy Toward Latin America for 06/06/2019 Thu, 06 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Donald Trump has often been faulted for recklessly upending established U.S. government policies, inviting harmful consequences. But in the case of Latin America, he has chosen to follow in a long U.S. tradition that has its own harmful consequences: pushing our neighbors around like it's our job.</p> <p>On Tuesday, he expanded Washington's campaign to starve the Cuban government into submission. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced a ban on organized group travel to the island, which had been allowed for the first time in decades under Barack Obama.</p> <p>Never mind that the United States has conducted a 60-year experiment in using economic ostracism to force a change in the Communist government of Cuba &#8212; and it has been a failure. The regime has held fast to power despite &#8212; or because of &#8212; the enmity of the colossus to the north. <p>Updated: Thu Jun 06, 2019</p> 7fa9ac128899ea989780470c0a36db13 Trump's Mexico Tariffs Threaten the US Economy for 06/02/2019 Sun, 02 Jun 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>When it comes to the economy, Donald Trump was born on third base and claims he hit a triple. But now, he seems determined to be thrown out before reaching home.</p> <p>His latest move is threatening to impose tariffs on all goods coming from Mexico, starting at 5% and rising to 25% in October. He made the announcement Thursday, even as he is asking Congress to approve a new trade deal to keep virtually all tariffs on goods from Mexico at ... zero.<p>Updated: Sun Jun 02, 2019</p> f926f952878468dc40201b9326369eb6 With North Korea and Iran, Trump Fails in Different Ways for 05/30/2019 Thu, 30 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The legendary Chicago White Sox hitting coach Charley Lau once observed: "There are two theories on hitting the knuckleball. Unfortunately, neither of them works." Donald Trump could identify. He has two theories on how to eliminate the potential nuclear danger posed by hostile rogue regimes, and neither of them is succeeding.</p> <p>Trump apparently has never read "Goldilocks and the Three Bears." He doesn't believe a policy can be too hot or too cold. He prefers to take things to their logical, or illogical, extreme.<p>Updated: Thu May 30, 2019</p> 4889561ce660b34b87d0411443b49d28 The Dark Logic Behind Alabama's Abortion Ban for 05/26/2019 Sun, 26 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A gaffe is not when a politician tells a lie, according to a famous adage by journalist Michael Kinsley. "A gaffe," he explained, "is when a politician tells the truth &#8212; some obvious truth he isn't supposed to say." </p> <p>When Alabama, Ohio and Missouri enacted broad abortion bans with no exception for cases of rape and incest, they made the same sort of mistake. Their measures gave the public an accurate but alarming picture of how many "pro-life" advocates see the issue. By showing how far they would take their logic, they dramatized the weakness of their case.<p>Updated: Sun May 26, 2019</p> 53a8f076eac1e9c7f5914b62cebcdca3 Trump Courts War with Iran for 05/23/2019 Thu, 23 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Presidents have always had to deal with unforeseen foreign crises that erupt out of nowhere. For Bill Clinton, it was the "Black Hawk Down" battle in Mogadishu, Somalia. For George W. Bush, it was the 9/11 attacks. For Barack Obama, it was the civil war in Libya. Each required the administration to react rapidly under intense pressure, which invites mistakes.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">Donald Trump has figured out how to avoid such surprises. He doesn't wait for crises to erupt but creates them himself. </span>Since they are largely of his making, they tend to be susceptible to his own unilateral "remedies." And once the crisis has passed, he can claim credit for staving off the disaster that wouldn't have loomed except for him.<p>Updated: Thu May 23, 2019</p> e7d0b1a778236a848e35fb4a6bbe0825 Trump's Latest Dishonest Failure on Immigration Reform for 05/19/2019 Sun, 19 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Listening to Donald Trump lay out his vision of immigration policy is like scavenging in a garbage dump. You will probably find some things worth keeping, but you have to wade through a lot of trash to find it. And you can be sure that whatever you really need won't be there.</p> <p>His address Thursday would not have been complete without the familiar, false Trump themes that animate him and many of his loyal followers. He accused Democrats of favoring "open borders." He portrayed the status quo as "lawless chaos." He insisted that immigrants are a threat to U.S. jobs.<p>Updated: Sun May 19, 2019</p> 6c5d124eddd0219b81c8ac758464e25b How Abortion Bills Could Wreck Republicans for 05/16/2019 Thu, 16 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>For decades, abortion has been an ideal issue for Republicans. It let them appease their base, bring millions of Catholic and evangelical voters permanently into the fold, and portray Democrats as extremists &#8212; all without much political downside. But their success may very well carry the seeds of their ultimate defeat.</p> <p>The right to abortion has enjoyed solid constitutional protection since the Supreme Court made it legal throughout the land in 1973, a decision it has repeatedly affirmed. An entire "pro-life" movement grew up in reaction. Congress and state legislatures have tried to restrict the right. But the basic liberty recognized by the court has remained almost completely intact.<p>Updated: Thu May 16, 2019</p> 8ef24104e85bded0c18c3a4527cf9eee In Both Parties, Magical Thinking Prevails for 05/11/2019 Sat, 11 May 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In Washington, there are divisions between liberal precepts and conservative doctrine, Trumpism and never-Trumpism, radicalism and moderation. But one type of thinking has come to dominate and unify policymaking: magical thinking.</p> <p>Democrats are increasingly gripped by this infatuation, which manifests itself in the growing support for "Medicare for All." Bernie Sanders' signature proposal has won the endorsement of several others running for president. They want to proclaim health care the right of every person and establish a single-payer system that will ensure no one goes without needed treatment. <p>Updated: Sat May 11, 2019</p>