Subscribe to Columnist RSS feed

Columnist

Clinton should look to RFK

I know the Democratic nominee has a lot on her mind as she prepares to accept her party’s coronation. But as she hones her theme for the Clinton-for-president general election campaign, I suggest she look for inspiration from the White House bid of half a century ago by a Democrat she says she adores.

Russia’s finger on the campaign scale

As a lifelong Republican, I don’t much care who runs the Democratic National Committee. But I am deeply disturbed by the way that Debbie Wasserman Schultz was forced to resign as the DNC head over the weekend. WikiLeaks released 20,000 stolen emails revealing a clear, if unsurprising, preference for Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders among Democratic officials. This appears to be a foreign intervention in American politics — and it may only be the beginning.

Doyle McManus: Hillary Clinton’s three big convention challenges

Donald Trump made one part of Hillary Clinton’s job easier last week — by making the braggadocios claim that he alone can cure the nation’s ills, a boast that sounded more like a promise of one-man rule. But Clinton faces three other big challenges at her convention in Philadelphia this week, and they won’t be as easy as painting Trump as a dangerous blowhard.

Christine Flowers: I’m a conservative and the RNC was a horror

As Heidi Cruz left Cleveland’s Quicken Loans arena after her husband, Ted, gave his stemwinder at the Republican National Convention, she was escorted by security through a hostile crowd. Apparently, people in the audience were annoyed that Cruz hadn’t endorsed Donald “I Call Him Lyin’ Ted” Trump. They couldn’t believe that the Texan actually gave his national audience permission to vote their conscience. They were in shock he didn’t bring gold, frankincense and myrrh with him to the podium as a gift.

The Tragic Death of Mary La Casse — July 1906

Life in the early day logging camps of Grays Harbor was not only hard on the men who risked injury and death on a daily basis to bring down the big trees but on the resilient and adventurous women who found work in the camps as well. One of these was Mary La Casse, a 36-year old Oregon native, who toiled with her husband in the kitchen at Coates logging camp, only to lose her life in a completely accidental, but entirely avoidable, shooting. It truly was a tragedy for all involved and serves as a stark reminder to all to make absolutely sure you know what you are shooting at before you pull the trigger.

Justice in Motion: Civility — lest we forget?

Last month’s column was about courtroom decorum, however recently, it seems a broader discussion about civility in general may be worth exploring. One impetus to the decline of civility may be due to our communication styles being dramatically abbreviated by texting, emails and all aspects of instant gratification technology. As a result, the most basic levels of treating each other with respect, kindness, generosity and empathy doesn’t fit within 140 characters. I suspect many think civility is over-rated, though where might we be if everyone was a bit more civil to each other in every day interactions?

Rekha Basu: Why it’s tricky to count on Pence as Trump’s ‘good cop’

Conventional wisdom has it that Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will offer a needed balance to Donald Trump — be the yang to Trump’s yin, the good cop to Trump’s officer-gone-rogue. As the thinking goes, Pence will give the Republican ticket diplomacy and political experience, calming the nerves of jittery voters imagining the combative New Yorker’s finger hovering over the nuclear trigger.

Doyle McManus — After Nice, it’s official: The campaign’s about fear

Last week’s terrorist attack in Nice, after similar tragedies in Paris, San Bernardino, Brussels, Orlando and Istanbul, made two things painfully clear. Western societies, including the United States, have failed to blunt the growing threat of Islamist terrorism. And that means the 2016 presidential campaign will be fought under a shadow of fear. There will be more attacks between now and November; the only questions are when and where.

Christine Flowers: Ryan offers hope for future of once-great Grand Old Party

I watched Paul Ryan’s town hall on CNN this week for a number of reasons, not the least of which is my slight (OK, significant) crush on the House speaker. He is a decade younger than I am, and more geek chic than GQ, but I still have a button that says, “I Heart Paul” from his ill-fated run as Mitt Romney’s vice president, which I wear when I want to annoy the liberals at Starbucks.
 

The big tech companies pose a threat to competition

The digital revolution was supposed to create an age of empowered microentrepreneurship, with power devolving to the masses. Instead, we’ve got the new Robber Barons: Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google, with Uber and a few others trying to join this profitable circle of global oligopolies.

Defining the political lie

Houyhnhnms, the noble talking horses in Jonathan Swift’s “Gulliver’s Travels,” had no word for “lie.” They did not engage in the petty subterfuge of politics and didn’t need a word to signify it. The closest they could come is the locution “to say the thing which is not.” But lying is much more complex than saying something that isn’t the case. A genuine lie — a lie in the moral sense — must be intended to deceive, and must be expressed to someone to whom the truth is owed. You aren’t lying if you misstate a statistic without intending to, or if you give a fake name to a prying stranger on the subway.