WASHINGTON - H.L. Mencken gets a workout in election years when voters are reminded by pundits of the curmudgeon's observation that no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.
WASHINGTON - The past couple of weeks have marked a turning point in American ugliness as the mob has turned its full fury on first lady Michelle Obama.
WASHINGTON - When it comes to tackling complicated legal issues, one would be hard-pressed to conjure a less likely partnership than Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz and Baylor University President Ken Starr.
WASHINGTON - This week's meeting between Pope Francis and President Barack Obama holds great promise in a time of turmoil, though not necessarily in the ways some may hope.
WASHINGTON - "Once an agent, always an agent."
WASHINGTON - There's nothing quite so helpful as a fatwa and threats of a Christian boycott to create buzz in advance of new movie.
WASHINGTON - I must need to smoke pot.
WASHINGTON - When the going gets tough, well, why not just make the going easier?
WASHINGTON - In matters cultural, California has always been America's petri dish. Whatever happened in California usually infiltrated the rest of the country.
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama's new outreach initiative to help at-risk boys of color - "My Brother's Keeper" - is cause for cheer.
WASHINGTON - We've heard much about the Republican war on women. Exhaustingly.
WASHINGTON - Republicans have excelled at concealing their brilliance in recent years and Democrats have exalted in their own good fortune.
WASHINGTON - It is easy these days to imagine that one is living in a fairy tale, albeit a dreary one.
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama gave a lovely speech at the recent National Prayer Breakfast - and one is reluctant to criticize.
WASHINGTON - We have officially reached the take-a-step-back moment in the unfolding - or unraveling - of the Chris Christie alleged bridge/political retribution/Sandy funds political scandal.