WASHINGTON - If you peruse the news on any given day, the farm bill/food stamp debate produces two general impressions: Republicans are heartless turkey thieves; Democrats are spendthrift welfare caterers.
"I'm not a particularly ideological person," President Barack Obama told an audience of donors in Seattle last weekend. He added (in Reuters' words) that "pragmatism was necessary to advance the values that were important to him."
WASHINGTON - For children, Christmastime may be the favorite holiday, even if their families don't celebrate the birth of Christ. The twinkling lights and aura of magic that suddenly transfigure the most plebian edifices are nearly as seductive as a round-trip ticket to Never-Never Land.
In Britain to promote her film "The Butler," Oprah Winfrey gave an interview to the BBC last week. Not surprisingly, she promoted her movie about race relations in the White House with comments about race relations and the White House.
WASHINGTON - By now, most of the world has digested the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination, and millennials can sigh relief that another such re-examination is at least 10 years away.
WASHINGTON - A president desperate to change the subject and a secretary of state desperate to make a name for himself are reportedly on the verge of an "interim" nuclear agreement with Iran. France called it a "sucker's deal."
WASHINGTON - Meet simile and sui generis.
WASHINGTON - Let's recap: If you like your insurance policy, you can keep it. No, wait. If you liked your policy, it was probably worthless anyway. Scratch that.
"Even if it takes a change to the law, the president should honor the commitment the federal government made to those people and let them keep what they got." - Bill Clinton, Nov. 12
Watching Barack President Obama's press conference Thursday, I almost started humming the old ditty the "Farmer in the Dell" because all I could think was: "The cheese stands alone."
WASHINGTON - In spite of everything - the GOP's internal scrimmages, the government shutdown, the party's transparent attempts to derail Obamacare - Republicans keep getting second chances.
"Obama to campaign to ensure health law's success" - The New York Times, Nov. 4
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama is no lip-biting, tear-streaking, chin-trembling apologist.
We cannot get past it, we Americans. Not a half century later. Maybe not even ever.
Many of the president's supporters are in barely concealed panic over the fact that he didn't tell the truth when he was selling the Affordable Care Act.
WASHINGTON - Vladimir Putin is a lucky man. And he's got three more years of luck to come.
WASHINGTON - When the going gets tough, well, why not just make the going easier?
Things are moving far too fast in Kiev, Moscow and Crimea to write about events there. But the past isn't going anywhere. Though you wouldn't know that from the way the Obama administration talks about it.
WASHINGTON - In matters cultural, California has always been America's petri dish. Whatever happened in California usually infiltrated the rest of the country.
SAN DIEGO - Selma. Mexico City. Johannesburg. Tiananmen. Tehran. Kiev. Caracas.
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama's new outreach initiative to help at-risk boys of color - "My Brother's Keeper" - is cause for cheer.
WASHINGTON - Henry Kissinger once pointed out that since Peter the Great, Russia had been expanding at the rate of one Belgium per year. All undone, of course, by the collapse of the Soviet Union, which Russian President Vladimir Putin called "the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the (20th) century."
Down with stakeholders.
SAN DIEGO - U.S. officials want to extradite the notorious Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, who was captured last week by Mexican marines and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents.
SAN DIEGO - I keep waiting for just one prominent Republican elected official to condemn in the strongest possible language President Barack Obama's horrendous record of deporting illegal immigrants.
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