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Please, Don’t Feed the Bully

Please, Don’t Feed the Bully

Bullies are insecure jerks. You know this if you managed to survive your junior high and high school years. Bullies attack because they fear being attacked. Bullies point out perceived flaws in others to deflect examination of their own shortcomings. The best way to deal with a bully is usually to ignore him. It’s easier said than done. Take the bully-in-chief, who delights in slinging adolescent insults. Horse face, dog, fat pig, slob—and these are just a few of the…

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Frat Boy Justice, the Musical

Frat Boy Justice, the Musical

Kavanaugh’s damage was wholly self-inflicted. As I watched him weep and pound his fists and flip binder pages with the petulance of a grade schooler, I wondered how he’d ever landed a job of any kind. He seems temperamentally unfit to work retail.

Notes From a Dumb Southerner

Notes From a Dumb Southerner

Apparently the current president called his attorney general a “dumb southerner” and made fun of his accent. This is one of many ugly incidents reported in Bob Woodward’s forthcoming book Fear. Look, I don’t like Jeff Sessions. He is a racist, sexist, homophobic, and self-righteous little man. But “dumb southerner” is an insult too far. One of Trump’s most annoying verbal habits is that he slings broad insults rather than specific ones. Calling Sessions a “dumb southerner” implies that all (or most)…

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This is Not a Good Guy

This is Not a Good Guy

Paul Manafort is not the best people. Yesterday, as news came down about Manafort’s eight felony convictions, the president kept insisting that Manafort is really “a good guy.” He isn’t. Good guys don’t hide their money in overseas bank accounts in an effort to defraud the federal government. Good guys don’t lie about their assets to get bank loans. Good guys don’t drape themselves in python and ostrich. Truly they do not. Manafort was convicted primarily of fraud. He lied…

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Trump is Talking About Himself

Trump is Talking About Himself

Trump can’t shut up about ‘collusion’. First it was “no collusion” and now he insists “collusion is not a crime.” I’ll bet he uses the word ‘collusion’ several dozen times a day in both public forums and private conversations. That’s not normal. Trump and his ever more unhinged lawyer Rudy Giuliani are correct: collusion is not a crime. It is, however, the perfect means to commit a number of crimes. People with actual legal expertise have enumerated the many, many…

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All the World’s a Stage

All the World’s a Stage

Did you see the president’s press conference on Tuesday? The one where he tried to convince us that he isn’t treasonous, but only careless with language? It was an absurd piece of political theater and it was punctuated by a dramatic, mid-monologue plunge into darkness. I don’t know who’s directing this show, but he or she has a wicked sense of humor. Look at cast member Maria Butina, indicted this week on suspicion of being a Russian spy. Butina charmed…

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The Mansplainer in Chief is Throwing a Tantrum

The Mansplainer in Chief is Throwing a Tantrum

Why aren’t these women doing anything about it? Poor Theresa May. Apparently Donald Trump told her how to do Brexit, but she didn’t listen. If only she’d taken his advice England would be peeling away from the European Union like a week-old sunburn. No fuss. No muss. And German Chancellor Angela Merkel keeps agitating Trump by running her country without consulting him. She’s all pro-immigration and anti-trade war, which is exactly the opposite of what Trump would recommend. But she…

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Let Them Eat Crow

Let Them Eat Crow

I don’t know what all the fuss is about. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was asked to leave a restaurant because the owner and the staff of the restaurant didn’t want to serve her. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielson was heckled by fellow diners when she visited a Mexican restaurant. White House advisor Stephen Miller was heckled in a different D.C.-based Mexican restaurant, but you have to figure Miller gets heckled on a daily basis. It probably didn’t…

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Politics and the Pulpit

Politics and the Pulpit

Preachers are making news this week. Bishop Michael Curry set the royal wedding abuzz with his animated, uplifting sermon about the transformative power of love. And longtime Southern Baptist leader Paige Patterson lost his post at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary after delivering one too many sermons urging wives to stay with abusive husbands. Tonight, religious leaders including Bishop Curry will hold a candlelight vigil at the White House. The vigil is part of a movement to “reclaim Jesus” by rejecting…

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