I'm not a huge fan of John Boehner.
I woke up this morning to the news of the terrorist attack on the Charlie Hebdo Magazine office in Paris. Twelve people were killed and eleven wounded, including two of my French cartoonist friends, Tignous and Wolinski. Cartoonists around the world are grieving.
We are all Charlie
Good-bye and good-riddance to 2014. As we move into 2015, what can we learn from how 2014 ended and how we're now "trending" in various areas? Here are a few items to watch:
The House is set to vote on the Keystone XL pipeline as their first order of business in the new Congress - and this time the newly-elected Senate is expected to have enough votes to break the anti-energy filibuster led by liberals Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer, who is urging President Obama to stop the pipeline with a veto.
Since New Year's is traditionally a time for resolutions, and since the new Congress convenes this week, I thought I would suggest some New Year's resolutions for Congress:
Pope Francis recently praised the benefits of big families - that a big family teaches children selflessness and sharing, which benefits the whole of society - and I couldn't agree more.
As children return to school after the Christmas break, they probably don't realize the fate of their public school education career will be based on decisions by the Legislature, Gov. Sam Brownback and members of the judiciary.
My mother's birthday is New Year's Day. This year, Matt decided it would be fun to take her, my father and our family, to Molly B and the Squeezebox Band which were performing at the Rose Garden Hall in Hays. Knowing full well that Molly B is second only to Anacani and Lawrence Welk in my husband's mind, I rolled my eyes wondering if the offer was self-serving or a genuine heartfelt gesture. However, as I know my German-Catholic mother from Liebenthal loves polka music, I conceded that it was a great idea.
What happens when the dog catches the car? Now that the Republicans control the Senate, will they continue to be the party of unsubstantiated conspiracy theories?
Now that dust from the midterms has settled, thousands of politicians-elect are taking office. In the predictably rough climate of American politics, there is serious controversy.
Just a reminder: January 8 marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans, the last major encounter of The War of 1812.
Get ready for our already ugly and violent 21st century to be the century of soft targets for terrorists. The number of places where people feel safe will diminish as terrorists pick new venues to increase body counts -- and grab more of that new and mainstream media publicity that helps with recruitment.
Hey guys. Did this whole crazy holy daze madcap bedlam thing sneak up on you this year, making the world speed up like a maglev Bullet Train going downhill lit by a strobe, like it did us? There's a perfectly reasonable explanation.
The Sony hacking story is the gift that keeps on giving. It's got it all: cyber crime, international intrigue, political posturing - plus a tantalizing trove of corporate and celebrity gossip.
A 6th grader in East Texas recently challenged state lawmakers to do what she and every other public-school kid have to do during testing season: "Sit in a room for up to four hours, without talking, writing, drawing, reading, or using your cell phone." Because millions of children are taking Common Core standardized tests this time of year, I did her one better. I took a 4th-grade English Language Arts practice test. The good news is I passed.
The old grocery store in my neighborhood is closing next month. Boy, does that make me sad.
Twelve years ago last week, the U.S. launched its invasion of Iraq, an act the late General William Odom predicted would turn out to be "the greatest strategic disaster in U.S. history."
You might want to stuff your pants pockets with sand and hang onto the rail as the ship of state lurches towards the distinct possibility that the next election to command the helm will be between Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton. The brother versus the wife. Sounds like a probate lawsuit.
On April 13, 2005 the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly, 272 to 162, to permanently repeal the federal estate tax, also known as the death tax. But in the ten years since, they have all but dropped the issue. A stunning 236 of the current members of the House have never had an opportunity to vote on it. Fortunately, the Ways & Means Committee under Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will soon consider a bill, H.R. 1105, written by Reps. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.) that would repeal the death tax. House leadership should bring it to the floor ...
Last week a political bloodbath unfolded on Capitol Hill.
One of my college roommates had a propensity for dismissing a rule (or someone else's interests) with "Pish posh! That's for lesser mortals!"
"What about the children?"
The country breathed a collective sigh of relief following Hillary Clinton's masterful press conference last week, held in response to the controversy surrounding her email troubles. "It's all fine. Don't worry about it. We got it covered. Easy peasy lemon squeezy."
The Republican opposition to striking a nuclear deal with Iran puzzled me, until my friend Truman explained that it's exactly like the famous tractor scene from Kevin Bacon's 1984 class movie, "Footloose."
As Iran continues to take an active role in helping Iraq fight the Islamic State group (ISIS), many neocons are upset that the U.S. military is not over there on the ground doing the fighting. They want Americans to believe that only another U.S. invasion of Iraq – and of Syria as well – can defeat ISIS. But what is wrong with the countries of the region getting together and deciding to cooperate on a common problem?
We all know that some people, for genetic or other reasons, experience depression more frequently and deeply than normal. At the other end of the spectrum are people like U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor who, despite having experienced painful losses and disadvantages that would understandably depress a normal person, achieve success and a life of remarkable accomplishment.
How would you like a free refund of your last three years' of taxes? A promise that you won't have to pay any possible back taxes or penalty? Would you have any objection if the IRS chooses not to ask for income verification?
This year marks the 20-year anniversary of Hillary Clinton's speech at the Fourth World Conference on Women titled, "Women's Rights Are Human Rights." It was 1995 when then-First Lady Clinton went to Beijing and challenged the world to see women's issues as not separate from the rest of humanity.
Senator Bob Menendez will soon be indicted on corruption and obstruction of justice charges stemming from his relationship with Salomon Melgen, a West Palm Beach eye doctor. Melgen thought he could get away with Medicare fraud because he gave Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid's Super PAC $700,000 and lavished Menendez with private jet flights to his luxury resort. Given the known public facts, Harry Reid should return Melgen's money to the taxpayers he stole it from and should ask Menendez to resign.