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Columns

Hey Hillary, it’s time to start smiling, girl

You know, the world would be a happier place if a girl would just smile more.Just ask the guys on Twitter.Now, by "girl," I mean a former U.S. senator and secretary of state who is likely to be the first female president of these allegedly united states.As for "the world," let's narrow it down. ...

Political year is desperate for good humor

Boy, do I miss Ronald Reagan's robust sense of self-confidence, which enabled him to use self-deprecating humor to confound his political adversaries. In 1987, after his presidency had hit a serious rough spot with the exposure of the Iran-Contra weapons-for-hostages deal and with a publicized ...

Essay: Will First Amendment survive the information age?

As Apple tries to fend off government demands for access to iPhone content, the company is leaning on free speech arguments as a key part of its defense in a California courtroom.On the other end of the country, 10 separate lawsuits have piled up this year against net neutrality rules, with ...

Tuesday’s biggest losers were pollsters

When the dust settled after Tuesday's Democratic primaries, Hillary Clinton expanded her commanding lead over Bernie Sanders by 18 delegates. This was the political bottom line, but it wasn't THE story, was it?The story was that by confounding pollster expectations that Clinton would handily ...

No words left for GOP charade

Convincing people that their lives can be better by making other people's lives worse is a recipe for fascism.Help! We political wordsmiths are in urgent need of assistance from lexicologists.The Republican presidential primary has gone so far out, so beyond accepted boundaries of civic and ...

Too many bills would limit access to what should be public information

Flint's water crisis might not have hit the national news until late 2015, but using the state's Freedom of Information Act, along with citizen and city sources in Flint, Flint Journal and MLive.com reporter Ron Fonger uncovered the problems months earlier. His use of FOIA to gain access to ...

Republican Party well on way to self destruction

"Burn it down." That's the slogan of faux conservatives who now rejoice that the Republican Party is being smashed by a slick, howlingly transparent grifter. The urge to destroy has a kind of pornographic appeal to a certain personality - but it's a shock to find it so widespread.The Republican ...

Trump’s America isn’t anywhere most people would like to live

When Donald Trump announced he was running for president, I mocked him. "Of the United States?" I asked. (I got a C- in Mockery when I was in college, unfortunately.)When he jumped into the lead almost immediately, I laughed. "The higher the climb, the harder the fall," I said. (I did better in ...

Republican Party well on way to self destruction

"Burn it down." That's the slogan of faux conservatives who now rejoice that the Republican Party is being smashed by a slick, howlingly transparent grifter. The urge to destroy has a kind of pornographic appeal to a certain personality - but it's a shock to find it so widespread.The Republican ...

No child left behind at Central

Not every child thrives in mainstream public high school, and that's why alternatives like Grand Haven's Central High School are so essential. But that's not always enough.That's why special programs like The Encounter Project at Central High are necessary additions to the curriculum. The ...

Politicians, it’s time to put the money where your mouth is

Every time there is a mass shooting many politicians will say something like, "Guns aren't the real issue, mental health is the issue."We hear the same talking point, again and again, shooting after shooting. So what exactly are politicians doing for mental health?So far in 2016, Gov. Snyder ...

Hillary’s education jackboot squad

Brace yourselves, parents: Hillary Clinton's Fed Ed jackboot squad is from the government and is here to "help."Clinton wants a cadre of new government educrats to undo the decades-old damage of old government educrats in America's worst public schools.She pitched her creepy proposal at the ...

‘Ordinary’ people support Donald Trump

Immediately, I bristled.Here we go again."Ordinary" Americans. We know what that's supposed to mean. Plain people. Malleable people. Nothing-exceptional-about-them people. Every four years, these white working-class voters become objects of curiosity like pandas at the zoo.These are the people ...

Farewell, prince of tides

WASHINGTON - Soon after "The Prince of Tides" became a blockbuster movie in 1991, People magazine put the film's leading man, Nick Nolte, on its cover as the "Sexiest Man Alive."This couldn't possibly be true, I thought (and wrote) at the time. Nolte, who played protagonist Tom Wingo, was a ...

Let’s razzle dazzle ourselves

"Give 'em the old razzle dazzleRazzle Dazzle 'emGive 'em an act with lots of flash in itAnd the reaction will be passionateGive 'em the old hocus pocusBead and feather 'emHow can they see with sequins in their eyes?"- "Chicago:The Musical"Looking for someone - anyone - to blame for the rise of ...

One prediction you can (almost) bank on

Panic has become the uninvited visitor to every meeting of elected Republican officeholders. With Donald Trump now the clear favorite to win the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, Republicans whose own fate and future could well be determined by whether they are forced to run on a November ...

GOP ‘takers’ take down establishment

Just as Donald Trump did a Super Tuesday stomp on the Republican establishment, the establishment showed why it deserved the rough treatment.The Republican Senate leadership yet again announced its refusal to consider anyone President Obama nominates for the Supreme Court until after the ...

Can Trump be stopped? Maybe

The Republican race goes on after Super Tuesday. In ordinary years, Donald Trump's wins in seven of the 11 Super Tuesday contests after three out of four wins in February, together with his delegate lead, would make him the nominee. Politicians would hurry to back the apparent winner.But, ...

Donald Trump can still be headed off but time is short

Mitt Romney made a compelling and urgent case for why the Republican Party's soul is at stake in this election cycle. And speaking of Romney, his experience in 2012 illustrates why those who are shrugging that it is too late to stop Donald Trump are mistaken.Attempting to stop Trump is not some ...

As primaries pass, Democratic, Republican frontrunners roll on

WASHINGTON - Voters in the Deep South and New England made it clear on Super Tuesday that the voice of the people is not likely to be denied in either major party this year.Seven state primary victories each for Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton have narrowed prospects that ...