Lincoln: Pretense to States Rights

This is the second of two blog entries on Abraham Lincoln’s Message to Congress in Special Session on July 4,1861. The first, Lincoln’s American People, appeared in this blog two weeks ago. This entry examines Lincoln’s choice and use of the word “pretense” in an important paragraph framing the central concerns of his speech. Both essays... Continue Reading →

Gotcha Emails: Give Her a Break

How many reasons do you need to give Hillary Clinton a break on the hacked email dumps that regularly befall her? The second dump happened last week; it showed questionable connections between State Department staff and The Clinton Foundation when Hillary Clinton was SOSOTUS. The first release at the start of the Democratic National Convention cost... Continue Reading →

Dumping on Trump

Author's note: This essay, first published in September of 2012, is particularly relevant now that Donald Trump is running full bore for the Presidency of the United States. While I've retained its original title for filing purposes—it is after all easier to reblog than rewrite—it is renamed Double Dump on Trump here to highlight his no apologies/no retractions habit of doubling down on... Continue Reading →

The American People

Every national politician loves the American People and speaks often of his fealty and devotion: “The American People are my employer.”  “I trust the American People.” “The safety of the American People is my primary concern.” “The American People will not stand for inaction.” “The American People are watching.” “The American People aren’t stupid.” “The... Continue Reading →

Iraq War: Out With a Whisper

Earlier this month, Edward Wasserman, Knight Foundation Professor of Journalism at Washington and Lee University and writer for the McClatchy Newspapers, published the most important piece of analysis I have read in the New Year. The article appeared in the Maine Sunday Telegram under the evocative heading, Media AWOl in Exposing Iraq War's Many Follies.... Continue Reading →

Torture Redux

Cullen Murphy's article, Torturer's Apprentice, (The Atlantic, January/February 2012, pp. 72-77) is an exquisitely researched mind popper, and a must read. It turns out that official records of the Inquisition's chief torturers in the 14th century are sufficiently detailed and abundant as to allow a comparison of types and theories of torture between inquisitors then... Continue Reading →

The Man Nobody Knew – A Must See Documentary Film

I recently had the opportunity to see Carl Colby's documentary film  THE MAN NOBODY KNEW: In Search of My Father, CIA Spymaster William Colby. The trailer, available through the filmmaker''s website, portrays the storyline faithfully. William Colby's service to the United States is laid out in sympathetic detail in his biography in Wikipedia. Another useful... Continue Reading →

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