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Illustration on Memorial Day by M. Ryder/Tribune Content Agency

Showing America’s gratitude

Orderly rows of white headstones line national cemeteries throughout our country. Each bears a name and behind that is a story of sacrifice. Today, a grateful nation remembers, but there is more we can do.

Illustration on remembering the sacrifices of U.S. Special Operators by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why special operators’ families must be remembered

Memorial Day is set aside for us to remember those who have fallen in defense of our country. This year’s observance should remind us that too many of us pay too little attention to the war that erupted on 9/11 in which Americans are still fighting, and sometimes dying, in many places around the world.

President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump walk from Marine One across the South Lawn to the White House in Washington, Saturday, May 27, 2017, as they return from Sigonella, Italy. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

No, Trump didn’t cause Obamacare to fail

It’s finally official. Obamacare is a public policy flop of epic proportions. That’s the only possible conclusion from the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City announcement last week that it will drop out of many markets in Kansas and Missouri.

Karen Clarkson, of Fairbanks, Alaska, kneels and cries at the grave of her son U.S. Army Sergeant Joel Clarkson on Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Monday, May 28, 2012. (Rod Lamkey Jr/The Washington Times)

The bitter history of Memorial Day

It used to be called Decoration Day and was observed on May 30. Today it’s commonly known as Memorial Day and is celebrated on the last Monday in May, mostly to give Americans a long weekend. But it used to be a solemn remembrance of the nation’s war dead — by decorating graves with spring flowers.

Former US President Barack Obama is awarded the German Media Prize 2016 in Baden-Baden, Germany, Thursday, May 25, 2017.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)

The latest news from the president in exile

- The Washington Times

The government in exile — the real one, according to the media — has had a busy week at home and abroad. “President Obama” has given up leading from behind and presumes now to lead from overseas. His secretary of state has a new mission, as missionary to the safe places where snowflakes fall.

Illustration on Obama's Labor Board legacy by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Ending the Obama labor board majority

Elections have consequences, or at least they are supposed to. Unfortunately for the rights of independent workers who don’t want to associate with a labor union, more than 100 days have passed since Barack Obama left office, but the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) remains in the hands of an Obama majority intent on pushing the limits of Big Labor’s forced unionism powers. It doesn’t need to be that way.

Illustration on Confederate soldiers buried in Arlington Cemetery by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Memorial Day must honor all of America’s fallen

As president of the American Veterans Center, the organization that produces the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington D.C., I am sometimes questioned as to why we include Confederate reenactors in our timeline of American military history.

Illustration on tax reform by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The case for tax and entitlement reform

Lobbyists are out in full force to block genuine tax reform. If Congress bends, great harm will come to ordinary folk — fewer good-paying jobs and a federal government too strapped to care for seniors and the truly needy.

Illustration on Trump's "Russian' problems by Kevin Kreneck/Tribune Content Agency

Possible crimes and cover-ups

In his first four months in office, President Trump has achieved the dubious distinction of being investigated by an independent prosecutor and at least five major oversight committees in Congress run by his own party.

FILE - In this Oct. 26, 2016, file photo, one of the remaining cows on Alabama farmer David Bailey's farm, walks towards a pile of hay to be fed, surrounded by dirt where ankle deep green grass use to be, acceding to Bailey, in Dawson, Ala. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

What’s the cattlemen’s beef? Washington

- The Washington Times

David Cook is a cattleman, a rancher and a member of the Arizona State House. He’s no Beltway insider. Mr. Cook came to Washington this week to spell out his beef. In short, he wants Congress to stop trying to lasso other ranchers and rural Americans with regulations.

Illustration on the need for Arab states to deal with Islamist terror by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

A harsh message worth sending

Just when everyone here was deep in preoccupation with partisan fantasy over whether Donald Trump should be impeached or removed by the 25th Amendment, the president changed the subject. Presidents can do that.

Illustration on Saudia Arabian duplicity by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Saudi Arabia’s duplicity

Trusting Saudi Arabia to combat terrorists and extremists and “drive them out,” as President Trump called on the kingdom and other Arab and Muslim nations to do in his Riyadh speech, is akin to forging an alliance with the Ku Klux Klan to combat racism and anti-Semitism.

Protesters from labor and other progressive groups fill the rotunda of the state Capitol in St. Paul, Minn., on Wednesday, May 24, 2017, to demand that Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton veto the bills that passed before the Minnesota Legislature's special session bogged down earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Steve Karnowski)

The dirty secret behind big labor’s decline

- The Washington Times

My father was a toolmaker and union organizer who, for many years, headed the Rockford, Ill. Labor Council while my mother was serving five terms as head of the Women’s Auxiliary of the United Auto Workers. Dad worked as a machinist and my mother as a waitress and clerk in a local jewelry store until my dad retired and joined a couple of buddies to buy a bar.

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President Donald Trump attends commencement exercises at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn., Wednesday, May 17, 2017, where he also gave the commencement address. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The art of the Trump take-down

- The Washington Times

Taking down President Donald Trump has become an art of late -- a national past-time, like going to a baseball game, or barbecuing on the Fourth of July.

Illustration on the crisis in Venezuela by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Venezuela's self-made crisis

Time is running out for Venezuela, a nation of 31 million with perhaps the world's largest proved reserves of crude oil. The consequences of its descent for its neighbors and for the United States, whether into dictatorship, civil war, or bloody chaos, demand an immediate response — well beyond the call for dialogue, partial targeted sanctions, and resolutions.

Illustration on Trump administration difficulties by Donna Grethen/Tribune Content Agency

The Comey memo

When the news broke this week that President Trump had passed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister at a White House meeting, administration officials said the story was "false."

Coordinated Preemptive Korea Attack Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Forging a strategy for North Korea

If one consults the great strategists of the human experience such as Karl Von Clausewitz, Sun Tzu, or B.H. Liddell Hart the goal of strategy never changes: it is the application of power in order to attain a clear objective, which in the case for grand strategy could be multi-generational.

The Swamp is Winning Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Why swamp fever must be cured

The accusations in the media against President Donald Trump are reaching hysterical levels. This has also been labeled "Trump Derangement Syndrome," and is characterized by a reporter's firm belief (shared by many Democratic politicians and Hillary Clinton supporters) that Mr. Trump is illegitimately occupying the Oval Office, is not fit for presidential duty, and must be ousted one way or another.

How Austen novels are 'revolutionary at their heart'

The default setting for a novel is the present day. We also have historical novels, sci-fic novels, gothic novels, and novels about other worlds -- including chicklit and Scandi Noir. We call them "genre novels" to distinguish them from mainstream fiction about believable characters and events in credible places.

Tyranny's tyranny, no matter flavor

After ratification of the Constitution, Benjamin Franklin was said to have walked out of Independence Hall and been asked by a passer-by, "What have you created?" Franklin replied, "A democracy, if you can keep it." Franklin contemporary Thomas Jefferson is credited with having said, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing " Franklin, Jefferson and many of the Founders were powerful thinkers on social, religious, scientific, moral and secular matters. Yet they knew they needed each other if they had any hope of their new nation surviving.

State Rep. Jody Richards, D-Bowling Green, reads a story to Head Start children at Community Action of Southern Kentucky, Thursday, May 18, 2017, in Bowling Green, Ky. (Bac Totrong/Daily News via AP)

Good First Amendment news

Sometimes there's a nugget of something good in the daily ration of bad news. A T-shirt printer in Lexington, Ky., one Blaine Adamson, won a state court ruling early this month that he was within his First Amendment rights to refuse to print an offensive message on T-shirts ordered by the Gay and Lesbian Services Organization for a "gay pride" parade.

President Donald Trump listens to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, left, speak during a news conference in the East Room of the White House, Thursday, May 18, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

A promise not kept

During the late, lamented campaign of 2016, when brave talk was in season, Donald Trump promised faithfully that once he was president he would take the United States out of the infamous Paris climate accord, an international agreement signed and promoted by Barack Obama that locks the United States into all kinds of anti-competitive things "to combat global climate change."

Selling out Israel will backfire

When an unidentified high-ranking State Department official said that the Western Wall was not part of Israel — despite the wall's having been indisputably in Israel proper for the past 50 years — there were immediate protests from not only Jews, but evangelical Christians as well. Now, to the dismay of those concerned about the security of Israel and its biblical and historical background, President Trump's national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, is refusing to contradict this official's ludicrous statement ("Top Trump aide won't say if Western Wall is part of Israel," Web, May 16).

In this May 16, 2017, photo, President Donald Trump welcomes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the White House in Washington. The Trump administration faced growing calls Thursday for a forceful response to violence by Turkish presidential guards on American soil, who were briefly detained this week but then set free. The unseemly incident added to U.S.-Turkish tensions that are being compounded by a growing spat over U.S. war strategy against the Islamic State group in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

No use trying to satisfy demanding Democrats

A close relative shared with me his thoughts on the odd situation we find ourselves in these days, where Republicans are in charge of the Congress and the White House yet it feels as if the minority Democrats are running the show.

U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres, center, addresses the European Parliament, while EU Parliament president Antonio Tajani leaves in Strasbourg, eastern France, Wednesday, May 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)

EU deepens its own crisis with attacks on Hungary, Poland

The European Parliament has condemned Hungary for human rights issues and a breakdown of the rule of law. Brussels is now threatening all-out financial war against both Hungary and Poland, among others, for alleged human rights abuses and anti-democratic policies and actions. But with conservative governments insisting on their sovereign right to protect their borders and preserve their national identities, Europe is headed for an existential crisis from which it may not recover in its current form.

In this Sept. 13, 2016, file photo, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Molly Riley, File)

Jason Chaffetz's right: Where's the memo, Mr. Comey?

- The Washington Times

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, in a Thursday "Good Morning America" interview, wondered aloud where the now-famous James Comey memos were -- and whether the fired FBI director really was going to release them for public viewing. These are good questions. The American public has a right to see the so-called evidence being used to take down President Donald Trump.

In this May 3, 2017, file photo, FBI Director James Comey listens on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

Comey: Higher-ups never asked for halt to FBI investigations

- The Washington Times

James Comey, just-fired FBI director, said in a Senate hearing earlier this month that he's never been asked by higher-ups to back off an investigation for political reasons, an interesting remark given the fact President Donald Trump's now being accused of that very thing.