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Illustration on the GOP and the death penalty by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Republicans reconsidering the death penalty

The mere idea of Republicans sponsoring death penalty repeal bills in great numbers was once considered an unlikely notion. However, Conservatives Concerned about the Death Penalty recently released a report revealing how Republicans are championing measures to end capital punishment at never-before-seen rates.

Doug Jones is greeted by a supporter before speaking during an election-night watch party Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Birmingham, Ala. Jones has defeated Republican Roy Moore, a one-time GOP pariah who was embraced by the Republican Party and the president even after facing allegations of sexual impropriety. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Doug Jones — and Trump’s life just got a lot harder

- The Washington Times

President Donald Trump has been beating a dead horse in Congress for almost a year now, trying to pass his agendas legislatively through a Senate that’s dominated by Republicans yet consistently falls to Democratic Party will because of an ever-looming threat of filibuster. It’s only going to get tougher for Trump. Prepare for the stalled and even dropped legislation.

Illustration on Iranian influence in the Persian Gulf region by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Iran’s indirect strategy for regional influence

Last month, Yemen’s Houthis, the Iranian-supported rebel faction that now dominates the southern Persian Gulf’s most volatile state, fired a ballistic missile that came close to the Saudi capital, Riyadh, before being intercepted by the country’s military. The incident was a clear sign of the deepening sectarian conflict between Tehran and Riyadh now taking place throughout the Middle East. But it was also an accurate reflection of the sort of asymmetric tactics being prioritized by Iran in its strategy for regional dominance.

An open process for revamping net neutrality

While the pall of scandals and alleged scandals in the nation’s capital may have many voters thinking of the Beltway as a dysfunctional wasteland, the reality is that much of the machinery of government is, in fact, going full throttle trying to create jobs and spur growth. Only you wouldn’t know it from the daily news cycle.

Invisible Political Hand Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The invisible hand of economics

The invisible hand of American presidential politics is economics. Almost imperceptibly guiding the electorate, no other issue is as determinant of a presidency’s success. Currently, it is supporting Donald Trump through his political problems and could push him to re-election, as it has so many others.

In this Aug. 27, 2017, file photo, demonstrators clash during a free speech rally in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson, file)

Drain the education swamp: College students’ tyrannical behavior must be stopped

How many conversations have we had with our friends, family and co-workers wondering what happened to the millennials? We expect a new generation to have new ideas and new ways of approaching the world. So how do we explain when a new generation is steeped in bullying, complaining about hurt feelings, demanding “safe spaces,” and using pride in fragile egos and weakened emotional states as the excuse to condemn free speech?

Illustration on China's role in diffusing the North Korean nuclear threat by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Nobody’s fool over North Korean nukes

Our news-hack kids — or, as Obama chief spinner Ben Rhodes called them, the “27-year-old know-nothings” — don’t have a clue as to the operative history of the North Korean nuclear threat to Asia, the Pacific and the United States.

Illustration on lawsuits harassing energy producers by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Energy producers’ uphill battle against wealthy environmentalists

American manufacturing has been undergoing a tough transition for decades. Import competition and currency manipulation by other countries as well as regulatory excess at home have all taken a toll in many sectors of manufacturing. Just as manufacturing in America appears to be coming back, it faces a formidable new threat: a cabal of activists, cunning lawyers, ambitious politicians and a network of well-heeled benefactors.

Removing Government Intervention Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Protecting American business abroad

Westerners applaud the actions of the Trump administration to end the war on the West waged by the Obama administration, including: President Trump’s efforts to revitalize energy production from federal lands — oil and gas and coal; his dispatch of the Environmental Protection Agency’s land-grabbing “waters of the United States” rule; and his order to revoke, roll back or revise the national monument decrees with which President Obama placed millions of acres of federal lands off-limits to economic and recreational uses.

Secure Air Traffic Control Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Privatization with a potential for danger

Relieving the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of its oversight of our nation’s air traffic control (ATC) operations would create significant concerns in both military and homeland security air defense mission areas. House Transportation Committee Chairman Bill Schuster has advocated relentlessly for ATC privatization, drafting and promoting two separate bills outlining the move to privatized control of the busiest airspace in the world. Endorsed by the Trump administration, this move has repercussions beyond the inherent conflict of interest presented by a commercial airline governing board.

Illustration on the changing attitudes toward good and evil in Star Wars by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Choosing favorites in ‘Star Wars’

On May 25, 1977, the original “Star Wars” movie, “A New Hope,” made its debut. It immediately had an impact that is hard to measure, especially on the generation that would, unfortunately, be called “X,” itself a seemingly sci-fi moniker.

Illustration on the growing threat of nuclear crisis with North Korea by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Discounting the North Korea threat countdown

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, speaking to the Reagan National Defense Forum on Dec. 2, offered up a doomsday prediction. When asked how close the United States and North Korea are to war, Mr. McMaster replied, “It’s increasing every day.” Sen. Jim Inhofe, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, seconded that statement in even more distressing language: “It is important for us here in the Senate to communicate to the American people the credible, grave, and immediate threat that we face . We don’t have the luxury of time.”

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Hedy Lamarr . (Associated Press) ** FILE **

When the prey becomes the predator

- The Washington Times

It's only a matter of time until the female of the species becomes predator, and is caught in the web of what the country preacher called "he'in and she'in," which has been the favorite game of men and women since Eve disdained perfection in the Garden of Eden.

Jeff Sessions at the Department of Justice Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Jeff Sessions' ambitious Justice Department

In February, 2016, a full nine months before the presidential election and days before Super Tuesday, Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions endorsed Donald Trump, the first sitting senator to do so. I recall being in a meeting of several other Washington conservatives with Mr. Sessions shortly after his endorsement. Mr. Trump, said Mr. Sessions "is the candidate who is the best advocate for our ideas. If he wins, he has the best chance of putting the country back onto the conservative mold left by Ronald Reagan."

Illustration on the U.S. reflecting on its motivations in foreign policy actions by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Aligning with Saudi Arabia's designs

The United States faces a question that it seems to want to ignore: What kind of nation are we? The question looms up in the face of America's complicity in an ongoing humanitarian crisis in the Middle East. We are helping Saudi Arabia starve the people of Yemen — men, women, and children — into submission to the Saudi will.

Illustration on Somalia taking up the fight against the al-Shabab insurgency by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

It is up to Somalia to combat al-Shabab

According to U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), there have been 18 airstrikes to date this year in Somalia — more than four times the average for the previous seven years. At the same time, the number of U.S. forces in Somalia has more than doubled. The target of the U.S. military in Somalia is al-Shabab, an Islamist militant group allied with al Qaeda and now considered the deadliest terrorist organization in Africa.

Illustration on Republican tax legislation by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

The anticipated tax legislation

Benjamin Franklin, who famously said that nothing in this world can be certain "except death and taxes," would love the Republican tax cut bill that's headed for a vote in the Senate this week.

2017 AP YEAR END PHOTOS - Opposition lawmakers brawl with pro-government militias who are trying to force their way into the National Assembly during a special session coinciding with Venezuela's independence day, in Caracas, on July 5, 2017. At least five lawmakers were injured in the attack. (AP Photos/Fernando Llano)

From revolution to ruin in Venezuela

Not so long ago Venezuela, which stumbles along as if on a national breadline, was the wealthiest country in Latin America. And why not? It has the world's largest proven oil reserves and abundant fertile farmland. Its governmental institutions were once efficient and largely free of corruption. With a few good funerals, times could be good again.

Vice President Mike Pence speaks to a gathering of Republican governors in Austin, Texas, Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017, at the J.W. Marriott. (Ricardo B. Brazziell/Austin American-Statesman via AP) ** FILE **

Discretion makes a comeback

That's Vice President Mike Pence getting the last laugh in the wake of the torrent of sexual-misconduct charges against Washington politicians, journalists and entertainment industry titans who are suddenly not so titanic.

Reform Mauritania now

The United Nations sets aside Dec. 2 as its International Day for the Abolition of Slavery. From sweatshops and prison labor, to trafficked women and men forced into unpaid work or prostitution, some 40 million people around the world are held in horrific conditions. But if there's an open sore, it's Mauritania in West Africa.

Reaping fruits of sexual revolution

Why is anyone surprised to learn that in our present social climate there is and has been for the past 40 years rampant sexual improprieties and assaults against women ("The return of virtue," Web, Nov. 29)? We are reaping the rotten fruits of the sexual revolution of the 1960s and '70s, during which the "Free Love" movement erased modesty and respect for women. The fairer sex became fair play and stigmas were removed from the exploits of amorous behavior. The #MeToo hashtag is a joke. I doubt there is a woman alive who has never experienced a sexual impropriety in her lifetime.

Tax cuts, spending and Democrats

- The Washington Times

Ever since Richard Nixon presented stakeholders in the nation's capital with limited home rule in 1973, Democrats have held the purse strings and dived into public coffers for liberal causes.

Ukrainian lawmakers scuffled during a parliament session in October. Former Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, who now heads an opposition party, accuses President Petro Poroshenko of stalling reforms and covering up corruption. (Associated Press/File)

Early promise of Ukraine's war on corruption fades by the day

Two years ago in Kiev, I met with Artem Sytnik and his colleagues at the National Anti-Corruption Bureau, along with the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office, of Ukraine, and wrote a profile headlined, "Can this man save Ukraine?" Mr. Sytnik at the time had just been installed as the head of NABU.

Nikki Haley, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, speaks during a Security Council meeting on the situation in North Korea, Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017 at United Nations headquarters. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Nikki Haley is sticking it to North Korea

- The Washington Times

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley just issued an oh-so-strong statement North Korea's way, telling the defiant regime its latest missile launch was a war-like act -- and if that's the way Kim Jong Un wants to play it, fine by the United States. But be prepared, she said. 'Cause North Korea will be "utterly destroyed" if war ensues, Haley vowed.

In this Jan. 16, 2015, file photo, Geraldo Rivera participates in "The Celebrity Apprentice" panel at the NBC 2015 Winter TCA  in Pasadena, Calif.  Rivera says he's "filled with regret" for initially discounting the sexual harassment allegations against his former Fox News Channel boss, Roger Ailes, and is apologizing for his skepticism.  (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Geraldo Rivera opens mouth, inserts foot

- The Washington Times

Geraldo Rivera of Fox News took to Twitter to weigh in on the fast-moving Matt Lauer sexual misconduct claims to say, in essence: This is all part and parcel of the dating scene. Unfair characterization? You decide.

President Donald Trump waves as he walks on the South Lawn upon his return to the White House in Washington from a trip to Missouri on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Not over by Thanksgiving

In August, when President Trump's lawyers persuaded him to refrain from attacking independent counsel Robert Mueller publicly — he had many times called Mr. Mueller's investigation a "witch hunt" — they also told him that the investigation was not aimed at him and not to worry because it would be over by Thanksgiving.

Cleaning Up the Department of the Interior Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Cleaning up at Interior

In the 1990s, after posting the largest revenue losses at the time of any U.S. company in history, multinational computer giant IBM implemented an epic corporate turnaround. Having posted billions of dollars in annual losses, it was widely considered bloated and antiquated. Business executive Louis Gerstner Jr., largely credited with IBM's "rebirth," reflected that "Reorganization to me is shuffling boxes, moving boxes around. Transformation means that you're really fundamentally changing the way the organization thinks, the way it responds, the way it leads. It's a lot more than just playing with boxes." It's clear that the Interior Department needs such a transformation.