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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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Freed killer will just return

It is marvelous that killer and illegal alien Jose Zarate was not convicted of murder because, of course, his victim, Kate Steinle, was merely was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

In this Nov. 9, 2017, photo, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Nancy Pelosi's idea of 'Armageddon' is a GOP tax bill

- The Washington Times

Armageddon, biblically speaking, is the sign of the end of times -- the be-all and end-all of battles, the one that pits good against evil and ushers in a period of humanly devastations unlike any ever before experienced. But to Nancy Pelosi, the House's highest-ranking Democrat, Armageddon is the Republican tax bill.

People sleep outside of the Supreme Court in order to save places in line for Dec. 5 arguments in 'Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission,' Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, outside of the Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Supreme Court travel ban ruling a return to reason

- The Washington Times

Citizens from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad -- terror hotspots, all -- and North Korea, as well as segments of Venezuela, are now barred from entering the United States, thanks to a Supreme Court ruling on President Donald Trump's executive attempt to secure the nation and stop the flow of potential terrorists across the borders. Finally, a court ruling with reason.

Colin Kaepernick attends the 2017 ACLU SoCal's Bill of Rights Dinner at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel on Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Colin Kaepernick, bogus hero of the left

- The Washington Times

Colin Kaepernick is riding high, having just won the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award as well as the American Civil Liberties Union's Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate Award -- honors bestowed, respectively, for sportsmanship and bravery. But Kaepernick is possessed of neither. He's more a tool -- a tool of false leftist beliefs.

James Comey. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Robert Mueller's mighty tuna shrinks to a goldfish

- The Washington Times

Robert Mueller has the heart of a Las Vegas hooker and the guile of a New Orleans stripper. Not to push the metaphor too far, he's skilled at showing a little skin in a cloud of satin and lace, but never quite comes across with what the customer is paying for.

Bitcoin and Government Monopoly Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The end of government monopoly money

After two centuries of government monopoly money, private monies are re-emerging and will likely come to dominate ultimately. Back in 1976, Nobel Laureate F.A. Hayek published his little classic, "Denationalization of Money." In essence, Hayek argued that money is no different than other commodities, and it would be better supplied by competition among private issuers than by a government monopoly. His book detailed the problems with government monopoly money and how most of these problems could be overcome with private competition.

Illustration on reducing the size of government by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Starving the beast

One way to kill a predatory animal is to deny it sustenance. The tax-cut bill passed by the Senate, if it clears a conference with the House and President Trump signs it, may be the first step toward starving the big-government beast.

Artistic freedom in a cake at stake

Jack Phillips is an artist. He has always loved drawing, sculpting and painting. Designing custom wedding cakes allowed him to do all three in a setting that inspired him as a person of faith. And Jack excelled at his work. The local newspaper called his shop "an art gallery of cakes," and his designs received acclaim from the well-known wedding website The Knot.

Illustration on three major Washington types by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Lawyers, liars and horndogs

Washington has always had lots of lawyers — it's the very nature of this power town; lots of liars — it's the very nature of politics; and, as we have recently discovered, yet again, lots of real horndogs — it's the very nature of power politics.

Facebook Addiction Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The false premise of Facebook addiction

In an interview with Axios, Facebook cofounder Sean Parker revealed the founders purposefully created a social network that's addictive: "God only knows what it's doing to our children's brains."

Too many patents approved by the U.S. Patent and Trade Office have been revoked by administrative law judges at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, inventors say. (Associated Press/File)

Stacking the patent deck against inventors

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in the patent case Oil States Energy Services, LLC v. Greene's Energy Group, LLC. In many ways, the future of American innovation hangs in the balance.

Deborah Simmons

Virginia road grinch steals Christmas

- The Washington Times

Terry McAuliffe is the kind of governor who prides himself as a good-doer who works to benefit the hard-working people of Virginia. When it comes to his efforts in Northern Virginia, however, somebody should design a T-shirt that says #RoadGrinchofVirginia.

A free-speech challenge, with icing

Nowhere on the left end of the political spectrum is the call for "tolerance" more deceitful than among the organized sexually confused. Tolerance, Jonathan Capehart, a gay (but not very cheerful) editorial writer for The Washington Post, tells a television interviewer, should not be a two-way street. "It's a one-way street." Tolerance for me, but not for you.

In this Oct. 28, 2013, file photo, former FBI Director Robert Mueller is seated before President Barack Obama and FBI Director James Comey arrive at an installation ceremony at FBI Headquarters in Washington. A veteran FBI counterintelligence agent was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller's team investigating Russian election meddling after the discovery of an exchange of text messages seen as potentially anti-President Donald Trump, a person familiar with the matter said Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

Another wisp of thin smoke, but no fire

The world customarily slows down in December — except at the mall — to gather itself for a new year. But 2017 has not been a typical year. The world is upside down, turned inside out and spinning like a child's top. The centerpiece of the clown show is the relentless Democratic campaign to bring Donald Trump's presidency to ruin. The destruction of Michael Flynn is little more than collateral damage.

Agency misuse needs better look

In many Third World nations, a change in government leadership usually brings about criminal investigations of the past leaders. This is done to prevent the previous leadership from returning to power, or at least to make it much more difficult for it to do so. However, in examining the Obama administration's misuse of the Internal Revenue Service, the FBI and God knows which other government agencies, it is clear that a thorough investigation by an impartial team is necessary. The misuse of government agencies was so bad and so exceptional that "forgive and forget" should not be an option.

Predatory women harm all women

At last someone has acknowledged that the predator game works two ways ("When the prey becomes the predator," Web, Nov. 30). I am proud of all the women who had guts to out their predators — whether the predator was Matt Lauer, John Conyers, Al Franken or someone none of us knows. It is ugly beyond words that these women were treated like sex toys and that they feared losing their jobs if they complained. Their workplaces were toxic.

Revisiting an iconic film, adding too much padding

"Casablanca" is one of the most beloved American classic movies, and is the most shown film on the Turner Classic Movie Channel. However, it also the most powerful piece of propaganda produced by Hollywood during World War II.