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Panda cub 'Meng Yuan' looks to the cameras as its brother 'Meng Xiang' is almost sleeping during a name-giving event for the young panda twins at the Berlin Zoo in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Dec. 9, 2019. China's permanent loan Pandas Meng Meng and Jiao Qing are the parents of the two cubs that were born on Aug. 31, 2019 at the Zoo in Berlin. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

The benefits and mysteries of sleep

America needs a nap. Everybody’s biology is different — both Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, for instance, barely sleep, as the president’s late night and early morning tweets indicate — but as a rule of thumb, most people should get about eight hours of shut-eye a night. But fewer and fewer people in our harried, busy country are hitting the target, or really even coming close.

The Capitol is seen in Washington, early Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020, as the House is set to vote to send the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate for a landmark trial on whether the charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress are grounds for his removal. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

A partisan impeachment

Destroying is much easier than building. As his relentless adversaries file into the U.S. Senate Tuesday to judge articles of impeachment brought against President Trump, they open the door for irreparable damage to a system of justice founded on both the U.S. Constitution and American common sense. There can be no justice without fairness.

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FILE - In this Dec. 19, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks as South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg listens during a Democratic presidential primary debate in Los Angeles. Warren lit into Mayor Pete Buttigieg for attending a fundraiser at a wine cave in Napa Valley where he dined and sipped under a chandelier with Swarovski crystals and bottles of cabernet can sell for $900. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson, File)

Democrats set a costly course that risks public wrath

Americans have a natural-born yearning for hearth and home where families can grow in peace and prosperity. A certain collection of their would-be leaders prefer to build castles in the air. "Progressives" grabbing for the reins of power in Washington are ignoring warning signs flashing elsewhere from outbreaks of indignant citizens watching officialdom separate them from their hard-earned money and their hopes for a better future.

Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif, left, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, listens as the House Judiciary Committee hears investigative findings in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump, Monday, Dec. 9, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Devin Nunes is owed an apology

Presidential impeachment is a serious matter. It's the penultimate sanction legislators may take against the nation's chief executive. After that comes removal from office. The way the current case is being handled cheapens the constitutional safeguards protecting our liberties.

FILE - In this April 9, 2015, file photo, people walk into the south portal of Yucca Mountain during a congressional tour of the proposed radioactive waste dump near Mercury, Nev., 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas. Nevada wants a federal appeals court to dismiss a bid by the state of Texas to kick-start government funding and licensing for a long-fought plan to entomb the nation's most radioactive waste in the desert outside Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

Yucca Mountain or bust

The power demands of modern life require the infusion of fuel and the disposal of resulting waste. If the nation is to move beyond fossil fuels, common sense dictates that a future run on clean energy must include a robust role for emissions-free nuclear power. While building a dependable supply chain for nuclear fuel, the Trump administration must take steps to break the long-standing deadlock over its hazardous end product.

FILE - This March 28, 2019 photo shows cigarette butts in an ashtray in New York. A decade after President Barack Obama signed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act into law in 2009, health advocates say the Food and Drug Administration has yet to put in place the most sweeping changes envisioned by Congress. (AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File)

The new smoking age

Public smoking bans have come at a cost to liberty -- it seems to us an overreach for a government to tell a business owner that he can't allow a patron to partake in a perfectly legal activity in his establishment, and, moreover, that it's OK that certain establishments cater to adults who don't particularly care about their health.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., joined from left by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., unveils articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

On the verge of impeachment

The die is cast. President Trump's enemies have gambled on removing him from office, and now they have nowhere to go but forward along a perilous path. As Democrats line up to pass judgment on the president, they are setting in motion their own day of reckoning.

Climate activist Greta Thunberg, centre right, embraces another young activist at the COP25 Climate summit in Madrid, Spain, Monday, Dec. 9, 2019. Thunberg is in Madrid where a global U.N. sponsored climate change conference is taking place. (AP Photo/Andrea Comas)

Greenhorns of the climate crusade

Everyone loves children. They're the best part of a better world to come. Unfortunately, kids are clueless about both the world as it is and the means to improve it. That's why they're sent to school to learn rather than teach.

People work to secure the scene of a shooting at a kosher supermarket in Jersey City, N.J., Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019. The mayor of a New Jersey city says gunmen targeted the kosher market during a shooting that killed six people Tuesday. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

The menace of the Black Hebrew Israelites

Residents of Washington, D.C., may be grimly familiar with the so-called Black Hebrew Israelites, or at least a radical subset of them who are avowedly "Black Supremacist." They tend to hang out in the capital's Chinatown neighborhood, near where the Washington Wizards and Capitals play, and shout racist, sexist and anti-gay epithets at passersby. They're a menacing presence, intending to frighten and intimidate Washingtonians and tourists going about their business.

In this January 2019 image made from video provided by Penn Medicine, IV bags of CRISPR-edited T cells are prepared for administering to a patient at the Abramson Cancer Center in Philadelphia. Early results released on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019 show that doctors were able to take immune system cells from the patients' blood and alter them genetically to help them recognize and fight cancer, with minimal and manageable side effects. (Penn Medicine via AP)

CMS payments and health care

Obamacare, which has been the law of the land for almost a decade, has failed to live up to most all the promises its proponents made. The health care cost curve has not been bent downward. People cannot, despite the former president's repeated statements to the contrary, keep the plans they had, whether or not they liked them. And we're still debating ways to increase access, improve quality, and create an environment in which every American, whether they want it or not, has insurance.

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (Associated Press) **FILE**

Martin O'Malley goes low

In the era of social media — where videos gone "viral" are the currency of the realm — hyper-partisanship, and, dare we say, symptoms of Trump Derangement Syndrome everywhere, political harassment is in vogue. Trump administration officials are routinely heckled and harassed in public places, like restaurants. This obnoxious behavior is corrosive of our democratic society. Political differences here are supposed to be debated, discussed and ultimately voted on. Public harassment has no place in an open society.

In this Jan. 26, 2015, file photo, a supporter of open carry gun laws, wears a pistol as he prepares for a rally in support of open carry gun laws at the Capitol, in Austin, Texas. Texas is still sorting out where firearms are allowed, and where they're not, more than a year after Republican Gov. Greg Abbott signed a suite of laws that vastly expanded gun rights. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

Second Amendment sanctuaries

Some on the left are angry, if not apoplectic, that conservatives are turning the tables on them and co-opting one of their own tactics against liberal policies. But turnabout, as they say, is fair play: Self-styled "progressives," it seems, aren't the only ones who can unilaterally decide which laws they will or will not enforce and/or comply with.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., questions constitutional scholars during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on the constitutional grounds for the impeachment of President Donald Trump, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. At right is Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

A naughty wish for impeachment

'Tis the season for holiday hopes, but Democrats in Washington may have gotten too greedy with their political wish list. Just as leaders of Congress' blue party eagerly launched their closing arguments in favor of impeaching President Trump for allegedly wielding the nation's foreign policy apparatus for personal gain, TVs from coast to coast displayed the president rocking the NATO summit in London for the good of the red, white and blue. Never-Trumpers pinning their impeachment hopes on convincing Americans not to believe their own eyes is a wish that would make Santa Claus roll his baby blues.

FILE- In this Jan. 24, 2019, file photo, the U.S. Capitol at sunset in Washington. Republicans have high hopes of using the House drive toward impeaching President Donald Trump to defeat Democrats from swing districts loaded with moderate voters. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Buying everything but impeachment

Like an autumn breeze that sweeps clean the fallen leaves, good fortune is expelling the dreary effects of the incessant political strife that has tarnished the days of 2019. Even as dour faces in Washington deliver the dismal details of presidential impeachment proceedings, elsewhere the news is of a nation bursting with new-found prosperity. By most measures, this holiday season is shaping up to come wrapped in a golden bow.

FILE - In this Oct. 11, 2018, file photo, former NFL football quarterback Colin Kaepernick applauds while seated on stage during W.E.B. Du Bois Medal ceremonies at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. Republican concerns that the former NFL quarterback is too controversial to honor as a black leader doomed a resolution recognizing Black History Month in the state Assembly, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2019. The Legislature's black caucus had proposed a resolution honoring a number of black leaders, including Kaepernick, but Assembly Republicans refused to take it up. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

Colin Kaepernick, professional ingrate

When the Minnesota Vikings take on the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night, it will wrap up Week 12 of the 2019-20 NFL season. That's three-quarters of the way through the 16-game regular season, and Colin Kaepernick remains a quarterback in search of a team that will hire him.

Mike Bloomberg speaks to the media, Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019 in Phoenix. Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, a late entrant in the already crowded race for the Democratic presidential nomination, was set Tuesday to file to run in Arizona's presidential primary. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Bloomberg out the gate

If it were happening in Russia or Ukraine, we could imagine the script the media would be reciting: "An oligarch with a media empire and deep connections to the leading party in the lower assembly is running for president. He is spending tens of millions of dollars of his own money to secure victory. He is silencing the media."

FILE - In this May 7, 2018, file photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, walks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during a meeting in Dalian in northeastern China's Liaoning Province. For China, concerns about instability in North Korea, its ostensible communist ally, have long overridden worries about its nuclear arsenal. Beijing chiefly fears a collapse of the North Korean economy that could lead to armed conflict within the government and a potential flood of refugees streaming across the rivers that separate the neighbors. (Ju Peng/Xinhua via AP, File)

Double trouble with China and North Korea

As China goes, so goes North Korea. It's an obvious takeaway from the recent contentious behavior of the Asian giant that is imitated by its junior partner. Satirist Mark Twain once said, "Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example." Based on his thorny dealings with the troublesome duo, President Trump would likely say the same about a bad example.