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Local columns

Teenagers do stupid stuff

TRAVERSE CITY — Why are teens eating Tide pods? Here’s why … I know many adults are struggling to understand why teenagers across the country are chewing on laundry detergent pods. I believe I can bring some clarity to this question: It’s because they’re morons. I do not say ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Feb. 8, the 39th day of 2018. There are 326 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On Feb. 8, 1968, three college students were killed in a confrontation between demonstrators and highway patrolmen at South ...

A Never-Trump press in near panic

WASHINGTON — “All the News That’s Fit to Print” proclaims the masthead of The New York Times. “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” echoes The Washington Post. “The people have a right to know,” the professors at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism hammered into us in ...

The memo and the truth

WASHINGTON — Partisans tend to read, watch and listen only, or mostly, to information and opinions that reinforce their beliefs. If information surfaces that counters those beliefs, it is usually disparaged, excused or ignored. That’s human nature. Such is the case with the “memo” ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Feb. 7, the 38th day of 2018. There are 327 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 7, 1943, the government abruptly announced that wartime rationing of shoes made of leather would go into effect in two ...

Most residents in struggling US areas respect police

WASHINGTON (AP) — A majority of Americans living in struggling communities say they have respect for and confidence in the police who patrol their neighborhoods, according to a survey released Sunday. More than 7 in 10 Americans who live in these communities said they have some or a lot of ...

Open to global capital, not people

BERKELEY — Trump to global CEOs and financiers in Davos, Switzerland, last week: “America is open for business.” We’re now a great place for you to make money. We’ve slashed taxes and regulations so you can make a bundle here. Trump to ambitious young immigrants around the world, ...

Lying, spying and hiding

WASHINGTON — I have argued for a few weeks now that House Intelligence Committee members have committed misconduct in office by concealing evidence of spying abuses by the National Security Agency and the FBI. They did this by sitting on a four-page memo that summarizes the abuse of raw ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Feb. 6, the 37th day of 2018. There are 328 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 6, 1778, during the American Revolutionary War, the United States won official recognition and military support from ...

A champion of American individualism

WASHINGTON — It was an assertion of hard-won personal sovereignty: Frederick Douglass, born on a Maryland plantation 200 years ago this month, never knew on what February day because history-deprivation was inflicted to confirm slaves as non-persons. So, later in life, Douglass picked the ...

A message for my evangelical friends

WASHINGTON — “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.” (Romans 13:1) That verse, written by Paul the Apostle, is one of the most difficult for modern ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, Feb. 5, the 36th day of 2018. There are 329 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 5, 1918, during World War I, the Cunard liner SS Tuscania, which was transporting about 2,000 American troops to Europe, ...

How They Voted

House Bill 4787, Revise personal data details on ice shanties: Passed 38 to 0 in the Senate To revise the requirement that ice fishing shanties must have the owner’s name and address affixed to each side, by allowing either the owner’s drivers license number or fishing license number ...

Freedom Ranking

NEW YORK — Is America the world’s freest country? Sadly, no. When researchers first started doing detailed international comparisons, the USA came in second or third. This year, however, we ranked 17th. The comparison I cite is the newly released Human Freedom Index, compiled by the ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Feb. 3, the 34th day of 2018. There are 331 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 3, 1943, during World War II, the U.S. transport ship SS Dorchester, which was carrying troops to Greenland, sank after ...

Patriotism on the cheap

WASHINGTON — For the first two centuries of U.S. history — while Americans were proudly winning a war for independence, founding a nation, abolishing slavery, settling a continent and winning two world wars — the patriot was that admirable fellow citizen willing to sacrifice his own ...

The state of President Trump

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s first State of the Union address set a new standard. For himself. If he lives up to that standard in future speeches, he may go far in changing his image from a blustering, ad-libbing “entertainer,” to someone who looks and sounds, shall I say it, more ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Friday, Feb. 2, the 33rd day of 2018. There are 332 days left in the year. This is Groundhog Day. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 2, 1943, the remainder of Nazi forces from the Battle of Stalingrad surrendered in a major victory ...

How They Voted

Senate Bill 749, Increase child care income tax credit: Passed 37 to 0 in the Senate To establish that an individual is entitled to claim the same child care tax credit against Michigan income tax as the credit authorized by the 2017 federal tax reform law. This is a means-tested credit that ...

Too many wars, too many enemies

WASHINGTON — If Turkey is not bluffing, U.S. troops in Manbij, Syria, could be under fire by week’s end, and NATO engulfed in the worst crisis in its history. Turkish President Erdogan said Friday his troops will cleanse Manbij of Kurdish fighters, alongside whom U.S. troops are embedded. ...