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One of Brian’s Favorite Quotes

The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.”
— George Bernard Shaw (1856–1950)

Real Clear Politics

White and Black and Blue

So, Michael Brown was the wrong cause célèbre and Ferguson the wrong town. That’s the conclusion reached by a St. Louis County grand jury, and the U.S. Justice Department. Maybe that’s right, although Brown’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit Thursday, and we may yet learn more about the August 9, 2014 confrontation that left the unarmed 18-year-old lying dead in the street. Whatever emerges from the civil litigation, however, the themes raised in Ferguson

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Nuclear Deal or Not, Iran Is Primed to Do Business

Ned Lamont recently returned from a fact-finding trip to Iran sponsored by the Young Presidents’ Organization, a global entity that bills itself as the “peer network of chief executives and business leaders.” He was the 2006 Democratic candidate for Senate in Connecticut, ran for governor in 2010, and is currently chairman of Lamont Digital Systems. The latest revolution to convulse Iran is rampant capitalism. The lobby of Tehran's international hotel, The Parsian Azadi, was a

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"Gilded Age" of the Washington-Hollywood Elite

American culture is at odds with a lot of things that shade its values, character and work ethic. Most notable of these are politics and Hollywood, the celebrity-driven entities that dominate media coverage. The collision of Hollywood and the presidency with a sizable chunk of Washington's media, which report on the latter and party with the former, has elevated both as cultural icons that dictate not just fashion but values, causes and behavior — or,

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Clinton Greed

The Clintons have always had an uneasy relationship with money. Bill never had any. And although Hillary had a comfortable upbringing, she didn't take the path to riches that her Yale Law degree might have provided, choosing instead to do public interest law right out of law school and marry a man with great political ambition. But, clearly, both Bill and Hillary wanted the good life -- and the money it takes to provide it.

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Donations Leave Hillary in a Cloud

WASHINGTON -- In thinking about donations to the Clinton Foundation from foreign governments and interests, an adage attributed to Benjamin Franklin and a Yiddish word come to mind. From Franklin -- actually, from Franklin's alter ego, Poor Richard -- comes the saying, "He that lieth down with dogs shall rise up with fleas." In foreign policy, as in fundraising, lying down with dogs goes with the territory. Combine the two, and fleas become an occupational

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Hillary's Double Standard on "Unaccountable Money"

Bill and Hillary Clinton are to money what the Gulf of Mexico is to the Mississippi River: the inevitable destination of a large and never-ending flow, which is sometimes polluted. The latest example comes in the form of donations of $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation by the chairman of a Canadian uranium company that needed, and got, U.S. government approval to be taken over by a Russian firm that enjoys the favor of Vladimir

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Mourning Curtis Gans, a Force of Nature in Politics

The first set of 2015’s major thunderstorms roared through the Washington, D.C., area earlier this week, leaving in their wake a number of fallen limbs, scattered patio furniture, and mangled umbrellas. Going outside the morning after the storms, I was relieved to see that, with the exception of a runoff-caused layer of mud on our front sidewalk, we had escaped any real damage. Even better, I also noticed the first bright green, tiny leaves appearing

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Snarking Clinton Is Not the Way to the White House

A number of GOP candidates are engaging in Hillary-bashing over allegations that she used her office as secretary of state to help her husband's business dealings, prop up speech-making fees and grease the path for foreign governments to donate massive amounts of money to the Clinton Foundation. But here's a warning to my friends on the presidential campaign trail: Bashing Hillary is only going to make the Republican Party look mean-spirited and snarky. It's no

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