Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, September 22, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page B:3



 Mountain Views News Saturday, September 22, 2018 



Mountain Views



Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 


Joan Schmidt


LaQuetta Shamblee


Richard Garcia


Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Kevin Barry


Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Dr. Tina Paul

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright



Be very careful, because it’s getting crazy out 
there. You don’t want to end up collateral 
damage accidentally straying into the path 
of the newest dance craze sweeping the 
Republican Party. Closely related to the St. 
Vitus Dance, it is characterized by rapid, uncoordinated jerky 
movements and commonly referred to as the Donald Trump Two-

 It’s pretty simple really: swing your arms back and forth, take one 
step forward, turn right, turn righter, take one step back. And repeat. 
It’s kind of like the Twist meets the Mexican Hat Dance meets the 
Hokey Pokey, with a heavy emphasis on the Pokey. The goal is a lot 
of movement without any discernible directional advancement.

 There’s an election coming up, and the threat of a Blue Wave is 
spooking conservatives like cobwebs in a closet with the lights out 
after midnight. So this spasmodic twitching is the direct result of 
pressure being applied from behind as well as the front, the left, the 
right, the in and the out. Candidates are suffering from the dreaded 
Trump Sandwich Effect.

 The dilemma is whether to be caught in a clinch, slow-dancing 
with the president or to waltz away so far, the chief executive can’t 
even be seen due to the curvature of the earth - the norm in almost 
every swing district. There’s a third option, the stutter-step of trying 
to have it both ways leading to the tortured choreography that a 
passing priest might describe as demonic possession.

 This is a problem similar to what Democratic office-seekers 
experience with Nancy Pelosi. The difference being, she rumbas a 
little more under the radar. Unfortunately the president thinks he’s 
John Travolta and can’t help discoing into every single spotlight 
event whether he’s asked to or not, including hurricanes.

 Florida GOP senatorial candidate Rick Scott, fox trotting in a 
dead heat with incumbent Democrat Sen. Bill Nelson, was forced 
by his state’s demographics to disown the president’s statement that 
his enemies inflated Hurricane Maria’s death toll in Puerto Rico to 
make him look bad. Paul Ryan said there is no reason to dispute 
the numbers. And he’s not even running for office. You don’t need a 
weatherman to tell which way this wind is blowing.

 Each and every GOP candidate has to make the decision whether 
to risk insulting Trump’s base or the intelligence of normal ordinary 
human beings. Hence the development of this dance of dishonor. 
Samba of shame. Hypocritical hula. 

 Whenever Mister Trump shoots out a crude tweet, says something 
demonstrably false or acts with an oafishness normally attributed 
to drunken grizzly bears, his loyal backers gravely announce being 
mildly offended and issue a statement that sort of, but not really, 
criticizes his behavior. Then claim to be totally satisfied with his 
intention to make amends, even if he hasn’t said anything to that 

 It’s the Donald Trump Two-Step, where you bounce up and down 
and move in and out, bopping and weaving so you never assume a 
single position long enough for anyone to get a bead on you. 

The good news is this slam-dance marathon only lasts another seven 
weeks. The bad news is many will drop either from exhaustion, 
confusion or by tripping over their own feet. Or to be more precise, 
the Oval Office rug cutter’s size 12s. 


 Copyright 2018, Will Durst, distributed by the Cagle Cartoons Inc. 

 Will Durst is an award-winning, nationally acclaimed columnist, 
comic and former sod farmer in New Berlin, Wisconsin. For a calendar 
of personal appearances, including his new one-man show, “Durst 
Case Scenario,” please visit

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Judge Brett Kavanaugh was never going to get a fair break during 
his confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee. 
The fault lies not with obstructionist Democrats, however, but 
with Republican leadership and members of the committee.

 By not turning over all documents in their possession, 
Republican members of the committee did the judge and the American people a disservice. 
And dumping hundreds of thousands of selected pages of documents, emails, and other 
correspondence on Democrats the night before hearings were scheduled to begin wasn’t a 

 Releasing all relevant material would have provided a fuller picture of Kavanaugh’s legal 
philosophy and writings for both the majority and minority. Not doing so only further riled 
Democrats still fuming over Republican obstruction of Judge Merrick Garland’s Supreme 
Court nomination in the waning days of the Obama administration. It succeeded in 
provoking confrontation and partisan conflict. Whether or not Judge Kavanaugh escapes 
the wrath of Democratic committee members, the real losers are the American people.

 Questions have arisen based on actions Kavanaugh took during time spent in the George 
W. Bush White House, including discussions about detainee torture during the early years 
of the war on terror, as well as a breach of secret Democratic files on judicial nominations. 
His writings have advocated broad presidential powers that have implications on ongoing 
investigations into Russian election meddling and questionable actions on the part of the 
president. Kavanaugh equivocated when asked whether he would uphold long-standing 
legal precedents, including those related to Roe v. Wade, LGBTQ rights, and affirmative 

 There are indications that Kavanaugh may have perjured himself, not only during his 
recent confirmation hearings, but during testimony before the Senate committee when he 
was originally nominated for the federal appellate court in 2006. These charges have been 
corroborated in emails and other work product that several committee members brought 
to light against the wishes of the majority. 

 And now comes the latest bombshell: allegations that Kavanaugh assaulted a young 
woman during a party while in high school. These are inflammatory charges that must be 

 What really needs further exploration is the entire process by which the Senate evaluates 
nominees for lifetime positions on the high court.

 Throughout the hearings, many of Kavanaugh’s responses to questions posed by 
committee members were evasive and rife with subterfuge. His discomfort was, at times, 
palpable. He did an inadequate job in presenting or defending his legal perspectives on 
issues that will certainly come before the Supreme Court. 

 To think that members of the judiciary cannot or do not hold personal beliefs, opinions, 
or philosophies is naive. We all have opinions, ideologies, codes of ethics and moral 
conduct. Americans have long lived under the rule of law and a system of government that 
affords us the opportunity to hold them. That said, we have the right to know if appointees 
at every level of the federal bench can divorce themselves from personal feelings in 
relation to the law of the land. That they must, to the best of their ability, make rulings 
that consider established precedent. Kavanaugh’s record must be allowed to speak for itself 
without obstruction or obfuscation. 

 Republican members of the Judiciary Committee fueled a smoldering fire by hindering 
the Democrats ability to fully-explore and accurately gauge where Kavanaugh stands on 
established law and how he might approach his deliberations as a member of the high 
court. This would have provided an opportunity for senators from both parties to make an 
educated choice in determining whether Kavanaugh should earn the committee’s blessing 
for confirmation and a subsequent vote by the entire Senate. Instead, their actions do 
nothing more than pave the way for Democrats to engage in future games of tit-for-tat in 
times they hold the majority.

 The modern judiciary - the last bastion of independent thought and final arbiter of our 
nation’s laws - has become grossly politicized. This is a bipartisan issue, and members of 
both parties must be held accountable for this deterioration.

 The entire Senate Judiciary Committee treated Kavanaugh unfairly, but we the people 
are the ultimate victims of its injustice.


Copyright 2018 Blair Bess distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

 Blair Bess is a Los Angeles-based television writer, producer, and columnist. He edits the 
online blog, and can be reached at



It’s surprising that a White House incapable of organizing a 
two-car funeral - if you believe the mainstream liberal media - 
is presiding over the most robust economy the U.S. has had in 
years. One could almost say it makes America great again.

 Strange, isn’t it? The Obama administration boy and girl 
geniuses were managing up a storm when it came to the economy, yet growth was 
sluggish, wages stagnant and economic optimism was nowhere to be found.

 Then the Trump clown car crashed into the Resolute desk in the Oval Office and all 
hell broke loose. And that’s in a good way. A man the OpMedia assures us is one drool 
away from assisted–living or one tantrum away from a rubber room may achieve 3 
percent growth in the economy, something that hasn’t happened since 2005.

 It’s almost enough to make you question the credibility of the liberal media!

 And still President Trump gets zero credit from the usual media suspects. The only 
time they take a break from trying to find a pixie dust trail leading to “Russia collusion” 
is when they try to find equally elusive evidence that Obama is the cause of our present 
economic growth.

 Let’s run down a few of the statistics courtesy of a roundup from The Hill. In August 
the economy added 201,000 jobs, which was more than predicted.

 The unemployment rate stayed at 3.9 percent, which is an almost 18-year low. 

 Wage growth edged up 2.9 percent, which is “the fastest growth since the recession 
ended in June 2009.”

 Even better for deplorables, “the bulk of the wage gains are coming for workers who 
earn lower wages, which is a good sign since pay raises have been slow in those areas 
during the expansion.” This means Trump’s immigration policies, designed to stop the 
flood of low-wage illegals, are beginning to have an impact on paychecks.

 When there is less competition from Tijuana, employers are forced to pay wages that 
make sense in Tulsa. Even better for workers who have been out of a job for a long time, 
employers are going to be adding internal training or apprenticeship programs to train 
the workers they need, instead of being picky and waiting for the already trained to 
walk in the door.

 It’s important at this point that the Trump administration doesn’t listen to cheap 
labor whiners and increase the flow of employer-sponsored visas that import cheap 
foreign labor.

 In the meantime, if the president is waiting for credit for delivering the expanding 
economy he promised during the campaign, he’s going to be waiting a long time. 
We hope he finds the fact he is making America great again to be more than a little 


 Copyright 2018 Michael Reagan. Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald 
Reagan, a political consultant, and the author of “Lessons My Father Taught Me: The 
Strength, Integrity, and Faith of Ronald Reagan.” He is the founder of the email service and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Visit his websites at www. and Send comments to Reagan@caglecartoons.
com. Follow @reaganworld on Twitter. 

 Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. For 
info on using columns contact Sales at

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