Category Archives: commentary

Can a license to drive be a license to own a gun?

I trust Matt Dunlap more than Donald Trump and Barack Obama. This isn’t personal; it’s just his job. Maine’s elected officials are more responsive to the needs of our state than a far-off federal government in Washington. That is true regardless of who resides in the White House at any given time. But maybe Secretary […]

Bernie Sanders was right: David Koch’s death is not cause for celebration

I’ve got to give Bernie Sanders credit. Last week, one of the favorite boogeymen of the American left passed away. David Koch was a phenomenally successful business leader and generous philanthropist who also happened to be politically active. He espoused a strongly libertarian philosophy, even running for vice president under the Libertarian Party banner in 1980 […]

Satire lets us laugh at our politics

Satire. It is one of the most powerful tools in politics. After all, governing is serious business; laws are implicitly and explicitly backed by the threat of force. When humor is brought to the intellectual battlefield, it diminishes the stature of the satirist’s opponent. For millennia, it has been part of western social discourse. Literary scholars […]

You know what Maine needs? More pork.

Maine offered a new spin on an old saw this week. Everyone knows about “pork barrel” politics, where elected officials effectively bribe taxpayers with their own money. It describes a scenario where a legislator works to get a pet project funded for political gain and glory. This week saw the introduction of “pork freezer” politics. […]

Compromise isn’t always a good thing

Compromise. It’s one of those magical words in politics. It is used as a paean to unity and a sword with which to cut through partisanship. Everything would get better if we just … compromised. It is never quite that easy. We kicked off Maine’s bicentennial celebration this past week. July 26 was the anniversary of […]

Finding light in the darkness of Washington

From the darkness that permeates our national political environment, this week saw a few rays of light shine through. The main event in Washington this week was the public testimony of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Democrats predictably tried to get Mueller to implicate President Donald Trump in nefarious activities. Republicans unsurprisingly rallied around Roman […]

Here’s to third-party candidates

Here’s to third parties. In the past week, we’ve had two major losses and an important change in partisan affiliation. H. Ross Perot and Lee Iacoccoa each passed away. Meanwhile, U.S. House Rep. Justin Amash has left the Republican party. Some of this hits home personally. My first memory of political engagement surrounded Perot. My […]

We should be united as celebrate America’s history

Psst. I’ve got a secret. There are a bunch of wealthy white men having a closed-door meeting. Rumor is they are conspiring to overthrow the government. Sounds spooky, right? Well, your perspective probably changes depending on what details are added. What if I told you that the group was the Cabinet members of President Donald […]