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Trump's call to Ukraine's president, which is at the heart of the impeachment articles, does not meet the standard of seriously harming the public or compromising the president's ability to do his job as shown by the China trade deal and the USMCA trade agreement between the U.S., Mexico and Canada, both signed and passed days after impeachment.

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The latest protests in Iran by people angry over the Iranian military's missile launch that "unintentionally" downed a Ukrainian jetliner killing many Iranians, Canadians and others, is different from past protests over rigged elections, rising gas prices, and what Americans like to call "voter suppression."

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Remember the children’s story about Chicken Little? A bird dropped an acorn and conked him on the head, and he became hysterical. He went around screaming “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!” to anyone who would listen. And there were plenty of gullible animals willing to listen.

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Retired Marine Corps Gen. Jim Mattis, the former secretary of defense and an exceptionally well-read warrior, has said, "Throughout history, we see nations with allies thrive, and nations without allies wither."

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Prior to Iran's missile attacks on U.S. bases inside Iraq, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said, "We are not seeking war with Iran, but we are prepared to finish one." Esper said the U.S. prefers a "diplomatic" solution to the escalation of tensions in the region.

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Is anyone here old enough to remember the urgent warning issued in a speech to the National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in August 2002 by an American vice president who had artfully avoided the military draft during wartime?

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Just when I thought it was safe to head to the kitchen again, I turned on the television set — to one of those feel good morning “news” shows — and learned that this week marks the beginning of Girl Scout cookie season.

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I guess the U.S. has given a little quid pro quo to the thugs in Iran who think it is acceptable to fire rockets at military bases housing U.S. soldiers and contractors.

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I have a Christmas story for you. I am sharing, with permission, an excerpt from one of the best Christmas columns I have ever read, written by Mark Evanier. Mr. Evanier is a Los Angeles-based writer who has inspired me for many years.

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It’s ironic that in the very same week that freedom fighters in Hong Kong were taking to the streets by the thousands waving American flags and singing “The Star Spangled Banner” that we – who actually live in the Land of the Free – are so divided. 

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After all of the decorating and shopping and wall-to-wall Christmas songs on the radio and fretting over what to buy for which person, and everything else that goes into how we celebrate the season, it’s Christmas Day.

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"It's the most wonderful time of the year," Andy Williams reminds us over tinny speakers in crowded shopping malls. It may be wonderful for the majority, but for those whose fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers or children have died in Iraq and Afghanistan there is a void this Christmas, and Christmases to come, that can never be filled. It is the same in every war.

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While watching "Jeopardy" the other night, I had a fantasy. Suppose Alex Trebek had a Final Jeopardy category called "The Ultimate Impeachment Hypocrite"?

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"Blowout" was how one UK newspaper described the decisive victory of Boris Johnson and his Conservative Party in last week's election.

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When Tink first moved to the place which he now firmly and alternately calls “my home” or “the place where I belong,” I often had advice on adjusting to the South. One piece was constant: “Be careful what you say about people because you never know who’s kin to who.”

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Not many people think of the Ten Commandments these days, unless some group is trying to fight a legal battle to place them on public property.

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It is a truism that a blackmailer is rarely satisfied. Once the payoffs start, there often is no end to them.

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In comparing the scrutiny and criticism Donald Trump Jr. has received in the press to the ultimate sacrifices of the 400,000 American fathers, brothers and sisters buried beneath the green hills of Arlington, he can be accused of callousness and egocentricity. But while perhaps extreme, his ignorance of American tradition and history is not uncharacteristic of the Me Generation, which he sadly represents.

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I could make a list of all the things I’m not good at, and it would fill this column space. It would include swimming, singing, cooking and anything that requires athleticism or construction skills. I wouldn’t even include the things I haven’t yet tried, but in which I know I would fail. Those would include skydiving, roofing and performing surgery. Truth be told, the list of things I can do well would fit in one sentence. Like for instance, math.

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has announced U.S policy toward Israel's "settlements" is reverting to one held by the Reagan administration; that is the right of Israelis to settle in the ancient lands of Judea and Samaria "is not, per se, inconsistent with international law."

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A while back, I found myself on a rural backroad that is now a blacktop, but I remember when it was nothing more than red dirt that left a swirl of dust behind the back end of a car or marred its wheels in mud that stuck to the whitewall tires like putty.

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If you are in need of more evidence as to why so many Americans are cynical about politics in general and Washington in particular (and isn't current evidence sufficient?), you need look no further than the etymological shift taken by Democrats during the House impeachment hearings.

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We all have our ups and downs, our better days and our rough days. Everyone of us serves time with our own version of the blues.

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If you are paying attention to the Washington circus that is the impeachment inquiry into President Trump’s handling of the much maligned Ukraine call, this is what real collusion looks like: a media largely committed to advancing the goal of Democrats to severely damage or remove him from office, a series of at first private testimonies by people who appear to have similar motives and connections to Democrats and/or anti-Trump forces, and now a new book by “Anonymous,” which claims the president has a bad attitude and is difficult to work with.

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