FROM Rand Beers
Afghanistan's Poppy Quagmire Opium from Afghanistan is responsible for 90% of the world's heroin. It's the cash crop that's enabling resurgence of the fundamentalist Taliban. But the State Department's former coordinator for counter-narcotics says that the Karzai government, supported by the US, depends on opium , too. He claims that Karzai is protecting the drug trade to assure his re-election next year. Is growing opium poppies the only way poverty-stricken farmers can make a living, or is that a myth perpetrated to cover up incompetence and corruption? Does aerial spraying pose a greater threat to the Taliban or the Karzai administration?
John McCain as Commander in Chief Barack Obama is on a foreign tour trying to demonstrate he's ready to be the US Commander in Chief. Only 48 percent of all Americans think he's qualified for that role, while 72 percent say that about John McCain . We take a look at McCain's record in the military and US Senate. Did his experience during the Vietnam War shape his view of the world for better or worse? Would his instincts as a "maverick" politician help him to keep the nation secure, or should consistency be the measure of leadership?
Political appointments and the reshaping of the judiciary President Trump has the chance for a long-term impact -- not just on the US Supreme Court, but on the entire federal court system. And his nominees are likely to get the support of a massive spending campaign by donors who don't have to reveal their names. Can President Trump "pack" the federal court system?
The 'deconstruction' of the administrative state President Trump has failed to fill high-level positions in important agencies — and some people he has named want to phase out the agencies they're supposed to lead. We look at the possible consequences for delivering services and providing security — and at top aide Steve Bannon's plans for "deconstructing the administrative state."
Trump, Russia and rabbit holes Conservatives are now joining liberal critics of President Trump by demanding to know about his administration’s ties to Russia. We hear about Washington latest political flap and possible unintended consequence.