FROM Gerald Prante
'Socialism' and Political Rhetoric, Past and Present Barack Obama wants to raise taxes on incomes over $250,000 and use part of the money for tax credits on all workers, even those who don't earn enough to pay income tax. John McCain says that borders on "socialism" and crowds cheer. In 2001, McCain voted against the Bush tax cuts he now wants to extend, saying the benefits went the "the most fortunate among us at the expense of middle-class Americans." But the progressive income tax has been redistributing income for almost 100 years. The Bush Administration, proudly conservative, is nationalizing banks; the auto and nuclear industries want guaranteed government loans. Meantime, Communist Russia and China are looking like free-marketeers. Does the word "socialism" still have the political force it did during the Cold War? Are McCain's charges likely to stick?
Trump's 'America First' goes missing abroad In the Middle East, President Trump is changing some policies of the Obama Administration—and reversing his own campaign attacks on Islam as a religion that "hates us." We hear about his visit to Saudi Arabia and what's at stake for the rest of his foreign excursion.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?