Cal Thomas

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Before meeting with North Korea's "very honorable" (Trump's words) dictator, Kim Jong-Un, the president should bone up on the history of that country's duplicity and deception, including ways it has used the wishful thinking of some past U.S. presidents to achieve its objectives. A good place to start is an essay written by Joshua Muravchik of the American Enterprise Institute for the March 2003 issue of Commentary magazine.



"No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other." (Matthew 6:24) The verse refers to money, but in light of today's debate about the unaccountable devotion many Christian leaders have for President Trump it is not a stretch to apply it to their relationship with him.



"It's a modern changing world, Everything is moving fast. But when it comes to love I like, What they did in the past." -- The Everly Brothers, 1962. Call me old-fashioned -- and I've been called worse -- but do I sense the possible end to the sexual revolution, which exploded in the '60s and whose fallout continues today.



When President Bill Clinton signed the welfare reform act in 1996, which he negotiated with then-Speaker Newt Gingrich, the left claimed people would starve. They didn't. According to the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, between 1996 and 2000, the employment rate for single mothers increased from 63 percent to 76 percent. 



KEY LARGO, Florida — At dinner with friends, I was asked what is wrong with Washington. The question presumes a standard by which "wrong" can be defined. I am frequently asked this question by people who do not live in "the swamp." They don't behave like Washington politicians. If a disagreement arises in their personal or professional life, they discuss it and usually compromise and work things out. Only in Washington, they note, does this rarely happen, and when it does it makes headlines.



Since the beginning of recorded history there have been end of the world predictions. In recent years we have had radio preachers, politicians and scientists declare with certainty that the world would soon end, either because of our decadent lifestyle, or because of "global warming," now known as "climate change."



You wonder how these things begin. For Harvey Schmidt, co-writer of the longest-running musical in history -- who died last week at 88 -- and his collaborator, Tom Jones, it began when the two were students at the University of Texas. In a sense it really began in their romantic hearts. No one could have written what these men wrote, unless they had ever been deeply and passionately in love.



MIAMI -- The list of failures in the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, are becoming legion. If any or all of those failures had been addressed, 17 students and teachers might be alive today. In addition to the several balls dropped by the local FBI office, it was later alleged that at least four Broward County sheriff's deputies, including armed school resource officer Scot Peterson, were outside the school during the shooting and instead of rushing in to confront the killer, later identified as Nikolas Cruz, waited four minutes until police officers from Coral Springs arrived to enter the building.



The indictment of 13 Russians and three companies for allegedly creating a “sophisticated network designed to subvert the 2016 election and to support the Trump campaign” is only half the story. While the Justice Department targeted foreign influence, others could have easily said something about the role U.S. media played in influencing the election’s outcome. While not criminal, the U.S. media should at least be shamed for its unrestrained bias for and against both left and right.



In my long career in journalism, I have met many famous people, but none of them impressed me as much as William Franklin "Billy" Graham. The reason had less to do with his fame and movie star looks; it was his humility that was so attractive, so refreshing, so like the One he faithfully served.



Partisans tend to read, watch and listen only, or mostly, to information and opinions that reinforce their beliefs. If information surfaces that counters those beliefs, it is usually disparaged, excused or ignored. That's human nature. Such is the case with the "memo" released last Friday by the Republican majority on the House Intelligence Committee. The four-page document alleges, in the words of a Wall Street Journal editorial: "the FBI and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court appear to have been used to influence the 2016 election and its aftermath."



“Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.” (Romans 13:1) That verse, written by Paul the Apostle, is one of the most difficult for modern evangelicals to fully accept. It was written at a time when the Roman authorities were bad dudes.



One reason Democrats seem so fixated on importing illegal immigrants and allowing their children to stay and become citizens may be the exodus from high-tax and traditionally Democratic states. Anecdotal evidence is usually not helpful in determining trends, but when stories begin to accumulate and sound the same attention must be paid. Two friends of mine, who are longtime California residents, recently decided to move from that highly taxed state to states with lower taxes.



“You can get a lot farther with a smile and a gun than you can with just a smile.” This quote has often been attributed to the late Chicago mobster Al Capone, who with his fellow organized crime buddies used extortion as one of their tactics to get what they wanted. Today's modern congressional Democrats have clearly benefited from Capone's example.



Having lost an election they thought they would win and unable to get over it; having been staggeringly wrong about their predictions that a Trump presidency would be the end of global economies; now putting faith in a special counsel to bring down the president with evidence that looks increasingly dubious, the left has taken refuge in the only shelter available to them: the president is off his rocker, mad, crazy, unstable and therefore the 25th Amendment must be invoked and Trump removed from office.



I do not make it a practice to comment on the work of fellow columnists, though occasionally some care to comment on mine, which is fine. I'm happy to help them make a living. An exception will be made here because of New York Times "conservative" columnist, Bret Stephens.



ANGLESEY, Wales -- The UK Daily Mail has again published a story about a subject that has become a recurring theme this time of year. No, not Christmas, but rather drunkenness, though the holiday is used as its primary excuse. Pictures accompanying the story show young people collapsing in gutters and vomiting on the sidewalks. It is not a pretty sight.



DUBLIN, Ireland -- "Try a Little Tenderness" is a song written by Jimmy Campbell, Reg Connelly and Harry M. Woods. According to Wikipedia, it was first recorded on Dec. 8, 1932, by the Ray Noble Orchestra (with vocals by Val Rosing). Probably these names are as unfamiliar to us today as the demonstration of tenderness is in our modern political culture.



Unless you are spending this time of year at a spiritual retreat cut off from TV, newspapers or internet service you cannot escape the blaring music and the marketers attempting to sell you something they promise will bring you happiness and peace. The many definitions of peace seem inadequate at this or any other time of year.



One way to kill a predatory animal is to deny it sustenance. The tax-cut bill passed by the Senate, if it clears a conference with the House and President Trump signs it, may be the first step toward starving the big government beast. Reporting on the Senate vote early Saturday morning reflected the biases of various media outlets. Predictably, The New York Times and Washington Post characterized the cuts as favoring the "rich," while doing nothing for the poor.