Summer Recess

Published: August 1, 2016

By Jim Lichtman
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Ahhhhhh… the cool mountain air, a calm… ripple… of water peacefully moving over the lake.

Oh… it’s you!

While on summer break, I thought I’d offer a few links to commentaries that garnered the most attention by readers over the past seven months.

First place, with the most views thus far, was my three-part series from April, Trust and Confidence, which details former-Secret Service Director Lewis Merletti’s 1998 legal battle with independent counsel Kenneth Starr. With the support of the entire upper echelon of the Justice department and former President George H.W. Bush, Merletti fought to keep agents on President Clinton’s protective detail from testifying in open court about what they may have seen or heard regarding Clinton’s relationship with intern Monica Lewinsky, ultimately taking his case all the way to the Supreme Court.

Former Federal Agent Felix Nater wrote: “…well written is an understatement, it was captivating, riveting and revealing.”

Of additional interest, Trust and Confidence – Some Back Story offers a behind-the-scenes look at the some of the drama that took place in researching this story.

In February, Shameful: an Update, a story looking into the bad practices at the Veterans Administration turned more personal when I reported on Veteran Dennis Haines who, even after he was approved, struggled to get the drug necessary to help his Hepatitis C which he contracted from tainted blood while being treated for life-threatening injuries he received in Vietnam.

No Excuse, No Excuse, Follow-up and But How Many Others?  tracks Haines’ battle with VA administrators to successfully receive the approved treatment despite repeated delays.

Another veterans story concerned Elaine Harmon, one of many WASPs denied burial at Arlington National Cemetery due to a technicality. The story was followed up in March with an Update, and They’re In! that reports that, following emergency legislation, the law was changed to allow the WASPs their place in the national cemetery.

From April, Standing on Principle talks about the blatant demagoguery practiced in post-World War II by Senator Joseph R. McCarthy in George Clooney’s compelling film, Good Night, and Good Luck. The film’s message is perhaps more relevant today than ever: “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it,” — George Santayana

A more recent, widely viewed commentary comes from June. Radical American Gibberish lists just a few of the many outrageous remarks made by Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Those Emails… again! and Those Emails – Part 2, took a closer look at the issue of Democratic Presidential Nominee Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail server. And 7 Key Points from the F.B.I. Investigation into Clinton’s E-mails, examines Director James Comey’s findings.

Last January I talked about the conflict between gun rights vs. responsibility in Inconvenient Facts.

Finally, I’m Abraham Lincoln and I Approved This Message examines the question: Could Lincoln be elected if his opponents used today’s political tactics?

I’ll be back, rested and refreshed, after Labor Day! First up: “What is Political Correctness?”

Let’s go, Antonio, it’s your turn to paddle… Andiamo!


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