"Don't be deceived," Duck Commander and A&E reality television star Phil Robertson insisted, when asked to define what he considered to be sinful behavior. "Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers - they won't inherit the kingdom of God. Don't deceive yourself. It's not right."
When President Richard Nixon arrived in Beijing in 1972, Chairman Mao Zedong - with his Marxist revolution, Great Leap Forward and Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution - had achieved an equality unrivaled anywhere.
In an attempt to shift public discussion from the Obamacare train wreck, President Barack Obama is again promoting universal tax-paid daycare for preschoolers. But spending $75 billion on free preschool for all won't work any better than the numerous times it's been tried before.
Twenty years after it took effect, NAFTA has failed the vast majority of Mexicans.
Let's assess the winners and losers in American culture for 2013. Our first obvious winner is "Duck Dynasty" and its Phil Robertson. He's a winner for standing by his Christian principles after some offensive remarks about homosexuality.
Here's a twist on Christmas that would make Jesus weep.
Pope Francis' call for a truce notwithstanding, the culture war rages on in America.
Just look at the chain's outlet in Canton, Ohio, where management set up bins for food donations, asking people to give generously to the poor who otherwise would not have a Thanksgiving dinner. But the bins weren't for customers - they were tucked back in the employees-only area.
What's been called the "War on Christmas" is often a case of secular liberals wanting to engage in Christmas denial. In the name of not wanting to offend people of minority faiths (or no faith), they remove the C-word from department store catalogs and Christmas songs from public school concerts, leaving us with lame messages about snow.
Here's a jarring headline: "Economic Populism Is a Dead End for Democrats."
Making fun of Fox News' Megyn Kelly for her vigorous-without-a-doubt-make-no-mistake insistence that Santa Claus and Jesus Christ are both white would be like taking candy from a child.
President Obama commuted the sentences of eight crack-cocaine offenders Thursday, including that of Clarence Aaron, who was serving a sentence of life without parole for a first-time nonviolent drug conviction when he was 23.
It's a scary world out there, with global terrorists plotting to kill us.
Jahi McMath, 13, died after a routine tonsillectomy, according to doctors at Children's Hospital Oakland who declared McMath brain-dead on Thursday. The coroner's office was set to remove her body on Tuesday.
PolitiFact has awarded their "Lie of the Year" to President Barack Obama for his promise that "if you like your health care plan, you can keep it."
Just last month, Apple chief executive Tim Cook made headlines when he wrote a piece in The Washington Post, panning Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act as "very dangerous." Apple, Cook wrote, does not believe in discrimination and strives to "do business in a way that is just and fair." This month, the San Francisco Chronicle's Wendy Lee reported, Apple fired some construction workers at Apple Campus 2 in January because they had been convicted of felonies or face felony charges. Just and fair? Hardly.
The debate about a "religious freedom" law being considered in Indiana has been making national news. The issue is whether the law would allow discrimination against gays. There has been a storm of protest both from inside and outside the state - with leading businesses threatening and threatened by a proposed boycott of the state; Silicon Valley, for the first time I can remember, taking effective political action; and Indiana legislators tripping over themselves to make sure everyone understands that the law is in no way intended to immunize or condone discrimination.
Imagine a government energy program that is such a disaster that the Environmental Working Group and the American Petroleum Institute both oppose it. The anti-poverty group ActionAid USA wants to get rid of it, as does the pro-business Competitive Enterprise Institute. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., wants to end it. So does Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa. They're both sponsors of the Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act of 2015.
Don't pick your nose (at least in public). The other day while I was walking down the street, I saw a guy doing just that. He had the index finger of his right hand up his right nostril, and he was really digging in like he was searching for gold. As I walked past, he turned to face the other way, even though I could still clearly see him as he proceeded to pop the treasure he had found right into his mouth. Super gross.
Does Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., suffer from short, medium and long-term memory loss?
I never quite understood what "nursing" really meant until the past six months, when the supposed superstar doctor who operated on me in Phoenix (One of the smartest male doctors I know told me she was the best, a woman, how wonderful; beware gender bias.) made a mess of my intestines, leaving me rather critically ill with peritonitis and unbearable pain while she went to Maui. Some very fine physicians, in California and in Arizona, tried to clean up the mess she left, but it was the nurses who took care of me.
"Do the crime, do the time," goes the old saying.
A voracious and eclectic reader, President Nixon instructed me to send him every few weeks 10 articles he would not normally see that were on interesting or important issues.
In what has been called the "Catholic moment" in America, in the late 1940s and 1950s, Catholics were admonished from pulpits to "live the faith" and "set an example" for others.
The libertarian-leaning me believes an American employer should be able to hire pretty much anyone he or she wants to hire. But the taxpaying me believes that if the federal government limits immigration yet creates a special visa program for highly skilled foreign workers with the assurance that the program will not cut into the wages or jobs of American workers, then Washington ought to keep its promise.
Representative Steve Scalise might not be for sale, but he is available for long-term lease.
Being a Congress critter isn't the cushy job many people assume. After all, they must draft laws, organize hearings, write speeches, round up votes, and do all sorts of other things.
By STEVE KNELL
Though "Bibi" Netanyahu won re-election, the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations will still look into whether the State Department financed a clandestine effort to defeat him.
If you're an American citizen, you've got one of the most valuable passports in the world. You can travel nearly anywhere, including countries Uncle Sam doesn't always get along with.