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Thursday, April 24, 2014

 President Barack Obama places a prayer tablet on the Votive Tree as he tours Meiji Shrine in Tokyo, Thursday, April 24, 2014. Showing solidarity with Japan, Obama affirmed Thursday that the U.S. would be obligated to defend Tokyo in a confrontation with Beijing over a set of disputed islands, but urged all sides to resolve the long-running dispute peacefully.  (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

There's nothing wrong with an American president spreading goodwill and eating good sushi, but the photo-op nature of the trip risks contributing to a perception that Obama's Asian policy, and his foreign policy generally, is similarly itinerant.

Dana Milbank
Posted at 4:49 p.m.
 John Steinbeck. AP Photo/Associated Press

"The Grapes of Wrath" was published 75 years ago this month, a seminal masterpiece of American literature that seems freshly relevant to this era of wealth disparity, rapacious banks and growing poverty.

Leonard Pitts
Posted on April 23, 2014 at 3:44 p.m.
 In this image taken from video, Chelsea Clinton, left, speaks to the audience as she co-hosts “

She not only will want to help shape a world in which women lead nations but also one in which babies and grandmotherhood are celebrated as integral to women's lives — not Photoshopped out as inconvenient obstacles to women's advancement.

Kathleen Parker
Posted on April 23, 2014 at 12:23 p.m.
 This artist rendering shows attorney Charles J. Cooper, right, addressing the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, as the court heard arguments on California's ban on same-sex marriage. Justices, from left are, Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen Breyer, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Samuel Alito and Elena Kagan. (AP Photo/Dana Verkouteren)
Posted on April 22, 2014 at 2:39 p.m.

The Supreme Court's oldest justice still has the juice.

 New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at Cooper Union in New York, Thursday, April 10, 2014.  (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Posted on April 21, 2014 at 4:52 p.m.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio offers no apologies for waging war on economic inequality, for taking his time in making key appointments, or for riling advocates of charter schools.

 President Vladimir Putin answers journalists' questions on current situation in Ukraine at the Novo-Ogaryovo presidential residence outside Moscow on Tuesday, March 4, 2014. (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Alexei Nikolsky, Presidential Press Service)
Posted on April 20, 2014 at 4:00 p.m.

To Putin's mind, he has emerged from these "diplomatic negotiations" — translated in Russian to mean "I did it my way" — as a tough statesman, generous in his restraint yet just scary enough to hold the world's attention.

 President Barack Obama speaks at Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network conference, Friday, April 11, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Posted on April 20, 2014 at 3:00 p.m.

You say race has played no role in the treatment of President Obama? Fine. What would it look like if it did?

 Rancher Cliven Bundy, middle, addresses his supporters along side Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie, right, on April 12, 2014. Bundy informed the public that the BLM has agreed to cease the roundup of his family's cattle. (AP Photo/Las Vegas Review-Journal, Jason Bean)
Posted on April 20, 2014 at 11:16 a.m.

From Wisconsin, cradle of the Progressive movement, comes news that the state Republican Party — the party of La Follette! — has advanced a pro-secession agenda.

 Visitors view the statue of Thomas Jefferson at the Jefferson Memorial early Saturday, April 12, 2014. Sunday, April 13, marked the 271st anniversary of Jefferson's birth. Jefferson was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence and one of America's founding fathers. (AP Photo/J. David Ake)
Posted on April 20, 2014 at 11:13 a.m.

Politics and religion. The confrontation is as old as Bible times. And as new as today’s Supreme Court Hobby Lobby quandary.

 Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures as he speaks during a nationally televised question-and-answer session in Moscow on Thursday, April 17, 2014. Putin dismissed claims that Russian special forces are fomenting unrest in eastern Ukraine as
Posted on April 18, 2014 at 1:37 p.m.

American hawks imagine that Bush's missile defense would have been an impressive symbol of Western resolve. But Putin is not the type to be scared of symbols.

 Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer
Posted on April 18, 2014 at 1:09 p.m.

The ultimate victim here is full disclosure itself. If revealing your views opens you to the politics of personal destruction, then transparency, however valuable, must give way to the ultimate core political good, free expression.

 Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. speaks at a GOP Freedom Summit, Saturday, April 12, 2014, in Manchester, N.H.  Briefly during his campaign for the Senate, Paul balked at accepting the constitutionality of the Civil Rights Act — putting him ideologically in line with Barry Goldwater's 1964 presidential campaign. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
Posted on April 17, 2014 at 1:29 p.m.

My concern here is with the tone and approach of the Goldwater movement. The candidate and his supporters regarded his vote against the Civil Rights Act not primarily as a political maneuver but as the evidence of ideological courage in the cause of liberty.

 Dr. Tim Brown, left, a Republican who represents House District 41 in the Indiana General Assembly, speaks with Tim Neese of Elkhart, a Republican who represented District 48, during the 2014 session. (Photo in.gov)
Posted on April 17, 2014 at 12:30 p.m.

I am personally paying for their politics when all I needed was access to good coverage at a decent price. And I am mad as hell about that.

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