Steve Chapman: You can’t have it all with health care in U.S.

Bill Clinton tried to fix America's health care problems and was shot down by Congress. Barack Obama got his solution enacted only to find most people didn't like it. Republicans who voted repeatedly to repeal Obamacare and replace it with something far better have found it fiendishly hard to agree on how.

Trudy Rubin: Time for Kurds to push for independence

ERBIL, Iraq -- Has the time for Kurdish independence finally arrived? No other Mideast community (except Israel) has a closer relationship with the United States than the Iraqi Kurds, who have played a critical role in confronting the Islamic State.

Ross Ramsey: Abbott must rally forces for session’s pre-K fight

The governor of Texas is getting bullied on his request for serious money for a serious pre-kindergarten program. Messing with governors can be risky business, but Texas lawmakers aren't answering Greg Abbott's call.

Linda Chavez: Excessive partisanship harmful to the U.S.

Hyperpartisanship is destroying American politics. The recent announcement that Democrats will filibuster Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch -- who is eminently qualified -- puts them on a dangerous collision course that jeopardizes the confirmation process itself.

Jonah Goldberg: Another empty ritual continues in Washington

Every society has its rituals. Indeed, while the details vary from place to place and time to time, ritual itself is a human universal, according to anthropologist Donald Brown.

Froma Harrop: Trump ‘faithful’ get budget cuts they voted for

Kentucky has become a favored dateline for many of President Donald Trump's fervent critics. They collect evidence there of betrayal, such as the ABC News item featuring a coal truck driver, ''one of the Trump faithful,'' attached to a breathing tube and weeping over his expected loss of coverage for deadly black lung disease.

Walter E. Williams: Transgender challenges plentiful in America

Determining one's own sex or that of another used to be a simple matter. First, there was the matter of appearance, whether a person looked like a male or looked like a female.

Leonard Pitts: Fox News sets out on impossible mission

It is time, once again, to explain journalism to Fox News.

Mark Davis: Russia ruckus distracts us from Trump’s own agenda

As the week began, you couldn't blame Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch and his Senate questioners if they were thinking, "Hey, remember us? We only hold the fate of the Constitution in our hands over here!"

Clarence Page: Have populist politics reached a peak level?

Whew! That was close. I wasn't expecting to be waiting on the edge of my seat for the outcome of this year's Dutch parliamentary elections. But I wasn't expecting Donald Trump to be America's president, either.

Steve Chapman: Opioid deaths another drug war failure in America

Illicit drug use is an old phenomenon, and Jeff Sessions has an old solution: Take off the gloves. ''We have too much of a tolerance for drug use,'' the attorney general complained to an audience of law enforcement officials Wednesday, promising more aggressive policing. ''Our nation needs to say clearly once again that using drugs is bad,'' he declared. ''It will destroy your life.''

Mary Sanchez: Republicans recycle old perceptions about the poor

Conservatives are a curious bunch. They profess a sunny faith, most of the time, in the unique power of free markets to lift society's poor and afflicted. Yet when markets fail and government steps in to deliver social goods or services, to alleviate suffering or poverty or misdistribution, conservatives switch their tune to moral outrage.

Trudy Rubin: People of Mosul ready to rebuild

MOSUL, Iraq -- As the Islamic State was withdrawing from the eastern half of this city in late January, the jihadis poured gasoline around the empty wards of the Ibn Al Atheer hospital for children. Then they set the hospital alight.

Froma Harrop: Steve Bannon failed his father, not AT&T

Marty Bannon did all the right things, mostly. He raised five children, lived modestly, worked hard and bought as much stock in his employer, AT&T, as he could.

Jonah Goldberg: Many on leisurely drive down wrong road

"We all want progress," C.S. Lewis wrote, "but if you're on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive."

Ross Ramsey: State cost-shifting goes on all of the time

On the same day this week that the state's Senate Finance Committee voted to limit how quickly property taxes can grow without voter approval, a House committee was taking up "sanctuary cities" legislation that would force local governments to enforce federal immigration laws.

David Harsanyi:

If Democrats want to filibuster President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, they're entitled to do it. In fact, Democrats are free to try and stop federal appeals court Judge Neil Gorsuch's confirmation for any reason they desire, whether ideological or personal, or even no real reason at all.

Let me say this about that

We hear lots of talk about "the media." There really is no such thing. Media in the United States -- newspapers, magazines, TV networks, local TV stations, cable channels, radio stations, websites, blogs, etc. -- are as varied as the snowflakes that fall on a cold winter's day.

Steve Chapman: Are immigrants destroying our way of life?

During Cold War debates about the merits of capitalism and communism, Americans offered a simple gauge: the movement of people. ''You have the Berlin Wall,'' the argument went. ''We have the Statue of Liberty. If communism is a blessing, why do people flee Cuba for America, not the other way around?''

Judy Kincaid: Cultivate a political ‘swim buddy’ to help share views

Her name is not really Cathy, but let's call her that. She's my new friend. We've had coffee once a week for three weeks

Walter E. Williams: Personal liberty in U.S. not for wimps

Most Americans, whether liberal or conservative, Democratic or Republican, do not show much understanding or respect for the principles of personal liberty.

Leonard Pitts: Trumpcare uses bullhorn to tout scorn for poor

Suddenly, there was just blood everywhere. It erupted from my father's mouth as we sat watching television. I was still struggling to process this horror when my mother, too shaken to drive, asked me -- 17 years old and still on my learner's permit -- to get us to the emergency room.

Trudy Rubin: Iraqi Kurds: U.S. still has role to play

There's no better place than Iraqi Kurdistan to understand the tortured relationship between Iraq and the United States, and why the two countries are still bound together.

Froma Harrop: GOP plan a plot to poison Obamacare

Arsenic was a poison favored by Victorian mystery writers. The victims would be fed small amounts, not suspecting the cause of their increasing discomfort. At a certain point, the arsenic buildup would send them into organ failure and death.

Jonah Goldberg: American partisanship born of small differences

"Polarize" is a funny word. I hear it all the time, including from my own mouth. The country is polarized. The parties are polarized. President Trump is polarizing. I think that's true, but I don't think the word means what people think it means.

Ross Ramsey: Texas GOP acts more like two parties at war

The facile answer might be the right one: Maybe House Speaker Joe Straus and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick really do not like each other. Theirs is hardly the first troubled political partnership in the Texas Capitol.

Steve Chapman: President often will not stand his ground

When rocker Tom Petty found out Republican George W. Bush was blaring his song ''I Won't Back Down'' at campaign rallies in 2000, he sent a cease-and-desist letter. Maybe the reason Donald Trump avoided the song in his campaign is that he didn't want similar trouble. Or maybe it's because he will, in fact, back down.

Mary Sanchez: We must revive push for Equal Rights Amendment

We lie to young girls. We tell them they can be anything they want to be, that nothing will hold them back from their aspirations but their ability to dream big.

Jonah Goldberg: Twitter now proving to be president’s Achilles’ heel

Recently Donald Trump had the finest moment of his short presidency -- his address to a joint session of Congress. Even many of his harshest critics praised his speech or reluctantly conceded that it was "presidential."

Chris Watts: Texas must reform public school funding

A house divided against itself cannot stand, yet the Texas Legislature is waging war against Texas cities.

Kelley Shannon: Repair holes in Texas Public Information Act

We Texans are fortunate when it comes to access to government information. Correction. We were fortunate.

Linda Chavez: No free lunch in the health care system for America

The health care reform bill that has now passed two committee hurdles in the House still faces an uphill battle to become law. Many tea party Republicans have already said they won’t vote for a bill they call Obamacare Lite, and it is likely that very few, if any, Democrats will cross over to support the GOP bill on the floor.

Clarence Page: How long can president’s art of deflection work?

“Whataboutism” is running rampant in the White House these days. What’s that, you may ask? It’s a Cold War-era term for a form of logical jiu-jitsu that helps you to win arguments by gently changing the subject.

Deroy Murdock: Americans sent Trump to repeal Obamacare

First, the good news: House Speaker Paul Ryan just operated to remove the Obamacare cancer that has made America sick for nearly seven years.

Mary Sanchez: We must revive push for Equal Rights Amendment

We lie to young girls. We tell them they can be anything they want to be, that nothing will hold them back from their aspirations but their ability to dream big. Lean in, women are told in mid-career. Keep your head down, be diligent and network. You’ll reach your highest goals.

Jonah Goldberg: Twitter now proving to be president’s Achilles’ heel

Recently Donald Trump had the finest moment of his short presidency — his address to a joint session of Congress. Even many of his harshest critics praised his speech or reluctantly conceded that it was “presidential.”

Keith Shelton: Boyd family law practice marks 100 years

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Boyd family’s involvement in Denton County’s legal community.

Steven Malanga: Trump’s plan could boost economy

President Trump has sparked controversy for his plans to build a wall along the Mexican border, for banning travelers from certain countries from entering the U.S., and for stepping up deportations of those here illegally.

Americans remember facts truly matter

I’m beginning to feel like Sally Field. Remember the 1985 Academy Awards, when she was stunned by the idea of being accepted? “And I can’t deny the fact that you like me!” she gushed. “Right now! You like me!”

Linda Chavez: President’s immigration message
offers hope

In the Trump era, good news rarely lasts a full 24-hour news cycle. The president’s well-received speech last week has already been overshadowed by revelations that Attorney General Jeff Sessions met twice during the presidential campaign with the Russian ambassador, despite the fact that Sessions testified otherwise under oath during his confirmation hearings.

President has hard choices in Afghanistan

It's generally foolish to look for clear thought and sincere intent in anything Donald Trump says. But a glimmer of hope emerged in his recent comments on America's recent military ventures.

M. Ray Perryman: World better place for Arrow’s intellectual journey

Economic theory can admittedly be simultaneously boring and incomprehensible at times, but is critical to our understanding of the functioning of markets, businesses and consumers.

Joyce King: Trump to aid historically black colleges

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos recently issued a statement before she met with officials representing HBCUs, historically black colleges and universities, that described blacks as “pioneers” in school choice.

Ross Ramsey: Voucher opponent protects Texas legislators from voters

The House’s new public education chairman opposes the school voucher bill that the lieutenant governor — from the same political party, but from the other side of the Capitol — says is the civil rights issue of our age.

Jonah Goldberg: Can scientific law explain Oscar-night debacle?

I went to sleep before Jordan Horowitz, a producer for La La Land, had to announce, “There’s been a mistake” — that Moonlight had in fact won the Oscar for best picture.

Lew Spellman: Trump picks right people for Cabinet at right time

The world is watching as President Donald Trump lurches into motion, and for many, the early signs suggest a blend of hubris and incompetence — creating chaos in the nation’s most elevated executive office.

Froma Harrop: President has media crying all the way to the bank

Donald Trump’s tweet about the media’s being ‘‘the enemy of the American people’’ was a classic distraction — in this case, from questions swirling around his team’s troubling ties with our Russian adversaries.

Walter E. Williams: Politicians undermine academic achievement

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement, “The president’s decision to ask Betsy DeVos to run the Department of Education should offend every single American man, woman, and child who has benefited from the public education system in this country.”

Mary Sanchez: Trump’s order on trans students repugnant

The muddled minds that now run the federal government think it’s fine, preferable even, to legally segregate public bathrooms. In 2017, this should shock.

Veronique de Rugy: Cronyism thwarts innovation

The goal of health care reform is to provide better health care to everyone at a lower cost, year after year. The solution is not to provide a better third-party-payer system — e.g., health insurance or government-provided health insurance — but instead to allow technological development and entrepreneurship to improve the current business model through groundbreaking innovations that empower consumers, improve quality and cut prices.