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In money we trust?

Look at the dollar bills in your wallet. They say they are “legal tender for all debts.” But are they? What makes them valuable? What makes them worth anything? Each bill says, “In God We Trust.” But God won’t guarantee their value. The $20 bill depicts the White House. Congress ...

Sickened by sister’s sexual assault

Dear Annie: Over the summer, my sister was raped. She chose not to report it. She was at a house party when it happened. She doesn’t know who did it. She confided in me the morning after, and I urged her to report so that the person who did it could be prosecuted and, hopefully, kept from ...

For the Democratic candidates, winnowing is already at work

WASHINGTON — “We’re cutting out some of this ear hair that you get when you get older,” said the 46-year-old manchild who is auditioning to be Skateboarder-in-Chief. Live-streaming his visit to an El Paso barbershop, Beto O’Rourke continued: “It grows out of your ears, and if you ...

College admissions scandal, part 2

Dear Readers: We were overwhelmed with letters about the college admissions scandal, and this is a continuation of yesterday’s column, filled with questions, criticism and praise from my many talented and brilliant readers. Dear Annie: I usually feel quite comfortable letting other people ...

Trump is fighting the good fight in trade war with China

PARIS — U.S. President Donald Trump boosted tariffs on Chinese goods this month, with the increases affecting nearly 6,000 products. “Trade war” talk abounds (along with the death-and-destruction language that goes with it), all because the cost of things like “Beach, Please” T-shirts ...

Notes on college admissions scandal, part 1

Dear Readers: Many of you have strong opinions about the college admissions scandal, and because there were so many thoughtful replies, I am devoting a few columns to reprinting some of the feedback to my proposed solution of fining the parents to pay for scholarships: Dear Annie: Loved your ...

A cap on interest rates charged consumers? Yes

The Loan Shark Protection Act would limit the interest charged on credit cards to 15 percent. A 15 percent cap would be too low — naively too low. Too bad the bill’s sponsors, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, weren’t more careful, because their clumsy approach hands ...

‘Monsters’ make mom miss sleep

Dear Annie. I have a 6-year-old daughter who won’t go to sleep on her own. She has an innate fear of staying alone in her room. We have tried every way we can think to motivate her to feel comfortable. We reassure her that she’s safe, that we’re in the room next door, that every night she ...

Democrats’ (not entirely) ‘bleak prospects’

In my line of work, I run into more than a few Democrats whose mood swings of late are frankly semi-wild. Last November, when their party won 41 Republican U.S. House seats and took the House majority from the GOP, Democrats were almost giddy, increasingly confident that voters in 2020 would ...

Pain causing short temper

Dear Annie: I have chronic back pain thanks to sciatica. I chose to treat it with physical therapy and exercise, and I take muscle relaxers and or anti-inflammatory drugs when the pain really flares up. I chose to forego all painkillers, be they opium-based or synthetic. The problem is that the ...

Higher education in America

Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Economics at Ohio University Richard Vedder’s new book, “Restoring the Promise,” published by the Independent Institute based in Oakland, California, is about the crisis in higher education. He summarizes the three major problems faced by America’s ...

When friends fill void left by family

Dear Annie: My husband and I moved to another state following our retirements a few years ago. We moved to a resort town six hours away from my brother “Billy” and his wife, “Patty.” We encouraged them to visit, but they gave one excuse after another. Billy eventually told me that they ...

Make new friends, keep the old

Dear Annie: I’m having a hard time trying to keep in touch with my boarding school friends. We went our separate ways after graduating high school and were adamant about keeping in touch. Lately, I feel like we are drifting apart because I’m always the one having to reach out. And whenever ...

Even Trump now realizes we need immigrants

After spending much time and energy as a candidate and president descrying immigration, Donald Trump now wants Americans to believe immigrants are good for our country. On Thursday, the president touted a new immigration plan put together by his son-in-law Jared Kushner, a man with little ...

Obit omission

Dear Annie: I am in my 80s and recently lost my beloved sister-in-law, who was 90. She married my brother when I was just a child, and we had been close ever since. Aside from the many things I did for her, I loved her dearly as she was the last of my ties to my brothers, who have all passed ...

Mike Pence was right, inadvertently

Mike Pence was right. At least, inadvertently, he was. In a commencement address Saturday at Liberty University, the Christian evangelical college in Virginia, the vice president warned graduates that they should expect to be “shunned or ridiculed for defending the teachings of the ...

Beyond time to cut the cord

Dear Annie: I’ve been in this relationship for five years now, and my boyfriend, “Steve,” still puts his adult daughter, “June,” before me. I’m a parent, and I understand their relationship to a certain point, but there are boundaries crossed. June is 29. Every time she’s in a ...

Pompeo and Bolton’s obsession with Iran is getting dangerous

PARIS — This week, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, two countries closely allied with the U.S. and Israel against Iran, announced that four commercial tankers had been “sabotaged” in Emirati waters. Frankly, I’ve seen worse damage to a bus in Paris when it sideswiped a ...

The five-year itch?

Dear Annie: I’ve been with my significant other for five years. We’re each other’s “person.” I’m more comfortable with him than I’ve ever been with anyone else, but there’s a catch. We’ve noticed a trend: that I’m better at taking care of myself when he’s not around. ...

TV tug of war

Dear Annie. My husband and I have very different television interests. I tend to prefer prestige shows that require significant time and attention commitment. He tends to enjoy brainless sitcoms. He says he doesn’t have the attention span to sit and watch many of the large-scale prestige ...