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President Donald Trump speaks at a rally at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Tuesday, May 29, 2018, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Sometimes saving money is scary

It's difficult to imagine that the U.S. Government has more money than it has figured out how to spend, but President Trump wants to give back $15.4 billion of such money and Congress is unhappy about it. This money is in appropriated, but unspent, funding from earlier years.

Michael Farris, CEO of the conservative Christian group Alliance Defending Freedom, looks at the decision in front of the Supreme Court, Monday, June 4, 2018 in Washington.  The Supreme Court has ruled for a Colorado baker who wouldn't make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple in a limited decision that leaves for another day the larger issue of whether a business can invoke religious objections to refuse service to gay and lesbian people.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

A half-baked cake

A half-baked cake may be better than no cake at all, but not much better. The Supreme Court's decision that a baker with religious convictions against it doesn't have to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding was the work of Justice Anthony Kennedy, who seems to have a schoolgirl crush on anything gay.

FILE - In this Sept. 13, 2015, file photo, contestants wear swimsuits as they compete in the 2016 Miss America pageant in Atlantic City, N.J. The Miss America Organization is dropping the swimsuit competition from its nationally televised broadcast, saying it will no longer judge contestants in their appearance. Gretchen Carlson, a former Miss America who is head of the organization's board of trustees, made the announcement Tuesday, June 5, 2018, on "Good Morning America." (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)

The new Miss America

"A pretty girl is like a melody/ that haunts you night and day/You can't escape, she's in your memory/by morning, night and noon/She will leave you and then come back again/a pretty girl is just like a pretty tune."

Names make news, and trouble, too

A lot of people don't like their names, even good, solid, substantial names like Woodrow, Arthur or Gertrude. Particularly, apparently, "Arthur." Names can predict fortune. June brides, dreaming of making children, might one day regret choosing something cute, such as naming a daughter "Chastity," or a son "Shirley." They could keep this in mind.

When is an informant a spy?

Enemies of Donald Trump made a big mistake when they sent a spy into the midst of the Republican candidate's campaign. Their secret agent was no debonair figure in the mold of "Bond, James Bond," but a rotund and affable academic with no trailing retinue of femmes fatale. There will be no winning over of American public opinion on fashion points, and so the legitimacy of shadowy enterprise will rise or fall on its own merit, which appears to be not much.

Workers plant romaine lettuce, Thursday, April 26, 2018, at the EG Richter Family Farm in Puyallup, Wash. The farm sells most of it's lettuce to large local grocery store chains, and owner Tim Richter says that so far his farm hasn't been affected by warnings that romaine lettuce from Yuma, Ariz., apparently has been contaminated with the E. coli bacteria. Richter says he urges consumers to stay away from bagged lettuce and to always cut and wash their own produce. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

When green takes a hit

Green is good. It's the favorite color of the environmentalists, and everything green is the craze of the politically correct. Many a clever shopkeeper, taxicab operator and entrepreneur has set out to "go green," joining the craze with little more than a brush and a can of paint. If green is good, it nevertheless needs a little marketing genius.

Turkey's President and ruling Justice and Development Party leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses his supporters during an election rally in Corlu near Istanbul, Tuesday, May 29, 2018. Turkey holds parliamentary and presidential elections on June 24, 2018, seen as important as it will transform Turkey's governing system to an executive presidency.(Presidential Press Service via AP, Pool)

The shriveling ally

Only yesterday, Turkey was considered a candidate for membership in the European Union, a reliable friend of the West. Turkey was reasonably modern, forward looking, and Western oriented. Turkey was already a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and membership in the EU would only cement its alliance with the West.

This undated photo provided by VisitNC.com shows a boy on the beach at Ocracoke on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach is No. 2 on the list of best beaches for the summer of 2018 compiled by Stephen Leatherman, also known as Dr. Beach, a professor at Florida International University. (Bill Russ/NC Department of Commerce via AP)

Let the good times roll

Summer signals the arrival of happier days -- more sun, more fun and more all-around good vibes. It isn't officially summer yet, but it's close enough to taste. Memorial Day is behind us and that means it's a good time to measure "the mood of America."

People wait their turn to vote during the presidential election in Caracas, Venezuela, Sunday, May 20, 2018. Amidst hyperinflation and shortages of food and medicine, President Nicolas Maduro is seeking a second, six-year term in an election that a growing chorus of foreign governments refuse to recognize after key opponents were barred from running.  (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

The destruction of Venezuela

Viva la revolution — or something. Alas, the slow-motion catastrophe that is the Venezuelan revolution shows no signs of abating. It keeps going, going and going, and in ever steeper descent.

President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-In in the Oval Office of the White House, Tuesday, May 22, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The president pulls the plug

Donald Trump was never going to win the Nobel Peace Prize, anyway. He demonstrated "the art of the deal" with his cancellation of the "summit" with Kim Jong-un, which North Korea had skillfully begun to portray as a triumph of its own statecraft. The president pulled the rug out from under Mr. Kim with a triumph of his own. We can all be thankful.

President Donald Trump speaks to the media before boarding the Marine One helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 23, 2018, en route to a day trip to New York City. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Slinging doubts about Singapore

The Democrats and their allied pundits are licking their chops at the prospect of supping on soup of bones from the collapse of the Singapore summit between President Trump and Kim Jong-un. Mr. Trump now rates the prospect of the summit even happening as no better than a toss of a coin.

Jim Thomas, Dr. Seth Cropsey, Ronald O’Rourke and Dr. Andrew Erickson, discuss the U.S. Asia-Pacific Strategic Considerations Related to P.L.A. Naval Forces Modernization in front of the House Armed Services Committee, in Washington, DC., Wednesday, December 11, 2013.  (Andrew S Geraci/The Washington Times)

The cost of not having a Merchant Marine

Freedom of the seas is critical to America's economic and political security, enabling the transportation of goods manufactured in the United States to other places around the world, and enabling Americans to obtain things otherwise unobtainable here, like bananas every day of every year. What would life be without the freedom to enjoy an occasional banana split?

In this Jan. 21, 2018, file photo, lights shine inside the U.S. Capitol Building as night falls in Washington. (AP Photo/J. David Ake) ** FILE **

A privilege, not a right

No nation is more confused over who, why and how someone may cross its borders than the "nation of immigrants." America's confusion is largely the work of men and women who would get lost on a highway with no exits. Common sense, an uncommonly precious leadership quality, is the compass that points the way toward an immigration policy based on respect for the law. Common sense, alas, suffers a sharp discount in our present day.

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