Charlottesville violence: America - diminished and dismissed

Trump Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Tuesday's combative press conference undid his carefully worded statement on Monday

I've just returned to Washington after a few weeks in Europe. In 20 years of living in the US, I've never returned to a country so dispirited, nor so dismissed.

I include in that the anti-Americanism that surrounded the invasion of Iraq and the trauma of the financial crash.

Dispirited.

Back in 2004 and 2008 Americans were by and large united, or at the very least they were not so angrily divided. One might think that the sight of swastikas on American streets would indeed unite the country in unwavering purpose. Not so.

The country is so mired in political division that even Nazi symbols have become political symbols some can live with if they feel that condemning them would give succour to their opposition.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Trump returned to his New York home during his 17-day 'working vacation'

Read full article Charlottesville violence: America - diminished and dismissed

Trump-Brzezinski row: Why facelift-gate matters

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionTrump's tweets: Four women, two takes

It is tempting to dismiss the row between Donald Trump, President of the United States, and Mika Brzezinski, host of a US TV show, as a vaguely self-referential media story that most Americans care little about.

Tempting, but wrong.

Read full article Trump-Brzezinski row: Why facelift-gate matters

Is Trump's thin skin getting in the way of his presidency?

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionHow the White House's story on Comey collapsed

What if the Comey firing is nothing to do with the Russia probe or the Clinton email server but is actually just a result of the president's thin-skinned character?

And would that be more or less alarming than Comey being fired in order to impede the Russia investigation, which is the case Democrats are making this week?

Read full article Is Trump's thin skin getting in the way of his presidency?

Comey fired: Will Trump embolden autocrats?

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionWhy does Trump admire strongmen leaders?

Autocrats are watching what's happening in Washington

I spent the evening after FBI Director James Comey's firing with a group of women from developing countries who work to ease conflicts. Their take on what had just happened here was salutary, and a reminder that the global impact of what happens in Washington should not be underestimated.

Read full article Comey fired: Will Trump embolden autocrats?

How getting fired made my career

katty in 2012

I was recently asked to write about resilience, in light of a new book on the subject by Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg. These are my thoughts.

It wasn't that I wasn't good at my job, he assured me, it was just that I didn't have much personality.

Read full article How getting fired made my career

What does all this bombing tell us about Trump?

Woman with donket and child Image copyright European Photopress Agency
Image caption The mountains targeted are found in the Achin district of Nangarhar province

Donald Trump has not only normalised American foreign policy, he has arguably made it more effective.

With two high-profile, signal-sending bombing raids and a series of breathtaking policy reversals, President Trump has brought US foreign policy back in line with conventional thinking. But he has added to the equation a measure of force that gives Washington new clout.

Read full article What does all this bombing tell us about Trump?

Katty Kay: Spicer had choice - apologise or dig

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer answers reporters" questions during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House April 11, 2017 in Washington, DC Image copyright Getty Images

It's never clear to me why it's so hard for people to say sorry. It's a simple word, just two syllables and its positive impact is enormous.

But to be effective the "sorry" needs to come fast and be said sincerely. Take too long or add a caveat and your apology loses its power.

Read full article Katty Kay: Spicer had choice - apologise or dig

Eric Cantor says healthcare bill is 'first real test for Trump'

Former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor - a top Republican during the Obamacare fight - tells me he thinks it will be a "real difficult road" for the rest of the Republican agenda if the healthcare bill is not passed.

Despite that, Mr Cantor is convinced it will make it through Congress.

Read full article Eric Cantor says healthcare bill is 'first real test for Trump'

Women's Day: A US gender ceiling far from shattered

It's much better than it used to be, but female leadership in the United States - in politics and business - has still a long way to go to achieve parity.

Here's my take.

Read full article Women's Day: A US gender ceiling far from shattered

Why Trump's big speech to Congress may actually matter

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionTrump's speech to Congress: Lessons from history

The state of the union is broken. Or, at least, the state of the State of Union address is broken.

Audiences for this annual political tradition have been steadily declining for years.

Read full article Why Trump's big speech to Congress may actually matter