Here's what newspapers around the nation are saying:
Chicago Tribune PHONY DISPUTE: Would Mexico threaten a trade embargo against the United States to force New Mexico to change its name? Would the British huff and puff . . . because a section of our Atlantic seaboard chose to call itself New England? Ridiculous, you say. Yet that's the stance of Greece toward its northern neighbor, the former Yugoslav republic of Macedonia . . . .
Bowing to Greek lobbying, the United States, Western Europe and the United Nations all decline full diplomatic relations with Macedonia . . . .
(But) there is little logic to Greece's argument other than overblown national pride and some vague claim, hardly backed by international law, to monopoly control of national symbols. . . . Why in the world is the world listening?
The New York Times
REFORM TAX CODE: The current (tax) code is maddeningly complex, costly and unfair. One large firm had to submit a tax return of more than 20,000 pages. The code penalizes savings, thereby retarding growth . . . and breeds cynicism among those who cannot claim any of the subsidies Congress passes at the behest of big contributors.
The Republican leadership says this year will be different. . . . Any reform needs to produce a code that is simple, pro-growth and fair. And none of the three Republican ideas - a national sales tax, a consumption-based income tax or a flat tax - hits all three targets.
House Republicans already have used the lofty goal of balancing the budget to camouflage steep tax cuts for the wealthy and huge spending cuts for the poor. It would compound the tragedy if the GOP altered the tax code for the same benighted purposes.
Los Angeles Times
FOSTER FIGHT: Bob Dole, the Senate majority leader and candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, (says) he will not vote to confirm Dr. Henry W. Foster Jr. as U.S. surgeon general . . . (even) hinting that if the Foster nomination clears committee, he might refuse to let the full Senate decide on the controversial physician's fate.
Smothering the nomination of (the obstetrician and gynecologist) would, of course, boost Dole's standing among those who are unforgiving toward any doctor who has ever performed abortions, as Foster has. It would also moot the threat by Dole's currently strongest rival for the GOP nomination, Sen. Phil Gramm, to organize a filibuster to prevent a vote . . . .
(Foster) deserves the right (to testify) and the full Senate should have the chance to pass on his fitness, whatever the presidential ambitions of Dole and Gramm.
The Boston Globe
CALLING NAMES: There was a time in America around 40 years ago . . . when the entire country was convulsed by a wave of anti-Communist anxiety and hysteria, capitalized upon and exploited by the infamous Sen. Joe McCarthy.
However, even paranoids have real enemies. In a series of Kremlin papers soon to be published by Yale University Press, the myth . . . that the American Communist Party was independent of Moscow . . . has been exploded . . . . However, (this) in no way makes the activities of McCarthy less scoundrelly. His wild, accusatory tactics were designed primarily not to expose Reds but to promote himself.
We hear echoes . . . in the voices of men like Rep. Robert Dornan of California, entrant in the GOP presidential race (who) rails against America's "moral decay" in such strident, defamatory tones as to make the task of those who really want to do something . . . all the more difficult.