Tuesday December 01, 2015
Archive - 2014
It seems there is something to offend everyone in the upcoming Hollywood comedy "The Interview." At this point, I'm guessing, most wounded of all may be the Sony Pictures executives who greenlighted the film.
The fossil-fuel divestment movement got the perfect holiday gift in 2014: tumbling stocks.
Founded only two years ago by experts and students fed up with the glacial pace of climate action, this global effort is already liquidating more than $50 billion of the oil, gas, and coal assets owned both by individuals and institutions like colleges and dioceses.
Charter schools are often promoted as a tool to address educational inequities, but a potential precedent-setting legal case launched earlier this month says the opposite. In filings with the U.S. Department of Education, two Delaware nonprofit groups allege that some of the state's publicly funded, privately managed schools are actively resegregating the education system -- and in a way that violates federal civil rights law.
Does Dick Cheney matter? Are the former vice president's comments on the torture report worth dissecting?
Some friends, as I mused the other day about what topic to tackle, argued no: Cheney is history. Too easy a target. Enough about torture. What about a nice holiday column?
As the weather turns colder in this month of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and the Winter Solstice, our hearts grow warmer and our thoughts turn to kindness and goodwill toward all.
Unless, of course, you’re Chris Christie.
If the great Rolling Stone campus rape hoax proved nothing else, it's that True Believers make lousy reporters. I've always found it useful to keep in mind what my brother and I call the state motto of our native New Jersey: "Oh yeah, who says?"
Reminiscing this week about the 1980 Iowa presidential caucuses, Gov. Terry Branstad, a Republican, recalled his "coal-black hair" and George H.W. Bush's stunning upset of Ronald Reagan.
Branstad, now 68, said he repeatedly warned Reagan's advisers about "how they were blowing it because the Bush family was going to every county." But they would not return his phone calls "and they got beat."
Upon release of the Senate Intelligence Committee report on the George W. Bush administration's use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" on captured al-Qaida suspects, two prominent American figures stoutly defended the practice -- former Vice President Dick Cheney and current CIA director John Brennan.
Peace on Earth, good will toward men. We honor these noble values every holiday season — and some people actually work to advance them all year long.
Other folks, by contrast, mock these values. They spend their days chasing after ever grander stashes of personal treasure.
At this point, we all know the true meaning of Christmas.