Archive - 2014

August 14th

Hillary, Barbed and Bellicose

    The other night, a prominent Democrat I know made the craziest statement.

    "I don't think Hillary's going to run," he proclaimed, silencing the room. He might as well have said that he'd just spotted Bigfoot pilfering rhubarb from the White House vegetable garden or that Arnold Schwarzenegger was in line to play King Lear on Broadway. ("Cordelia, I'll be baaaaack.") He was humming some kind of loony tune.

    His evidence?

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From Sneakers to O'Bannon

    "When I first heard about the decision, I was speechless," said Sonny Vaccaro.

    Speechless as in he never thought this day would come.

    Vaccaro is the former sneaker marketer turned anti-NCAA crusader, and he was talking about Friday's decision in the O'Bannon case - the one in which Judge Claudia Wilken ruled that the principle of amateurism is not a legal justification for business practices that violate the nation's antitrust laws.

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Phosphorus and Freedom

    In the latest Times Magazine, Robert Draper profiled youngish libertarians - roughly speaking, people who combine free-market economics with permissive social views - and asked whether we might be heading for a "libertarian moment." Well, probably not. Polling suggests that young Americans tend, if anything, to be more supportive of the case for a bigger government than their elders. But I'd like to ask a different question: Is libertarian economics at all realistic?

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August 10th

'War on whites?' No way

    Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Alabama) claims that liberals are waging a "war on whites." If so, Barack Obama must be at war with himself.

    That's how goofy Brooks' logic sounds. But he's not nuts. It is an old reflex, when cornered in politics, to lash back with the same charge that others have leveled at you -- or, put another way, to project your own flaws onto other people.

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The Untransparent CIA

    If the CIA spends half as much energy finding terrorists as it has spent fighting Congress, we should feel very safe.

    The spooks, taking a break from the mundane work of protecting the nation, have lately been turning their spycraft against the lawmakers who are supposed to be overseeing them. The not-so-secret mission: To block the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on tortu--, uh, enhanced interrogation methods.

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Presidential overreach is in eye of the beholder

    As the battle intensifies over how much authority President Barack Obama has to take executive measures in the face of congressional inaction, James Madison and Richard Nixon provide the frames of reference.

    The Republican-controlled House is planning to sue Obama for exceeding his executive authority, and threats of impeachment are in the air if, as expected, the president unilaterally exempts - at least temporarily - more undocumented immigrants from deportation. This isn't a new fight.

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Obama doctrine put to the test

    Even as President Obama continues to insist that there will be no return of American "boots on the ground" in Iraq, stark reality is severely testing what has come to be known as the Obama Doctrine--that the use of U.S. military power has limits defined by America's own national interests.

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What the pope got wrong about kids

    The pope may be infallible, but he is not correct.

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This Is Reform?

    Too little, too late.

    On Thursday, the 18 members of the NCAA's Division I board of directors voted 16-2 to allow the five richest conferences to play by their own rules, at least a little bit.

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RAPE - RAPE - RAPE

    Growing up in the generation when the word rape was hardly said out loud I am dismayed at how not just the word but the actuality of the act has become so common. I am appalled at the statistics regarding reported rapes with ample evidence that these statistics represent a small portion of what is believed to be reality.

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