Archive

June 9th, 2015

Your Guide to the 2016 GOP Candidates

    The Republicans have a big problem. Their presidential primary contest is beginning to resemble the New York marathon — hordes of contestants as far as the eye can see.

    How is a voter expected to choose among them, particularly since virtually all say pretty much the same thing?

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This Spill Hits Close to Home

    The recent oil spill in Santa Barbara, California hit home for me in a painful way. As a southern Californian for many years now, I take any excuse to head up the coast to Santa Barbara I can get.

    It’s a particularly beautiful stretch of pristine coastline, populated by an abundance of marine mammals.

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The New Face of Noplace, USA

    As everyone who travels a lot soon learns, it’s easy to forget where you are. Those big chains uniformly offer all the charm of Noplace, USA.

    This disorienting sameness has become more dizzying in recent years as the chains have merged and conglomerated.

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Sites like Yelp can be tough, but hospitals embrace online reviews

    Laura Markowski used to worry every time a text alerted her that a patient had posted a negative review online of a doctor at her health-care system.

    She's in charge of "reputation management" at a group of hospitals and clinics in Virginia, and it's her job to monitor complaints about rudeness, long waits, lack of face time with a doctor or something more serious.

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Restricting Medicaid is bad medicine

    "My focus is to create a red-state model that allows the Republican ticket to say, 'See, we've got a different way, and it works,' " Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback said in 2013.

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Re-entering Society — and the Voting Booth

    Following the recent uprising in Baltimore, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan promised that he’d work to reduce crime in the state. He also affirmed that Marylanders who’d been convicted of felonies and done their time should be able to reenter society as free citizens.

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Rand Paul making a habit of hyperbolic grandstanding

    Politicians talk a lot, and the more a politician talks, the greater the risk he or she will say something regrettable. If you run your mouth for 11 hours at a stretch, as Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is wont to do, the chance of putting your foot in it goes up correspondingly.

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Is the EU good for Britain? That's up to Germany

    I was in the audience a few rows in front of British Prime Minister David Cameron when he delivered his seminal 2013 speech pledging a referendum on Britain's membership in the European Union. At the time, I couldn't decide whether it was a political masterstroke that would finally quiet Britain's most strident euro-skeptics, or a suicidal concession to the anti-European elements in Cameron's Conservative Party.

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Huckabee and Duggar: Now showing on Red State reality TV

    After watching the fuss Republican presidential wannabe Mike Huckabee made about Beyonce Knowles early this year, it has been amusing to watch him try to wriggle and squirm his way out of the Duggar family's scandal.

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Hillary Clinton's Real Primary Opponent

    In a sane world, the 2016 presidential election campaign would begin about this time next year. However, the political infotainment wing of our esteemed national news media seems intent upon pushing the contest ever earlier -- whether voters like it or not. TV ratings and enhanced career opportunities depend upon it.

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