Wednesday November 26, 2014
August 7th, 2014
I'm starting to wonder if we've entered some kind of golden age of books about education. First came Paul Tough's book, "How Children Succeed," about the importance of developing noncognitive skills in students. It was published in September 2012. Then came "The Smartest Kids in the World," by Amanda Ripley, which tackled the question of what other countries were getting right in the classroom that America was getting wrong. Her book came out just about a year ago.
The Republican Party's paralysis on immigration is so complete -- and so utterly irresponsible -- that President Obama has no choice but to act on his own.
Just say the word immigration and most GOP members of Congress either change the subject or scurry away. Rather than tackle a suite of genuine issues whose obvious solutions would clearly benefit the nation, House Republicans prefer to pass yet more useless bills that seek -- and fail -- to take away people's health insurance.
"It's all a scam started by the Democrats at the White House," House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, insisted Tuesday when asked about impeaching President Barack Obama. "Why? Because they are trying to rally their people to give money and to show up in this year's election."
The latter part of that is true: Over the weekend, Democrats say they raised $2.1 million largely using the specter of an attempted impeachment.
When the ovum is ready, even if the woman isn't, sperm introduced into the picture will come from every direction.
That's the picture for women on the public policy front right now. They're getting it from every direction.
They've gotten it from five males on the Supreme Court who see birth control to be less the stuff of health-care mandates and more like, oh, eyeliner and blush.
I've been arguing that the big divide in the world these days is between the world of order and a growing world of disorder. If you're keeping score at home, the world of disorder just added another country: Libya. America quietly folded up its embassy in Libya last week and left, leaving behind a tribal/militia war of all against all. Not good.
Climate change is no longer a problem for a distant tomorrow. We're feeling the impact on our health, on our environment and on our economy today. But while climate change hurts everyone, communities of color and low-income Americans are the hardest hit.
The numbers are small for a large country like this, but the alarm is big over the influx of Central American children coming over the southern border. People are merging this special case involving about 57,000 children with generalized anxiety about a broken immigration system that has resulted in an estimated 11 million illegal residents. At bottom are fears that the United States is incapable of managing an orderly immigration program.
California’s harsh new measure to deal with long-term drought is making waves. Residents caught wasting by washing sidewalks with their garden hose and committing similar reckless acts are incurring fines of up to $500.
Is that fair? Or will the fine be perceived as governmental overreach, like former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s ill-fated attempt to limit soda sizes to 16 ounces.
"Hair is political."
That was the line that stuck with me when my 17-year-old daughter recently regaled me with the minutiae of a lighthearted argument she'd had with a friend. It was about my daughter's staunch resistance to straightening or altering her hair in any way.
The friend had insisted that such alterations were no big deal, to which my daughter took umbrage and shot back, "Hair is political."
After six years of bending to the gales of tea party vituperation against President Barack Obama, the 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls seem to be rising up like visitors to Oz -- with a heart, courage and a brain.
"Idea conservative" is a common nickname given to those who seek to respond to liberal ideas, policies and programs with something more than a simple "No."