Archive

Date

March 5th, 2014

No Merit Badge for This Scout

    Rex W. Tillerson, a resident of Bartonville, Texas, like many of his neighbors was upset with his city council. That’s not unusual. Many residents get upset at their local governing boards. And so they went to a city council meeting to express their concerns that the council was about to award a construction permit.

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Health Care Horror Hooey

    Remember the "death tax"? The estate tax is quite literally a millionaire's tax - a tax that affects only a tiny minority of the population, and is mostly paid by a handful of very wealthy heirs. Nonetheless, right-wingers have successfully convinced many voters that the tax is a cruel burden on ordinary Americans - that all across the nation small businesses and family farms are being broken up to pay crushing estate tax liabilities.

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How long can Putin bask in the glow of Sochi?

    Reading all the positive foreign reactions to the Olympics, I can't help imagining how a flunky of Russian President Vladimir Putin would put together a selection of quotes to please the boss - to make the president feel as though he had won all of Russia's world-beating 33 medals, including 13 golds.

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Obama's unfulfilled challenge

    Republicans are unhappy that President Obama is invoking his executive powers to govern in the face of a do-nothing-in-2014 House of Representatives. To hear them talk, you would think our chief executive is modeling himself on the late Hugo Chavez and wants to seize dictatorial control.

    This, of course, is nonsense. In fact, Obama has in many ways been less aggressive in his use of executive authority than his predecessors.

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'The Wild West of Privacy'

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Victim-blaming persists in campus sexual assaults

    There are no "toga and yoga" keggers. No football team. No lacrosse team. No jello shots, jungle juice, boilermaker binges or beer pong. And certainly no bongs.

    The most dangerous substance around evangelical Patrick Henry College is the Sweet Frog frozen yogurt place across the street from the Loudoun County, Va., campus.

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Zealots crusade to deprive disabled of protections

    Any suspicion that the political right, after suffering a defeat on the debt ceiling and facing threats from business donors, is losing its clout can be dismissed by the fight over the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

    The treaty has been ratified by 141 countries. It is backed by the White House, former President George H.W. Bush, the major U.S. disability and veterans advocacy groups, and American businesses.

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Good Reasons to Hate Big Tech

    We love computers and other electronics, but -- not unlike an addict's opinion of his dealer -- we hate the companies that sell them to us. Now our contempt for Silicon Valley is expanding to include tech workers.

    In San Francisco, where locals know the techies best, 30-year-old worker bees are taking as much heat as their billionaire CEO overlords.

    Geographical familiarity breeds political contempt.

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GOP crocodile tears over jobs

    At the risk of repeating myself, the federal minimum wage is far too low and needs to be raised. Republicans who claim to be worried about lost jobs can dry their crocodile tears, because a few simple measures would get all those jobs back -- and lots more.

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Mass Transit Is for the Young

    I frequently ride one of those cheap buses connecting my small city with a big city. At first, I expected my fellow passengers to be largely poor and old -- the folks who can't afford to drive or are unable to.

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