Tuesday September 30, 2014
February 13th, 2014
The start of any week in Washington is as unpredictable as a Super Bowl. Before Sunday night's game, everyone thought the Broncos and Seahawks would have a close one, and by the third quarter the Seahawks had so dominated the action, it became necessary to thumb through the rule book to see if pro football had a mercy rule. Traffic from Fort Lee, N.J., is more free-flowing than the Broncos offense. Who knows where the week will end up, but here are three questions worth noodling as it starts:
It is tempting to think that the declining number of subscribers at the United States's biggest cable- television companies is a symptom of the industry's malaise as it slowly slides into obsolescence. Don't buy it. The losses are accounted for in the gains by smaller and nimbler rivals.
High school never ends.
Chris Christie has given us proof of that, as though we needed it.
Still, anyone who clings to high school the way the 51-year-old governor of New Jersey does makes me nervous.
At one time in my life I had no use for it. Hated it.
I hated what snow did to the morning newspaper, how it crimped my driveway basketball dominance, how it curbed mobility in all forms except on skis.
Love it. Can’t get enough of it. Snow, snow, snow. The last few weeks it has done just that where I live -- 8 inches of it outside my window, with more on the way.
Philip Seymour Hoffman's death at the end of a heroin needle again spotlights the dangers of a poisonous drug. And so did the Vermont governor's plea last month to confront the "full-blown heroin crisis" plaguing his rural state.
His population is far poorer and more isolated than an Oscar-winning actor in New York's Greenwich Village. But though drug overdoses are democratic in choosing victims, the War on Drugs is anything but.
A Budweiser commercial during the Super Bowl, that annual celebration of violence as sport, featured a most joyous homecoming for a U.S. veteran of the Afghan War. It was a fitting tribute to the fact that he survived, but you would have to be drunk on Bud not to notice that the three decades since the United States first meddled in Afghanistan have been an unequivocal disaster and that those who did not survive -- NATO combatants and far larger number of Afghan natives -- died in vain.
Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman is yet another victim of the war on drugs. Prohibition is not working. It is time to try something new.
Hoffman, 46, was found dead in the bathroom of his Manhattan apartment Sunday morning, apparently the victim of a heroin overdose. According to widely published reports, there was a syringe in his arm. Police found the place littered with small plastic bags stamped "Ace of Spades" or "Ace of Hearts" -- brand names that street dealers use.
America’s ongoing debate over economic inequality may be turning a new page.
Starting in the 1980s, during the debate’s first chapter, pundits and policymakers battled over whether the United States was in fact becoming more unequal. This initial debate is over now. No serious analyst argues any longer that the gulf between America’s rich and everyone else hasn’t jumped substantially.
We in journalism tend to cover airplane crashes, corrupt officials and loathsome criminals with gusto, but let's take a break and applaud a hero.