Archive

Date

October 30th, 2014

Let's all get scared. America

    “The only thing we have to fear is . . . Let’s face it, folks, I’m scared spitless.”

     So said Franklin Roosevelt in 1933.

    Well, OK, he didn’t say that. FDR lived through the Great Depression, endured polio and world war, but somehow he didn’t live in fear, like we do in 2014.

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Influenza 1918-19: Fear and courage in another outbreak

    It started with the death of John W. Clore, 30, a widower, on Sept. 21, 1918, at the old Sibley Hospital in Washington.

    Four days later, John Janes, 33, who ran a candy store and restaurant, died at home.

    On Sept. 27, three people died - Amos Matticks, 33, Grayson B. Coffman, 20, and Pearl Morgan, 33.

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Ebola czar has two jobs and one big problem

    The trick to appointing an Ebola czar - a decision that President Barack Obama got mostly right in naming veteran Democratic operative Ron Klain - is that the two problems this "czar" is supposed to solve are close to opposites.

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Dueling negatives in North Carolina Senate race

    If Republicans are in control of both houses of Congress next year - which is looking probable two weeks before the elections - House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell could use some guidance from North Carolina: Don't overreach.

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A World Without OPEC?

    Forty-one years ago this month, the Arab oil embargo began. The countries that were part of it belonged, of course, to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries - OPEC - which had banded together 13 years earlier to strengthen their ability to negotiate with international oil companies. The embargo led to widespread shortages in the United States, higher prices at the gas pump and long lines at gas stations. By the time it ended, the price of oil had risen to $12 a barrel from $3.

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October 23rd

Obama's second-term slide mostly about us, not him

    As President Barack Obama heads into the final half of his final term, many of us Americans wonder whatever happened to the fresh promise of that cheerfully charismatic optimist who dominated the political stage back in 2008.

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Obama unveils his Ebola response

    Harry Truman's old adage, "The buck stops here," has been confirmed, at least politically, in President Obama's highly visible response to the Ebola crisis. His lengthy talk on the subject televised from the Oval Office was clearly devised not only to calm mushrooming public fears but also to reassure fellow Americans he was personally on the case.

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Monopsony Is Not OK

    Amazon.com, the giant online retailer, has too much power, and it uses that power in ways that hurt America.

    OK, I know that was kind of abrupt. But I wanted to get the central point out there right away, because discussions of Amazon tend, all too often, to get lost in side issues.

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A most forgettable election

    The closing days of a closely fought election rarely offer uplifting moments, but the 2014 season has been particularly dreary, nearly devoid of content and high on unedifying spectacle.

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The Virus of Cynicism

    We have no clue at this point how far Ebola could spread in the United States - and no reason for panic.

    But one dimension of the disease's toll is clear. It's ravaging Americans' already tenuous faith in the competence of our government and its bureaucracies.

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