Archive

Date

August 10th, 2014

Dear Guests

    At 6:02 a.m. Saturday, the air raid siren sounded over Tel Aviv. I was rousted by the hotel staff from my room and ushered into the windowless service elevator area with two French families, everyone in their pajamas. After 10 minutes, when the Hamas missile threat had passed, we were allowed to go back to our rooms. As I slipped back into bed, the hotel loudspeaker bellowed, "Dear guests, you may return to your routine."

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Clueless in Gaza: Another Example of How We Only Support Democracy Abroad When Their Elections Go Our Way

    "Rarely has a president been confronted with so many seemingly disparate foreign policy crises all at once," The New York Times noted about Obama on July 23. What the paper didn't/won't/can't say is: Rarely has a president caused so many of his own crises.

    This summer, most of Obama's problems follow from his unwillingness to respect democracy overseas.

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Blue vs. Blue Does Not Equal Red

    They are all Democrats, blue and blue. But like Republicans, they have opposing visions duking it out in the primaries.

    One side sees urgency in reforming public-employee benefits now eating state and local budgets alive. This group includes Democratic governors Jerry Brown in California, Andrew Cuomo in New York and Pat Quinn in Illinois.

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A Modest Proposal

    Enough with all the phony impeachment talk.

    Onward to a real impeachment!

    In the absurdist capital we live in, it would be good for all sides - in ways you may not have considered.

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Plato and the Promise of College

    Kimberly Lantigua, 17, is an avid reader, but of a somewhat unusual oeuvre. Not long ago she worked her way through novels that spawned movies starring Meryl Streep, one of her favorite actresses. "The Devil Wears Prada" was a breeze. "Sophie's Choice" is Kimberly's unsummited Everest.

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GOP's answer now: 'Dynamite the bridges'

    By review: If the Affordable Care Act were blown up as congressional Republicans desire, 12 million Americans who now have health insurance would have none.

    That being the case, one of the most telling comments of the last six rip-roarious years came the other day from Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.

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August 7th

Tea party versus business backers in the bayou

    Fresh from helping save Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi from a tea party upstart, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is on the verge of endorsing an embattled Senate Democrat. According to the New York Times's Joe Nocera, national political director Rob Engstrom told the heads of the chamber's regional groups that the mother ship planned to support Louisiana's Mary L. Landrieu in a close race against three Republicans.

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Teachers Shouldn't Be Learning on the Job as They Go

    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.

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Absent on immigration reform

    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.

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Calls for impeachment: a timeline

    "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.

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