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April 26, 2015
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Funny Man in an Unfunny World

The world lost one of its great comedians this week with the death at age 71 of George Carlin. Carlin had a career as a stand-up comic that spanned a half-century, in which he continually broke new ground, targeting those in power with his wit and genius.

Posted on Jun 25, 2008 READ MORE


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Fueling Stealth
AP photo / Mark Farmer

Wasteful Weapons and the Politicians Who Love Them

Remember Curtis LeMay, the Air Force general played to chilling effect by Sterling Hayden in the 1964 movie “Dr. Strangelove”? If you’re too young for that reference, you probably don’t recall when the concept of Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) dominated our military posture toward our Soviet enemy.

Posted on Jun 24, 2008 READ MORE


San Francsico marriage
AP photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez

Notes on a California Sea Change

Watching the couples in line for licenses in Beverly Hills on the first day of gay marriage in California, I was struck by how the scene was so commonplace, even boring—just a bunch of men and women waiting their turn at a nondescript government office.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE


Fixing Public Financing

Barack Obama’s decision to forgo public funds will bring joy to opponents of campaign finance reform. But to say that Obama has killed public financing is to miss the point.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE


‘Did I Mention He’s Black?’

The question isn’t whether race will be an issue in the general election campaign between Obama and McCain. Race is already an issue, even if largely confined to the shadow world of implication and coded language.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE


Oil Mania

There’s nothing like the Saudi version of straight talk to put in perspective the tongue-twisting of American politicians.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Charles Dharapak, file

The Hedonists of Power

Washington has become Versailles. We are ruled, entertained and informed by courtiers.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE


A Revolutionary Campaign

Republican presidential nominee John McCain officially kicked off his general election campaign today, promising to bring his race for the White House to “all 13 colonies.”

Posted on Jun 22, 2008 READ MORE


Countering Race With Class

In our us-versus-them culture, every political campaign is a battle to define who exactly the “us” and “them” are. At their most effective, Democrats parry by defining the “us” as the majority of working people, and the “them” as the tiny group of plutocrats who control the country.

Posted on Jun 19, 2008 READ MORE


Playing Through the Pain

I, for one, am relieved that Tiger Woods decided to devote his unimaginable focus and determination to golfing excellence and not to, say, world conquest. We’d all be living in Tigerland by now.

Posted on Jun 19, 2008 READ MORE


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