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Los Angeles: City of Dreams

By Bill Boyarsky
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Flickr / The Gifted Photographer / CC-BY-SA

Fair and Balanced (and Phony) Science

Evading the challenges of climate change—and the human responsibility to save the planet—is simple enough even for the laziest citizen.

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


The ‘Human’ Factor Missing in Copenhagen

Countries are wrangling over everything about human-induced climate change except the increasing number of humans inducing it.

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


Making Gun Safety (Politically) Safe

When it comes to passing sensible gun laws, Congress typically offers Profiles in Cowardice.

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


‘The Great Global Security Underwriter’ Will Pay a High Price

Why, if the electorate is less than enthusiastic about providing global underwriting, and would like to see others provide their own insurance, does Washington persist in its role?

Posted on Dec 8, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Financial Oversight: We’re Still Waiting, Mr. President

We have a “regulation czar,” but no new regulations. It seems we can expect little from those with a track record of enabling bad policies.

Posted on Dec 8, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Leslie E. Kossoff

21st Century Skills: Education’s New Cliché

What’s new about them? They sound like the skills one would have gotten from a good 20th century education—or from a lot further back than that.

Posted on Dec 8, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / ianduffy

EPA Moves Toward Regulation of Greenhouse Gases

Who needs Congress? The EPA officially determined Tuesday that “greenhouse gases (GHGs) threaten the public health and welfare of the American people.” Under the Clean Air Act and with the blessing of the Supreme Court, the agency might now be able to regulate emissions that contribute to the climate crisis. (continued)

Posted on Dec 7, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Jens Meyer

Liberals Are Useless

The gravest danger we face as a nation is not from the far right, although it may well inherit power, but from a bankrupt liberal class that has lost the will to fight and the moral courage to stand up for what it espouses.

Posted on Dec 7, 2009 READ MORE



cironline.org

Corporate Farmer Calls Upon Sen. Feinstein to Influence Environmental Dispute

Wealthy corporate farmer Stewart Resnick (shown above with wife Lynda) has written check after check to U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s campaigns, and when he needed her help, he got quick results.

Posted on Dec 6, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The Health Care Race to Christmas

President Obama’s speech on Afghanistan and his subsequent jobs summit underscored why it’s essential to get a health care bill done quickly.

Posted on Dec 6, 2009 READ MORE


The Crushing Legacy of Bush and Cheney

Now it’s “Obama’s war,” but we should not ignore the events that led us to this moment and the inexplicable decisions of the Bush administration.

Posted on Dec 2, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Gunnery Sgt. Scott Dunn

Why They Hate Us, Part 2

Stephen M. Walt takes the “especially fatuous” Tom Friedman to task for one of his obstinate screeds. By the most conservative estimates, Walt explains, the U.S. has killed 30 Muslims for every American killed by Muslims, extremist or otherwise.

Posted on Dec 2, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Charles Dharapak

Here We Go Again

After 30 years of failure, and thanks to the political opportunism of the current commander in chief, the Afghanistan war is still without end or logical purpose.

Posted on Dec 2, 2009 READ MORE


Understanding Our Hollow ‘Centrists’

The puzzling thing about politicians of either party who claim to be “centrist” or “moderate” is how much they sometimes sound like party-line right-wing Republicans.

Posted on Nov 25, 2009 READ MORE


Like It or Not, Health Care Mandate Is Constitutional

Law students may debate whether Congress has the right to mandate health insurance, but in the real world, it’s not a big worry.

Posted on Nov 24, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Sgt. Mark Fayloga

Intelligentsia Against Intelligence

Any hope that we aren’t turning into a full-on slobbering idiocracy was snuffed out last week by two of the Washington intelligentsia’s most respected voices.

Posted on Nov 20, 2009 READ MORE


Enough G-2 Talk Already

I have never understood the widely touted idea or assumption of China-U.S. equality or partnership or joint rule of the world or superpower partnership that has dominated the press coverage of Barack Obama’s trip to Asia.

Posted on Nov 19, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Manuel Balce Ceneta

GOP Obstruction Goes Unnoticed—and Unpunished

Democrats in the Senate may engage in collective suicide, but it’s Republicans who, with Machiavellian brilliance, have brought the country to a halt.

Posted on Nov 18, 2009 READ MORE


What Is So Patriotic About Hysteria?

The loudest voices on the right never tire of telling us that they are the truest patriots, but when did fear-mongering in a time of war become an act of patriotism?

Posted on Nov 18, 2009 READ MORE


Three Abortion Coverage Myths

Let’s dispense with three fallacies swirling about the question of abortion coverage in health care reform.

Posted on Nov 18, 2009 READ MORE



Modified from an archival White House photo by David Morse

The Demilitarization of the White House

Barack Obama has made a welcome change to the presidency, dropping the praetorian guard that used to flank his predecessor at every opportunity.

Posted on Nov 17, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Rachel Zack

1 in 7 Americans Went Hungry in 2008

That recession is over statement looks more unfortunate every day. The Department of Agriculture disclosed Monday that a little more than 49 million Americans had trouble putting food on the table last year—the highest percentage since the government began keeping track in 1995, up 13 million people from the previous year. (continued)

Posted on Nov 16, 2009 READ MORE


We Need a Civilian ‘ROTC’

The military does not rely solely on patriotic feelings to build its force, and neither should the civilian parts of government.

Posted on Nov 16, 2009 READ MORE


Where Are the Real Deficit Hawks?

Save $110 billion, or spend $6.3 trillion? In recent months, tea party protesters and Congress’ so-called fiscal conservatives chose the latter.

Posted on Nov 12, 2009 READ MORE


Don’t Let Abortion Destroy Health Care Reform

Pro-choice Democrats need to accept that their House majority depends on a large cadre of anti-abortion colleagues. They can denounce that reality, or they can learn to live with it.

Posted on Nov 11, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Cpl. Daniel Martin Moman

U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Rains on Surge Parade

Karl W. Eikenberry, a former top-ranking general who once commanded allied forces in Afghanistan and now leads America’s diplomatic mission in Kabul, has reportedly urged President Obama to delay any escalation of the war until Hamid Karzai ... (continued)

Posted on Nov 11, 2009 READ MORE


Department of Health Care Misinformation

The outright falsehoods peddled by Republican opponents to the House health reform bill lead one to wonder whether they have any genuine fact-based objections.

Posted on Nov 11, 2009 READ MORE


When Voters Disrupt the Tea Party

Here’s a story you may have missed because it flies in the face of the dreary conventional wisdom: When advocates of public programs take on the right-wing anti-government crowd directly, the government-haters lose.

Posted on Nov 8, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / SEIU International

Kucinich: Why I Voted No

Rep. Dennis Kucinich explains why he voted against the landmark health reform bill, which he says “continues the redistribution of wealth to Wall Street at the expense of America’s manufacturing and service economies.”

Posted on Nov 8, 2009 READ MORE



wikimedia.org

The Rich? They Get Elected

A day after it was announced that the U.S. unemployment rate had hit the double-digit mark, a report was released showing that nearly half of the members of Congress are millionaires, seriously questioning the notion that our lawmakers identify with “we the people.”

Posted on Nov 7, 2009 READ MORE


We Are What We Trade and How We Trade It

The rules governing what we buy and sell are now playing such a decisive role in almost every major policy that we ignore them at our peril.

Posted on Nov 5, 2009 READ MORE


I.F. Stone
kean.edu

Keep the Government Out of the News Business

I’ve been thinking of I.F. Stone while reading the growing stack of reports and essays giving recommendations on how to save the declining news business. The outrageous solution increasingly favored by the journalism establishment is one that Stone would have hated—turning to Washington for help.

Posted on Nov 5, 2009 READ MORE


Learning to Speak Anew in a Tribal World

The international conversation since the Second World War tended to be something of an American monologue, but that’s changing now that the United States is widely perceived as a large part of the current world problem.

Posted on Nov 5, 2009 READ MORE


The GOP’s Toxic Tea Party

The more that Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and kindred spirits appear to represent the Republican brand, the less appeal that brand possesses.

Posted on Nov 5, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Cpl. Artur Shvartsberg

Today’s U.S. Army and Its Ambitions

It is possible that the creation of an all-professional U.S. Army has been Congress’ most dangerous decision.

Posted on Nov 3, 2009 READ MORE


The Tortured Logic Continues

“Extraordinary rendition” is White House-speak for kidnapping. Just ask Maher Arar. He’s a Canadian citizen who was “rendered” by the U.S. to Syria, where he was tortured for almost a year.

Posted on Nov 3, 2009 READ MORE



AP / J. Scott Applewhite

The Best Justice That Money Can Buy

It is somewhat late in the day to lament the politicization of the judiciary, a condition that has always existed, but extravagant campaign contributions have now perilously altered the landscape.

Posted on Nov 3, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Musadeq Sadeq

Opium, Rape and the American Way

The warlords we champion in Afghanistan are as venal, as opposed to the rights of women and basic democratic freedoms, and as heavily involved in opium trafficking as the Taliban.

Posted on Nov 2, 2009 READ MORE



AP / David Guttenfelder

McChrystal Doesn’t Get It—Does Obama?

President Obama may have won the Nobel Peace Prize, but if he allows himself to be bullied into supporting Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s foray into Afghanistan, he will reveal himself as the worst kind of warmonger.

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE


Afghan Poppy Trade Blurs All the Lines

The opium poppy was introduced to Afghanistan more than 2,300 years ago by the armies of Alexander the Great. His forces were eventually driven out, like those of every would-be conqueror since. The poppy has proved more tenacious.

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

TARP on Steroids

The former financial executives inside the Obama administration have labeled their bill the “Financial Stability Improvement Act,” but it’s more like the 9/11 of bailouts.

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE


When the Tough Should Get Going

The former Marine officer Matthew Hoh, who resigned his Foreign Service post in Afghanistan because he feels the war is pointless and not worth dying for, deserves all the attention he’s gotten and more.

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Caveman 92223

Pot Politics: California Could Go All the Way

California was the first to legalize medicinal marijuana and, if three ballot measures and a bill floating around the state legislature have anything to say about it, the Golden State could be the first to legalize and tax adult marijuana use across the board. (continued)

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Dennis Cook

The Party of Choice

By acting on their convictions rather than their fears, the Democrats could ultimately find that the public option can be turned to their advantage for years to come.

Posted on Oct 28, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Geithner’s Fed Made AIG Pay Banks to the Max

That Timothy Geithner must love the big banks he spends all day talking to. Back when he was in charge of things, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York forced AIG to pay off Wall Street tycoons for all those toxic bets, even though the mega-insurer was busy trying to negotiate a better deal.

Posted on Oct 28, 2009 READ MORE



NLN / Thomas Good

Don’t Ruin the Public Option for Everyone Else, Arkansas

While the House is chugging along with what’s shaping up to be a strong public option, the Senate has come up with a compromise that might make room for government insurance. Essentially, states that don’t dig government-run health care wouldn’t have to have it.

Posted on Oct 22, 2009 READ MORE


Wall Street ‘Crimes’ Need Better Policing

Slashing bonuses at bailed-out companies is like arresting jaywalkers while ignoring the bank robbery that’s happening in broad daylight down the block.

Posted on Oct 22, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Army / Spc. Tia P. Sokimson

The Country That Cries Wolf

European allies have tired of America’s cries of “wolf! wolf!” in Iraq (yesterday), Afghanistan (today), and (I fear) Pakistan or Somalia or Kashmir tomorrow.

Posted on Oct 22, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Rich Pedroncelli

Blinded by Reform

The Obama administration has committed serious money to education reform, but many of the Department of Education’s big ideas are flawed.

Posted on Oct 21, 2009 READ MORE


Playing Monopoly With America’s Health

Anyone infuriated by the grossly inflated compensation of the masters of finance should check out the incredible earnings of the top executives in the health insurance business.

Posted on Oct 21, 2009 READ MORE


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