It’s easy to tell when the Trump administration has nasty plans for the environment. The officials in charge spare the places where they or their political allies operate. The examples are as egregious as they are bizarre. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke is on a big push to transfer large chunks of federal land to various Western states. Just not in his state of Montana.
Here is Bernie at his best — blunt and colorful, the senator from Vermont whom Sunday talk shows love to book. Here is the unapologetic progressive who speaks plainly on the economic plight of working Americans. And unlike so many self-defeating Democrats, Sanders does not divide them by color, gender or sexual identity. He recognizes that “white” is not synonymous with “rich and privileged.”
Democrats scouring their ranks for a 2020 presidential candidate should put Andrew Cuomo high on their list. The New York governor is already on the case, giving speeches tailored for the Iowa caucuses. Assuming Donald Trump wins the Republican nomination for a second term, Cuomo would be an especially strong combatant.
Public anger at the ills unleashed by social media currently burns hottest on Facebook — namely, its profiting off political lies posted by masked operatives. Many also blame Facebook for stoking the modern hell of FOMO — fear of missing out. We speak of the feelings of inadequacy fanned by friends’ jolly vacation and party posts, presentations that make many think everyone is having a better time than they are.
Zuckerberg this week at the Senate hearing on Facebook’s failures regarding privacy, fake news and foreign interference in elections: “It was my mistake, and I’m sorry. I started Facebook. I run it. And I’m responsible for what happens here.” Well, that makes us feel a whole lot better. Zuckerberg wisely dressed up for the grilling but still issued kid-in-a-T-shirt apologies.
Since Inauguration Day, the Trump administration has engaged in a tireless assault on the nation’s environmental protections. It should thus surprise no one that it is now going after the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. Three days before Christmas, it issued a legal opinion that the law doesn’t prohibit the incidental killing of these birds. Penalties for doing so vanished.
For Laura Ingraham, the decline came well before the fall. The Parkland teens’ success in pressuring advertisers to flee her Fox News Channel show could cut her career down to tweet size. Ingraham made the mistake of mocking student leader David Hogg’s reaction to being turned down by several colleges. Ingraham is great at dishing invective, less so at taking it.
Holmes amassed several billion selling a modern Silicon Valley fantasy using old-fashioned smoke and mirrors. She built a “narrative” around herself as the mythical tech genius. She wore black turtlenecks like Steve Jobs. She reveled in having dropped out of college like Jobs and Bill Gates. She gave her blood-analyzing device the brainy but simple name of “Edison.”
Consider a recent House primary race in Illinois. If there is any Democrat a liberal might want to see the last of, it’s Chicago-area Rep. Dan Lipinski. Lipinski voted against the Affordable Care Act because of the mandate requiring employers to cover birth control. (Let the record show that he’s since opposed Republican efforts to kill Obamacare.)
The 1999 massacre at Columbine High School in Colorado opened a new horrifying chapter in U.S. gun violence. The nation stood transfixed for months. But a subsequent parade of mass shootings has worn down the shock over carnage on school property. The public became so numbed that even the 2012 slaughter of 20 elementary school children in Newtown, Connecticut, failed to produce meaningful response in Washington.
Finally, finally, there’s talk of hitting back at Putin where his filthy-rich cronies hurt — their mansions, Bentleys and other baubles of the posh life in Britain. A study released by Deutsche Bank in 2015 says that Russians were a major source of the $129 billion that had made its way into Britain through secret offshore dealings the previous nine years.
As computers continue to replace cashiers, ticket vendors and bank tellers, consumers increasingly don’t notice or care much whether they are dealing with a human or a machine. The big exception is when they do. Consumers often prefer the convenience of interacting with computers. A checkout employee who doesn’t know the price of Gala apples adds grit to the smooth functioning of an over-scheduled day.
The United States under President Trump has been retreating from leadership roles in Asia and Europe. Closer to home, his hot rhetoric about trade with Mexico and Canada is propelling our neighbors to start pulling away. Two truths here: One is that the benefits of the North American Free Trade Agreement — a three-country deal — have flowed in all directions.
America desperately needed a new kind of citizen leader to force political change. She found it in the students, parents and teachers scarred by the massacre at a Parkland, Florida, high school. Watch how effective they’ve been at making the case for tighter gun laws. Watch how they’ve alarmed politicians under NRA control.
There’s no mention of Donald Trump, obviously, but it’s hard to see the movie without feeling some heartbreak for an America now enduring a dark hour — that is, Russia’s ravaging of our democratic core. Our political culture is under threat, but we have no Churchill to fight back.
President Trump’s budget blueprint would only make things worse for U.S. agriculture. Trump’s hostility to trade deals has already inflicted damage on an economic sector highly dependent on exports. And that’s on top of his deficit-exploding tax bill and cranked-up federal spending, sure to make borrowing still more expensive.
Would someone kindly replace Nancy Pelosi as a spokesperson for Democrats? The House minority leader’s riff on the tax bill as “crumbs” for average Americans bombed on two fronts. One was her snide and preachy tone. The other was linking “crumbs” to $1,000-or-better bonuses that a few companies said they will distribute out of their tax savings.
Some of the nation’s fiercest winds tear across the 100-odd miles separating Casper and Rawlins, making Wyoming a potential colossus of wind power. So why is Wyoming the only state to tax wind power? Ask the politicians representing America’s biggest producer of coal. Or simpler, check their donor list.
President Trump offered few words about health care in his State of the Union address. He did mention drug prices, though. “One of my greatest priorities is to reduce the price of prescription drugs,” he said. “In many other countries, these drugs cost far less than what we pay in the United States. … That […]
“America is roaring back,” Donald Trump pitched to the global elite gathered in Davos, Switzerland. Those back home should be asking two questions: How loud, really, is that roar? (The economy’s, not Trump’s.) And what price are Americans paying for his approach to growth? The Davos billionaires are not unimpressed by the opportunities offered by […]
By Groundhog Day, the government shutdown will have been largely forgotten. That’s a guarantee. As memory of that long weekend fades, the matter of whether Democrats won, lost or tied in the deal to reopen the federal government will be of little consequence — at least to those of us who have lives. But the […]
Nothing TV star Aziz Ansari did during that now-infamous one-night stand constituted sexual assault. It wasn’t even a proper one-night stand. Ansari and the young woman never engaged in carnal intercourse. But the woman accused Ansari of being a sexist brute nonetheless. Herein lies a cautionary tale for all. Given the fictional name of “Grace,” […]
President Trump and the Republican leadership have made clear that they have no intention of repairing our chaotic immigration system. Why not? Because illegal immigration is a problem that bothers most Americans. Fix it and all these politicians have are tax cuts for the rich, environmental degradation, soaring deficits and the loss of health care. […]
Clinton left office with a higher approval rating than did Reagan. Yet the Democrat running to replace him, Vice President Al Gore, kept a distance between himself and Clinton during the campaign. Despite all the evidence that Clinton remained quite popular, Gore’s campaign chose to ingest the right’s propaganda that most Americans disliked him.
Notably, he used the word “comprehensive” in talking about reform, a poisonous term for many opposed to legalizing the presence of millions here without papers. Proposed comprehensive reforms would also strengthen enforcement of immigration laws to curb future flows of undocumented workers.