It's funny how loopholes are always just big enough to accommodate a lobbyist. In Texas, the legislature recently banned lobbyists for testing companies from serving on education accountability advisory boards, but Bill Hammond, a lobbyist representing Pearson's interests, is serving on an accountability panel. It may sadden you to know that Texas is messing with ethics, but fear not: It appears no one is listening to Hammond anyway.
Over in the sports section they greet each baseball season with rankings, predictions and detailed summaries of off-season roster moves. Here on the opinion page we usually prefer to wax about emerald green grass, the crack of the bat and the vernal reawakening of our Great American Pastime.
The National Labor Relations Board says college football players are not "students." Many would agree. It took the NLRB to declare them "employees."
These days, the only thing harder than making money is hanging onto it. It's easier to protect dandelion fuzz in a tornado. Everywhere you go, everyone wants a taste. Their only job is to get a grip on your money. And some of these folks are pretty darn good at their jobs.
Come on guys, let's start focusing on the important stuff like ObamaCare, Ukraine and winning the Senate.
Bad habits are hard to break. Sixteen months after the electorate told him to take a hike, Mitt Romney is still lying.
With congress reconvening this week, all eyes will be warily cast on President Obama. He recently ordered the Department of Homeland Security to review deportation policies so they might be handled "more humanely." For millions of Americans who support enforcement first, and who represent the nation's majority, Obama's directive sent a chilling message.
Yes, there are indeed second and third acts in American public life -- even for voter-terminated farces. In the latest sign of how notoriety pays off in 21st century America, former Democratic Congressman and unsuccessful New York Mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner has won a new gig as a monthly political columnist for the online site Business Insider.
"Education Spring"-the rise of public education advocates against the business-backed privatization movement-is spreading across the country and has finally reached Washington. But if you're wondering why standardized testing is causing such a stink these days (after all didn't we manage OK with the SAT, ACT and other tests?) all you have to do is go back to where this all started in Texas. Providing cautionary tales to the rest of the country is a public service we provide here. You're welcome.
"You have been warned, Vladimir. If you don't reverse your impending annexation of Crimea, you're going to pay a steep price."
"Lean In" Author and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's campaign to cheer young girls to participate launched last week. Sandberg claims little boys get called leaders and for the same behavior little girls are branded as bossy. "Together we can encourage girls to lead. Pledge to Ban Bossy," reads the site.
No one should be surprised that President Obama signed a Democratic Party bill that puts more homeless people in the streets. It just needs to be repealed.
On city streets throughout America a battle is being waged for the soul of humanity, and it is taking place right in front of our eyes. As darkness descends, the fading light lays bare an open wound in the fabric of society. The most vulnerable among us are being offered up as prey for those with unspeakable appetites. Children are being trafficked sexually in this country at an alarming rate and right now 300,000 are at risk of being prostituted.
When I was a six-year-old lad lusting over the "ant farm" advertisements in 12-cent comic books, I had no idea how ahead-of-their-time those ads were.
God Bless America, and how's everybody?
After I read the news report, I popped the wine cork and praised the science gods. Alcohol consumption helps us live longer.
Welcome to a new chapter in our history, when we must now ask, "What is going on with these people who seem to get such a thrill out of posting selfies of themselves grinning alongside animals they have killed?"
"And They're Almost Off." Yes, the entrance to the 2016 Presidential Derby has officially been flung open wider than the gap between George Bernard Shaw and Pee Wee Herman. Backstage at the Bolshoi Ballet and the snack bar adjacent to the Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Fame gift shop. Horseshoes and mirrors.
Last week two prominent Ukrainian opposition figures were gunned down in broad daylight. They join as many as ten others who have been killed or committed suicide under suspicious circumstances just this year. These individuals have one important thing in common: they were either part of or friendly with the Yanukovych government, which a US-backed coup overthrew last year. They include members of the Ukrainian parliament and former chief editors of major opposition newspapers.
Pope Francis recently annoyed the Turkish government by making the politically incorrect observation that it had exterminated a generation of Christian Armenians. He used the word "genocide," which is something that the Turks have been rejecting for decades.
Should women serve in combat? Right now the military is answering that question with a final verdict scheduled to come down from Defense Secretary Ashton Carter in January 2016. This will inevitably become a political question-and thus particularly useless in producing a satisfactory answer-but until then it's useful to understand that the military sees this question differently than you and I do.
Amidst all the early GOP presidential jockeying, let's check on our Jersey boy Chris Christie. Looks like the tough-love guv surfaced this week on a radio show and ranted about reefer madness.
It's amazing how Hillary Clinton can stimulate the U.S. economy simply by announcing her candidacy for president.
Forget the joke candidacies of Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. Forget Scott Walker and his constant attempts to link himself to Reagan. Forget Jeb Bush and his deep-pocket donors. Forget Marco Rubio, the candidate of the "future" who represents the policies of yesterday. Think not about Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal and Ben Carson and Chris Christie and Mike Pence. Forget them all - at least for the moment.
Hillary's all in for 2016.
There is another round of Republican presidential primaries headed our way. Like before, a slew of candidates eagerly claim to be the end-all of American conservatism.
I stumbled upon my father's 1959 income tax return a few years ago. Oh, how I long for the simplicity he enjoyed when he filed his taxes that year.
Militarism and military spending are everywhere and on the rise, as the new Cold War propaganda seems to be paying off. The new "threats" that are being hyped bring big profits to military contractors and the network of think tanks they pay to produce pro-war propaganda.