Over the last several months, we've heard much about partisan politics. Regardless of what each of us believe or how we vote, it should be obvious that party is running above principle more so than at any other time in modern history.
In 2005, Hurricane Ivan was a Category 5 storm headed for New Orleans. "Mayor Ray Nagin declared a state of emergency and strongly recommended that residents evacuate immediately," reported CNN.com at the time. Roughly half-600,000-residents left; the majority stayed. The storm passed. New Orleans was unscathed.
Hey, remember the House GOP's big summer announcement that it intended to sue President Obama for his purportedly tyrannical behavior? Whatever happened to that, anyway? Did John Boehner file the suit or not?
Gather round kiddies, because it's time for Uncle Will to regale you with the funny side of Ebola. Oh, yeah, there is one. Just need a trained professional to find it. Take the widespread fear and paranoia making people crazier than the trajectory of an arrow with a gelatin shaft. Okay. Not entirely side splitting. Well, how about the prospect of a global epidemic on the scale of two zombie apocalypses? No, you're right. Still less humorous than polio. Which never was a laugh riot.
Partisanship, for lack of a better word, is good. You won't find a more unexamined assumption in America today than a sneering contempt for partisanship. Yet partisanship persists, an evolutionary fact of life in our democracy because it is an ineffable expression of the American experiment. Partisanship isn't just what we do instead of shooting each other but how we express our moral values.
To quarantine or not to quarantine?
The live TV coverage on CBCNN brought back memories of another assassination -- the assassination of JFK. A funeral procession punctuated by drumbeats and bagpipes. Only this time, a country's grief focused on Corporal Nathan Cirillo. Only this time, the haunting image of a child that'll be reproduced forever was Carrillo's 5-year-old son Marcus, bravely walking in the parade, his life changed forever.
The primary reason for Barack Obama's second-term victory, and the most pressing issue for the impending midterms, is not economics, foreign policy, or even immigration reform. Instead, it is something we generally hear little about: multiculturalism.
"Ewww!" said my wife, when I told her that BrandsOnSale.com is marketing leftover "Breaking Bad" meth lab hazmat suits as Ebola Containment Suits this Halloween, at $79.99 a pop.
Remarkable new wonder drugs have caused a new confrontation over pricing wars between manufacturers and health plans, now reaching a fever pitch over hepatitis C treatments from Gilead. Unfortunately, rather than the industry players settling the issue through negotiation, health plans are turning to Congress to step in and arbitrarily limit prices, which could undermine the investment that is critical to developing new cures.
As the Giants and the Royals went at it, the bigger game for some fans took place in the hours before the first World Series pitch, playing baseball's season ticket-holder roulette.
Here it comes. Creeping down dark alleys. Overturning garbage cans and spooking black cats. The scariest day of the year. With the exception of your next birthday, that is. Halloween. All Hallow's Eve. The night preceding All Saint's Day. Time to carve a gourd.
The media has been obsessed this week with Renee's Zellweger's new face, with articles quoting plastic surgeons on why she doesn't look like herself. Zellweger says she looks different because she's happy now and doesn't admit to having plastic surgery.
We all know what an act of Islamic terrorism is - except for our lame duck-in-chief, that is.
Is Mel Brooks smiling?
A poll released this week found 51 percent of Americans approve of the harsh interrogation tactics the CIA used immediately after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
One of the most perverse consequences of the feverish backroom deals used to get Obamacare past the finish line was the funding formula for the law's Medicaid expansion, which started with the infamous Cornhusker Kickback, a sweetheart deal for Nebraska alone to get 100 percent federal funding for Medicaid expansion that was used to get then-Senator Ben Nelson's vote.
Can Elizabeth Warren, the progressive senator from Massachusetts, wrest the Democratic presidential nomination from Hillary Clinton? Moreover, could she somehow leap an even higher hurdle and succeed Barack Obama?
The 2016 presidential campaign has barely started, and I'm already bored.
If you believe the recently released Senate Intelligence Committee torture report, you might be tempted to conclude that the CIA lied to the press and the public and to Congress about the extent and effectiveness of its torture campaign. And that conclusion would be correct, sir.
Would police have harassed Eric Garner or his wife if the government had no financial interest in the selling of taxed cigarettes?
Oil, like political punditry, is a commodity, traded freely on the open market and subject to the laws of supply and demand. The difference of course is that punditry enjoys an abundant and renewable supply, flows freely, and produces nothing of value. Oil, on the other hand, is actually important. The problem is that people think they are related.
The political class breathed a sigh of relief Saturday when the US Senate averted a government shutdown by passing the $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill. This year's omnibus resembles omnibuses of Christmas past in that it was drafted in secret, was full of special interest deals and disguised spending increases, and was voted on before most members could read it.
Torture is illegal. Period. End of debate. There is no legal, moral or probable justification for torture. It's against the Bill of Rights; it's against the Geneva Convention; it's against United Nations Convention Against Torture (ratified by the U.S. in 1994); it's against every state statute from every modern constitutional democracy and every decent and encouraging proposal coming from humanity in the last century.
Well over two years ago, a local public figure encouraged folks to give blood because it was the selfless thing to do.
Remember Kelly Thomas?
They say there's been a recovery, but most of us haven't seen it. Our economy is creating more jobs, but they don't match the wages, benefits and working conditions of the ones we've lost. The stock market is at a historic high, but its gains seem eerily divorced from how the economy is actually performing. Unfortunately, it looks like just another speculative bubble.
Recent reports have circulated that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has not treated Kansas well. Some point to the rise in premiums, or the fixed monthly costs you pay for health insurance, and that in Kansas, the rise in these premiums is more compared to the rest of the country. Perhaps not surprisingly, given the political nature of evaluating the success of the ACA, there is disagreement by analysts over the accuracy and the relevance of the numbers.
A diverse group including concerned parents, sports fans and even the Writers Guild of America is fighting the proposed merger of media monoliths Time Warner and Comcast. The effort is spearheaded by the non-profit organization Public Knowledge, which claims the $45 billion merger would harm both the economy and our democracy.