"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.
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.
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.
The key to understanding Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz is not that he is a fighter or that he is an unwavering ideologue. To highlight his intelligence points the spotlight in the right direction but misses the mark. The man can give a speech, but that's not quite the thing, either. The thing that explains Cruz, at least to me, is this: He is a debate nerd.
You know there's a problem with the Iran nuclear agreement when The White House releases a fact sheet to the press outlining the agreement, and Iran issues a statement claiming the fact sheet is false... within 15 minutes.
Since President Obama's first year in office, the federal government has been illegally using your federal tax dollars to pay lobbyists at the state and local level to lobby for tax hikes, zoning restrictions, and other nanny state policies that pick your pockets and limit your freedom. Every time a scandal breaks or Congress tries to crack down on abuses, the grant-making program changes its name and keeps on going.
Rand Paul's prospects of ever being president are on a par with the Philadelphia Phillies' odds of winning the pennant. If he somehow makes it to the Oval Office, I will personally climb Mt. Everest and chisel his curly locks into the rocks.
There is a big problem with the prevailing liberal narrative that the phrase describing subsidy eligibility in Obamacare, "established by the state," could not possibly mean what it says. The problem is named Jonathan Gruber.
Political correctness is a contradiction of reality and distortion of morality that necessitates relentless government intervention devised by those who seek to control our lives. These self-appointed "Speech Sheriffs" warn us that words spoken outside the imaginary perimeters they've set are judgmental, negative, racist or intolerant.
Nebraska's legislature recently made headlines when it ended the state's death penalty. Many found it odd that a conservatives-dominated legislature would support ending capital punishment, since conservative politicians have traditionally supported the death penalty. However, an increasing number of conservatives are realizing that the death penalty is inconsistent with both fiscal and social conservatism. These conservatives are joining with libertarians and liberals in a growing anti-death penalty coalition.
Craig Ranch North Community Pool in McKinney, Texas was not a "whites only" pool, but it might as well have been. Before Eric Casebolt shoved a black girl's face into the ground and pulled a gun on her two unarmed friends, white neighborhood residents at the pool assumed that all those black teenagers were in the wrong place. They didn't see the invited guests of a black neighbor getting a little rowdy at an end-of-school pool party. They saw black people who didn't belong in the mostly white neighborhood.
Rich people with too much time and money on their hands often seem to get bored with the hum and drum of their gold-filigreed existences. In response they turn to egalitarian enterprises, such as feudal kings commissioning alchemists to turn base metals into gold, because a lot of stuff back then needed to be filigreed.
You don't need to check a screen to know how much time we're spending with them. Besides, surveys keep reminding us: total screen time for adult Americans is now just under 10 hours per day - roughly half in front of what we still call a "television," the rest spent with computers and mobile devices.
When we last visited the sorry state of Kansas, Governor Sam Brownback - a former short-lived GOP presidential candidate - was showing us what happens when a right-wing ideologue tries to impose his utopian fantasies on the real world. Predictably, the result has been disastrous.