This week the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the NSA's metadata collection program was not authorized in U.S. law. The PATRIOT Act, under which the program began, was too vague, the court found. But the truth is the Act was intended to be vague so that the government could interpret it in the broadest possible way.
Federal taxpayers spent a shocking total of $5.4 billion - with a B - on grants to establish what ended up being just 13 state Obamacare exchanges. In some states the failures have been spectacular enough to embarrass officials and imperil political careers, and in far too many places, Republicans who should have known better went along. It's an object lesson in keeping your fingerprints off the other party's very bad ideas, and should be front of mind not just if the Supreme Court decision in King v. Burwell sparks new Obamacare exchange fights in state capitals, but also ...
"Orphan" is a very empty word. It conjures up images of loss, of being rootless, of unwanted and untenable liberty. When I think of "Orphan," I think of something flying around in the great human universe, searching for its home.
For many, it was an apocryphal moment. One which will be remembered for a lifetime. Exactly where we were and what we were doing when Bruce Jenner shocked the world by going on television to announce that he is ... a Republican. And oh yeah, the transgender thing was sort of a big deal too.
While running for president in 2012, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was chatting up some students at Otterbein University about how they could get ahead in this world. He offered that his friend, Jimmy John, borrowed $20,000 from his parents to start a sandwich shop. "This kind of divisiveness, this attack of success, is very different than what we've seen in our country's history," said the candidate. "We've always encouraged young people: Take a shot, go for it, take a risk, get the education, borrow money if you have to from your parents, start a business."
I had tickets to the "ghost game," the baseball game played last Wednesday between the Baltimore Orioles and the Chicago White Sox. Instead I watched it on television-bore witness, really-and it was as surreal as you'd think. No one was there to chase home run balls. The only cheering came from the dugouts. All that was left was a game played by a team that tried to remind us that what's required in Baltimore is empathy and not judgment.
Apologists for the National Security Agency (NSA) point to the arrest of David Coleman Headley as an example of how warrantless mass surveillance is necessary to catch terrorists. Headley played a major role in the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack that killed 166 people.
I like to say that I was born on Mt. Sinai, along with the Ten Commandments. Unlike the tablets, though, which were delivered by Moses, I was delivered by Dr. Rizika, an obstetrician at that Baltimore hospital with the biblical name in December of 1961.