HOLLYWOOD--God bless America, and how's everybody?
Washington, D.C., is in the grip of scandals, the economy is stumbling and a host of other challenges are weighing me down - which is why I prefer to dwell on more obscure subjects, such as a battle raging behind the scenes over the 2020 Olympics.
Since the Obama administration has confessed to spying on journalists at the Associated Press and Fox News, have you noticed there are more stories about the Obama scandals in the news?
As amateur news hounds gain power and influence through social media, the definition of "journalist" has ripened for philosophical debate. But now it's becoming a legal issue – one that could hamper efforts to protect the news profession at the very time federal lawmakers are awakening to the need to do so.
Scandal after Obama scandal.
A stitch in time saves nine. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. You can lead a horse to water, but if an outdated bridge collapses on it, the meat will wind up marketed by IKEA.
Imagine you are a 19-year-old Marine. You are riding in a Humvee with four other Marines - your friends - when an improvised explosive device (IED) explodes.
There's good news and bad news in the twin terrorist outrages of the horrific running over and hacking to death of a British soldier and the Boston Marathon bombings. The good: intelligence agencies had some of these young terrorists on their radar. The bad news: having them on the radar did little good since the murderers still successfully completed their planned butchery.
When it rains, it pours.
MONTEREY, Calif.- They don't ask, "Paper or plastic?" around here anymore. Single-use plastic bags are banned, and stores offering paper are required to charge the stiff price of 25 cents per bag.
IRS apologists are furiously trying to change the subject from the outrageous targeting of political opponents by the IRS to a policy debate over forced disclosure of contributions to groups that engage in political speech. The story is that a deluge of applications forced the IRS to cut corners and the targeting scandal was an accidental result of mismanaging that flood. From there the apologists pivot to demanding a new crackdown on political speech, forced disclosure of donors, or both. But the story is a fairy tale and the "solutions" are unconstitutional.
As part of the brash rash of wire-brush scouring on the Teflon coating that routinely seals the Obama presidency, a large heavy-duty cast-iron deal has been made of the IRS conducting audits on Tea Party-affiliated organizations. But scratch the surface and it makes a sort of perverse sense.
The growing scandals enveloping the Obama administration are becoming a series of shiny baubles being dangled before the right and the left alike. The right wants to impeach Obama, while the left, of course, wants to blindly defend him. Meanwhile, the American people are being sold a bill of goods that this is a partisan fight and that partisanship is a danger to the Republic. The truth is, the real danger lies in so-called bipartisanship.
Having just helped my mother with her annual yard sale, I have come to a disturbing conclusion.
Men might be from Mars and women from Venus, but at least we're in the same solar system. When it comes to politics, liberals and conservatives can't agree on what the problems are much less solutions. We can blame the politicians for not making progress on the big issues of our time, but until Americans share a common truth about what those issues are we won't move an inch.
Since 1998 it has been prohibited by federal law for states and localities to tax Internet access. This policy, known as the Internet Tax Freedom Act, has been extended three times with broad bipartisan support. But it is set to expire again on November 1, and some Senate Democrats appear willing, this time, to allow it to actually expire if they can't use it to leverage an unrelated tax issue. It's a dangerous game that could cost taxpayers billions of dollars and worsen the digital divide by pricing some lower income Americans off of the Internet entirely.
It takes a special kind of jerk to market fear and exploit public ignorance in the midst of a health emergency - and, sure enough, members of this repellent American subspecies are already flapping their yaps.
Get this: Low expectations are the key to happiness.
The problem with a lie-even one that everyone agrees with-is that eventually you can't ignore the truth. Enron can't paper over debt and crashes. The housing bubble pops. Now, as the rush towards using standardized test scores to evaluate teachers turns into a retreat, it might be time to face that standardized tests are a lousy way to hold schools accountable.
More fun than fourteen barrels of flunkies watching our elected officials exit Washington like scared rats streaming out of a sewer to escape Godzilla. And really, who can blame them. Anybody who's ever spent a summer in DC can tell you the climate is real similar to Hell. With humidity. Then again, not sure even Hell has winged insects the size of footstools. It's not called Foggy Bottom because that's the first thing that springs to mind when Diane Feinstein walks away, you know.
The US government's decision to apply more sanctions on Russia is a grave mistake and will only escalate an already tense situation, ultimately harming the US economy itself. While the effect of sanctions on the dollar may not be appreciated in the short term, in the long run these sanctions are just another step toward the dollar's eventual demise as the world's reserve currency.
Happy Tuesday, everybody, and God Bless America.
It is said that Americans don't like titles.