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Columns

Column: Britain’s Military Lacks Defenders in the Battle of the Budget

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Conservative Party has traditionally been the champion of a strong defense in Britain (just think Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher). So with elections approaching in May and new military threats emerging from Russia to Islamic State, boosting the nation’s defenses might seem a logical campaign theme for Prime Minister David Cameron. The opposite has been true, which is disturbing. Cameron’s coalition government has already cut the nation’s defense budget …

Column: Minivan Mom Looks to Score Some Weed

Monday, March 2, 2015

Washington If marijuana is going to be as mainstream as chardonnay in our country’s capital, it shouldn’t be tough for a minivan-driving mother of two to find a pot party, right? Especially not if the city’s stoners were going to be lighting up in the wee hours Thursday to celebrate legalization. I tried …

Column: Even Gruber Deserves a Break sometimes

Monday, March 2, 2015

Jonathan Gruber — yes, that Jonathan Gruber — is in trouble again. This time he’s being pummeled by liberal state governments for whom he’s done work. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker demanded Gruber’s resignation from the board of the state’s Health Connector insurance website. And more troubling, the Vermont state auditor has raised questions over bills Gruber submitted to the state government for consulting …

Column: Each Generation Invents the Monsters It Needs

Sunday, March 1, 2015

A search for “zombie fiction” on Amazon currently provides you with more than 25,000 options. Barely a week goes by without another onslaught from the living dead on our screens. We’ve just seen the return of one of …

Column: What Does the Public Get in Privacy Trade-Offs?

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Suppose that the government were to ask each of us to wear an unremovable bracelet that allowed our location to be determined in an emergency. The responsible agencies would promise never to use this authority in the absence …

Column: The Chicken Count — Small Farmers Could Use Flexibility in Slaughter Rules

Sunday, March 1, 2015

This past year, we raised and sold 1,000 chickens on our farm outside White River Junction. We have a strong market for chicken, and every year we can sell this many birds with a reasonable return on time …

Column: America Needs Caring Love and Tough Love Too, Mr. Giuliani

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The late Rev. William Sloane Coffin Jr. described his relationship with America as that of a critical lover. I can state with confidence that he would have been deeply troubled by Rudy Giuliani’s gratuitous attack on President Obama. As has been widely reported, Giuliani said, “I do not …

Column: The Crorys Gave Me the Chance of a Lifetime, and Even More

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Longtime state representative Elizabeth Crory of Hanover passed away this month at age 82. She was a tireless advocate for the underserved, a dedicated public servant and someone who touched the lives of many, including my own. Elizabeth …

Column: Concessions to Iran Would Be Dangerous

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Washington A sunset clause? The news from the nuclear talks with Iran was already troubling. Iran was being granted the “right to enrich.” It would be allowed to retain and spin thousands of centrifuges. It could continue construction of the Arak plutonium reactor. Yet so thoroughly was Iran …

Column: China’s Fertile Ground for Islamic State recruiters

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Three hundred Chinese citizens, members of the country’s Uighur ethnic group, have recently traveled to the Middle East to join the Islamic State. Those Uighurs are part of a broader Muslim migration, spurred by a government crackdown, away from China’s western province of Xinjiang, where Muslims have lived …

Column: ‘Mein Kampf’ and the Lure of Martyrdom

Friday, February 27, 2015

Washington As The Washington Post reported this week, Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf is expected to be reissued in Germany for the first time since the end of World War II. Although widely available elsewhere in the world, the book — Hitler’s testament and what’s considered the founding text …

Column: A Liberal View of American Exceptionalism

Friday, February 27, 2015

“I don’t hear from Obama . . . what an exceptional country we are,” former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani recently declared. “With all our flaws we’re the most exceptional country in the world.” Giuliani has been roundly — and rightly — criticized for his statements, since President …

Column: Engineering the Climate

Friday, February 27, 2015

What makes climate change dangerous isn’t just what we know, which is that human activity is warming the planet. It’s also all that we don’t know. How far will temperatures rise, and how fast? What damage will it cause? Will governments finally confront the problem seriously, and how …