Columns

VA System Has Been Unfairly Maligned by the Nation’s Media

Monday, December 22, 2014

One of the biggest — and most misunderstood — stories of 2014 was about the nation’s largest health care system, the Veterans Health Administration. Revelations that managers at the VA were concealing long wait times led to the resignation of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki and has left the lasting impression that the VA does not deliver high-quality care. The drumbeat of negative coverage has also made it difficult for the …

My Rape Story: The Price of Staying Silent

Monday, December 22, 2014

As the Washington Post Cairo bureau chief, I live and work with the risk of sexual violence all around me. I’ve covered war and political turmoil in the Middle East for the past seven years, spending five of those in Cairo, where sexual harassment is an almost daily experience. When I was groped amid a crowd of protesters battling police outside Cairo’s al-Azhar …

Editorial: A Cyberattack Against Free Speech

Monday, December 22, 2014

The cyberattack on Sony Pictures Entertainment has taken an even more disturbing turn. First it demonstrated how cyberthieves can raid a company’s most valuable trade secrets. Now it has escalated into a blatant terrorism threat by a group linked to North Korea and an assault on the freedom of speech directed from a capital of totalitarianism. Both the cyberattack and the coercion are …

A Supporter of Right-to-Work Laws Cites Myths

Monday, December 22, 2014

Many states and local governments are considering right-to-work laws. These laws make union dues voluntary. Without them, union contracts make paying dues a condition of employment. While most Americans support the concept of right-to-work, unions argue strenuously against them. However, most of the arguments against right-to-work have little …

Column: Food Deserts, Food Jungles

Sunday, December 21, 2014

If I need a gallon of milk, I can travel three miles to my town general store. If I need a spaghetti squash, I can find one in season at a farmer’s stand four miles away. Fresh sushi? …

Column: ‘Hunger Games’ Vision of Rebellion Is Sheer Fantasy

Sunday, December 21, 2014

The latest Hunger Games film, Mockingjay- Part 1 , is topping the international box office. Although it’s a Hollywood blockbuster aimed at young adults, it presents potentially quite subversive ideas of mass revolution, economic sabotage and the populist …

Column: Merry Christmas, Really, From an Atheist

Sunday, December 21, 2014

On one of my infrequent visits to Facebook, where I silently observe the interests and opinions of extended family members, I’ve noticed a small but growing anti-secular campaign. Many folks, including several of the aforementioned, vigorously object to the phrase “Happy Holidays.” It is apparently too euphemistic for …

Innovation Wave On the Horizon

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Changes in technology are happening at a scale which was unimaginable before and will cause disruption in industry after industry. Here are five sectors to keep an eye on: Let’s Start With Manufacturing Robotics and 3-D printing have made it cheaper to manufacture in the United States and …

Making a Deal With Cuba: Who Will Win?

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Washington The U.S. embargo on Cuba — or what’s left of it after President Obama’s dramatic Cuba policy announcement — may be a futile gesture. But it is, or was, not an empty gesture. It put the United States firmly on record that it would have as little …

Returning to Cuba, With Complex Emotions

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Ann Arbor, Mich. I walk a tightrope with Cuba. I’m a daughter of Cuban exiles who’ve pledged not to return until there is political change. Yet I’ve traveled to the island numerous times since the early 1990s; it’s …

Transparency About Medical Costs Is Key to Controlling Them

Friday, December 19, 2014

U.S. health care spending has never grown as slowly as it did last year. Dwight D. Eisenhower was in the Oval Office when the U.S. government began recording health care spending in 1960. Since that time, growth in health care spending has never been lower than the 3.6 …

Shumlin: Why I Put Single-Payer Aside

Friday, December 19, 2014

Earlier this week, I made one of the most difficult decisions of my public life when I announced that I cannot support a move to a publicly-financed health care system in Vermont at this time. I have advocated …

Editorial: Cuba, Si — Isolation, No

Friday, December 19, 2014

A 45-minute phone call — the first between presidents of Cuba and the United States in more than 50 years — sealed an agreement that could end the pointless economic standoff that has held the island’s people hostage for generations. It will take an act of Congress, long …