Columns

Column: Partisanship Grows Sharper in ‘Tribal’ America

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Washington After a political rally last week in which Democrats criticized the Obama administration for siding with Republicans on trade, I had a talk about the future of the party with Rep. Alan Grayson, a Florida Democrat who is one of the most ferocious partisans in the House. It does no good, he told me, for Democrats to “pretend to be Republican” or to “run corporate campaigns and try to …

Column: California Demonstrates the GOP’s Demographic Problem

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Los Angeles Jim Brulte, California’s Republican chairman, has sobering but useful words for his party’s leaders and 2016 candidates: If they don’t learn from what happened to the GOP here, they may doom themselves to repeating its decidedly unpleasant experience. “California is the leading edge of the country’s demographic changes,” Brulte said in an interview. “Frankly, Republicans in California did not react quickly …

Column: Christie’s Straight Talk About Social Security

Monday, April 20, 2015

Don Quixote tilted at windmills. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie seems bent on running for president, even after his reputation took a whack over that traffic jam on the George Washington Bridge. Even more improbably, he wants to campaign on a sweeping proposal to rein in federal entitlement spending on the elderly. “It …

Column: Stand Up for Office Health

Thursday, April 16, 2015

There may be no more euphemistically titled field of research than “inactivity physiology.” Or, the never-before-needed study of how incredibly awful it is to sit on your keister all day. By now we’re all familiar with the general findings: Prolonged sitting leads to more heart disease, decreased sensitivity …

Column: Lincoln, Posthumous Hero

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Abraham Lincoln was laughing at a punch line at a stage play when he was shot once in the back of the head. He never regained consciousness and died nine hours later. Tuesday marked the 150th anniversary of the day that John Wilkes Booth snuck into the presidential …

Column: GOP to the Rescue for the Nation’s Richest

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Washington Give credit to Republicans in Congress. They’ve discovered, belatedly, that income inequality is a problem, and they’re no longer proposing to give tax breaks to the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans. Now they are proposing to give tax breaks to the wealthiest two-tenths of 1 percent of …

Column: It’s Come to This: Death Penalty Firing Squads

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

On March 23, Gov. Gary Herbert signed legislation that will make the firing squad a legal method of execution in Utah. The state faces the same problem that is challenging other death penalty states, the difficulty of obtaining the drugs required for lethal injection. The shortage of drugs …

Willem Lange: Back to the Civil War Battlefields

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Sharpsburg, Md. It’s a raw and windy day here in the angle between Antietam Creek and the Potomac River. At 3 o’clock the rangers at the National Battlefield Headquarters on the grassy rise commanding a view of the field will ring bells commemorating the 150th anniversary of the …

Jim Kenyon: A Broker’s Payback

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

In May 2009, Rob Fenyk, a stockbroker who ran a small branch office in Woodstock for investment banking giant Raymond James Financial Services, was abruptly fired. Over a couple of emails. But before delving into that part of the story, here’s some background: Fenyk moved to Barnard with …

Column: Whatever the Iran Deal Is, They’re Against It

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Washington In the 1980s, Ollie North and Fawn Hall gave us the Iran-contra affair. Now we’re experiencing the Iran-contradiction affair. A week ago, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., went on television and proposed abandoning the nuclear deal just reached with Iran and returning to the 2013 interim agreement that …

Column: So Much Talk About the Middle Class, but Not Enough Action

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Right now, the people aspiring to be president will say and do anything to appeal narrowly to their party’s base. But when the contest for the presidency really gets underway, they are likely to say and do anything to appeal broadly to America’s middle class. And that is …

Column: Sugar Lobby Explains Away Health Risks

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Washington Our mothers told us: Sugar is filled with “empty calories,” and it can rot your teeth, make you fat and give you diabetes. They told us this because, unfortunately, it’s true. But this is Washington, and things …

Column: Women Face Inequality in Heart Treatment

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

My eyes were opened to gender inequality when I was 26. I’d decided I wanted to make a movie based on Isaac Bashevis Singer’s story of Yentl, a young woman who has to pretend she’s a man to get an education. It was hard to convince anyone that …