Columns

Left, Center and Right: We’re All in Denial About Climate Change

 The political left, center and right do share something in common in today’s polarized America: we’re all in denial. The first step in 12-step programs begins with admitting that you have a problem for a reason: you can’t tackle a challenge whose existence you refuse to acknowledge. “From a psychoanalytical viewpoint, denial is a pathological, ineffective […]

Will Clinton Democrats Vote for a Progressive Against Trump?

The campaign for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination appears to be an exception. Once again the contest appears to be coming down to a choice between a “centrist” establishmentarian corporatist with institutional backing (Joe Biden) and a left-leaning populist progressive (Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders) preferred by Democrats, of whom three out of four voters […]

Once Again in Afghanistan, the U.S. Proves It Can’t Be Trusted

The first draft of this column came not to bury but to praise Donald Trump. I planned to applaud the president’s peace initiative with the Taliban, his strategy of ignoring the corrupt and discredited puppet regime Bush installed in Kabul and his desire to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan. This was a move I have […]

Billionaires Who Promise to Save Journalism and Then Default: It Ought To Be a Crime.

Let’s talk about fraud: “a person or thing intended to deceive others, typically by unjustifiably claiming or being credited with accomplishments or qualities,” the dictionary calls it. Let’s also discuss breach of contract. “A breach of contract occurs when the promise of the contract is not kept, because one party has failed to fulfill their […]

Freedom of the Press? Not in the U.S.

            The United States ranks 48th among nations for press freedom, according to Reporters Without Borders. Since few other countries have the equivalent of our First Amendment, learning that we rank below Botswana and Slovenia may come as a surprise. Mostly the organization pins this dismal state of affairs on Trump’s attacks on the news […]

As Long as Enemies of the State Keep Dying Before Trial, No One Should Trust the State

            There is no other way to say it: it was a political assassination. Osama bin Laden was unarmed. SEALs captured him alive. Following brazenly illegal orders from Washington, they executed him. “The [Obama] administration had made clear to the military’s clandestine Joint Special Operations Command that it wanted bin Laden dead,” The Atlantic reported […]

The Root Cause of Mass Shootings is the Rage of Alienation

Mass shootings prompt simple explanations of the gunman’s motivation. At Columbine High School in Colorado, the killers supposedly snapped after being bullied. The guy who shot up a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado was wild-eyed carrot-topped nuts. After a massacre at a Walmart in El Paso, an anti-immigrant manifesto posted online pointed to right-wing politics. […]

Here is Exactly Why Congress Won’t Act on Gun Violence, Climate Change, Impeaching Trump or Anything Else

 I’m from Dayton so I’m thinking about this today: Why hasn’t Congress done anything to address our national epidemic of mass shootings, namely reviving the assault weapons ban? People—Democrats and not a few Republicans—ask me that all the time. I bet all left-leaning pundits get that question. The answer is simple. But it’s not something most […]

Bernie’s Plan to Address the Retirement Crisis: It’s Good That It Exists. But It’s Not Nearly Enough to Solve the Problem

 Two weeks ago Bernie Sanders announced his “right to a secure retirement” plan. The media didn’t notice, the voters didn’t care, no one’s talking about it. But the problem is huge and about to get huger. And the government isn’t doing jack. As I wrote a year ago in a column that no one gave a […]

Progressives to Democrats: We Are Watching the Way You Mistreat “the Squad”

 Strictly speaking, Nancy Pelosi is right. Led by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, the four Congressional freshmen known as the Squad are, by Beltway standards, relatively powerless—just four votes, as the speaker said. They chair no committees and head no broad coalitions that can be counted upon to cast yeas and nays at their command. Yet […]