Archive for 'Political Issues'

Lawmakers give a pass to corporate welfare

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Just a few weeks before the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was signed into law last December, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) announced it was time to reduce the deficit by cutting entitlements. On talk radio, he said, “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform … it’s the health care entitlements that are the big drivers of our debt …”

Ryan is not alone. The Washington Post reported that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) stated, ...

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Are liberals purveyors of misinformation?

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In my last post, I wrote about why it’s hard to debunk misinformation. Two examples of misinformation I cited came from the Trump administration. Some readers suggested I should have been more balanced. One wrote, “Too bad you didn’t offer a couple examples from the other side of the aisle, like the notorious Harry Reid or the ever-panicked Nancy Pelosi. Surely there are others??”

I wasn’t trying to pick on the Trump administration, and I’m not an apologist for either ...

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Why it’s hard to debunk misinformation

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Why is it hard to debunk misinformation? Why aren’t people willing to change their minds? Part of the problem lies within our own psyche, and part of the problem is with the news media.

Ezra Klein of Vox interviewed Dartmouth University political scientist Brendan Nyhan about our reticence to accept proven facts. The underlying problem is that we’re slow to update our belief system. No one likes to admit he’s wrong, and admitting you’re wrong becomes even harder when the ...

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What in the world were they thinking?

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Ever wonder how people come up with their ideas? Take, for example, the Trump administration’s decision to nominate Matthew Spencer Petersen to be a federal judge for the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia.

Nominees must be approved by the Senate, and the questioning by Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., last Friday showed how unfit Petersen is to serve as a judge. It’s painful to listen to Senator Kennedy’s questioning. If appointed, Petersen would serve a life-long appointment, but ...

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Rwanda could teach U.S. about collaboration

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What a can the United States learn from Rwanda?  It would seem, little. The U.S. is a large, industrialized nation, with nearly 325,000,000 people, a gross domestic product of $18 trillion, and an average life expectancy of 78 years. Rwanda is a tiny, developing country of only 11 million people, with a poor infrastructure and insufficient access to electricity, and an average life expectancy of 64.5 years.

More about what we can learn from Rwanda in a minute. First, let’s review ...

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George Wallace and Donald Trump—two bigots, one repentant

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george-wallaceThe mark of a man is his ability to admit his errors. Former governor of Alabama, George Wallace, after trying his best to prevent integration, publicly apologized for his bigotry. Donald Trump, who has displayed at least the same level of bigotry, doesn’t even know he should.

The photo you see is from the day Wallace stood in front of the doors of a classroom ...

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Trump’s redeeming quality

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Donald Trump has been criticized for a variety of faults. He’s a bully, a bigot, a misogynist, mean spirited, dishonest, and self-centered. Stealing a line from columnist Paul Krugman, “On the other hand, he’s a terrible person.”

For all his faults, Trump has one redeeming quality. He selected as his personal physician a man who has a sense of humor. ...

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Legislating from the bench

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Two months ago, Judge Richard A. Frye of the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas issued a decision that made a number of 17-year olds happy and caused him to be accused of “legislating from the bench.”  The decision is remarkable for both reasons.

First, let’s take a look at what was at stake. By statute, Secretary of State Jon Husted is obligated to promulgate instructions for how voting is to be conducted throughout the state. The 2015 Election Official ...

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What we can learn from fighter pilots

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Off the catapault

It’s not something you would think of, but when it’s comes to personal conflict and politics, we can learn from fighter pilots—fight your fight; don’t fight the other guy’s fight.

Fighter pilots know you never engage an enemy on his terms. Whatever advantages an enemy jet may have in aerial combat are things you avoid. Play to an opponent’s strengths, and ...

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Handling our fear

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27YIP-2015-SEPTEMBER-ADD1-jumboThis is Aylan Kurdi, the Syrian toddler who drowned off the coast of Turkey last September. Some media sources chose not to publish the photo. I think everyone needs to see it. It’s emblematic of a world where things have gone badly wrong.

Aylan likely had no idea why his family was leaving home on what must have been a difficult trek with little planning. He probably could feel his parents’ fear ...

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