From the Left



55 hours binge-watching the never-before-seen and the unimaginable (America, Jan. 4-7): Part II

Jan. 5, c. 11:50 p.m.: Vote-count reports continue streaming in. It has become clear that Raphael Warnock will win the disputed Senate seat. Jon Ossoff, meanwhile, will likely squeeze a victory of his own. TV networks and news agencies are not yet ready, however, to project winners.

And what if Ossoff's victory margin is less than 0.5%? That ...Read more

55 hours binge-watching the never-before-seen and the unimaginable (America, Jan. 4-7): Part I

Notepad and pen in my right hand, TV remote control in the other, caffeine doses taken as needed. This will be a news-heavy week.

Trump's Speech on the Eve of the U.S. Senate Runoff Elections in Georgia (Jan. 4, c. 8:50 p.m.)

Neither MSNBC nor CNN are airing the speech. I am curious as to how far (low) President Donald Trump will go. Will he ...Read more

A tale of two other cities: Rising authoritarianism out of Washington, D.C., and Havana

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." So begins Charles Dickens' historical novel "A Tale of Two Cities."

In Washington, D.C., and Havana, the final months of 2020 have undeniably been the worst of times: "Foolishness" (lack of wisdom), "incredulity" (no belief), "darkness" (absence of light); it is a Dickensian "winter of ...Read more

'Ask them to spell their names' and other real-life blunders in transcultural business communications

"The single greatest barrier to business success is the one erected by culture," said Edward T. Hall and Mildred Reed Hall. I agree with them.

Someone who wishes to purchase goods and services in the international marketplace may get by with English only and little understanding of foreign cultures, but if you want to sell in an increasingly ...Read more

The diplomacy of haggling -- or how to avoid being an ugly tourist

Travelers are, to some degree, diplomats who willingly or unwillingly represent their country abroad. I have seen and heard my fair share of tourist misbehavior: obnoxiousness, arrogance, inappropriate clothing and penny-pinching avarice demonstrated while haggling over the price of a straw hat or ugly T-shirt.

Here are four real-life stories ...Read more

'Are we not your fellow artists?': The solitude of Cuba's San Isidro movement

Liberty, equality, fraternity. So goes the French Revolutionary motto to which the abolitionist society Les Amis de Noirs responded with the iconic image of a kneeling, shackled black slave who asks, "Am I not your brother?"

The motto and the image have been circling my mind since I first learned, around two weeks ago, about the systematic ...Read more

Should we get married or continue living together? Puerto Rico's never-ending status question

Allow me to resume the analogy of a human couple. Puerto Rico's Independence Party advocates separation and, eventually, divorce -- with alimony. The New Progressive Party (PNP) has consistently courted Congress with hopes of everlasting marriage. The other major party, the Popular Democratic Party (PPD), prefers a reformulation of the current ...Read more

The stormy statehood romance between Puerto Rico and Washington and Congress (Part I)

On the long, unforgettable evening of Nov. 3, while millions of Americans were nervously glued to their TVs watching CNN, MSNBC, Fox and other news media, their co-citizens in Puerto Rico watched news of their own elections and a yes-or-no referendum on statehood.

For the residents of Washington, D.C., it was yet another election day in which ...Read more

Democrats need to figure out why its support among Latinos slipped

I am about to hit the send button of an email with this column. It is 4:30 p.m. on the Friday of election week. And what a week it has been! CNN and MSNBC have Joe Biden ahead in four of six yet-to-be-called states (Arizona, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Nevada). Victory is imminent for the Biden/Harris ticket, but overcautious news organizations want ...Read more

Election-eve carpet bombings, scarier-than-usual Halloween costumes, and other things we may see before and on election day

As I sit down to start this column, the general elections are less than a week away. I see them as the most consequential in U.S. history. Columnist Eugene Robinson wrote earlier this week that these elections are a matter of life and death. If democracy is life and tyranny is death, I fully concur.

One of the most repeated aphorisms about ...Read more

I cannot believe the things I have been reading in the preelection media

The closer to Election Day, the more disturbing the news and the hateful, partisan messages appearing in the nation's newspapers. Read or skim through a handful of daily papers from different parts of the country and you will find plenty of news, actual or fake, that will make you wonder whether we have reverted to a bygone era of political ...Read more



Jeff Danziger Al Goodwyn Joey Weatherford Joel Pett Darrin Bell Jimmy Margulies