With all that's haywire in the world, it's comforting to have a good old American roadshow this summer. Its awesomely cornball name is "The Veepstakes." Drumroll.
Sometime very, very, very soon, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden will join forces with a running mate, and his campaign signs will get a refresh: Biden-Harris or Biden-Rice...Read more
Warning lights are flashing red. Warning sirens are blaring.
Yet history may look back at this summer of 2020 and wonder why Americans and the famous names we trusted to save us -- the leading voices of our government, politics and yes, the news media -- just didn't seem concerned enough to heed and lead. Even though the warnings were ...Read more
After weeks of bad coronavirus news, Californians glimpsed a sliver of hope this week: The average number of people hospitalized or admitted to the ICU with COVID-19 infections has declined over the last two weeks. Infections might have ebbed significantly as well, but we won't know for sure until the state fixes a data collection foul-up.
The bombs dropped by the United States on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 75 years ago, in the final days of World War II, incinerated some 200,000 people, most of them civilians.
And they did much more than that. They also transformed the nature of war, raising the specter of Armageddon and ushering in the bizarre and terrifying nuclear ...Read more
When The New York Times Magazine published the "1619 Project" last year, supporters hailed this retelling of America's founding as a "woke" counternarrative meant to correct the historical record. Yet in recent weeks, Nikole Hannah-Jones, the lead editor, has stressed that her project to reframe history is not the same as "a history." Clear ...Read more
In a country where COVID-19 remains out of control, it's wrong for anyone not to wear a mask on a commercial airplane. Increasing evidence shows that good cloth face coverings significantly lower the spread of the novel coronavirus at close quarters -- and that not wearing them is risky, because this germ is so often breathed into the air by ...Read more
The social media app TikTok has been downloaded more than 175 million times in the U.S. alone since its global launch in 2018. But now it's going viral for reasons other than teens dancing or cooking in pajamas.
President Donald Trump recently announced that the U.S. government would ban TikTok on Sept. 15 or force the company to divest its U.S...Read more
Early August 1945 was a confusing time for many Americans, who were experiencing some combination of celebration, sadness and foreboding.
The war in Europe was over, bringing home thousands of gleeful troops by ship. Yet newspapers were still catching up on reports of individual soldiers killed during winter and spring, while men continued to ...Read more
The attorney general of New York has sued to seek the dissolution of the National Rifle Association, alleging fraud and abuse in the way the NRA's chief executive and other officials ran the operation. Given that the NRA has played such a powerfully destructive role in U.S. politics, fighting against gun regulations that demonstrably save lives,...Read more
Gov. Gavin Newsom would be anointed a kingmaker -- or queenmaker -- if Joe Biden selected California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate.
That's because Newsom, on his own, would select Harris' Senate replacement if the Democratic presidential ticket won on Nov. 3. The U.S. Constitution gives governors that right.
If Biden instead chose ...Read more
This week I heard a story that had nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic that has ravaged the United States throughout 2020 -- and yet it had everything to do with it. On New York Times' "The Daily" podcast, the Black activist Sharhonda Bossier tells the story of what really radicalized her growing up in Los Angeles in the 1990s. It wasn't...Read more
Recently a copy editor had a question about the word schizoid.
It was used in connection with a public official being all over the map on restaurant closures during COVID-19.
Was this the best word to use? Probably not.
Was it being used in its literal sense? No.
Was it a word readers would understand in that context? Probably so.
You could...Read more
Abraham Lincoln once said, "No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar." To be a good liar you have to keep track of all the lies you've told, and to whom, in order to keep the truth hidden. But Honest Abe never knew President Donald Trump, or perhaps anybody like him.
Trump is a successful liar because he refuses to remember. Not ...Read more
With the COVID-19 outbreak spreading to virtually every corner of the nation, both Donald Trump and his supporters in state legislatures and governor's mansions should be worried with Election Day looming around the corner.
In response to the pandemic, the federal government has essentially delegated responsibility to states and municipalities ...Read more
At a time when Americans are reassessing so many painful aspects of our nation's past, it is an opportune moment to have an honest national conversation about our use of nuclear weapons on Japanese cities in August 1945. The fateful decision to inaugurate the nuclear age fundamentally changed the course of modern history, and it continues to ...Read more
There are good reasons for Democrats to be upbeat about their chances of netting at least three Senate seats in the fall, which, combined with a Joe Biden presidential victory, would flip the chamber.
But while Democrats are on the offense in more states than a year ago, they haven't quite locked down the four overall takeovers they need. (Or ...Read more
For two weeks, we waited for the pandemic police to come.
In mid-July, my wife and I headed on vacation to a rustic cabin her father built 65 years ago on a small lake north of Toronto.
Most Americans can't visit Canada these days. Because of the coronavirus threat, both countries have closed their borders to nonessential traffic.
But my ...Read more
Former Vice President Joe Biden is taking some heat for postponing the announcement of his choice of a running mate, a decision he once suggested would be made at the beginning of this month but now could be more than a week away.
The impatience among his fellow Democrats isn't all that surprising. Although vice presidential nominees typically ...Read more
As if the Lebanese haven't suffered enough. For months, they have been caught between an economic meltdown, crumbling public services and a surging pandemic. Now they must count the dead and survey the extensive damage to their capital after two giant explosions on Tuesday.
The blasts, especially the second, were so huge they were reportedly ...Read more
The two biggest events of 2020 have exposed a frightening fact: A passing grade in civics class wasn't a prerequisite for many of our political leaders to get elected to public office. Their embarrassing ignorance about the roles of state and local governments versus the federal government when it comes to handling riots and pandemics shows that...Read more