Why do good people take bad money? And what are the insidious effects of doing so?
These are puzzles surrounding Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender, who so easily insinuated himself into prestigious universities and an orbit of prominent scientists years after his 2008 conviction. His billion-dollar fortune allowed him to lavishly fund...Read more
As opposition to the death penalty has grown in recent years, some execution states (including California under Proposition 66) have gone to great lengths to protect their sordid practice in part by trying to hide exactly what it is they are doing.
Arizona, for instance -- which spent nearly two hours executing Joseph Wood in 2014 -- has ...Read more
Los Angeles Fashion Week begins in October in the biggest clothing manufacturing center in the country. But what do you find when you go beneath the clothes -- not the nudity but something much more revealing: how the world's wardrobes are made, and what real damage is done to the planet and to humans who create your $10 "bargain"?
Before Dana ...Read more
Fifty years ago this fall Spiro Agnew put a new, tough-talking populist face on the GOP that proved to be the genesis of Donald Trump's Republican Party.
Agnew had barely served a year in Annapolis as Maryland's governor in 1968, when he caught the eye of Richard Nixon aide Pat Buchanan. Blaming Baltimore's black community for the riots ...Read more
The national discussion about the health risks of vaping involves both the long-term effects of e-cigarettes and an immediate crisis. At last count, 380 lung disease cases in 36 states, along with seven deaths, have been linked to vaping. It appears from news reports that many of those cases involve vaping not a nicotine product but THC, the ...Read more
When Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed the bill last year that would have provided California's public university students access to medication abortion -- widely known as the "abortion pill" -- at their on-campus student health centers, he justified it by saying most students lived within five to seven miles of an off-campus abortion provider. He saw the...Read more
Never let a crisis go to waste. That could be the official motto for the anti-tobacco industry, which has irresponsibly exploited this summer's sudden outbreak of "vaping-related" lung ailments.
With the aid of sloppy news reporting and biased announcements from federal officials, anti-tobacco advocates have successfully deceived the public ...Read more
Did Brett Kavanaugh, now 54, sexually mistreat young women when he was in high school and college?
Did he then lie under oath last fall during his U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearing when he vigorously denied accusations against him and offered innocent explanations for seemingly embarrassing or incriminating entries in his high school ...Read more
The moment I learned that there exists a Barbie Doll modeled after Tippi Hedren -- you know, the actress attacked by a murder of crows in Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 film "The Birds" -- I had to have it. You'll either understand immediately or will be sputtering a series of barely formed questions about my sanity.
But I am quite sane, thank you, ...Read more
On his way to scooping up $15 million in campaign contributions in California in two days, President Donald Trump was troubled. The Golden State has a growing problem with homelessness, he had learned (presumably from one or more of the 18 segments Fox News has aired about it this year), and he was determined to do something about it. After all,...Read more
In response to the seventh death from severe lung injury associated with vaping, which occurred in Tulare County, California, the Tulare County Health and Human Services Agency issued a warning against the use of electronic cigarettes: "The Tulare County Public Health Branch would like to warn all residents that any use of e-cigarettes poses a ...Read more
The Electoral College is under fire. Again.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) recently proposed killing it on the grounds that the presidential selection mechanism leads candidates to focus on just a handful of "swing states" that are most likely to determine the election.
If presidents were picked via a nationwide popular vote, she implies, ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- No. No. No. No.
We are not going to war with Iran. Not if rationality has anything to do with it.
We are an energy independent nation, not a mercenary military force called out to put our sons' and daughters' blood on the line to retaliate for strikes against oil fields in Saudi Arabia, with which we have no military treaty. ...Read more
It's reassuring that President Trump says that he's in "no rush" to respond militarily to last weekend's devastating air attacks on two Saudi Arabian oil facilities -- attacks Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo blamed on Iran. On Sunday the president had tweeted that the United States was "locked and loaded," waiting only for Saudi Arabia to ...Read more
Almost 800 years ago, the Persian poet Sa'adi offered a useful warning:
Do you not see how the cornered cat
Will tear out the eyes of a leopard with its tiny claws?
In today's Middle East, Iran -- besieged by the more powerful United States, its economy in tatters, its military stretched thin -- is playing the role of the cornered cat.
We ...Read more
The House Judiciary Committee brought in President Donald Trump's former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on Tuesday as part of what it's now calling an impeachment investigation. Indeed, the committee subpoenaed Lewandowski, former White House staff secretary Rob Porter and former White House deputy chief of staff Rick Dearborn to discuss ...Read more
Well, President Donald Trump huffed and puffed and now, finally, he's getting on with his efforts to blow California's house down.
Trump, who has a bizarre desire to increase air pollution in the United States, has for months threatened to withdraw California's authority under the Clean Air Act to set its own limits for auto emissions.
And now...Read more
The NCAA knows a thing or two about making a buck.
The governing body of college athletics, which operates as a non-profit organization, reported revenues of $1.1 billion for the 2017 fiscal year. NCAA President Mark Emmert walked away with $2.9 million that year. But not a dime went to the athletes primarily responsible for raking in the dough...Read more
The bidding war that has defined the Democratic presidential race reached its apogee of absurdity earlier this month when Bernie Sanders had to explain that, no, he had no plans to erase voters' credit card bills.
Questioned about his proposal to wipe away $81 billion in personal medical debt in a New Hampshire interview, the Vermont socialist ...Read more
The Black Futures Lab, dedicated to building political power for underrepresented groups, recently produced a report entitled "When the Rainbow is Not Enough: LGB+ Voices in the 2019 Black Census.
The report is drawn from the same survey of more than 30,000 respondents that also produced a report on what black Americans want to see in terms of ...Read more