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Francis Wilkinson: Trump's wall settles into a strange, costly afterlife

Politics / Op Eds /

Donald Trump’s signature border wall is morphing in strange and costly ways — even as it seems to play little role in stemming illegal migration.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has been busy spending state money — in hundred-million-dollar chunks — to erect his own political statement on the Texas-Mexico border. Abbott’s wall, which the ...Read more

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Commentary: Biden's successes were made possible by Obama

Politics / Op Eds /

It’s a safe bet that President Joe Biden will use his State of the Union address to brag about his many policy accomplishments over the last two years — and that the Democrats in the audience will respond with cheers. Many of Biden’s supporters argue that he can claim a truly exceptional degree of legislative success. According to the ...Read more

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Editorial: Big Oil reaps record profits while the planet burns. California should curb its greed

Politics / Op Eds /

Chevron, Shell, Exxon Mobil and other oil companies made more money than ever in 2022, showing just how massive a windfall they reaped as surging gas prices made it a struggle for drivers to afford filling up.

The billions in record profits they posted this week bolster the appeal of California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s effort to curb oil industry ...Read more

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Editorial: Why California leaders may regret playing hardball in negotiations over the Colorado River

Politics / Op Eds /

The failure of California and six other Western states to meet a Jan. 31 deadline for deciding how to divvy up the dwindling water supplied by the Colorado River clears the way for one of the biggest fights over natural resources in U.S. history — and already the Golden State is being cast as the villain in some national coverage for being the...Read more

Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/Kent Nishimura

Jackie Calmes: On the debt-ceiling crisis, take it from moderate Republicans: Be afraid, be very afraid

Politics / Op Eds /

A group of moderate Republicans and former Republicans in Washington who call themselves the Concerned — as in, for the state of their party and the country — are really concerned these days.

Some are even more than concerned. "This really scares me," said one man in the group's Zoom meet-up this week.

That was Bill Hoagland, who for a ...Read more

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Editorial: Tucker Carlson, Joe Biden and whale beachings

Politics / Op Eds /

We aren’t whaleologists — actually, the term is cetologist; we just looked it up — but neither is Tucker Carlson. So take it with all the grains of salt in the ocean when the Fox News gasbag blames Joe Biden for an elevated rate of whale deaths off the Atlantic Coast. Carlson’s rant, “The Biden Whale Extinction,” claims an uptick in ...Read more

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Commentary: The video of Tyre Nichols' murder is unbearable. But it shows why we need stories of both Black pain -- and joy

Politics / Op Eds /

The murder of Tyre Nichols and the individual and collective reckoning we have all encountered — whether or not to witness the brutal images of his final moments — sent me back to an issue that I’ve been wrestling with for two decades.

In the fall of 2001, I started writing the seeds of a book project with the intention of examining the ...Read more


Commentary: Palestinians in Israel have new cause to fear for their future

Politics / Op Eds /

In recent days, there has been an alarming escalation of violence in Israel and the Palestinian territories, adding victims to what had been a deadly year in 2022. Last Thursday, the Israel Defense Force launched a raid against militants in the Jenin refugee camp, killing nine Palestinians. The next day, a 21-year old Palestinian from East ...Read more

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Commentary: Ukraine should not abandon its domestic debt market as it battles Russia

Politics / Op Eds /

The financial support provided by international partners helped Ukraine withstand the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion and became a significant source of funds throughout 2022. This year, our country will also need continuous financial support. However, it will be difficult for the government to reduce budget expenditures because ...Read more

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Commentary: What WWE and pro wrestling could teach struggling media companies

Politics / Op Eds /

World Wrestling Entertainment’s “Monday Night RAW,” the longest running weekly episodic TV show in the U.S., just celebrated its 30th anniversary.

Whatever you might think about the world of professional wrestling and outdated stereotypes like “it’s fake,” that kind of longevity should be instructive to the media institutions ...Read more

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Lisa Jarvis: Free COVID care will be gone soon. Should you worry?

Politics / Op Eds /

On May 11, the COVID-19 public health emergency officially comes to a close in the U.S., and with it comes an end to largely free access to all related healthcare. House Republicans might want to declare it over this instant, but a cushion is needed — and this one might not even be enough — to ensure everyone from insurers to drug companies ...Read more

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Erika D. Smith: Before Tyre Nichols was a martyr, he was a Sacramento kid who didn't 'see color'

Politics / Op Eds /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Through it all, the family of Tyre Nichols put on their brave faces Wednesday in that church in Memphis, Tennessee.

They echoed the calls for justice for their 29-year-old son, father and brother, who died after being savagely beaten by police last month. They took solace in the swiftness of justice, knowing that the ...Read more


Michael Hiltzik: The stupid and dishonest idea of raising the Social Security retirement age is back

Politics / Op Eds /

The people who are in the forefront of pushing Social Security "reform" by cutting benefits have gotten pretty good at hiding their intentions behind plausible-sounding jargon and economists' gibberish.

The latest "reform" package offered by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, for example, calls on lawmakers to "promote stronger ...Read more

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George Skelton: Newsom is pushing for more gun control restrictions. Polling shows Californians overwhelmingly support them

Politics / Op Eds /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Gov. Gavin Newsom and Democratic lawmakers are launching a new effort to restrict who can carry concealed loaded guns — and where — as fresh polling data show that California voters have their backs.

Twice as many likely voters think it's more important to control gun ownership than it is to protect gun rights, ...Read more

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Editorial: House Republicans wanted to do away with asylum claims, then Miami's Maria Elvira Salazar spoke up

Politics / Op Eds /

A proposed Republican “border security” plan, now stalled in the U.S. House, is so extreme that even some members of the party, namely Miami-Dade’s Maria Elvira Salazar, have denounced it, saying it jeopardized the U.S. asylum laws and the very idea of this nation opening its arms to those escaping for humanitarian reason.

Currently, ...Read more


Commentary: The digital age is destroying the art of the letter

Politics / Op Eds /

A “Collection of Chicago Postal History,” an assemblage of thousands of letters, will be auctioned in March by H.R. Harmer Fine Stamp Auctions of New York City.

Nearly all were originally mailed from Chicago. They were found and collected over decades by Leonard Piszkiewicz, a retiree and former Chicagoan now living in Northern California. ...Read more


COUNTERPOINT: In the mind of the beholder

Politics / Op Eds /

America has always had a complicated relationship with the truth. From the Vietnam War to the Iraq War, from swiftboating to birtherism to “alternative facts,” and, of course, the whitewashed versions of history being taught in our schools, truth is in the mind of the beholder.

While we have a long history of loose and varied ...Read more

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Nicholas Goldberg: Trump's view -- How can I make money off it?

Politics / Op Eds /

What's the difference between songwriter-satirist Tom Lehrer and narcissist ex-President Donald Trump? That's probably not a question you've ever thought to ask.

But two recent stories — both about intellectual property law — have helped answer that question nevertheless.

Let's take them one at a time.

Many people today don't remember Tom...Read more

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Editorial: Getting Fed up: Federal Reserve's continuing rate hikes may be too much

Politics / Op Eds /

The Federal Reserve shocked no one Wednesday when it announced another 25 basis-point hike to interest rates. Yet our lack of surprise doesn’t mean a lack of questions about the central bankers’ continuing anti-inflation warpath.

Chairman Jay Powell took great pains to leave the impression that the Fed has no problem with a strong labor ...Read more


Editorial: Here are the facts that Idaho school voucher supporters don't want you to know

Politics / Op Eds /

The Idaho Senate Education Committee on Tuesday agreed to print a bill that would bring school vouchers to Idaho.

Idaho Sen. Tammy Nichols, R-Middleton, introduced the bill, the “Freedom In Education Savings Accounts,” which would allow Idaho families to collect taxpayer dollars to use for private school tuition. It’s cut-and-paste ...Read more



Chip Bok Steve Kelley Phil Hands Drew Sheneman Dave Granlund Dana Summers