The American Cancer Society, American Heart Association and American Lung Association wrote Proposition 29, the measure on the June 5 ballot in California to increase the state's cigarette tax by $1, to $1.87 per pack. Lung Association President Jane Warner likes to emphasize the demarcation at play: She's with the good guys, while the bad guys, big tobacco, will spend buckets more money trying to fight the measure than her groups will spend trying to pass it.
I went to a strip club once. OK, maybe it was twice. The guys were going; I was curious.
Just when you think the tea party Republican majority in the U.S. House couldn't possibly get any screwier, up jumps Rep. Allen West.
Calling America's criminal justice system "racist" is not confined to "civil rights leaders" like the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. Then-Sen. Barack Obama, during the 2008 presidential campaign, said it, too. Blacks and whites, said Obama, "are arrested at very different rates, are convicted at very different rates (and) receive very different sentences ... for the same crime."
As it turns out, Hilary Rosen was wrong about Ann Romney not working a day in her life. She's plainly working right now, as a strategist for her husband's campaign, not a stay-at-home mom. For all the shock and chagrin about Rosen's comment (which was, of course, poorly put, but was an effort to address the question of whether the Romneys could understand the problems of "people like us," as pollsters usually ask it), it turns out that Mrs. Romney wasn't insulted at all. She considered it an "early birthday gift," a strategic opportunity for her ...
President Barack Obama calls his proposed tax on millionaires the "Buffett rule," based on financier Warren Buffett's claim that he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary. Obama claims that the "Buffett rule" asks millionaires to "do their fair share" by paying the same income tax rate that middle-class families pay.
Never again. That should be the determined motto of California legislators who will set dates for this state's future primary elections, now that it's perfectly clear the June 5 California Republican presidential primary election will mean little or nothing, just like all other June primaries contested here since 1972.
I've not weighed in on the Trayvon Martin killing, because I really didn't have anything to add. Until now.
"I don't know any polite way of putting this - but he's lying," said professor John Ellis, president of the National Association of Scholars' California division. Ellis was reacting to a critic's characterization of the NAS's damning report, "A Crisis of Competence: The Corrupting Effect of Political Activism in the University of California."
The shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin and its galvanizing effect on African-Americans has been compared to the 1955 lynching of Emmett Till.
God save me from my friends; I can take care of my enemies.
The news is stuffed with "studies" in which "experts" tell us how we should behave. One recently found that conservatives have lost their trust in science over the last 40 years. That's probably because the very political academics of science are routinely summoned to prove the right-wingers are not only wrong but dangerously wrong and not just dangerously wrong but evil, too.
"Godfather" director Francis Ford Coppola is a big shot - and not just in the film world. As a vintner and restaurateur, Coppola apparently sees himself as the capo di tutti capi - the boss of all bosses - who owns the Italian dictionary. Last year, Coppola won a U.S. trademark for the phrase "a tavola" - Italian for "to the table" (or, in American English, "come and get it"). It seems the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office also thinks Coppola owns a piece of the Italian language.
There was much ado about not much when President Obama declared last week that it would be "unprecedented, extraordinary" for the United States Supreme Court to overturn the health care reform law that passed both houses of Congress with substantial majorities.
President Barack Obama chastised the media last week. "I think that there is oftentimes the impulse to suggest that if the two parties are disagreeing, then they're equally at fault and the truth lies somewhere in the middle," the president chided those attending the American Society of Newspaper Editors luncheon.
The short answer is: everything.
Wal-Mart loves keeping track of data. For instance, the retail giant's researchers know that before and after major storms, customers buy strawberry Pop-Tarts at a rate that's seven times faster than normal.
Last week, we were told there were 40,000 Yazidis on Sinjar Mountain facing starvation if they remained there, and slaughter by ISIS if they came down.
Surely you thought that partisan posturing by far-right Congress critters couldn't get any nuttier. But here comes the GOP's claim that all the talk about impeaching President Barack Obama is being led by…Barack Obama!
"You can make money without doing evil" is No. 6 on the list of 10 things Google (the corporation) knows to be true. The Google list leaves out a few caveats. Like: You can make more money flouting antitrust laws. You can pay your brainiacs less if they believe you will retaliate if they try to go to work for someone else.
When the news rippled out on Monday that Robin Williams had committed suicide, even I thought - for a moment - "but he had everything." As if suicide is a "choice."
Most Americans have received an authentic-looking email from a scammer, purportedly from a bank, requesting an update to the account information for official-sounding reasons.
If John Boehner is so worried about the president's executive orders, why didn't he sue George W. Bush?
"Who is responsible for the Bay Bridge?" I asked California Gov. Jerry Brown at a San Francisco Chronicle editorial board meeting in May.
The Koch brothers - the GOP megadonors and fossil fuel magnates - live in their own special world, enshrouded in the fumes emanating from their family's enormous stockpiles of wealth.
That is how one unnamed official described the military option in Iraq, on Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014.
At the end of the Cold War, Francis Fukuyama famously wrote that our world may be at the "end of history" where "Western liberal democracy" becomes "the final form of human government."
It has been a summer of remembrance.
Back in the 1950s, C.S. Lewis saw chastity as under attack with "all the contemporary propaganda for lust that makes people "feel that the desires we are resisting are so 'natural,' so 'healthy,' and so reasonable, that it is almost perverse and abnormal to resist them."
The (well-funded, I am sure) opposition to San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener's ballot measure to tax soda and other sugary drinks calls itself the Coalition for an Affordable City. Its website features owners of corner markets explaining how the proposed tax would hurt their businesses and expressing their bewilderment at City Hall's picking on hardworking merchants.