TAMPA, Fla. - Clint Eastwood put on an odd skit Thursday night at the Republican National Convention. It was awkward to watch and hard to hear, but I have to hand it to Eastwood. He achieved the impossible; he made the gaffe-prone Mitt Romney come across as supremely tactful.
TAMPA, Fla. - You could say that the film "2016: Obama's America" is the GOP equivalent of Michael Moore's "Roger and Me." The documentary is based on conservative firebrand Dinesh D'Souza's 2010 book, "The Roots of Obama's Rage." As the film's narrator, D'Souza argues that Barack Obama's philosophy is "anti-colonialist," a legacy passed on from his Kenyan father, who left Obama's family when he was 2 years old.
Did Mitt Romney make the economic sale at the Republican National Convention? Did he convince people who are living at the margin or unemployed and discouraged that he has the answers to the economy? Frankly, I don't think so.
It was the political convention that almost wasn't. In the run-up to the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., Democrats and their fellow travelers in the so-called mainstream media claimed that the GOP was waging a "war against women," depicted Mitt Romney as a heartless felon responsible for the death of a woman who lost her health insurance and blasted Romney for choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate. They then tried to define Ryan as a heartless ideologue who would eliminate Medicare and throw grandmothers off a cliff. And then a tropical storm-turned-hurricane named Isaac threatened to blow ...
After a genuinely grassroots Republican platform committee produced a principled document on a plethora of issues, including immigration, some people who were not part of the process are promoting pro-amnesty proposals. Writing this week in The Wall Street Journal, Jon Huntsman suggested that President Obama's executive order offering work permits to 1.6 million illegal immigrants doesn't go far enough.
In front of a spirited crowd that packed the Tampa Times Forum, Chris Christie gave a solid speech that echoed Mitt Romney's programs, consisting of substantial budget cuts, tax cuts and entitlement reform.
The Republican convention was delayed by a day on Monday. It's not a problem: The national media's preconvention spin was timed perfectly, almost as if it was on automatic pilot. In Monday's New York Times, longtime political writer Adam Nagourney regurgitated the same old, tired political spin that the Republican Party is too conservative and exclusionary on "social issues" and that their divisive stands will hurt them with "mainstream" voters.
TAMPA, Fla. - Mitt Romney chose Paul Ryan to be his running mate. Since his teens, Ryan has been a big fan of Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged." In 2005, he told The Atlas Society that the novel shaped his "values system" - and that speech has launched a number of recent columns by liberals aghast at Ryan's taste in literature.
Like teenagers on vacation with their parents, Republicans from blue states and Democrats from red states don't want to be seen with party elders.
Mitt Romney made a smart executive decision selecting Paul Ryan as his vice presidential running mate. Ryan's genial personality, serious policy wonkery and political courage have dazzled conservatives and won respect even in a few liberal circles. Romney scores points for political courage as well. He knew liberal politicians and journalists would talk in punishing terms about Ryan's budget ideas.
Shrewd move in choosing House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., as running mate for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Now here's the next play: Invite George McGovern, the 1972 Democratic presidential candidate, to speak this month in Tampa at the Republican National Convention.
The only way the planned California bullet train could possibly be exempted from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) would be via legislative action followed by a signature from Gov. Jerry Brown.
Stark's 'Second Litter' Subsidy
WASHINGTON - According to the pollsters and the so-called mainstream media, as of the dead of summer, the presidential contest between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney is a dead heat. We also are told this race is all about the "economy" or "jobs" or "middle-class taxes" or "repealing Obamacare." Or not.
A very public marital melodrama is now playing in San Francisco. It shows the idiocy of domestic violence laws and the extremism of the feminists whose ideology paints men as innate batterers and women as victims of the patriarchy.
A couple of weeks ago at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, several hundred people went to their feet to applaud a speech delivered by David H. Koch. The occasion was the opening of the Met's new facade on Fifth Avenue. It runs four city blocks, and is complete with new fountains, paving, lighting, landscaping and seating areas for visitors. Mr. Koch contributed the entire $65 million cost of the project, which took years to complete.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell wanted to share his long-repressed feelings about a traumatic event. "It was," the Kentucky Republican confided, grim-faced, "the worst day of my political life."
DEAR DIDI: Our four year old pit mix will play with toys if we interact with them but if we throw the toy and ask him to fetch he loses all interest and walks away. He runs into things around the house fairly often so we are wondering if he has a balance or coordination issue. How PETS we work on this? We adopted him when he was a year old and he is so calm and such a joy to us. Our other issue, unrelated, is that he growls intensely at anyone that comes to our home even if ...
"The power to declare war, including the power of judging the causes of war, is fully and exclusively vested in the legislature."
At last month's California gubernatorial debate, Republican hopeful Neel Kashkari praised Gov. Jerry Brown and Attorney General Kamala Harris for using their discretion not to appeal a court ruling that overturned the state's same-sex marriage ban. Kashkari then chided both Democrats for failing to use that same discretion when they appealed the Vergara v. California court decision. The suit is named after Beatriz Vergara, one of nine students who sued to eliminate the state's teacher tenure system.
Just when you thought the plutocratic profiteers running America's exploitative, low-wage economy couldn't get any more clueless, self-serving, pious, and mingy - along comes Lady Maria of Marriott, magnanimously saying: "Let them eat tips."
In his U.N. address, President Obama listed a parade of horrors afflicting our world: "Russian aggression in Europe," "terrorism in Syria and Iraq," rapes and beheadings by ISIL, al-Qaida, Boko Haram.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Lawrence Silveira is a Sierra High graduate now living in Chicago. In this column, penned on Sept. 5, he writes about the differences between the two locales, and what he's learned in his first few weeks at Columbia College.
"Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains."
Here's an unusual super-rich guy with a strange message for his fellow 1-percent-of-the-1-percenters.
There's a photo-word montage on the Internet in which a little boy, presumably from Africa, looks skeptically at a woman who is apparently from somewhere else. The boy asks, "You mean to tell me you have so much clean water, that you (poop) in it?"
Where are the peaceniks? Why aren't they marching on Capitol Hill to protest President Barack Obama's use of military force in Syria and Iraq? The San Francisco Chronicle's Kevin Fagan interviewed peace activists who told him that their ranks are numb, in part because America has been at war for more than a decade. Some even wonder whether the Islamic State is so barbaric as to merit airstrikes.
"I see the media is at it again," an acquaintance said referring to the deluge of coverage after the Ray Rice assault on his wife. True, a ton of coverage on what became a national, if not international story.
For those of you who read my last column and thought I had crossed over to the dark side, this one should tilt the world back on its proper axis.
"You'll never meet anyone who says, 'I want to be a millionaire. I think I'll start a winery,'" owner Bill Smyth tells me from his small office over the tasting room of Westover Vineyards, nestled in Palomares Canyon. Smyth has worked in a number of fields. He made some money. He bought the vineyard property when he was young. His ex-wife bought him a kit to make wine, and his labor of love turned into a small business.