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.
Take a moment and look around you. Look up. The sky hasn't fallen, has it? People in Colorado are buying marijuana - legally - and civilization hasn't come crashing to its knees.
My wishfully thinking Democratic friends are hoping that Bridgegate will sink the presidential ambitions of "frontrunner" Chris Christie, the New Jersey governor whose independent streak and straight-talking authenticity have earned him the mostly meaningless crown three years out.
CNN's Candy Crowley seems absolutely, positively astonished that Republicans could oppose raising the minimum wage and extending unemployment benefits.
It's still a mystery how Santa Claus got it down the chimney, but Bastrop got a Christmas present boys can only dream about: a big honking, steel-clad, Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) truck.
In 2014, 25 million to 30 million Americans with employer-provided health insurance are likely to lose it, thanks to Obamacare's requirement that all plans cover what Washington deems "essential benefits." Some employers will consider this unaffordable, so after their current lower-cost plans expire over the course of the year, they'll drop coverage altogether.
My cousin Ben, may he rest in peace, told me years ago that he was having terrible dreams about his house going up in flames, and the firefighter is there but can't save him because she's a woman. As the feminist lawyer in the family, I was surely to blame.
The Democrats have selected raising the minimum wage as THE issue to protect them from public opposition to the Obamacare fiasco, which is dimming their prospects for retaining the Senate in the 2014 elections. But raising the minimum wage may actually be worth considering if it has the side benefit of cutting the gigantic total of our hidden welfare programs.
In this wicked world of woe, there are hucksters, flimflammers, plain ol' crooks…and Republican members of the California Assembly.
Smoking Marlboros is now forbidden in Irish bars in New York City. But buying, selling, and smoking marijuana is legal in Colorado.