My friends from outside of Los Angeles are horrified. "Donald Sterling is a pig?" they say with surprise. "A racist, ignorant, loud-mouthed fool?" And Jewish, to boot. This is not, my mother would have said, good for the Jews.
A poll released last week reported that 7 percent of American journalists say they are Republicans. The survey also found that the news force is aging, having a median age of 47. And 62 percent of journalists are men. A mere 8.5 percent of full-timers are minorities. Less than 1 in 4 are "very satisfied" with their job. In short, the profession that dubbed the Republican Party a refuge for "angry white men" is teeming with angry white men.
First the censorious left went after Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the Somali-born critic of Islam's treatment of women, after Brandeis University had invited her to receive an honorary degree. Bowing to political correctness, Brandeis rescinded the invitation.
In August of 2011, the former child actor Corey Feldman made a stunning assertion to ABC News: "I can tell you that the No. 1 problem in Hollywood was and is and always will be pedophilia. That's the biggest problem for children in this industry ... It's the big secret." The rest of the media said nothing.
It tells you how completely California has become a one-party state that practically no one in Sacramento believes that a Republican can beat Gov. Jerry Brown in November. But GOP big shots think it is very important which Republican loses to Brown, 76, in November - former Treasury official Neel Kashkari or Assemblyman Tim Donnelly.
They're back. they're rested. they're ready!
"What Would America Fight For?"
In March 2006, CBS News announced that President George W. Bush had stumbled into a "record low" approval rating of 34 percent. All the other networks jumped on the poll. CNN was reporting the number every hour on the hour. The survey confirmed their suspicions. The wheels on the Bush presidency had come off.
"Dude, this was, like, two years ago." Thus spake former National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor on Thursday after Fox News Channel anchorman Bret Baier asked him whether he had been involved in changing talking points to prepare then-U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice for Sunday talk shows in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi, Libya, attacks that left four Americans dead. Vietor explained that he should not be expected to remember something as "mundane" as "the process of editing talking points."
That's what the Simon Wiesenthal Center called the assignment given to eighth-grade students in Rialto, Calif., to research and write an argumentative essay about whether the Holocaust actually happened or was "merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain wealth."
Two years ago, Delta College was facing the prospect of closing its doors to summer school because of possible state revenue reductions. State budget cuts caused the college to limp through the recession, slashing courses, and losing faculty/staff positions through retirements. We had little operational funding to hire replacements. Then California voters passed Proposition 30 in November 2012, creating a five-year tax increase that staved off massive budget cuts and set a steadier course for higher education in California and the San Joaquin Delta Community College District.
Late April didn't just bring flocks of tourists to Washington. It's when hundreds of members of the National Restaurant Association - a.k.a. the "other NRA" - swarm Capitol Hill for two intensive days of lobbying.
Their views are vile, despicable, shameful, pathetic and hurtful, but we should all be thankful that Cliven Bundy and Donald Sterling didn't hide their true feelings about race.
News reports this week were filled with lamentations from death penalty opponents about the messy and unnecessarily painful execution of Oklahoma's Clayton Lockett. As Andrew Cohen wrote in The Atlantic, Oklahoma corrections officials "were using an untested mix of lethal drugs, never previously used in that dosage combination, obtained through secret means, which precluded the possibility of oversight from attorneys or medical officials on the quality of the drugs. They were warned by medical experts, and asked by defense attorneys, to open up the process to review - by the courts, by doctors, by some members of the public. Yet ...
"I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever lives in me and I in him will bare much fruit." - John 15:1
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.
There is no white Republican elected official today who is coming close to Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul's effort to reach out to black voters.
In June, President Barack Obama sent a letter to Congress asking for help to address the surge of illegal crossings at the Texas-Mexico border. Among other items, Obama asked Congress to grant him the legal authority "to exercise discretion in processing the return and removal of unaccompanied minor children from non-contiguous countries like Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador."