Columnists

The end of everything — or not

A new United Nations report projecting the extinction of one-eighth of all animal and plant species should rattle the cages of any remaining skeptics regarding climate change and the central role humans have played in Earth’s accelerating destruction. The report is by far the ...

Some people just don’t matter much

There are people who do not matter much. That’s a painful truth, starkly at odds with our Jeffersonian creed and national mythology. But it is a truth, nevertheless, one frequently proven in actions if denied in words. In this country, by dint of race, gender, class or status, some people ...

I’m crazy for Kaizen

I love Kaizen. Everyone loves Kaizen. That only leaves one question — what the heck is Kaizen? Is Kaizen that hot new word game where you have to see how many words you can make using only six letters of the Mongolian alphabet? Is it an ancient martial arts discipline in which you train ...

Merry-Go-Round death-mobile

“Don’t worry. He’s fine,” my son’s kindergartener teacher said to me over the phone when I picked up her call at 11 a.m. “You just need to take him to the hospital for a broken ankle.” Clearly, his teacher’s version of “fine” and my version are quite different. After I ...

Life reset

It was a Sunday morning and I was using my laptop computer and Android smartphone. All of a sudden the smartphone locked up and wouldn’t do a thing, like a cold mackerel. Hmmm. I tried to take the battery out of the phone. That’s what I used to do in the old days when the phone went ...

The Constitution and Oath of Office should guide Congress on impeachment

In 1776, Thomas Paine advocated independence from Great Britain by stating that in a free republic “the law is king.” Paine contended “for as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law ought to be King; and there ought to be no other.” However, President ...

Biggest trade war in history

This week, President Donald Trump threatened China with stiffer tariffs ahead of trade talks. On Friday, he raised tariffs from 10 to 25 percent on a $200 billion worth of Chinese goods. For U.S. consumers, this will mean higher prices on goods imported from China, items from toothbrushes and ...

Back the Blue this National Police Week

National Police Week is May 12-18. May 15 is National Police Officer Memorial Day. This is an excellent time to reflect upon those law enforcement professionals who have given their lives in protection of communities across the United States. This is also an excellent time to thank local law ...

Trump can use the economy to change people’s minds about him

With the end of the Mueller probe and the news that the U.S. economy is performing far beyond expectations, President Donald Trump has reached an inflection point in his presidency. He has the chance to turn the political tides decisively in his favor, if he takes it. On Friday, we learned ...

The danger of dabbling in protectionism

A man who worked in a boxer’s corner in a 1962 match against Cassius Clay, as he still was known, explained why the referee stopped the fight in the fourth round: “Things just went sour gradually all at once.” It can be like that when government dabbles in protectionism. U.S. industrial ...

Why scorn matters

This week, the Met Gala took place in New York City. The event has always been a showpiece for celebrities seeking to make a splash, from Rihanna in her Pope costume to Katy Perry dressed as a chandelier. This year’s event was designed in homage to Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay, “Notes on ...

Trump invites constitutional crisis ahead

President Trump’s decision to claim executive privilege to shield himself from further investigation into his personal and business affairs assures a critical clash over the Constitution’s separation of powers among the three governing branches. He has directed present and former Trump ...

America’s middle class will storm the Bastille

Recent news is riddled with proof that America’s soi-disant elites are the most venal, self-absorbed, sybaritic and utterly tone-deaf group since the French nobility of the 18th century. And the comparison is not idly made. We start with the Met Gala, for which movie stars, musicians, ...

A solution to college debt

Congress created the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program in 2007 in an attempt to attract people into professions like teaching, nursing and public-interest law. College graduates would be forgiven their student loans if they pursued a career in such professions. The Wall Street Journal ...

Skipping over Hillary and Obama fights

New York Times reporter Peter Baker offered new insights into how badly former President Barack Obama reacted to Hillary Clinton losing the 2016 election. It came in a new edition of his book “Obama: The Call to History.” But since Obama sounded whiny about how history unfolded, the news ...

Let staff ask the questions

There aren’t many advantages to being old — and at nearly 72, I qualify — but having actually lived through historic events gives one certain insights. From 1972 to 1974, I was a young staffer on the House Judiciary Committee. I was hired to the professional staff even though I did not ...

Personal mantras and racial realities

We’re in the last week of the semester here at Kent State, when graduating seniors have reached the zombie stage of stress, and everyone else, it seems, is somewhere else, even when they’re sitting right in front of you. As a teacher, it can be a challenge in these last days to find that ...

Will Joe Biden’s long career help or hurt?

Joe Biden has been around a long time. He was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1972, at age 29 (he reached the Constitution’s required age of 30 before taking office in January 1973). No one in the current Senate was there then; the current senior-most House member only arrived there after ...

Discrimination and disparities II

Last week’s column discussed Dr. Thomas Sowell’s newest book “Discrimination and Disparities,” which is an enlarged and revised edition of an earlier version. In this review, I am going to focus on one of his richest chapters titled “Social Visions and Human Consequences.” Sowell ...