Local columns

Despite woes Obamacare not in ‘death spiral’

WASHINGTON (AP) — President-elect Donald Trump says that President Barack Obama’s health care law “will fall of its own weight.” House Speaker Paul Ryan says the law is “in what the actuaries call a death spiral.” And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says that “by nearly ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Jan. 11, the 11th day of 2017. There are 354 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 11, 1927, the creation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was proposed during a dinner of Hollywood ...

Chicago carnage: What can be done?

WASHINGTON — Chicago has come a long way from the idealized lyric “my kind of town, Chicago is,” which Frank Sinatra made famous. True, Chicago has a history of gangland murders going back to the days of Al Capone, but 2016 set a new and lamentable record. According to CNN, citing ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Jan. 10, the 10th day of 2017. There are 355 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On Jan. 10, 1967, President Lyndon B. Johnson, in his State of the Union address, asked Congress to impose a surcharge on ...

Obama’s last stands

BERKELEY — President-elect Donald Trump has accused President Obama of putting up “roadblocks” to a smooth transition. In reality, I think President Obama has been too cooperative with Trump. I’d recommend Obama take the following last stands in the final weeks of his ...

Obama’s unforced errors on foreign policy

WASHINGTON — When Barack Obama moves two miles from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to 2446 Belmont Road in Washington’s Kalorama neighborhood, he will live half a mile from 2340 S Street, where Woodrow Wilson spent his three post-presidential years. Wilson’s embittering foreign policy failure ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, Jan. 9, the ninth day of 2017. There are 356 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 9, 1788, Connecticut became the fifth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. On this date: In 1793, Frenchman Jean ...

Trump’s hit-and-miss ‘Obamacare’ tweet

WASHINGTON (AP) — Taking a swipe at “Obamacare” on Twitter, President-elect Donald Trump correctly identified two of its most pressing problems — a spike in premiums and high deductibles. But he failed to acknowledge the subsidies that soften the hit for many consumers, though not ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Jan. 7, the seventh day of 2017. There are 358 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 7, 1942, Japanese forces began besieging American and Filipino troops in Bataan during World War II. (The fall of ...

The Trump Years

NEW YORK — Two more weeks until the new administration begins! I wonder if President Donald Trump will stick to his campaign promises — like reducing immigration and slamming consumers by imposing a 35 percent tariff. Hope not. But it could have been much worse. Bernie Sanders ...

Kerry’s two-faced solution

WASHINGTON — In his recent speech excoriating Israel for refusing to commit suicide by allowing a sworn enemy to have a state adjoining the Jewish state, Secretary of State John Kerry claimed the U.S. government “did not draft or originate” the UN resolution critical of Israeli ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Friday, Jan. 6, the sixth day of 2017. There are 359 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 6, 1967, U.S. Marines and South Vietnamese troops launched Operation Deckhouse Five, an offensive in the Mekong River ...

Trump tweets help push GOP reversal on ethics

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a city bound by tradition, every president taps a legislative affairs director to work with Congress. President-elect Donald Trump appears ready to use a legislative whip like none other: Twitter. On the opening day of Congress, Trump demonstrated the power of his ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Jan. 5, the fifth day of 2017. There are 360 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 5, 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower proposed assistance to countries to help them resist Communist aggression in ...

Wanted: Substitute teachers

FLINT — Michigan schools can’t find nearly enough substitute teachers, which is why you’re seeing billboards all over the state advertising for them. One superintendent told the Free Press, “The state really needs to do something. We have to look at why are students not going into ...

Thomas Sowell says farewell

WASHINGTON — Even the best things come to an end. After enjoying a quarter of a century of writing this column for Creators Syndicate, I have decided to stop. Age 86 is well past the usual retirement age, so the question is not why I am quitting, but why I kept at it so long. It was very ...

Congress ushers in new era of all-Republican rule

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress ushers in a new era of all-Republican rule. On Tuesday at noon, with plenty of pomp and pageantry, members of the 115th Congress were sworn in, with an emboldened GOP intent on unraveling eight years of President Barack Obama’s Democratic agenda and targeting ...

Trump’s dark cloud of illegitimacy

BERKELEY — A dark cloud of illegitimacy hangs over the pending presidency of Donald Trump. Bad enough that Trump rejects the conclusions of the CIA, FBI and other U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia intervened in the 2016 campaign to help him become president. Even worse that Trump ...

Obama’s skewed moral universe

LOS ANGLES — President Barack Obama likes to see himself as a moral leader. “The arc of the moral universe is long,” Obama likes to say, quoting Martin Luther King Jr, “but it bends toward justice.” According to Obama, Obama is a genteel representative of decency and good grace, a man ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Jan. 3, the third day of 2017. There are 362 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 3, 1967, Jack Ruby, the man who shot and killed Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President John F. Kennedy, ...