American politicians love to boast of their nation’s status as the world’s premier “representative democracy,” and to lecture other, presumably less enlightened, countries on the importance of representative political institutions. Going by the numbers (which admittedly don’t tell the whole story), there’s good reason to question whether such preening is justified.
On April 13, US president Joe Biden spoke by phone with Russian president Vladimir Putin, whom he has previously referred to, in pot/kettle fashion, as a “killer.” During the call, Biden proposed a summit between the two in the near future. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Russian chess legend and political exile Garry Kasparov … Continue reading A Biden-Putin Summit: Jaw-Jaw is Better than War-War
In February 2020, US President Donald Trump announced a peace deal with the Taliban, giving US forces 15 months to get out of Afghanistan. Nearly a year later, with the withdrawal nearly complete and only 2,500 US armed forces members remaining on Afghan soil, incoming President Joe Biden took the oath of inauguration and instantly began complaining that the May 1 deadline would be “hard to meet.”
The first five “initial actions” are a mix of pro-gun-violence idiocy and public relations fluff that the White House should be embarrassed for even trying to put over on the public as non-fiction.
Was the tweet anti-Semitic? Ask the Jewish protesters in Israel who equate that country’s vaccine passport scheme not only with the yellow Star of David badges forced on Jews by the Nazis, but with death camp prisoner tattoos.
Xeriscaping, ornamental and vegetable gardening, etc. are increasingly popular alternative approaches to yard use. But for those of us who really want to be done with lawns, an important first step is getting governments off of them.
For the first time in its more than eight decades of surveying Americans’ religious attitudes and practices, Gallup reports, church members constituted only 47% of the US population in 2020 — down 23% since 1999, prior to which the percentage seldom dipped below 70%. Why the precipitous drop, and what might it portend for the … Continue reading America Unchurched: A Sign of the Times
As I write this column, Arkansas House Bill 1570 (the “Save Adolescents From Experimentation Act”) awaits the signature or veto of Governor Asa Hutchinson, having passed in the state House on March 10 and in the Senate on March 29. If it became law, the bill would forbid physicians and other healthcare professionals to ” provide gender transition procedures to any individual under eighteen (18) years of age” or to refer such an individual to other healthcare providers for such procedures.
In a March 24 Yahoo! Finance interview, as the price of Bitcoin hovered above $55,000, Bridgewater Associates chief investment officer Ray Dalio weighed in on the future of cryptocurrency. The two main takeaways from the interview are a little scary, each in a different way.
In its current form, the US Senate delaying tactic called the “filibuster” hangs on a rule requiring 60 votes for “cloture.” Simply put, it takes 51 Senators to pass a bill, but before that it takes the consent of 60 Senators to end debate and actually get to a final majority vote.