The Super Bowl and Sex Trafficking

  On February 2 of this year, thousands will gather at Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., to watch the Seattle Seahawks battle the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII. As the athletes take the field and the fans cheer, they will be oblivious to the tragedy unfolding around them in dark hotel rooms…

The Shame of American Health Care

Even as Americans struggle with the changes required by health care reform, an international survey released last week by the Commonwealth Fund, a research organization, shows why change is so necessary. The report found that by virtually all measures of cost, access to care and ease of dealing with insurance problems, Americans fared poorly compared…

The United States, Falling Behind

Researchers have been warning for more than a decade that the United States was losing ground to its economic competitors abroad and would eventually fall behind them unless it provided more of its citizens with the high-level math, science and literacy skills necessary for the new economy. Naysayers dismissed this as alarmist. But recent data…

Jerry Brown Dictatorially Defies Federal Immigration Law

When Governor Jerry Brown signed the Trust Act, he ended the partnership established between local law enforcement and Immigration and Customers Enforcement authorities that the federal Secure Communities program established. Under Secure Communities, jails submit arrestees’ fingerprints to both criminal and immigration databases to identify deportable aliens. Gary McCoy / Cagle Cartoons Brown’s signature made…

An Exit Strategy From Afghanistan

As it winds down its 12-year-old military commitment in Afghanistan, the United States is still looking for a face-saving way out of a conflict that seems headed, at best, for a stalemate. The new bilateral security agreement between the two nations is part of that exit strategy. So is a hoped-for political settlement with the…

How to avoid another shutdown

It is difficult to explain the recent government shutdown to citizens of other nations. In most of the world’s democracies, this kind of disruption can’t happen. Rules are in place to keep the government running even if a new budget isn’t passed on time. The U.S. needs to reform its budgetary processes to prevent the…

Congress: The joke’s on us

In 1942, the popular detective fiction writer Rex Stout published a book about Congress featuring “the silliest, stupidest and most dangerous statements that have ever been made by men laying claim to being leaders of the American people.” The book’s title told the whole story: “The Illustrious Dunderheads.” I’ve been thinking about Stout during the…

Obama’s Uncivil America

The “new era of civility in politics” called for by President Obama after former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) was shot, lasted about five Washington minutes. Since then Obama has adopted a scorched earth public policy in an attempt to destroy his political enemies, but sacrificing the Constitution as collateral damage. Fast forward to the October…

The Real Deficit’s in Leadership

“Man, this government shutdown is making America look foolish.” “I agree with you. I am certainly no fan of the shutdown. But the division in Washington is a reflection of the division in our representative republic.” “I think it’s a reflection of a total lack of leadership among our politicians in Washington.” Luojie / China…

Fukushima Sushi

Which is harder to believe? The ludicrous shenanigans going down in Washington or the fact that nobody seems particularly interested in doing anything about them? Good neighbors — it looks like we got ourselves one heck of a bumper crop of official dysfunction this year. Near as high as Manute Bol’s eye. You’d think with…

News Analysis: How Activist Is the Supreme Court?

WASHINGTON — JUSTICES Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg are ideological antagonists on the Supreme Court, but they agree on one thing. Their court is guilty of judicial activism. “If it’s measured in terms of readiness to overturn legislation, this is one of the most activist courts in history,” Justice Ginsburg said in August in…

The Delayed American Household

According to a recent report by the Census, married couples with children account for only 19.6 percent of all households in the U.S. The new figure represents a drop of 4.5 percentage points from 2000 when 24.1 percent of all households in the U.S. were married couples with children. The share of total households in…