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  • Uh-oh, the GOP has no choice but to work with Democrats on healthcare reform

    Uh-oh, the GOP has no choice but to work with Democrats on healthcare reform

    The sudden collapse of Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell’s healthcare bill on Monday was much more than a tactical setback for the Senate Republican leader once considered an unbeatable legislative wizard. It was a catastrophic failure for the GOP’s attempt to make one-party government work. It’s one...

  • With Obamacare repeal off the table, will Republicans start trying to actually improve healthcare?

    With Obamacare repeal off the table, will Republicans start trying to actually improve healthcare?

    Millions of Americans whose healthcare coverage was imperiled can breathe a sigh of relief now that congressional Republicans’ reckless efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act have foundered. They can thank a handful of courageous moderates in the Senate Republican Caucus for being unwilling...

  • Trump's biggest success: Proving the inadequacy of federal ethics laws

    Trump's biggest success: Proving the inadequacy of federal ethics laws

    President Trump is a walking — well, golf cart-riding — conflict of interests. Even though he has given up active control of the billion-dollar Trump Organization, he still enjoys its enormous financial benefits, which has made the intersection between personal gain and public policy extraordinarily...

  • How George Romero Americanized the zombie

    How George Romero Americanized the zombie

    When George Romero died Sunday, he was almost universally hailed as the father of the zombie movie. The title was both too much and not enough. Romero’s “The Night of the Living Dead” didn’t invent the zombie movie; that credit goes to “White Zombie” from 1932. But in his great trilogy — “Night...

  • California needs to keep its ballots spin-free

    California needs to keep its ballots spin-free

    Words matter. And when those words appear on the ballot, where space is limited and the competition for voter attention is high, they matter a lot. This has become an issue for a group of Republicans who have proposed a ballot initiative to repeal a recently passed package of gas taxes and vehicle...

  • Trump can thank the 'fake media' for his presidency

    Trump can thank the 'fake media' for his presidency

    Of all the disputes about “fake news,” none is more richly ironic than President Trump’s attacks on CNN. After all, the current head of CNN Worldwide, Jeff Zucker, helped design “The Apprentice” to make household words out of “Donald Trump” and “you’re fired” back when he was head of NBC Entertainment....

  • Respectability politics won't save us from police violence

    Respectability politics won't save us from police violence

    Philando Castile was a veteran of police stops, if there is such a thing. By the time he encountered his final, fatal one in July 2016, the Minnesota school cafeteria worker had been pulled over more than 49 times in 13 years. So when he calmly volunteered to officer Jeronimo Yanez that July 6...

  • The new GOP healthcare bill is more conservative and more moderate, and still plain bad

    The new GOP healthcare bill is more conservative and more moderate, and still plain bad

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has done something remarkable to the Republican healthcare bill he’s been trying to steer through the Senate: He’s simultaneously made it more conservative and more moderate. But he hasn’t magically transformed it into a good bill that would make healthcare...

  • Why did Don Jr.'s emails surface? Because Robert Mueller is already changing Washington's lying ways

    Why did Don Jr.'s emails surface? Because Robert Mueller is already changing Washington's lying ways

    For more than a year, the most senior officials in the Trump administration have adamantly, even scornfully, denied that there was any contact between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. The bombshell report earlier this week of Donald Trump Jr.’s efforts to secure dirt on Hillary Clinton...

  • L.A.'s streets have become a de facto toilet. We need more public restrooms

    L.A.'s streets have become a de facto toilet. We need more public restrooms

    Perhaps the most humiliating thing about being homeless is having to use the street as your bathroom because you don’t have access to a toilet. The results are grossly unpleasant as well for all who must walk down city sidewalks, pungent with the smell of urine, and step over human feces. For those...

  • For the sake of the planet and our state, extend California's cap-and-trade program

    For the sake of the planet and our state, extend California's cap-and-trade program

    California is the nation’s leader in the effort to cut greenhouse gas emissions and an increasingly influential player on the world stage. That was made all the more evident last week in Hamburg, Germany. While President Trump was getting the cold shoulder from other world leaders at the G-20 confab...

  • Obamacare is only 'exploding' in red states

    Obamacare is only 'exploding' in red states

    When he talks about his efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, President Trump almost always asserts that Obamacare is “exploding.” Republican members of Congress make similar claims, insisting that Obamacare is unsustainable—and that they therefore have no choice but to “repeal and replace”...

  • What would Lincoln think of Trump?

    What would Lincoln think of Trump?

    Donald Trump has a sketchy relationship with Abraham Lincoln. “Great president,” Trump said. “Most people don’t even know he was a Republican, right?” Trump also conjectured that “had Andrew Jackson been a little later, you wouldn’t have had the Civil War,” though Jackson had died many years before....

  • The six categories of Trump apologetics

    The six categories of Trump apologetics

    Now that Donald Trump Jr. has confessed to organizing a campaign meeting with a Russian lawyer said to have “information that would incriminate Hillary” Clinton as part of “Russia and its government’s support” for his father, we can say with ironclad certainty that special counsel Robert S. Mueller...

  • What can stop the worms? How about a 60-year-old asphalt driveway?

    What can stop the worms? How about a 60-year-old asphalt driveway?

    As an enthusiastic if inept gardener, I recently had a big section of my driveway jack-hammered up, so I could increase my vegetable output. It wasn’t at all like lifting a rock and finding all kinds of wiggly creatures busy below. The dirt under the 60-year-old asphalt was still and dry and compacted....

  • Hold your outrage — the LAUSD board deserves a big raise

    Hold your outrage — the LAUSD board deserves a big raise

    The pay raise that an independent panel just awarded the L.A. Unified School District board is eye-popping, for sure. The members’ annual compensation will come fairly close to tripling, with the full-timers on the board seeing a raise from $45,627 to $125,000. The public could understandably see...

  • Happy birthday to Henry David Thoreau, a great sleep scholar

    Happy birthday to Henry David Thoreau, a great sleep scholar

    On this 200th anniversary of Henry David Thoreau’s birth, we celebrate what he did while he was awake: resisting the long arm of the state when it came knocking on his door to collect taxes that funded an unjust war; chronicling the changing ecosystem of his beloved ponds and rivers; modeling a...

  • Unruly women were having a moment. Then Trump happened

    Unruly women were having a moment. Then Trump happened

    "Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud" author Anne Helen Petersen on the backlash against strong women.

  • Just because Trump has a blind spot on Russia doesn't mean the rest of the government has to

    Just because Trump has a blind spot on Russia doesn't mean the rest of the government has to

    Despite claims by some officials in his administration that President Trump aggressively confronted Russian President Vladimir Putin about Russian interference in last year’s American elections, it’s abundantly evident that he continues to have what Sen. Lindsey Graham calls a “blind spot” about...

  • The state shouldn't get to decide if your baby lives or dies

    The state shouldn't get to decide if your baby lives or dies

    Charlie Gard’s parents are doing the wrong thing — and I’d probably do it too. Charlie Gard, if you haven’t heard, is the 11-month-old baby whose plight has become a popular cause in England and, increasingly, the United States. Charlie seemed like any other healthy baby when he was born. His parents,...

  • Moby: Sacramento shouldn't be trying to get you to eat more beef

    Moby: Sacramento shouldn't be trying to get you to eat more beef

    When President Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris climate agreement last month, Gov. Jerry Brown promised that California would continue to lead the fight against global warming: “I want to do everything we can to keep America on track, keep the world on track, and lead in all the...

  • It's more obvious than ever: Trump doesn't care a whit about the national interest

    It's more obvious than ever: Trump doesn't care a whit about the national interest

    For a president who lies more than any of his predecessors — even Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon! — Donald Trump can also be candid to a fault. Recall how, after firing FBI Director James Comey, he blew apart the administration spin that this had nothing to do with any investigation of the Trump...

  • Why are we afraid of North Korea?

    Why are we afraid of North Korea?

    With North Korea’s successful intercontinental missile test last week, Americans again woke up to breathless alarm over possible military strikes and the specter of a North Korean nuclear attack -- a virtual repeat of the hype in April when it looked as if a sixth North Korean nuclear test was...

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