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Jan 11,2008
Iran this week played a very dangerous game of chicken with the U.S. Navy in the Persian Gulf. Five small boats of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard harassed and provoked three U.S. warships in the Strait of Hormuz on Sunday morning. The boats swarmed the U.S. ships and engaged in threatening behavior. And they almost paid a high price for the stunt. And it's still not clear what the Iranians were up to. Was this an ... [full story]
730 times read - No comment posted

Jan 11,2008
"The first thing I'd love to do as president: Put a 'Going out of business' sign on the Internal Revenue Service" So says Mike Huckabee, the victor in the Republican Iowa caucuses who was among the front-runners in the New Hampshire Primary. It's an effective applause line, particularly in tax-averse New Hampshire. But it's a troubling statement and would be disastrous policy. If elected president, the former Arkansas governor wants to abolish income and payroll ... [full story]
609 times read - 1 comments posted

Jan 11,2008
Pitting seniors against their juniors can be a loser for both. That didn't stop an AARP lawsuit hazardous to both. For three years, the AARP pursued a suit to force the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to force employers who offer retiree health coverage to pay as much from their pocket for retirees eligible for Medicare as for retirees who aren't yet 65. The EEOC also took that position until probable adverse consequences changed its mind. ... [full story]
737 times read - No comment posted

Jan 11,2008
The price of oil briefly broke the $100 mark last week. The most remarkable thing about passing the long-dreaded psychological barrier was how little it seemed to hurt. Back in the 1970s, the oil price shocks helped bring on years of inflation, economic stagnation and two recessions. This time around, the market mostly yawned when oil on the New York market touched $100.09 a barrel on Thursday, even though that's just a hair below the ... [full story]
1193 times read - No comment posted

Jan 11,2008
The word "evolution" is a kind of post-modern Pavlov's bell. At the mere mention of it, two parallel lines begin to form. On one, scientists stand ready to defend biology's central organizing principle. On the other are creationists of various kinds protecting their faith in Biblical truth. The debate between them often is sparked by the teaching of evolution in public elementary schools and high school science classes. That has happened in past years in ... [full story]
1244 times read - No comment posted

Jan 11,2008
The class of drugs known as statins has been remarkably effective at reducing bad cholesterol and fighting heart and coronary disease. A recent long-term study even found that statins can prevent heart attacks up to a decade after people stop taking them. But despite those well-documented benefits, an advisory panel of the Food and Drug Administration took the correct action last month when it rejected a request by Merck & Co. to make its cholesterol-lowering ... [full story]
1091 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
Seventeen-year-olds finishing high school next spring have about a one-in-three chance of having any money in a 401(k) by the time they reach retirement, a new government study has found. The study by the Government Accountability Office should spark new discussion about the fallout of the shift from pension plans to so-called defined contribution plans. Such plans give participants the most freedom to secure their own future - but only if they take advantage. Study ... [full story]
1062 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
Now that President George W. Bush has become a born-again fiscal conservative, he should look out his office window for a clue on how to save the taxpayers several billion dollars: Chop the bloated program to develop a new fleet of presidential helicopters. This is not to say the president doesn't need a safe, secure helicopter. It's just that he doesn't need a fleet of half-billion-dollar helicopters that grow more expensive by the day. In ... [full story]
1083 times read - 1 comments posted

Jan 04,2008
New figures from the Congressional Budget Office suggest that the gap between wealthy Americans and their fellow citizens has now become a chasm - reaching its widest point since the Roaring '20s. The CBO examined data for 2005, which turned to be a very good year if you happened to be wealthy. Those at the top of the heap - incomes in the highest 1 percent of Americans - saw their after-tax earnings rise by ... [full story]
530 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
Kenya's almost certainly stolen election and the tribal violence that followed are doubly tragic. For Kenya, the rigged vote count and ensuing killing are ugly, heartbreaking steps backward for a nation that had been one of Africa's comparative success stories. For Africa, this is yet another reminder that the long road to better governance, ethnic peace and economic development is fraught with peril and that progress is fragile. Kenya's president, Mwai Kibaki, claimed a narrow ... [full story]
535 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
Mexican President Felipe Calderon's heart is obviously in the right place. But, sometimes, one has to wonder where his head is. For instance, take a look at how he has handled the enormously important yet incredibly delicate issue of immigration. After spending the first six months of his tenure largely focusing on battling drug cartels, Calderon spent the next six months making up for lost time by talking incessantly about the issue. But what is ... [full story]
696 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
It's now been nearly 14 months since Rep. Nancy Pelosi, then incoming speaker of the House, vowed to lead "the most honest" and "most ethical" Congress ever. The San Francisco Democrat's bold declaration on election night 2006 was welcomed by voters whose anger over lawmakers' scandals and crimes led them to end Republicans' control of both the House and the Senate. Pelosi acknowledged the daunting task she faced, given legislators' bipartisan addiction to "earmarks." These ... [full story]
1250 times read - No comment posted

Jan 04,2008
The Green Bay Packers won their first two preseason games this year, which meant exactly nothing in the National Football League. To win it all, the Pack will have to get to the Super Bowl on Feb. 3 and win it. But if the rules of presidential politics applied to the NFL, the Packers could have laid an early claim on the Lombardi Trophy in August. In the game of nominating a president, which begins ... [full story]
659 times read - No comment posted



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