The days when the Jewish people remained passive in the face of genocidal enemies, those days are over….Even if Israel has to stand alone, Israel will stand. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, March 3, 2015, Washington.
Two speeches, delivered just four days apart, reminded us how leaders can motivate and inspire, stir our passions and call us to great things. Most of all, they can bring moral clarity to the complex realities of a messy world. Continue reading
The prevalence of the mammone has long been thought to be a predominantly Italian phenomenon, with deep cultural roots. It has grown more pronounced with the country’s recent economic distress. Since 2008, a growing percentage of Italian men aged 25-54 have abandoned the labor force, no longer bothering even to look for work.
Italy’s workforce participation rate among men of prime working age is by far Europe’s lowest. But it is not the lowest in the developed world. Italy now shares that dubious distinction with the U.S.
That wouldn’t happen if Obama were President. Continue reading
To recover from his exertions, he and his family then “ventured to the white-sand beach at Bellows Air Force Station, which is on the windward side of the island of Oahu and features turquoise water and a stunning view of the Mokulua Islands,” the Washington Post reported.
That tranquil scene augured the best year for U.S. employment growth since 1999. According to the Labor Department, the economy added more than 3.1 million jobs in 2014. The topline unemployment rate was 5.6% in December, down from 6.7% the prior December and the lowest rate since June 2008.
And here is the surprising major reason for the resurgence in employment: Congress spurned the President’s entreaties and let extended unemployment benefits expire. Continue reading
LEBLANC: Yeah, well, when you say it that way, it sounds terrible.
Scene from Season 3 of “Episodes“
The fourth season of “Episodes” premieres tonight on Showtime, promising another sumptuous feast of Hollywood send-ups. David Crane’s (“Friends,” “Joey”) handiwork has it all: self-obsessed actors, self-important executives, mawkish phoniness and bloodless betrayals, all set among ubiquitous lies and deceptions. Crane’s satire is pitch-perfect: overdrawn enough to be funny, but real enough to be (almost) true. Continue reading
The Constitution offers no remedy for presidential impatience. Presidents, Members of Congress and judges are sometimes constitutionally required to “just keep on waiting.” And that is something officeholders of both political parties seem increasingly unwilling to do. When it comes to circumventing the rules to achieve the political objectives of the moment, the President and some of his most strident conservative foes are soulmates.
Another August. Another flirtation with war. In the psychodrama that is the Obama Presidency, our hero vacillates between war and peace, detachment and intervention, riding out the storm and steering into its teeth. The rest of us are left to guess whether he will respond to the next humanitarian crisis with bombs or hashtags. There is, as Mrs. Clinton notes, no “organizing principle” to lend coherence to our foreign policy. Continue reading
The Iraq civil war did not start under Obama, it started when Bush, Cheney and the neocons pulled the trigger to invade Iraq … . It was [the] status of force agreement, signed by Bush, that pledged to withdraw all US forces … Given the staggering cost of expense and lives we could not stay there “maybe a hundred years” as McCain said. Nor could we bleed hundreds of billions of dollars there every year. Obama promised to get us out of there, and he rightly did so … To attempt to blame anyone but Bush, Cheney and the neocons for the Iraq disaster is simply revisionism at its finest. — Excerpted from a comment on my recent post on Iraq.
The Obama presidency’s leading malfeasance lies in its belief that finding someone to blame for a problem is as good as solving it. So it is little surprise that my recent post on Iraq, in which I argued against US military intervention, would spur comments that former President George W. Bush is to blame for the renewed fighting. Continue reading
The President made this inarguable statement in the course of proclaiming a change in the law governing student loans. Henceforth, millions of people who borrowed for college will have their monthly payments restructured and, in some cases, be entirely relieved of the obligation to repay their debt.
In the President’s mind, borrowing money is playing by the rules; paying it back is punishment. Continue reading