Letter to the Editor: Few talk at Goodlatte telephone meetings

March 23, 2017

Telephone “conferences” are Congressman Goodlatte’s preferred mode of answering constituent questions. His polite young aides who record questions at Samuel’s Library on Wednesdays are not empowered to answer questions. Mr. Goodlatte hasn’t had a physical town meeting since 2013 – he claims they are rowdy and unproductive.

Letter to the Editor: Navy bribery scandal no surprise

March 23, 2017

That story of the Navy bribery scandal saddened me, but the story did not surprise me. My Dad said they used to have signs in store windows that read, “No dogs or sailors allowed.” If we get a bum rap we only have ourselves to blame.

Letter to the Editor: President should apologize to Merkel

March 23, 2017

I write this demand for an apology for the all friends and relatives that I have on six continents and for the friend who flies to the seventh continent on a regular basis. I write this demand for an apology for my German daughter and son and my little German granddaughter. I write to honor my German heritage: my grandparents and great-grandparents and all those familiar German valley names with whom I have some connection.

Michael Barone: Perceptions are that Trump’s policies are working

Michael Barone

March 22, 2017

Perceptions matter. People make decisions, even life-altering decisions, based on what they perceive as likely to happen. To the extent that public policy affects such decisions, the perception of likely policy change can affect behavior even before the change happens — even if it ends up never happening.

Commentary: Beware of PACs seeking gifts

March 22, 2017

There has been a lot of talk lately regarding the adding of a seventh member to the Board of Supervisors, mostly coming from members of Parental Alliance for Strong Schools, a group founded to increase school spending. No one can argue or debate that there has been dysfunction on the Board of Supervisors as of late.

Froma Harrop: Dump myth that ACA froze out GOP

Froma Harrop

March 21, 2017

It’s true. The Affordable Care Act was passed without a single Republican vote. Republicans repeatedly cite this fact as Obamacare’s original sin, a fatal flaw that justifies their efforts to dismantle the ACA.

Commentary: Trumpcare: Health insurance for young, wealthy

March 21, 2017

There is a huge gap between the promise of Trumpcare and the reality. President Trump promised better, lower-cost insurance available to everyone. In reality, Trumpcare will cost many people much more and provide less. It isn’t an exaggeration to say that millions of people in the country will lose their insurance, not by choice, but because they cannot afford it. Charity care cannot take its place. People will die because they aren’t rich enough to go out and buy good insurance without help.

Marino de Medici: Times fraught with heavy worries in EU, U.S.

Marino de Medici

March 20, 2017

The European Union is celebrating 60 years and the treaties signed in Rome on March 25 with the shared duty of facing the new challenges: in short, to respond to the social crises in its member countries, to calm the pervasive fears of its peoples, to face the threats to their security and to give new hope for the renewal of the union as a whole. Now more than ever, Europe feels the need to be faithful to its original ideas and to act in solidarity and with respect for all its citizens.

Mark Shields: The serious matter of political humor

Mark Shields

March 19, 2017

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the only American elected president four times, had an often overlooked strength that both sustained him under the torrent of abuse he endured and served to thwart his dyspeptic political opponents: FDR could laugh at the jeers directed at him. He framed and showed off one cartoon from Esquire magazine showing a little girl, an obvious tattletale, telling her mother that her brother had just written a dirty word on the sidewalk — ”Roosevelt.”

Andy Schmookler: Believing the unbelievable

Andy Schmookler

March 17, 2017

These are unhappy times in America. But of all the distressing news items I’ve come across, the one that disturbed me most was this: according to the polls, when asked which side they found more credible in the conflict between what the media report and what President Trump says, about four out of five Republicans declared they believe Mr. Trump.