The human kindling that makes up the flammable Republican base may soon burst into flames, again. Portions of that excitable cohort are looking — some with fawnlike eyes filled with hurt, others with sparks shooting from eyes narrowed like gun slits — askance at other Republicans urging Jeb Bush to seek the 2016 presidential nomination.
House Republicans on Wednesday held Benghazi hearing number 1,372,569, give or take, and this time they were determined to find the proof that had eluded them in the previous 1,372,568: That Obama administration officials had put politics before national security.
"A Dupont Circle neighbor said he seemed ‘more like a nerd than a spy.’ ” “The rabbi of the South Bend, Ind., temple where he was bar mitzvahed described him as an ‘outstanding scholar and your prototype all-American boy.’ ” Those were my words as a young reporter at The Washington Post, writing 28 years ago about the arrest of Navy intelligence analyst Jonathan Pollard outside the Israeli Embassy.
Recently, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice added her voice to those who have long been urging the Republican Party to reach out to black voters. Not only is that long overdue, what is also long overdue is putting some time — and, above all, some serious thought — into how to go about doing it.
Childhood, it would seem, is different than it used to be. I know, I know, this conclusion doesn’t involve incredibly perceptive powers of parental observation; it simply requires contact with modern kids and an exceptionally long memory that reaches back to your own childhood.
Igor Stravinsky, the Russian composer, said of Poland, perilously positioned between Russia and Germany: “If you pitch your tent in the middle of Fifth Avenue, it is quite likely you will be run over by a bus.” Poland has been run over hard and often; indeed, between 1795 and 1918 it disappeared from the map of Europe.
At a time when many students still see college as their best hope for a rewarding career, higher education has become more expensive, far outpacing the steady increase in the cost of living. As a consequence, average student debt at graduation is currently pushing $30,000. In some cases, student debt reaches a disheartening six figures.
Executives at Washington’s public teachers union (the WEA) announced recently that gaining access to greater pay increases was their primary lobbying goal for 2014 — not raising student test scores, closing the achievement gap, or improving low graduation rates.
The story of Josue Noe Sandoval-Perez, an illegal immigrant recently deported back to his native Mexico, perfectly captures the chaos of our broken immigration system — and for all sides of the debate. Settled in this country for 16 years, Sandoval-Perez appears to have been the good father and hard worker his champions portray. But his dilemma does not offer an argument for ignoring the country’s immigration laws.
Rand Paul is the most intriguing — and for Democrats, perhaps the most frightening — figure in today's Republican Party. The Kentucky senator, who is more than flirting with a 2016 presidential run, is making a smart play for the millennial generation that was key to President Obama's twin victories and that his own party has convincingly repelled.