Tagged: essayist

Tech Solutions

The time we’re living in is being called the Technology Revolution. It’s given us personal computers and cell phones and devices that, we all agree, make our lives altogether better. Everything is more efficient, more connected. Things can be ordered to appear at your door, getting lost in your car is almost impossible, and you don’t...

Mourning the Real Victims of the Bangladesh Garment Factory Disasters

News comes from Dhaka, the capital city of Bangladesh, that a disastrous fire swept through a garment factory there, killing eight people. A factory fire in November killed more than 100. The garment industry in Bangladesh is euphemistically called “loosely regulated,” so, regrettably, these things (fires and so forth) tend to happen with alarming regularity....

In Defense of Defense

Howard “Buck” McKeon represents California’s Twenty-fifth Congressional District, which is home to an Army fort, an Air Force base, a Navy weapons station, and a Marines mountain warfare training area. So if anyone is perfectly qualified to head the House Armed Services Committee it’s old Buck. Thank God that conflict of interest concerns don’t disqualify...

Celebrating Our National Sheriff of the Year

The Los Angeles Times needs to stop investigating Sheriff Lee Baca. Instead of undermining our top lawman’s authority with pointless reports about this or that allegation, the newspaper needs to focus on falling crime numbers, fewer accidental deputy shootings, and a measurable (if not statistically significant) percentage drop in gross negligence claims against the Sheriff’s...

Getting Good and Bad Mixed Up

Funny, isn’t it? The way things can get turned around completely backwards so that everything means the opposite? We don’t mean Orwellian doublespeak. We’re talking about common words that don’t seem to have a static definition. Like, say, the word “villain.” Pfc. Bradley Manning was called a villain, among many other pernicious names, in the...

Endorsement: Cardinal Roger Mahony for Pope!

The race is on! Now that everyone’s beloved Uncle Joe Ratzinger, also known as “Benedict,” has stepped aside, leaving the Papacy for a comfortable dotage on Vatican property, where he shall remain blissfully shielded from criminal prosecution for the rest of his days, someone (male) will wield the sceptre and wear the mitre! Who will win the title...

A Modest Proposal For Solving Our Gun Violence Problem

Guns are not the problem. People are not the problem. Young people are the problem. They don’t listen. They play awful video game simulations of mass murder. They shoot six-year-olds. And no amount of background checks or ammo-clip restrictions will change that. There’s only one way to solve the gun situation, one way to bring...

Very Short Books

Books are far too long, right? Who has time for 300-pages of blabbering on about nothing? Do you know how many tweets you can read in the amount of time it takes to slog through one stupid novel? A lot. And they’re usually way funnier. And unlike books they’ve got hashtags, like #betterthanactuallyreading. Still, in...

A New Definition of Family

If you wish to align yourself with a mindset that no one will dispute and most will acclaim, proclaim yourself a paragon of “family values.” Earn a reputation as a “family man.” Put “family” before self. Found a right-wing Christian political bribery machine and call it “Focus on the Family.” Do whatever it is you want to...

Bad Endings

I helped an old man load his groceries into the trunk of his car, which was parked curbside near the entrance to a 99-Cent store. He walked with a cane and seemed to have trouble handling his bags. A watermelon had fallen to the sidewalk, somehow escaping unblemished. But things didn’t look as though they...