American novelist Herman Melville is much better known for his lengthy classic “Moby Dick” than his posthumously published novella “Billy Budd,” but both involve exploits at sea and, more to the point, the suffering of great characters. The latter was composed as an opera by Benjamin Britten and is currently being perform
Many conservatives were disappointed that the House Republican leadership did not attempt to extract concessions from Senate Democrats and President Obama when the latter asked for an increase in the national debt ceiling last week. But the only battles they can win are those for which they have enough votes. The sad fact is that they don’
N ot just conservative Republicans but even liberal constitutional law professors are alarmed by President Obama’s avowed determination to stretch if not burst constitutional barriers to executive authority. Jonathan Turley, a Georgetown University scribe and a big Obama supporter, has sounded the alarm on, of all networks, FOX. Such
Concerned as Americans understandably are about domestic economy, developments on the international front ominously point to dangerous times for the United States and its allies and friends. For the three great threats from Russia, China and Islamist terrorism are growing daily because of President Obama’s withdrawal from the responsibilit
“The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, is the very definition of tyranny.” - James Madison, The Federalist No. 47
Flailing about following the disastrous first year in his second term, Presi
While Bob and I were waiting for an elevator at the VA Hospital in West Los Angeles, Bob began chatting with someone walking by. While the two of them were deep in conversation, a retired general stepped up and asked, “Are you with Bob?”I said, “Yes, I’m his son-in-law.”
The general looked me in the ey
T he abortion business has come to the High Desert. The newly minted Planned Parenthood (PP) facility is located in Victorville, coincidentally at the lowest point of the shopping center on Park Avenue near Palmdale Road and the Interstate 15 freeway. The iron gate may be open to the fenced area surrounding the 10,213 square foot building, but t
Are you an identical twin?
If so, perhaps, you know what I mean when I say that at times, the twin thing can get ridiculous. For example: A woman once asked if my identical twin and I were brothers. We told her, “We’re twins.” Then she inquired, “How long have you been twins?”
As well, my brother&rsq
W hen a majority of U.S. Supreme Court justices decided against natural justice, the Constitution and science that aborting unborn children was a heretofore unacknowledged right, it hit Americans like a tsunami. The majority opinion was even written and supported by Republican members of the Court, effectively neutralizing it as a partisan issue
Chuck Norris pummels his enemies and opponents. When it comes to martial arts and his acting roles in television and films (Walker, Texas Ranger/Delta Force), Norris knows how to take care of business.
You may have seen him act and, perhaps, talk about exercise (Total Gym), but did you know that Norris also speaks about spirituality wall
D r. Robert Gates was the 22nd secretary of defense. This week his book, “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War,” will be published by Knopf. His excerpted comments in the Wall Street Journal(http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304617404579306851526222552)last week have generated considerable political controversy, and
Jahi McMath, a 13-year-old girl whose routine tonsillectomy turned into a coma, may be dead by the time this column is published. But her parents refused to accept the judgment of Children’s Hospital Oakland that she was already dead and sought to remove her from that institution and seek treatment at another, possibly in New York.
P erhaps the hopeful sentiment expressed in the headline for this column may strike some people as wildly optimistic and others as just plain vile, but I think that the facts now known to us will support my prediction that constitutional government will get a boost in the 2014 congressional elections.
The evidence for this prediction is
F or years private American citizens have formed organizations and solicited contributions to provide services to our returning military veterans, physically and psychically wounded from the wars they have volunteered for. Millions, me included, have been moved to help as much and as broadly as possible.
Meanwhile, complaints have mushro
T he ever-expanding Christmas holiday season from 12 days beginning Christmas Day and ending on Epiphany January 6, and anticipated by Advent four Sundays prior; but now commencing even before Halloween (hence my term: Hallothanksmas); is more characterized by perpetual merchandising and unwelcome Grinching than religious piety. But nothing brid
Since its launch in 2007, the movement for a Common Core of public education standards has been controversial. It is attacked and defended from both the Left (“teaching to the test”) and the Right (“lowest common denominator”). My concern is whether public education can be saved by this well-intentioned reform or whether
Megyn Kelly recently was added to the Fox evening commentary lineup. A show last week made her case in spades. She invited a dozen college graduates ranging in age from 21 to 31 to discuss their family and career prospects as they are affected by current government economic policies.
Their judgment was harsh. Saddled with massive student
Every fourth Thursday in November we Americans give thanks for our many blessings, and there are indeed many. From President George Washington’s Thanksgiving proclamation in 1789 (the first year of the national government under the Constitution) to Abraham Lincoln’s in 1863 in the midst of a bloody Civil War, to the presidential proc
Marty the Magician performed magic tricks for kids, including the traditional rabbit-out-of-a-hat. Then one day: “I was signing autographs and taking pictures with children and their parents,” he told me. “Suddenly, a badge was thrown into the mix, and an inspector said, ‘Let me see your license.’”
Yesterday, November 19, and the day after tomorrow, November 22, get our attention this week because they mark, first, the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and, second, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John Kennedy. To some, the convergence of these events could not be more appropriate, but to others th
For the millions of Americans who are losing health plans they liked as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the name of that law is a bitter joke. They do not feel protected, and they often find that the replacement coverage they are forced to buy costs a lot more.
But President Obama has a solution. “We hav
The capture was made while I was, of all things, playing a board game at a friend’s house.I was ten years old, and my friend was taking too long to make his next chess move. As I stared out the window, I saw my twin brother and another friend running between two houses towards the street. The second they reached asphalt, police
Most criticisms of the ObamaCare rollout, beginning October 1 and limping along six weeks later, have been that incompetence and insincerity were to bame. It seemed to many that the practically non-functioning web site and the lame attempts to explain away its failures were proof of colossal ineptitude.
My inclination has been the same,
The market is fine for some things, people will say, but other activities are too important to be left to the market. Or too complicated. Or too fundamental to our democracy. I say: Privatize everything.
To some of you, that will sound callous — but failure to privatize services, keeping them in government hands instead, is w
T he warning signs were all around about the “train wreck” (quoth Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mt.) that is the piously named Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, but it takes a meticulous record of its failures and shortcomings to convince those for whom liberalism is a secular religion to acknowledge them.
The problem with wha