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OPINION
August 26, 2012 | By Cary Schneider and Sue Horton
" There are two sides to every issue: One side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil. " - Ayn Rand's hero John Galt speaking in "Atlas Shrugged" Ayn Rand's novel "Atlas Shrugged" has polarized opinion for more than 50 years. Its fans - including, until recently, vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan - applaud the book's celebration of rugged individualism and no-holds-barred capitalism. Its critics dismiss it as heartless, simplistic and elitist. In the novel, many of the nation's most brilliant and innovative entrepreneurs and business leaders have disappeared, leaving the nation in chaos.
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OPINION
March 30, 2014 | By Ronald Neumann and Michael O'Hanlon
Negative early headlines about Afghanistan's April 5 presidential election are easy to imagine. Some candidates are already trying to foster a simplified view among Westerners that they can fail to make the likely second-round runoff only if there is fraud. This is a deliberate attempt to provoke U.S. interference, whatever the facts. A peaceful transition of power to a new president broadly accepted as legitimate by the Afghan people is essential for several reasons: to secure future Afghan stability; to maintain support for Afghanistan in the U.S. Congress; and, above all, to achieve a key strategic goal - that the nation does not again become a base for terrorism against the United States.
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OPINION
January 15, 2013 | By David Kopel
Everyone knows the terrible litany of gun violence: Columbine High School, Virginia Tech, Ft. Hood, Tucson, the Cinemark movie theater in Colorado, the Sikh temple in Wisconsin, Sandy Hook Elementary School. Here are some examples you may not have heard about: Pearl High School in Mississippi; Sullivan Central High School in Tennessee; Appalachian School of Law in Virginia; a middle school dance in Edinboro, Pa.; Players Bar and Grill in Nevada; a Shoney's restaurant in Alabama; Trolley Square Mall in Salt Lake City; New Life Church in Colorado; Clackamas Mall in Oregon (three days before Sandy Hook)
OPINION
March 24, 2014 | By Dennis Ross
President Obama will visit Saudi Arabia this week. Based on what I hear from key Saudis, he is in for a rough reception. Rarely have the Saudis been more skeptical about the United States, and if the president is to affect Saudi behavior, it is important for him to understand why. Fundamentally, the Saudis believe that America's friends and interests are under threat, and the U.S. response has ranged from indifference to accommodation. The Saudis see Iran trying to encircle them with its Quds Force active in Bahrain, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and their own eastern province.
OPINION
January 14, 2014 | By Daniel Sokatch and David N. Myers
Recently, Israel has been beset by a pair of controversies relating to its Arab minority: first, the proposal over whether to resettle Bedouin Arabs against their will in state-sponsored towns, and second, the renewed call by Israel's foreign minister to "transfer" Arab residents of northern Israel to a new state of Palestine should one be established. At issue here is not only the status of Israel's Arab population but the concept of citizenship in Israel. If threats to the status of Israeli citizenship continue unchecked, Israel's very democracy is imperiled.
NEWS
December 20, 1990
I was very upset with the commentary by Roberto Rodriguez (Oct. 11, in which he recalled that Mexican-Americans had held him and other Mexicans in contempt). I have never made fun of any Mexican national or any Latino and I have never denied my Mexican heritage. I have worked in the medical field for 20 years, and have assisted people from Mexico in many ways. I feel insulted when I read an article that puts down Mexican-Americans. VIRGINIA A. TREJO Whittier
OPINION
August 13, 2013 | By Nora Freeman Engstrom and Robert L. Rabin
For decades, advocates of tort reform have pushed to limit the amount that courts can award for noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering. The California Legislature first capped this type of damages in medical malpractice lawsuits in 1975, and roughly half the states have followed California's lead. This summer, however, nearly 40 years after California's Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act first limited noneconomic damages in malpractice cases to $250,000, trial lawyers and consumer groups have unveiled a ballot initiative that would relax the cap considerably.
OPINION
December 27, 2010 | By Jamie Court
Article 1 of California's Constitution broadly declares that privacy is among our inalienable rights. But the laws enforcing this right are from another era, and our constitutional protection is being undermined. For example, the law requires the consent of both parties before recording telephone calls and restricts official snooping in our private business. Yet some of California's biggest companies, such as Google and Facebook, violate our privacy daily by tracking us online and collecting massive amounts of private information without our explicit consent.
OPINION
April 3, 2011 | By Susan Straight
At a time when teachers and their unions are under fire across the nation, my eldest daughter just had a much-anticipated interview with Teach for America. She will graduate from college in May and hopes to be a teacher in the fall. She was worried that I'd be disappointed she didn't feel a desire for graduate school. But I was thrilled. Since graduating from college in 1984, I've taught GED courses, English as a second language, composition at a city college and now writing and literature at a public university.
OPINION
February 19, 2012 | By Drew Westen
In poll after poll, Americans say they don't like negative campaigning. Yet in the final week of the Florida primary, more than 90% of the ads broadcast were attack ads. That's not likely to change in the run-up to Super Tuesday. So why do candidates rely so heavily on a kind of advertising voters say they abhor? Because it works. To understand why, you have to consider what we know about how emotions work - and the different ways our conscious and unconscious minds and brains process "negativity" during elections.
OPINION
March 18, 2014 | Jonah Goldberg
Will everyone please stop talking about a new Cold War? However badly things work out between Russia and the United States and the West, a new Cold War isn't in the cards because Russia today isn't the Soviet Union. Sure, we are in a diplomatic and geostrategic conflict with Russia, which was the heart of the old Soviet Union. Also, Russia wants much of the real estate that belonged to the Soviet Union before it collapsed. And Vladimir Putin is a former KGB colonel who now waxes nostalgic for the good old days.
OPINION
March 18, 2014 | By David H. Gans
Are secular, for-profit corporations free to violate the rights of their employees by claiming that the law violates their corporate religious conscience? That's the big question at the heart of the two blockbuster challenges to a key provision of Obamacare that will be heard by the Supreme Court next week. In its 225-year history, the Supreme Court has never held that secular, for-profit corporations are entitled to the free exercise of religion. It should not start now. Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood claim in their lawsuits that the Affordable Care Act's requirement that employers' health insurance plans cover preventive care for women, including the full range of FDA-approved contraceptives, violates their right to the free exercise of religion.
OPINION
March 16, 2014 | By David J. Hand
We humans have a curious relationship with chance. We're prepared to place bets that events with incredibly small probabilities will occur - such as the 1 in 259 million chance that a ticket will win the Mega Millions lottery. Yet, we go about our everyday lives happily ignoring far larger probabilities - that we might get killed by a lightning strike, for example, which has a chance of about 1 in 3 million in the United States each year. The great mathematician Emile Borel said that sufficiently improbable events never occur.
OPINION
March 16, 2014 | By Christopher Reynolds
These might be the best, busiest, most complex weeks of the year in our house, and it's all because of two threads. One red, one green. The most important is the red one - the cultural tether that stretches back to Chengdu, China, where our daughter, Grace, was born in 2004. Grace was 13 months old when my wife, Mary Frances, and I arrived to adopt her and bring her home to Los Angeles. In our early days as a triple-A (Asian American by adoption) family, I thought we might face some cultural barriers, draw stares, confuse people.
OPINION
March 9, 2014
Re "Night bike race takes a spill," Editorial, March 7 For perhaps 20 years now, Paris has routinely allowed organized bicycle and roller-blading cruises without paralyzing the city for hours each time. Depending on weather, there are between a few hundred to several thousand participants. The routes are posted online. Each departure is led by motorcycle police officers who progressively block the intersections ahead of the pack; they are relieved by the organizers of the race wearing fluorescent vests, allowing for a brief blocking of the intersections along the route.
OPINION
March 9, 2014 | By Dinah Hatton
If you're a city person, you might only have read of chamber pots, an inconvenient though useful contraption from an earlier time. In the part of Texas where I grew up, the term "chamber pot" was a tad too genteel. We called these essentials "slop jars" or just "the pot. " Whatever you called it, I had to empty it. Our house sat on a slight rise facing busy Highway 31. The outhouse was back of the house, toward the woods, maybe 50 feet away. PHOTOS: 5 Senate women to watch in 2014 It was tricky running with the pot to the outhouse.
OPINION
February 20, 2014 | Meghan Daum
It's an idea that, in the death-squeamish U.S., is probably too disturbing for the edgiest TV hospital drama, let alone real life and real legislation. Last week, the Belgian Parliament passed a law allowing terminally ill children to request aid in dying. Adults there have been able to do that since 2002, and a few other European countries have similar measures. But last Thursday's action, which is expected to be signed into law by King Philippe, will make Belgium the first to extend the right to minors faced with "constant and unbearable suffering.
OPINION
February 27, 2014 | By Karen J. Greenberg
In Barack Obama's first weeks in office, in a series of executive orders and public statements, the new president and former professor of constitutional law promised to make sweeping changes in the way government operated in a number of specific areas. But has he kept his pledges? Let's consider four of them: Ending torture On his first day in office, Obama ordered an end to the practice of torture, or as the George W. Bush administration preferred to call it, "enhanced interrogation techniques.
OPINION
March 9, 2014
Re "Democrats lose bid to punish GOP lawmaker," March 6 House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Vista) pulled another right-wing Republican stunt while pretending to examine the IRS' alleged targeting of conservative groups. He continuously browbeat an IRS official and then abruptly adjourned the meeting, refusing to let Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) speak, and then turned off the microphone and left the room. But since no one listens to Issa anyway, Cummings had an opportunity to say something - and everyone was listening.
OPINION
March 9, 2014
Re "Top House Republican proposes tax overhaul," Feb. 27 Your article misleadingly labeled the depreciation schedule for business aircraft as "special treatment. " The depreciation system that applies to the purchase of a business aircraft has been on the books for decades, and also applies to the purchase of delivery vehicles, trucks and forklifts. Unfortunately, each time someone mischaracterizes business aviation, they are really taking aim at an industry that generates more than 1 million American jobs and is responsible for more than $150 billion in economic impact.
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