December 20, 2009 |
Last June, a long time ago in politics, Democrats in the Senate were briefly jubilant. For the first time in a generation, they held 60 seats, the "supermajority" required to control the Senate's proceedings. The road to enacting President Obama's center-left agenda looked, for a moment, almost smooth. But that's not how the Senate works. It's an assembly of 100 independent egos, not a parliament of two disciplined parties. The word "control" doesn't apply. Last week, as Majority Leader Harry Reid struggled to corral 60 votes to move a healthcare bill forward, the jubilation of summer gave way to desperation on cold winter nights -- with occasional flashes of recrimination.
January 16, 2010 |
"Avatar" won a record-breaking six Critics' Choice Movie Awards on Friday night, but it was the independent Iraq war drama "The Hurt Locker" took home the best picture honors from the Broadcast Film Critics Assn. Kathryn Bigelow also won as director of the harrowing ensemble war film. "The Hurt Locker," which is nominated for best picture and director at Sunday's Golden Globes, has received the lion's share of critics' awards, including honors from the L.A. Film Critics Assn.
January 26, 2010 |
Shoppers spent more than they planned during the Christmas season, giving retailers a much-needed sales spurt that industry watchers are hoping will continue this year. Consumers spent an average of $811 on holiday gifts, significantly more than the $699 they initially planned to spend, according to a Consumer Reports survey expected to be released today. About 4 in 5 consumers bought gifts, and in a good sign for discretionary spending, many shoppers bought for themselves, the poll found.
March 22, 2010 |
A stranger wandering into the scene that overtakes downtown Austin, Texas, every year during the music portion of the South by Southwest festival could be forgiven for thinking it was some kind of apocalypse. The din, the trash, the packs of stumblers forming strange clumps of humanity in the middle of each block and then dispersing across the intersections -- the total environment emanates disaster. It's really a party, of course, a packed gathering of fans jumping from club to club in search of the perfect set from the thousand-plus artists playing dozens of showcases in dozens of venues around Austin's core.
December 19, 2007 |
LAHORE, PAKISTAN -- Back in the warrens of Lahore's old city, the boys and young men don't seem too worried about whether American politicians (Hillary Rodham Clinton) or American newsmagazines (Newsweek) think Pakistan might be the most frightening country in the world. Emergency rule doesn't seem to have changed the nightly routine much either. On Noor Street after dark, the cricket bats still come out, an old metal wicket gets set up, and spin bowlers show their stuff to the neighborhood.
February 17, 2010 |
Southern California is headed for a gradual economic recovery in 2010 and 2011, along with the rest of the state and the country, according to a forecast released today. Unemployment will remain elevated, but the entertainment, international trade and tourism sectors will push growth regionally, according to the report from the Kyser Center for Economic Research at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. "The feeling is that the worst is past and we are looking at a modest recovery," said Jack Kyser, founding economist of the center.