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OPINION
September 9, 2012
Re "Pedal empowerment," Column One, Sept. 6 How much would it cost to get Brazilian Judge Jose Henrique Mallman, who started a program in which inmates can reduce their prison terms by riding bikes to charge batteries that power boardwalk lamps, up here to revamp our archaic criminal justice system? The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world. We can no longer afford this dubious first-place trophy, nor can we afford the human wreckage left behind by convicts who have served their time.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 26, 2014 | By a Times staff writer
The industrial city of Vernon in southeast Los Angeles County has long been known for its small number of residents and voters - just 42 turned out for a municipal election last year, for example. So on Friday, when city leaders and state and national elected officials announced the groundbreaking of a new apartment complex in the city, it was hailed as a good governance reform that will bring more voters to the city. The 45-unit Vernon Village Park is hailed as an environmentally conscious, energy-efficient facility that, as city officials put it, "will make the concept of a live/work community a reality in Vernon.
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OPINION
April 20, 2014
Re "Obamacare enrollments top 8 million," April 18 As a physician devoted to the care of the indigent, I applaud President Obama's initiative to provide healthcare insurance for uninsured Americans. That reporting enrollments in a federal program is considered front-page news underscores the troubled history of this program. Of far deeper concern is that these are just enrollments. In other words, the hard work has not even begun. With the most expensive healthcare system in the world by an order of 10, and one that has many Byzantine contortions to stymie patients and providers alike, providing cost-effective care to those previously considered uninsurable will certainly stress the system in unforeseeable ways.
NEWS
April 25, 2014 | Lisa Mascaro
WASHINGTON -- The push-pull of immigration reform is intensifying as Congress prepares to return to work for one of the last few legislative sessions before the midterm elections. The window for Congress to approve an immigration overhaul is closing, but House Speaker John A. Boehner continues to suggest that action is still possible -- even as he mocked his colleagues who find the hot-button issue too difficult. "Here's the attitude: Ohhhh. Don't make me do this. Ohhhh. This is too hard," Boehner said, mimicking a whining tone, at an Ohio luncheon, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.
OPINION
December 25, 2013
Re "Mexico's energy reform is the latest setback for leftists," Dec. 22 Though many Mexicans still feel resistant to allowing foreign companies to drill for oil in Mexico, the state-run Pemex today is hardly what President Lazaro Cardenas envisioned when he established it in 1938 to provide for the Mexican people. Indeed, the company has failed utterly in one of its most basic tasks: supplying subsidized, cheap fuel to Mexicans, half of whom live in poverty. Mexico's energy reforms are poised to bring desperately needed foreign capital and technical expertise, enabling the country to make the most of its vast hydrocarbon wealth and bring down energy prices.
OPINION
September 1, 2009
The tragic case of Jaycee Lee Dugard, abducted at the age of 11 and allegedly held captive for 18 years in a backyard complex of tents and outbuildings at an Antioch home, has raised a newly relevant question: How could the alleged kidnappers and their victims have hidden in plain sight for so long? And does the apparent failure of parole agents to detect the ongoing crimes show that reforms to the state's parole system are a bad idea? Phillip Garrido and his wife, Nancy, who have been charged with 29 counts of kidnapping and rape, were well known to law enforcement officials.
NEWS
April 13, 2012
Editorial cartoonist Jeff Danziger re-envisions IRS Form 1040, just in time for the April 17 filing deadline. Click on the image below to see it at full size. ALSO: Photo gallery: Ted Rall cartoons Daum: The radical message of 'Girls' Reading between the lines of Obama's tax return
NEWS
May 10, 2011 | By Michael A. Memoli
Mitt Romney's campaign announced Tuesday that the former Massachusetts governor will deliver a speech on healthcare reform in Michigan on Thursday, taking head-on an issue that is widely seen as his biggest vulnerability in the Republican nomination battle. The campaign says Romney will lay out a plan to "repeal and replace Obamacare" -- the federal health reform law that resembles the plan enacted during Romney's single term as the Bay State's governor -- and replace it with "reforms that lower costs and empower states to craft their own healthcare solutions.
OPINION
March 5, 2009
Re "A smart play on health," Opinion, March 1 I'm pleased to see that the president is attempting to enact comprehensive healthcare reform by advocating its economic benefits. Despite evidence that America's medical system costs more per capita than any system administered by a government and paid for by taxes, opponents of reform have cited cost as a reason not to provide adequate healthcare to our poorest citizens. The moral incentive of aiding disadvantaged Americans has, sadly, proved itself unable to galvanize support for national healthcare.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 14, 2009 | Eric Bailey
These are desperate days in the California statehouse. Lawmakers are floundering as they attempt to halt a financial meltdown. Their popularity has plunged even lower than usual. Now the 120 women and men of the California Legislature face another daunting challenge: a growing push to reconstruct the way state government works. If legislative leaders and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger don't take steps to overhaul their operations, it might be done for them.
WORLD
April 24, 2014 | By Christi Parsons
SEOUL -- President Obama plans to honor those who died in the Korean War with a surprising message for a foreign audience: a pitch for immigration reform back home. At a naturalization ceremony Friday for 13 U.S. service members and seven military spouses stationed in South Korea, he will offer a tribute to the contributions that naturalized American citizens have made through military service, according to an official familiar with the event. The ceremony offers a rare setting for a recurrent Obama message: that the U.S. will benefit if immigrants who already make the sacrifices of citizenship can enjoy the rights and privileges that go along with it. The remarks, coming in the middle of an eight-day tour of Asia, will also be the opening message to a South Korean audience worried about national security and looking for reassurance from their ally.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 22, 2014 | By Garrett Therolf
Los Angeles County supervisors have begun weighing recommendations to dramatically rework the safety net for tens of thousands of abused and neglected children, including what would be the most significant reorganization of county government since 2007. The Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Protection has said a linchpin of a proposed package of reforms is the creation of a new child welfare czar. The executive would have broad powers to move money and people across departmental lines to support a more unified and effective approach to the protection of children, the panel said.
OPINION
April 20, 2014
Re "Obamacare enrollments top 8 million," April 18 As a physician devoted to the care of the indigent, I applaud President Obama's initiative to provide healthcare insurance for uninsured Americans. That reporting enrollments in a federal program is considered front-page news underscores the troubled history of this program. Of far deeper concern is that these are just enrollments. In other words, the hard work has not even begun. With the most expensive healthcare system in the world by an order of 10, and one that has many Byzantine contortions to stymie patients and providers alike, providing cost-effective care to those previously considered uninsurable will certainly stress the system in unforeseeable ways.
WORLD
April 19, 2014 | By Carol J. Williams
Amid low expectations, it came as a surprise to Western diplomats when Russia signed off on an agreement calling for armed separatists in eastern Ukraine to lay down their weapons and surrender the public buildings they have been occupying for weeks. What hasn't been surprising in the days since is Russia's apparent unwillingness to ensure that those terms are quickly and cleanly enforced. Russian President Vladimir Putin has two objectives in what the Ukrainian and Western governments say is his thinly disguised backing of the separatists.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2014 | By Abby Sewell
Los Angeles County officials proposed a budget Monday that would pump money into reforming some major problem areas, including the jail and foster care systems, and expanding staffing in medical facilities to manage the transition to federal healthcare reform. As part of a new $26-billion spending plan that builds on post-recession economic improvements, County Chief Executive William T Fujioka proposes adding more than 1,300 new positions to county government, including nurses, social workers and staff for the newly created Sheriff's Department inspector general.
NEWS
April 12, 2014 | By Don Lee
WASHINGTON - The U.S. made clear this week that it wants the International Monetary Fund to be the emergency lender for countries like Ukraine, but American lawmakers have persistently refused to give the IMF the additional financial firepower that it has sought. That tension was evident in meetings concluding this weekend of the IMF, the World Bank and representatives of the Group of 20 major economies: Washington's long delay in ratifying changes to the IMF's so-called quota system came under fire from finance ministers and other officials of many countries.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 12, 2012 | George Skelton, Capitol Journal
SACRAMENTO - Good reform ideas are a dime a dozen. Look in any faculty lounge. But successful strategies for implementing those ideas are rare. Espousing sweeping reform that can't be enacted because it's politically unacceptable is a common habit of profs, pols and pundits. There also are idealists unwilling to compromise, who'd rather strike out than bunt the runner to the next base. California Forward, a blue-ribbon reform group, is none of that. But the think tank provides a case study of how difficult it is to enact significant change when confronted by the status quo. Not that every proposed reform is golden or all status quo rotten.
OPINION
January 15, 2011
During the George W. Bush administration, the goal of promoting democracy in the Middle East was so intertwined with the invasion and occupation of Iraq that it became discredited in some quarters. That may explain why President Obama's advocacy of democracy in the region has been more subdued than that of his predecessor. That may be changing. In a speech this week in Qatar, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton warned Middle Eastern leaders, many of them autocrats, that "in too many places, in too many ways, the region's foundations are sinking into the sand.
WORLD
April 6, 2014 | By Carol J. Williams
MOSCOW - It can take Moscow residents two hours in dense traffic to drive the first 10 miles on the highway to St. Petersburg, in the direction of their country cottages surrounded by lakes and birch groves. Then the road's real limitations become apparent. The potholed two-lane route connecting Russia's two largest cities has never been upgraded into a proper highway. Anyone who cares to drive its entire 440-mile length - mostly truckers - will need at least 12 hours. But 5,600 miles away, the government spent more than $1 billion on less than a mile of bridge connecting Vladivostok with Russky Island, previously inhabited only by a military garrison so isolated that four soldiers starved to death in 1992.
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