Too Little Time

But this one had a twist. The 125 donors were all from the broadcast industry, a special-interest group that finds itself in the rare and enviable position of not having to wait until after the election to draw a return on its political capital. In fact, the checks they cast upon Lazio that night have… Read more »

Playing With Numbers

My friend Rob took as few classes as possible at Stanford. He had top-notch SAT scores and high-school grades, and he was smart enough to graduate even if he was less at ease in the library than party-hopping in a caveman suit. We took one class together and were assigned Gulliver’s Travels—a book I had… Read more »

The Legislative Shuffle

Thirty-nine members of the Ohio House–Davidson included–will be forced out this year, when the eight-year term limits that voters imposed on members of the state House and Senate in 1992 finally ripen. A full third of the members who would have been termed out this year have already left, snatching the first attractive opportunities to… Read more »

Sex in the Digital City

We spent the rest of the night talking and playing music together next to a pile of beer bottles and a pool table. He looked about 21 years old and wore black. He said he had grown up in Canada, someplace near Toronto that I’d never heard of. He had sex with lots of people,… Read more »

Global Shell Games

It’s a shopping spree a defense contractor might love. But this time the Pentagon is not involved; nor any other part of the government, for that matter. Instead the strange prices are the work of multinational corporations, and one of the biggest tax avoidance scams this country has ever seen. The ideological Right makes a… Read more »

Loosening the Golden Handcuffs

Now, teleport yourself across the country to a vault under the streets of Manhattan. Here the U.S. Federal Reserve holds more than 8,000 tons of gold–around four times annual global production and more gold than is thought to be in all the mines of the United States. Most of this gold belongs to the Federal… Read more »

Canada’s Burning Reader Response

“Canada’s Burning! Media myths about universal health coverage, ” by Theodore Marmor and Kip Sullivan, falsely assume that what works for Canadian health care consumers is relevant in the U.S. and that bashing the media messenger will disprove the facts and opinions that journalists report. And they downplay and deny the well known but inconvenient… Read more »

Canada’s Burning!

The three major reports on Canada, by The Washington Post, The New York Times, and ABC News, used the overcrowding problem as evidence that Canada’s universal health insurance program was critically flawed. The problems of Canadian emergency rooms, in short, indicted Canada’s medicare. The two major reports on the problem in the United States, by… Read more »

One Cheer For Soft Money

Translation: national government is corrupt largely because of soft money and by clamping down on soft money, political corruption will shrivel. It’s a simple and appealing formula. As with most such formulas, however, it misreads reality and promises more than it can deliver. Though we do need to address any possible corruption resulting from campaign… Read more »

Reasonable Doubts

Courts are supposed to be finders of fact. Yet there’s an awful lot about the criminal justice system that keeps them from ever getting to those facts. Some of the obstacles are straight-forwardly bad laws. Others are more a question of resources and oversight. We could help our courts get past some of these obstacles… Read more »