The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday made a decision of rare importance, concerning not a pandemic illness but the country’s leading cause of preventable death: smoking. It is crucial the White House stick up for what would be the FDA’s most assertive antismoking policy ever — one that will inevitably meet severe resistance.
Thursday, June 23, 2022
A pastime around our office in early 2021 was guessing when Democrats would begin to point out that President Joe Biden was too old for the job and should pack it in. The consensus was after a drubbing in the midterm election, but congrats to the colleague (he knows who he is) who figured sometime early this year. He wins the office pool because the drive to shove the president out the door has already begun.
Wednesday, June 22, 2022
North Carolinians along with most other folks who visit a gas station these days, now pay close to, or in excess of, $5.00 a gallon. Why?
Saturday, June 18, 2022
High temperatures have been bearing down lately, even before the season officially turns to summer. For many of us, it’s beyond uncomfortable. It could feel like being trapped in a furnace. Or Texas.
Thursday, June 16, 2022
On Jan. 6, 2021, a mob descended on the U.S. Capitol, seeking to disrupt the joint session of Congress gathered to officially certify the results of the 2020 presidential election.
The conventional wisdom on abortion polling is that the Supreme Court is walking into a gale-force political wind if it overturns Roe v. Wade. Gallup reported last week that 55% of Americans identify as pro-choice, up six points since 2021 and near a record high. The Journal’s poll last week says 68% of people hope the Supreme Court doesn’t completely overturn Roe.
Americans maintain a bargain with their police: Officers will run toward danger while the rest of us seek shelter, and in exchange we cede to police enormous discretion, abundant resources and the benefit of the doubt regarding their actions. That bargain is too rarely examined absent a shocking and deadly incident. The police murder of George Floyd was one such breakdown. The killing of 19 elementary school students and two adults on May 24 in Uvalde, Texas, is another.
Schools have been returning to normal, for better or for worse, over the last two years. The next “normal” comes at the end of June, when the federal government will let the sun set on universal free school lunch. For people who work in education policy, the impending cutoff has been a concern for months.
Donald Trump abused his national security power by slapping tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to support domestic producers. Now President Biden is stealing from his predecessor’s industrial policy guidebook by invoking the Defense Production Act to boost domestic green energy. Don’t laugh — the White House wants to make solar panels and heat pumps to stop Vladimir Putin.
If the members of North Carolina’s congressional delegation want to show they really stand with the American people they have a chance to do it by passing the common-sense agenda President Joe Biden outlined Thursday in his nationally televised speech.
Children in the United States today live in a country where their lives, well-being and future are of little concern to many of the adults with the power and responsibility to protect them.
Once upon a time political party bosses gathered behind closed doors, in what in a quainter time would be termed “smoke-filled rooms,” to anoint their candidates for public offices.
You would think, after the House Bill 2 backlash that occurred in 2016, North Carolina Republicans might think twice before pouring gasoline on the flames of divisive social issues.
Imagine a successful small-business owner who wants to run for Congress. To jump-start his campaign, he might lend it some money. Once fundraising gets going, it can pay him back. But the law says donations arriving after Election Day may repay only $250,000 of candidate debt. If the businessman loans his campaign more than that amount, he’s taking a real financial risk.
Republican politicians, including some of the party’s top leaders, openly espouse versions of a white supremacist conspiracy theory holding that an orchestrated effort is underway to displace white Americans. A recently published poll found that almost half of Republicans believe that immigrants are being brought to the United States as part of such an effort.
President Biden likes to tout his role as “Sheriff Joe” in the Obama administration, where he helped distribute and monitor billions in recovery aid in response to the Great Recession. But another key part of the cleanup from the 2008 financial crisis was tighter regulation of Wall Street banks. In that area, Biden is in danger of not getting his own sheriffs in place.
Abortion rights represent, perhaps, the deepest of many chasms that divide the American people — sometimes even when they’re getting their facts from the same sources. It’s unlikely that many minds will be changed by oft-repeated talking points — and certainly not by some of the insulting and often medically inaccurate rhetoric that comes from the Republican contingency. On this issue, the party has no compunctions left about forcing what is, ultimately, its religious beliefs onto the rest of the American public. So be it. They’re winning.
In some ways, there’s nothing new or terribly surprising when large bureaucracies — be they government agencies or big corporations — are revealed to be plagued by waste and malfeasance. Humans and their institutions being as they are, flawed and prone to foibles like incompetence, greed, sloth, overpromising, and favoritism; such revelations have been a constant in the American experience since prior to the country’s founding.
North Carolina has experienced some of the fastest growth in the country in recent years, mostly in cities, but it hasn’t been without consequences.
The 428,000 net new jobs last month in the Labor Department’s Friday report is mildly encouraging since every major industry added workers. But the report also contains a warning that inflationary pressure may be starting to hurt the labor market.