Vice President Biden’s ‘Moonshot’

Vice President Joe Biden goes on the attack against cancer. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Last year, cancer killed an estimated 589,430 Americans. And despite recent advances in treatment, it stubbornly remains a leading cause of death. Can Vice President Joe Biden lead an American offensive that will vanquish the dreaded disease once and for all? We hope so. And while we acknowledge the danger of buying into the “moonshot”… Read More

Obama’s Regret

President Barack Obama  used his final State of the Union  address to appeal for unity. (Evan Vucci/Newscom)

In his final State of the Union address last week, President Barack Obama reminded the country that optimism and hope are the tried-and-true American responses to hard times and to demagogues. Although he didn’t refer to a specific Republican candidate by name, it was clear that in attempting to return to the grand philosophical vision… Read More

Responding to North Korea

Last Friday, South Korea resumed its high-decibel loudspeaker propaganda attack against North Korea, which two days earlier had tested a nuclear weapon in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions. As the hermit nation led by Kim Jong Un suffered the ear- popping onslaught of K-pop songs and weather reports, talks were underway elsewhere on how… Read More

Balance of Rights

President Barack Obama has set his sights on the rights that gun violence has taken away. (PHILIP COBURN)

In announcing executive action to reduce gun violence across the nation last week, President Barack Obama called for balancing Second Amendment gun rights with other liberties. As he did so, he recited a litany of those whose elementary rights were taken away by gun violence: The “right to worship freely and safely … was denied… Read More

Seeing Through the Transparency Bill

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked’s bill most certainly would promote intimidation. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90)

Under a bill introduced by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked of the right-wing Jewish Home party and approved by the Israeli Cabinet on Dec. 27, new rules are going to be imposed on Israeli nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that receive funding support from foreign governments.  According to supporters, the Shaked bill is a “transparency bill” designed to… Read More

No Reason to Spy

One of the many surprising revelations made by  Edward Snowden in 2013 was that the National  Security Agency was tapping the phone conversations of world leaders, most famously German Chancellor Angela Merkel, a key U.S. ally. That led President Barack Obama in January 2014 to announce that the United States would no longer spy on… Read More

Unparalleled Race

In case you haven’t noticed — or alternatively, you’ve noticed too much and have tuned out the endless headlines and reports over who said what and who insulted whom — the presidential election season, that quadrennial bacchanalia of wall-to-wall coverage, jingoistic slogans, sleazy ads and fever-pitched rallies, is firmly upon us. Dear readers, welcome to… Read More

Is a Jewish Dentist a Security Threat?

The crime of practicing dentistry while Jewish would be funny if it wasn’t true. But by all appearances, that’s exactly what led a retired dentist, Dr. Gershon Pincus, to be denied a needed security clearance to continue treating patients at an off-base naval clinic in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. We would normally question such accounts as… Read More

Justice, Not Vengeance, for Freddie Gray

A protester carries a sign outside the City Circuit Court House during jury deliberations in the trial 
of William G. Porter.

The mistrial of Baltimore Police Officer William G. Porter, who was on trial for the death of Freddie Gray, likely satisfied no one. Most disappointed appear to be those who wanted to see Porter convicted of the charges against him: involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and misconduct in office. The fact that there was… Read More

Progress in the Absence of Peace

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin: “Cultivating channels of communication … improves our situation.” (Itzike via Wikimedia Commons.)

In an op-ed in The Washington Post last week, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin outlined a kinder, gentler right-wing approach to the Palestinians living under Israeli control that would focus on improving basic services and quality of life in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. In the absence of “a viable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,”… Read More