| Nov 25, 2014
| 7:44 AM
One little-recognized reality of poverty in America is how closely it lurks beneath the surface of even a successful professional life. A bad career turn, a couple of financial missteps, and -- here comes the dizzying plunge from middle class to...
| Dec 4, 2014
| 2:30 AM
There is nothing like a little heat from a third political party to get the attention of career politicians who wish to stay in office.
Nigel Farage, leader of the upstart UK Independent Party (UKIP), has been turning up the heat on British Prime...
| Nov 4, 2014
| 2:30 AM
Forget the race "card." In this election, Democrats have been playing the entire race "deck."
The Wall Street Journal has listed some of the more outrageous ads and flyers designed to frighten African-Americans into believing that all opposition to...
| Oct 19, 2014
| 6:54 PM
State Sen. Darrell Steinberg officially stepped off the stage last week. And Sen. Kevin de León stepped on it. Did he ever!
Drums, mariachis, a color guard, political VIPs. It was a full-throated "inauguration" at Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown...
| Oct 14, 2014
| 5:08 PM
National polling on the Nov. 4 midterm elections confirms a doleful trend that's been firming up all year: Voters aren't enthusiastic about their choices — on either side.
A Gallup Poll last week found that only 32% of voters said they felt...
| Sep 2, 2013
All of us have had times when we've needed help. Maybe we were hobbled by a broken leg or laid up after surgery. Maybe it was just a lousy flu, something that knocked us out and made us ask another to lend a hand.
That never feels good. We don't like to...
| Jun 9, 2013
The steamboat conveying Andrew Jackson up the Ohio River toward his tumultuous 1829 inauguration had brooms lashed to its bow, symbolizing Old Hickory's vow to clean up Washington. But sweeping out Washington's Augean stables, like painting the Golden...
| Apr 2, 2013
The government in Britain recently did something interesting.
It asked everyone receiving an "incapacity benefit" — a disability program slowly being phased out under new reforms — to submit to a medical test to confirm they were too...
| Oct 8, 2013
For all the acrimony in Washington over Obamacare, there's an intriguing consensus around one issue: the ratchet effect. Neither side uses the term, but both the right and left treat it as an article of faith.
The term was coined by the libertarian...
| Nov 3, 2013
| 5:00 AM
Never mind the conventional speculation about whether the resolution of some political standoff in Washington favors Republicans or Democrats, liberals or conservatives, "entitlement" fans or skeptics.
The more fundamental question, says Benjamin...
| Jul 25, 2013
| 2:16 PM
If there's an iron rule in economics, it is Stein's Law (named after Herb, former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers): "If something cannot go on forever, it will stop."
Detroit, for example, can no longer go on borrowing, spending, raising...