Cain's smoking ad: Amateurish, genius or dumb luck?. WASHINGTONHerman Cain's craggy-faced Chief of Staff Mark Block took a drag off a cigarette, blew smoke at the camera and sent the political class into coughing fits.Theories about what Block intended have run the gamut from James Carville's "He was drunk
WASHINGTON—Herman Cain's craggy-faced Chief of Staff Mark Block took a drag off a cigarette, blew smoke at the camera and sent the political class into coughing fits.Theories about what Block intended have run the gamut from James Carville's "He was drunk," to amateurish campaigning, to post-modern genius. Me? I'm leaning toward accidental brilliance.
WASHINGTONThe operative maxim in cable television can be summed up as follows: Is it good TV?Brilliant is good, but not enough. Attractive is imperative, but not enough. Also needed are tension, conflict and passion. Television is visual storytelling and it doesn't succeed without all elements working in sync with
WASHINGTON — By the time Steve Jobs' Wikipedia page had been adjusted to past tense, eulogists had added a footnote to his biography of success. Failure.Jobs, though wildly successful, also failed often and badly. Therein, we note posthumously, lies perhaps the larger lesson of his life: Sometimes you have to fail to succeed.
Celebrating another taboo 'F'-word: failure. WASHINGTONBy the time Steve Jobs' Wikipedia page had been adjusted to past tense, eulogists had added a footnote to his biography of success. Failure.Jobs, though wildly successful, also failed often and badly. Therein, we note posthumously, lies perhaps the larger lesson of his life
In my opinion, capital punishment is barbaric, for Troy Davis and all others.
Will God be on Perry's side?. That's the mirror-mirror question for Republicans.
The latest trend in the media world is "trending." That is, monitoring what people are buzzing about and directing coverage accordingly.
Take names. Remember them. The behavior of certain Republicans who call themselves tea party conservatives makes them the most destructive posse of misguided "patriots" we've seen in recent memory.
Most would agree that one would have to stoop pretty low to question the story of a man's mother's death.
MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell says he’d own up if it were his. Jon Stewart says he doesn’t remember his old friend being quite all that!
NEW YORK — In a slender essay titled "Here Is New York," E.B. White wrote about the implausibility of the great city, mentioning among other things the millions of gallons of water needed each day just so people could brush their teeth.
Once upon a time, Ma would say: “Sit up and eat your vegetables.” Pa said: “Don’t talk with your mouth full.”
Sitting under the lush palms and blue skies of the richest Americans’ favorite resort — during off-season when the rich wouldn’t be caught dead here, I hastily add — I naturally couldn’t wait to watch Mitt Romney's PowerPoint presentation on health care.
NEW YORK — If you really, really dislike Barack Obama, his long-form birth certificate, finally proffered in exasperation, is quite simply a counterfeit.
As the number of Republicans declaring themselves potential presidential candidates has begun to look like a conga line without music, hope lingered that somewhere unnoticed was a brilliant dark horse biding his sweet time.
NEW YORK — So why do Republicans hate art, the elderly and children?
Whether the topic is Libya’s rebels or Afghanistan’s “reconciliation” with the Taliban, the pivotal question is, or should be: What about the women?
NEW YORK — It would be hard to find two more compelling, formidable women in American public life than South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and fellow South Carolinian and philanthropist Darla Moore.
SAG HARBOR, N.Y. — Everybody wants to save the children. It’s the cliche that tipped the point that jumped the shark in a perfect storm.
Now would be a very good time to be a cartoonist. Or perhaps not. As the late cartoonist Doug Marlette frequently lamented, “How do you cartoon a cartoon? We’re living in ‘Toon Town.’”
It is hard to think largely about the sweep of events when one is reacting instantaneously to breaking ... tweets.
The turmoil in Egypt has been a lesson in the fragility of a right we so often take for granted: to speak.
He didn’t say it. That word: “exceptional.” Barack Obama described an exceptional nation in his State of the Union address, but he studiously avoided using the word conservatives long to hear.
As a longtime champion of greater civility in public discourse and one who has led the charge for dialed-back rhetoric, may I respectfully take most of it back?
NEW YORK — It is bracing, not to mention annoying, laughable and obnoxious, to hear a White House press secretary lectured by a Russian journalist about the parameters of free expression American-style.
While sorting through the perennial lip-pursing tempest about a certain word in Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” — the “N-word,” as we now say it — I turned for inspiration to the master himself.
Thanks to WikiLeaks, even Vlad the Putin can raise an eyebrow and presume to know more about founding American principles, democracy and free speech.
Two words: Narrative, schmarrative.
NEW YORK — In 1991, the world divided itself in two camps: those who believed Anita Hill and those who didn’t. I fell somewhere in the middle: She may have told the truth, but so what?
Fair is foul, and foul is fair. There’s something witchy in the air.
NEW YORK — If you haven’t been humming tunes from “Les Miserables,” you haven’t seen “Inside Job,” the new documentary about how our economic crisis evolved.
The suicide of an 18-year-old Rutgers University student following an unimaginable invasion of his privacy has launched an overdue examination of casual — and possibly criminal — disregard for others’ personal space.
NEW YORK — After living in New York City for a few weeks, I’ve reached a few conclusions about the great political divide in America.
Of course I knew it all along. President Barack Obama is a Kenyan anti-colonialist and that’s why he doesn’t get us. He’s a ticked-off African.
NEW YORK — How worried are Democrats? V-E-R-Y.
August finally redeemed itself from shark-jumping hysteria with an original, spontaneous, transcendent event — the accidental intersection of one Antoine Dodson, his sister, her would-be rapist, and some musical magicians who tapped into that uniquely American reservoir of salvation — irreverence.
As I was perusing headlines that seem seldom to change -- mosque, immigration, sacred ground, 9/11, more mosque -- an unlikely trio intruded upon my malaise: Paul Newman, Rodney King and John Lennon.
As I was perusing headlines that seem seldom to change — mosque, immigration, sacred ground, 9/11, more mosque — an unlikely trio intruded upon my malaise: Paul Newman, Rodney King and John Lennon.
NEW YORK — It is hard to imagine that anything has gone unsaid about the so-called ground zero mosque, but we seem to be missing an important point.
Observing the Michelle Obama vacation controversy unfold, one is of multiple minds.
We’ve heard much these past few years about “small town values,” most recently iterated and personified by Sarah Palin.
When people think of New Orleans, most think of jazz, hurricane cocktails, Katrina — and now the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The current Journolist controversy that has the blogosphere heaving sparks, and Washington even more self-absorbed than usual, is weak tea — a tempest in Barbie’s teacup.
It is often said that there are no new stories, just different ways of telling the same ones. Familiar plots persist through literature: man versus nature, “rags to riches,” the hero quest, and so on.
Fifty years ago today, a novel hit America’s bookshelves that changed the way millions thought about race and the inexplicable South.
Sometimes it takes a scientific study to reveal the obvious. The latest discovery — that touch influences how we perceive things — is something like the warning on a steaming cup of coffee.
If Bill Clinton was our first black president, as Toni Morrison once proclaimed, then Barack Obama may be our first woman president.