Now that two of the last three Democratic presidencies have been emphatically judged to have been failures, the world's oldest political party -- the primary architect of this nation's administrative state -- has some thinking to do. The accumulating evidence that the Democratic Party is an exhausted volcano includes its fixation with stale ideas, such as the supreme importance of a 23rd increase in the minimum wage. Can this party be so blinkered by the modest success of its third recent presidency, Bill Clinton's, that it will sleepwalk into the next election behind Hillary Clinton?
Government is far, far bigger than it used to be. Liberals generally cheer this development. Conservatives regret it. To understand the disagreement about this change, one must first understand the magnitude of the change.
They say they are going to rape Shoshana Roberts.
She's the star of a hidden camera video that has gone viral. Posted by Hollaback!, a group that campaigns against the street harassment of women -- "catcalling" -- it shows Roberts taking a silent stroll through New York City. Over the course of 10 hours, she records over a hundred instances of unwanted attention from unknown men.
Unlike the dog that chased the car until, to its consternation, he caught it, Republicans know what do with what they have caught. Having completed their capture of control of the legislative branch, they should start with the following six measures concerning practical governance and constitutional equilibrium.
Hillsborough writer Hal Crowther is widely admired for his provocative columns and ability to shock us by his creative use of words, phrases, comparisons and images as powerful weapons that can persuade or provoke us.
You can't handle the truth.
There is a temptation to take that line from Jack Nicholson -- snarled at Tom Cruise in "A Few Good Men" -- as the moral of the story, the lesson to be learned from a new study on trustworthiness and the news media.
Mix a pitcher of martinis Tuesday evening to fortify yourself against the torrent of election returns painting a pointillist portrait of the nation's mind. Before you become too mellow to care, consider some indexes of our civic tendencies.
A couple weeks ago, I finally finished after many fits and starts a wonderful book by my old friend and former colleague Ed Williams.
Williams, now retired, was for many years editor of the editorial pages at The Charlotte Observer, and for several of those years I was a mid-level editor on the news side of the paper. His book, “Liberating Dixie,” is a collection of columns and editorials he crafted with characteristic grace, wisdom and incisiveness over the years. Reading it was in some ways discouraging, since I was reminded on page after page how I could never measure up to the caliber of Williams’ work.
I’ve learned how to “tweet.” This involves putting words together to share, using 140 characters. One of my most “retweeted” “tweets” on the Internet came out after a tragedy had everyone in panic mode. These were the words: “The world is transfixed by fear. Perfect love whispers in fear’s ear to turn his head toward hope.”
It was the summer of 1969 the first time I came here, two months shy of my 12th birthday.
As the 2014 election cycle draws to a close, few states have drawn so much national attention as North Carolina, thanks to the tight Hagan-Tillis race, the dramatic turn in state government from blue to red, and our status as a presidential swing state in 2008 and 2012.
For longtime residents of the state, however, national attention is nothing new.
In a sun-dappled square decorated with scores of entrants in the community's Halloween scarecrow contest, a balky sound system enables, if barely, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate to exhort a few hundred people, mostly supporters, to urge neighbors to vote to reduce Sen. Harry Reid to minority leader. The exhorter is David Perdue, a glutton for punishment who has been campaigning incessantly for 15 months and may be doing so for two more.
Who are North Carolina’s public intellectuals?
Over the years we have been blessed with influential and thoughtful people whose wise commentaries about the state’s concerns often moved public opinion.
The early morning paramilitary-style raids on citizens' homes were conducted by law enforcement officers, sometimes wearing bulletproof vests and lugging battering rams, pounding on doors and issuing threats. Spouses were separated as the police seized computers, including those of children still in pajamas. Clothes drawers, including the children's, were ransacked, cellphones were confiscated and the citizens were told it would be a crime to tell anyone of the raids.