Opinion: Columnists

Jan. 31, 2015 @ 10:49 PM

Google Fiber, a plus for us, could deepen divide

The news that Google, that juggernaut of the Information Age, is bringing super-high-speed Internet connections to Durham and the rest of the Triangle generated no small amount of excitement last week.


Jan. 31, 2015 @ 10:14 AM

Free speech faces threats

Freedom of speech is one of the core values of a free society. It ought to be appreciated and protected by Americans across the political spectrum. Unfortunately, it is not. And while no party or faction is immune from the temptation to silence messages or messengers they don’t like, most of the threats to free speech today come from the modern Left.


Jan. 31, 2015 @ 09:53 AM

The realities of ‘serving at the pleasure’

Steve Logan, former East Carolina University head football coach, recently remarked that things don’t usually turn out well for head coaches. The same is often true for anyone who serves “at the pleasure” of someone or some group. UNC President Tom Ross is the latest example.


Jan. 31, 2015 @ 08:40 AM

On girls and books – and knowing body and soul

My daughter declared C. S. Lewis a heretic.  She was about 6, and her father had just read the part in “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” where Aslan the lion kills Jadis the witch.  She had a sense that readers are to celebrate Jadis’s death, and she protested. “But she is a child of God!”


Jan. 30, 2015 @ 01:44 PM

We could have predicted ‘Cake Wars II’

We should have seen this one coming.

This is America, after all, a country having no shortage of people with, apparently, too much time on their hands. So someone should have predicted Cake Wars II.


Jan. 28, 2015 @ 08:23 PM

Bud Selig's winning legacy

The business of baseball and the nation's business used to be conducted in Washington with similar skill. The Washington Senators were run by Clark Griffith, who said: "Fans like home runs, and we have assembled a pitching staff to please our fans." Today, however, Washington's team is a model of best practices. The government? Less so.


Jan. 27, 2015 @ 10:26 AM

Martin: Tom Ross in William Friday’s footsteps 30 years later

“He's got great job security,” someone asserted a few years ago when UNC President Tom Ross' job first seemed to be at risk after the party affiliation of UNC’s board of governors changed.


Jan. 26, 2015 @ 01:01 PM

Why serious people discount Fox News

Tucker Carlson said on Fox that more children die of bathtub drownings than of accidental shootings. They don't.


Jan. 25, 2015 @ 12:36 PM

Vermont's Sanders has mountains to climb

The young man who answered the phone in the Senate office of Vermont's Bernie Sanders told the caller, a would-be campaign contributor, that it is illegal for funds to be accepted on federal property. He advised the person to contact Sanders' political operation, which might become a presidential campaign.


Jan. 23, 2015 @ 03:14 PM

Something obscene about civil asset forfeitures

Imagine this:

You get pulled over by police. Maybe they claim you were seven miles over the speed limit, maybe they say you made an improper lane change. Doesn't matter, because the traffic stop is only a pretext.


Jan. 21, 2015 @ 08:17 PM

George Will: The mushrooming welfare state

America’s national character will have to be changed if progressives are going to implement their agenda. So, changing social norms is the progressive agenda. To understand how far this has advanced, and how difficult it will be to reverse the inculcation of dependency, consider the data Nicholas Eberstadt deploys in National Affairs quarterly:


Jan. 20, 2015 @ 02:50 PM

Leaving proudly, but not with enthusiasm

“Fired with enthusiasm.”

Last week I was reminded of that quote attributed to Clark Kerr, the legendary president of the multi-campus University of California. It is what he said when, shortly after Ronald Reagan’s election as governor in 1966, university regents ousted Kerr. He joked that he left the university the same way he came in, “fired with enthusiasm.”


Jan. 20, 2015 @ 12:35 PM

Pontiff wrong on limiting freedom of expression

or what it's worth, there are a few that are acceptable. You don't threaten or incite violence. You don't defame. You don't produce child pornography. And you don't falsely shout "Fire!" in the proverbial crowded theater.


Jan. 18, 2015 @ 12:08 PM

Mitt's third run would be no charm

After his third loss, in 1908, as the Democratic presidential nominee, William Jennings Bryan enjoyed telling the story of the drunk who three times tried to enter a private club. After being tossed out into the street a third time, the drunk said: "They can't fool me. Those fellows don't want me in there!" 


Jan. 17, 2015 @ 10:36 AM

UNC-Chapel Hill policy draws lawsuit

Another wave of bad publicity and legal questions isn’t what the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill needs. But that’s exactly what the school is getting, thanks to its longstanding and troubling use of race as a major factor in admissions.