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The Nation

on Oct 14, 2014 - 17:16 PM ET
Jim Webb

When Jim Webb announced he is thinking seriously about running for president in 2016, it did not exactly excite hearts and minds among the Beltway crowd. The former senator from Virginia was widely regarded as an odd duck who does his own thinking, stubbornly goes his own way. He dropped out of electoral politics after one term in the Senate and resumed his successful career as a writer. Webb’s best-selling novel, Fields of Fire, captured the reality of...

on Oct 6, 2014 - 11:29 AM ET
Secret Service

Reading details of the Secret Service’s failure to protect the president, I was jolted by a sudden premonition. Our country is once again risking “the fire next time.” James Baldwin’s dreadful prophecy—a phrase he borrowed from an old Negro spiritual—was published in 1963 when the civil rights movement was approaching its climactic triumph. Yet the novelist’s resonant warning came true a few years later. Cities across America were...

on Sep 23, 2014 - 14:15 PM ET
ISIS Strike

The war whoops of the pundit class helped propel the nation into yet another doomed military adventure in the Middle East. Ghastly beheadings by a newly discovered enemy were the frightening flashpoint. The president ordered bombers aloft and US munitions were once again pounding battlefields in Iraq—and as of last night, in Syria. The president promised to “degrade and destroy” this vicious opponent.

Here we go again, I thought. This is how...

on Sep 4, 2014 - 14:49 PM ET
Islamic State militant

The New York Times used an incendiary phrase to describe the beheading of another American reporter in Syria. It was, the newspaper said, an “apparent murder.” The Times simply repeats the assertion of President Obama, who denounced the event as “the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist.” Perhaps it was. But popular American outrage at the barbaric killing and political voices demanding forceful retaliation reveal...

on Aug 30, 2014 - 10:18 AM ET
Teachers on Strike

I know this sounds absurd—it is absurd—but for some odd reason Labor Day reminds me of my mother. She was a school teacher, and I think she would have a good laugh to learn that so-called “education reformers” are accusing school teachers of being too powerful and protected. My father, who was himself a long-time member of our local school board, would probably snort at the ignorance of highly educated experts.

Together, they could set the...

Education, Labor
on Aug 6, 2014 - 10:40 AM ET
Could Obama Solve the Immigration Crisis Through Executive Action?

Never mind the stalemated Congress, demonstrators for immigration reform showed up again at the White House on Monday—Barack Obama’s birthday—to make more speeches and deliver fresh petitions urging the president to take unilateral action on their issue. To the astonishment of veteran activists, Obama has already assured them he intends to do so. According to movement leaders who met with the president at the White House on June 30, a bombshell...

Barack Obama, Activism, Immigration