Top Stories

  • Stroud cafe owner: Clear benefits from having a diverse workforce

    BY DAWN WELCH | Published: Sat, Aug 9, 2014

    Recent publicity given to high-powered female tech executives such as Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg and Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer masks a deeper problem. Unfortunately, these women are an exception in Silicon Valley, not a rule. Indeed, the tech industry as a whole has consistently lagged with regard to integrating women into the workforce. From Google down to the lowest startup, women find themselves excluded from too many opportunities. In every facet of the workforce, the breadth of the gender gap in Silicon Valley is striking. The statistics speak for themselves. Only 30 percent of Google’s workforce is female. Twitter’s proportions are identical. Yahoo and Facebook are equally weak at 37 and 31 percent, respectively.

  • E.J. Dionne: Plain vanilla bipartisanship

    Published: Sat, Aug 9, 2014

    WASHINGTON — When does Congress become so embarrassed by its laughably low approval ratings that its leaders decide to pass laws to make our country a modestly better place? Is there a plain vanilla agenda that might pass muster across party lines? If you thought attitudes about Congress couldn’t get any worse, consider the Washington Post/ABC News poll’s finding this week that 51 percent of Americans disapproved of their own House member. This was the first time in the 25 years the poll has been asking the question that a majority disapproved of their representative. Usually, people hate the body as a whole but like their own guy or woman. Congress in the abstract does fare much worse. The Real Clear Politics average

  • Charles Krauthammer: Amnesty as impeachment bait

    Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    WASHINGTON — President Obama is impatient. Congress won’t act on immigration, he says, and therefore he will. The White House is coy as to exactly what the president will do. But the leaks point to an executive order essentially legalizing an enormous new class of illegal immigrants, perhaps up to 5 million people. One doesn’t usually respond to rumors. But this is an idea so bad and so persistently peddled by the White House that it has already been pre-emptively criticized by such unusual suspects as (liberal) constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley, concerned about yet another usurpation of legislative power by the “uber presidency,” and The Washington Post editorial page, which warned that such a move would

  • George F. Will: The reason for Watergate?

    Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    WASHINGTON — At about 5:15 p.m. on June 17, 1971, in the Oval Office, the president ordered a crime: “I want it implemented on a thievery basis. Goddamn it, get in and get those files. Blow the safe and get it.” The burglary he demanded was not the one that would occur exactly one year later at the Democratic National Committee’s office in the Watergate complex. Richard Nixon was ordering a break-in at the Brookings Institution, a think tank, to seize material concerning U.S. diplomacy regarding North Vietnam during the closing weeks of the 1968 presidential campaign. As they sometimes did regarding his intemperate commands, Nixon’s aides disregarded the one concerning Brookings.

  • Washington Examiner: Liberals' interesting quest to smite First Amendment

    Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    AMONG the most distressing distempers on the liberal side of the American public policy debate is the mushrooming pressure to repeal the First Amendment and put officials in charge of censoring political speech. How things have changed. Liberals like former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once were the stoutest defenders of the right of every American to speak his mind. When the right was misused for speech on behalf of abhorrent ideas like racism and fascism, Brandeis famously said “if there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the process of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence.

  • Think tank analyst: Leave minimum wage alone

    BY MICHAEL SALTSMAN | Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    July 24 marked the five-year anniversary of the last increase in the federal minimum wage. President Obama used the occasion to call for another pay hike of nearly 40 percent. But that’s not all: The president has been encouraged by labor union-backed advocacy groups to raise the base wage of tipped employees (e.g. servers and bartenders) by as much as 232 percent. If that sounds like a radical idea, it’s because it is — and employees and their customers are worried about the consequences. Federal law says tipped employees must earn at least the full minimum in combined wages and tip income. If these don’t add up to the minimum, the employer must make up the difference.

  • Ruth Marcus: Richard Nixon's ghost, 40 years on

    Updated: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Forty years after he slunk out of office, Richard M. Nixon retains the capacity to astonish and disgust. Just when you thought you could no longer be shocked by Nixon’s willingness to abuse power, his seething resentments and paranoia, and his florid anti-Semitism, another round of tapes emerges. To listen to them — I highly recommend HBO’s new “Nixon by Nixon: In His Own Words” — is to be reminded, again, of the 37th president’s unrelenting self-absorption. The question is always about what is best for Nixon, never what is best for the country; his willingness to hijack the machinery of government to assure his success shows no bounds. In Watergate, the crime, it turns out, was even worse

  • Restauranteur: Meaningful immigration reform needed this year

    BY ROBERT ROSS | Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    In Oklahoma, immigrants are making a significant mark in starting new businesses. Despite accounting for 5.5 percent of the state’s population, 7 percent of the state’s business owners are foreign born. Oklahoma’s foreign-born entrepreneurs generate more than $475 million in annual revenue, according to the Partnership for a New American Economy. Economic contributions such as this demonstrate the importance of immigration reform. We must implement common-sense reforms that will boost the economy. New businesses are responsible for a majority of the creation of new jobs in this country. As Oklahoma continues to struggle against a recession along with the rest of the nation, entrepreneurs are a critical component to

  • Michael Gerson: Bet on Africa rising

    Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    WASHINGTON — As more than 40 African leaders gather in Washington for an unprecedented summit, Africa’s brand problem in America has grown significantly worse. Two events — the kidnapping of more than 200 Nigerian girls by Boko Haram and a currently uncontrolled Ebola outbreak in West Africa — have tuned in clearly through the news and social media static. And they have reinforced existing public impressions of disorder and disease. From this perspective, the timing of the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit could hardly be worse. (Not to mention the questionable choice of scheduling the meeting during August, when members of Congress, and much of official Washington, have fled the capital as though the British were back to burn

  • Cal Thomas: People, not politicians, improve world economies

    Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    STRATFORD-UPON-AVON, England — “Neither a borrower nor a lender be; for loan oft loses both itself and friend, and borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.” — “Hamlet,” Act I, Scene III William Shakespeare is not known for his economic expertise, but the advice he gives through Polonius in “Hamlet” may be the best counsel ever offered for individuals and governments. After years of debt (90.6 percent of GDP in 2013) and deficit spending, Britain’s ruling Conservative Party is crowing about the latest economic figures that show the country has outpaced the developed world in its economic recovery. Reuters reports that the International Monetary Fund recently upgraded Britain’s projected economic growth this

  • Washington Examiner: An example of why the U.S. Senate needs new leadership

    Updated: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    HOUSE Republican leaders last Thursday had to pull from the floor their bill to deal with the current crisis of child migration at the border. The Beltway media pounced instantly with a stale narrative about how this was an embarrassment to the new House leadership team. Then late Friday, the House actually passed a border bill. It won’t become law as written, but it’s still one bill more than the Democrat-controlled Senate — by then already out of town for the August recess — had approved in response to the deteriorating situation on the border. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., had already declared that the border was secure and no legislation was needed. He followed through on his stated indifference by

  • David Ignatius: Time for Netanyahu to make peace

    Updated: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Now it’s Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s turn to show that he has the vision and leadership to build a durable cease-fire that could empower moderate Palestinian moderates and begin building a pathway from the hell on earth that is Gaza. Many people, including me, sharply criticized U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry a week ago for seeking a quick Gaza cease-fire that would have strengthened Hamas and its allies, Qatar and Turkey. Hamas didn’t deliver, the fighting resumed, and the process had the effect of undermining moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Kerry was widely attacked, especially in Israel. Kerry isn’t the problem today, however.

  • Panel chairman: Let Oklahoma Workers' Compensation Commission realize its potential

    BY TROY L. WILSON | Published: Sun, Aug 3, 2014

    Over the past week, critics of Oklahoma’s new Workers’ Compensation Commission (WCC) have raised issues about everything from office furniture to staff structure. What they’ve lost sight of is the purpose and mission of the new workers’ compensation structure: the delivery of a more efficient and effective system for injured workers and their employers. The WCC began operation less than six months ago. Like any startup, it’s passing through a stage of infancy before transitioning to a growth mode. Rather than allowing critics to impede the infant’s organizational development, we should recognize the considerable successes already realized by this newly reformed system and the positive impact it has and will have on

  • George F. Will: A progressive with punch

    Published: Sun, Aug 3, 2014

    WASHINGTON — If Ohio’s senior senator were named Sharon Brown instead of Sherrod Brown, progressives would have a plausible political pin-up and a serious alternative to the tawdry boredom of Hillary Clinton’s joyless plod toward her party’s presidential nomination. Drop one of Brown’s consonants and change another, and a vowel, and we might be spared the infatuation of what Howard Dean called “the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party” for Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Sherrod Brown won’t be considered because the Democratic Party’s activist core is incurably devoted to identity politics — the proposition that people are whatever their gender is (or their race or ethnicity or sexual orientation or whatever seems

  • Paul Greenberg: And the war came

    Published: Sun, Aug 3, 2014

    The innocent American could only read the headlines and shake his head sorrowfully at the continuing carnage in Gaza — a pillar of fire by night and a cloud of smoke by day. How did this happen again? Simple: Hamas renewed its indiscriminate attacks on Israel through overhead rockets, underground tunnels, words and deeds — and Israel finally responded in force. Not just the innocent but the sophisticated observer has to wonder: Why? What’s the sense of it? There seems none from the rational — that is, the conventionally Western — point of view. Which may explain why generations of Western diplomats, denizens of think tanks, and Deep Thinkers in general, have failed to make sense of this ever-renewed conflict, let alone

  • Oklahoma City resident: City needs more blacks working in urban planning, development

    BY MARCUS HAYES | Published: Sat, Aug 2, 2014

    Oklahoma City has grown handsomely in the past decade. I watch with pride as the city I’ve known as home virtually all of my life blossoms into a city that people desire to relocate to and grow and raise their families. It’s a constant joy reading about new hotels being constructed. New boulevards being envisioned. Whole new communities and neighborhoods being planned and built. Bricktown is expanding. Midtown is developing. The Wheeler District is making its debut. The Paseo district and the Plaza district continue their respective renaissance. It’s an exciting time to be in Oklahoma City.

  • Air Force colonel: Modernization, readiness are musts for U.S. military

    BY MARK TARPLEY | Published: Sat, Aug 2, 2014

    The future for national security includes a strategic question on how to best use scarce, if not diminishing, funding. For the U.S. Air Force, the conundrum can boil down to allocating between the needs to invest in modernization and readiness simultaneously. Current funding, however, limits the ability to meet objectives to fully fund the Air Force needs in both areas. To have an Air Force capable in the next several decades to protect America’s national security interests, modernization and readiness investment are essential. However, budget pressures can lead toward choosing one in favor of the other. Modernization is the primary means of addressing the future challenges that may confront the United States in both the

  • Charles Krauthammer: Kerry the Clueless

    Published: Fri, Aug 1, 2014

    WASHINGTON — John Kerry is upset by heavy criticism from Israelis — left, right and center — of his recent cease-fire diplomacy. But that’s only half the story. More significant is the consternation of America’s Arab partners, starting with the president of the Palestinian Authority. Mahmoud Abbas was stunned that Kerry would fly off to Paris to negotiate with Hamas allies Qatar and Turkey in talks that excluded the PA and Egypt. The talks also undermined Egypt’s cease-fire proposal, which Israel had accepted and Hamas rejected. “Kerry tried through his latest plan to destroy the Egyptian bid,” charged a senior Palestinian official quoted in the Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat — a peace plan the PA itself had

  • Leonard Pitts Jr.: Paul Ryan breaks the silence surrounding poverty in America

    Published: Fri, Aug 1, 2014

    Cover your eyes and hide the kids: A Republican is talking poverty. This has not been a pretty picture in the recent past. Who can forget then-South Carolina Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer likening poor people to animals one feeds from the back door and Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning calling them stray raccoons? And let’s not even get into Mitt Romney’s wholesale slander of the so-called “47 percent.” So one receives with a certain trepidation the news that Romney’s running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, has issued a proposal aimed at curbing poverty. But Expanding Opportunity in America, produced by the House Budget Committee Ryan chairs, is a surprise — serious, substantive and sprinkled with interesting ideas. Not that you

  • Oklahoma PTA president: Time to begin working to make every student's potential a reality

    BY JEFFERY CORBETT | Published: Fri, Aug 1, 2014

    Oklahoma’s public school students are like children caught in the middle of a messy divorce. Their embittered “parents” (legislators, administrators, bureaucrats) are parties in what appears to be a custody battle — a battle raging full bore over public school academic standards that must be developed since the repeal of Common Core. Hanging in the balance are the future of the state and the children and youth of Oklahoma. Those who have seen these domestic dramas play out know that in the end there are no winners. We can’t afford for the children to be subjected to one more day of the non-communicative, one-upmanship mentality that dominates Oklahoma’s education and legislative systems.