• OSSAA director: Setting the record straight on Cache case

    By Ed Sheakley | Published: Wed, Nov 4, 2015

    I want to set the record straight regarding “OSSAA actions undermine the organization's credibility” (Our Views, Oct. 30) and the allegation that the Cache girls' basketball coach instructed players to throw a basketball into the face of an Elgin player. The Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association does not take lightly allegations of unsportsmanlike conduct. OSSAA also does not, in every instance, first ask the member schools involved to investigate alleged misconduct before pursuing our own preliminary investigation. In this instance, however, responsible administrators from both schools were present at the game. They were in the best position to talk with the coaches and students involved from their respective

  • Cal Thomas: Bob Beckel's remarkable story

    Cal Thomas Tribune Content Agency | Published: Tue, Nov 3, 2015

    In Washington, most stories that make the newspapers and evening newscasts are about scandals and political infighting. Rarely is there one about redemption. In his new book, "I Should Be Dead: My Life Surviving Politics, TV and Addiction," Bob Beckel, the longtime Democratic Party political operative, tells a deeply personal story about searching for life's meaning through political power, drugs, physical abuse as a child, womanizing, hardball politics and finally a change of heart and direction. I am asked about my friendship with Bob more than I am asked about myself. People are curious how two men who come from different backgrounds and hold different political views on most, but not all issues, could be close friends

  • Does Iran's anti-Semitism run too deep for deterrence?

    GEORGE F. WILL The Washington Post Writers Group | Updated: Sun, Nov 1, 2015

    WASHINGTON — Yale historian Timothy Snyder is indebted to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who recently made Snyder's new book even more newsworthy than his extraordinary scholarship deserves to be. And Netanyahu is indebted to Snyder, whose theory of Hitler's anti-Semitism is germane to two questions: Is the Iranian regime's anti-Semitism rooted, as Hitler's was, in a theory of history that demands genocide? If so, when Iran becomes a nuclear power, can it be deterred from its announced determination to destroy Israel? Netanyahu recently asserted, again, that a Palestinian cleric was important in Hitler's decision to murder European Jews. Netanyahu said that on Nov.

  • Ruth Marcus: The GOP debate was not presidential

    RUTH MARCUS The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Sun, Nov 1, 2015

    WASHINGTON — One of the 10 Republicans who debated Wednesday night is going to end up as the party's nominee. None of them looked like presidential material. That theme was sounded early on, when Ohio Gov. John Kasich swatted away the first question — what is your biggest weakness? — by addressing the larger weakness of the field: "My great concern is that we are on the verge, perhaps, of picking someone who cannot do this job." Indeed. The two, manifestly unqualified front-runners, Donald Trump and Ben Carson, were remarkably muted. Trump simply repeated his, yes, comic-book version of a presidential campaign — huge wall, huge tax cut, huge Trump smarts — except when he was shamelessly denying he had said what

  • UCO president: Federal, state support vital for higher ed

    By Don Betz | Published: Sun, Nov 1, 2015

    Nov. 8 marks the 50th anniversary of the Higher Education Act, the federal law intended to strengthen the educational resources of our colleges and universities and to provide financial assistance for students in postsecondary education. In short, it increased federal money given to universities, created scholarships, gave low-interest loans to students and established the National Teachers Corps. At the signing ceremony, President Lyndon Johnson said, “This will swing open a new door for the young people of America ... the most important door that will ever open — the door to education.

  • Paul Greenberg: A sense of place

    Paul Greenberg Tribune Content Agency | Published: Sat, Oct 31, 2015

    You have to be careful at Franke's cafeteria here in Little Rock, Ark., a combination senior center, local eatery and longstanding tradition (founded 1924), or some wild driver like me will drive right over you with his walker. The same goes for Bryce's in Texarkana, Texas (founded 1931), another local institution. Both have that hard to define but immediately recognizable sense of place. At lunchtime the other day, a gentleman of a certain age came by my table and paused politely before mentioning that he'd just read my column in the morning paper. Not to be outdone, the lady with him said she'd read after me since I was writing for the Pine Bluff Commercial. They used to live in Wabbaseka, she explained.

  • Scott Meacham: OKC would benefit from new fiber network

    By Scott Meacham | Published: Sat, Oct 31, 2015

    Oklahoma entrepreneurs should be pinching themselves upon hearing the news this week that Google may bring high-speed fiber to Oklahoma City. Because, frankly, they need speed. They want to build their ideas right in their own homes, where innovation can occur without a 9-to-5 schedule.  And, with lightning-fast Google Fiber, they can. Fiber networks that deliver fast, reliable and affordable broadband to homes and small businesses are a requirement for many of the innovative, entrepreneurial businesses that communities like ours want to attract and grow. Google Fiber provides Internet access at gigabit speeds — that's 1,000 megabits, up to 85 times faster than what most Americans have today.

  • Washington Examiner: Paul Ryan's uplifting conservatism

    Washington Examiner Editorial | Published: Fri, Oct 30, 2015

    “We show by our work that free people can govern themselves,” said Paul Ryan, R-Wis., in his inaugural speech as speaker of the U.S. House on Thursday. “They can solve their own problems. They can make their own decisions. They can deliberate, collaborate and get the job done. We show self-government is not only more efficient and more effective; it is more fulfilling.” Ryan has a tough road ahead and tall hills to climb in his new, powerful leadership position. But it is a good early sign that he is already talking about politics precisely the way conservatives should. His point was that this nation's government can often be wrong — quite wrong — and Congress often does more to create problems than to solve them.

  • E.J. Dionne: The challenge of being Paul Ryan

    E.J. DIONNE JR. The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Fri, Oct 30, 2015

    WASHINGTON — Paul Ryan had excellent reasons for not wanting to be speaker of the House. He's a smart guy and knows that the Republican caucus he is about to lead is nearly ungovernable. He's been anointed as a savior, and saviors often meet a bad end. Moreover, Ryan is still very much a work in progress. He was happy to stay away from the center stage as he mapped out the next steps of his life and the direction of his thinking. As chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, he could pick his fights and choose the issues he wanted to highlight. As speaker, the issues will often pick him and he may well have to wage battles he might prefer to avoid. Ryan has always wanted to be several things at the same time, and they have

  • OKC attorney: More money alone won't fix education

    By Larry V. Parman | Published: Fri, Oct 30, 2015

    There are points of agreement regarding education — we want better outcomes for our children and they are not achieving at a high enough level. We have political cat fights about how to best address those two issues. As a matter of principle, I will not be signing the David Boren initiative petition for a proposed 1 percent sales tax increase for education and I urge others not to sign. Here's why. According to the National Association of Educational Progress (NAEP), Oklahoma trails 39 other states in fourth-grade reading, with two-thirds below proficiency. In math, it's worse. We're 45th of 50 and three-fourths are below proficiency. Only one-third of our students taking the ACT are “college ready.

  • Charles Krauthammer: Skip the investigations, win the election

    CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Fri, Oct 30, 2015

    WASHINGTON — At a certain point, you have to realize you can't hit a fastball. House Republicans don't quite get that they are hopeless at oversight hearings. They keep losing — and now the chairman of the House Oversight Committee has just introduced articles of impeachment against IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. I'm sympathetic to the GOP motive, given how the Obama IRS has consistently obstructed and misled Congress in the tax-exemption scandal. But impeachment is no ordinary move. No agency chief or Cabinet officer has been impeached since 1876. And even proponents admit that there is no chance of Koskinen being removed from office because the Senate will never convict.

  • George Will: The political reality of fantasy sports

    GEORGE F. WILL The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Thu, Oct 29, 2015

    WASHINGTON — Americans have been betting on sports since the first time a Puritan pilgrim boasted that his horse was the fastest in Massachusetts Bay Colony and another said, "Wanna bet?" But fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly and government gotta fret about gambling on fantasy sports. Torrential television advertising by DraftKings and FanDuel is creating millions of customers for these sports fantasy businesses, thereby creating government anxiety lest Americans make unregulated choices inimical to their material and moral well-being. In today's decidedly un-puritanical America, betting on sports is illegal, except where it isn't (Nevada, Oregon, Montana, Delaware). Besides, much more money is wagered illegally on sports than in

  • Colorado Springs Gazette: What to look for in tonight's third GOP debate

    Colorado Springs Gazette editorial | Published: Wed, Oct 28, 2015

    Making America great again must be more than a slogan. It should be the substantive pursuit of anyone seeking to lead the country's executive branch of government. Americans are desperate for real answers and a leader with personal depth. That may explain why Donald Trump slipped to second place in a scientific national poll released one day before the Republican National Committee's third debate Wednesday in Boulder, Colo. The man or woman who will restore this country's greatness probably is not a flamboyant bombast with a quick wit and impulsive need to insult. Trump has been a distraction in the search for leadership. The Boulder debate may reveal him as a man who is rising to the occasion.

  • Kathleen Parker: Jeb's fight club

    KATHLEEN PARKER The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Wed, Oct 28, 2015

    WASHINGTON — When all else is failing, reinvent yourself. This is the new strategy of Jeb Bush's campaign. He's not going to be so nice anymore. Emerging from a weekend confab with family and donors, Bush is ready to rumble, loaded for bear. He'll dance like a butterfly, sting like a ... WASP? When Donald Trump goads him about his brother's presidency, Bush will punch him in the nose. OK, probably not, but can't a girl dream? It's a fantastically entertaining thought, but Bush is probably better suited to a duel at dawn, which is not an endorsement of gun violence — nor dawn, though one is always keen to see another. To sum up, Bush isn't going to take it anymore.

  • State senator: Vaccine effort would save Oklahoma lives

    By State Sen. Ervin Yen | Published: Wed, Oct 28, 2015

    In 2000, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that measles had been eradicated in the United States. The CDC made a similar claim about pertussis, also known as whooping cough, in the 1970s. Despite the successes of modern medicine, both of these preventable diseases are again on the rise in the United States. In 2014 alone, there were more than 600 measles cases and nearly 33,000 cases of whooping cough.  A woman in Washington state succumbed to measles in July, while a 50-day-old infant in Elk City recently died from whooping cough. Why are so many Americans contracting diseases once thought to be eradicated? Part of the reason is the increase in exemptions from laws mandating vaccinations for

  • Former lawmaker: Expect Boren tax plan to pass

    By Cal Hobson | Published: Wed, Oct 28, 2015

    Not that an editorial page need be fair and balanced, but the Oct. 25 edition of The Oklahoman was overkill. The letters to the editor were unanimous in opposition to University of Oklahoma President David Boren's call for a 1-cent sales tax increase earmarked for public schools — prekindergarten through graduate school and career technology. The page also included the expected condemnation from the president of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.

  • Michael Gerson: End times for the GOP

    MICHAEL GERSON The Washington Post Writers Group | Published: Wed, Oct 28, 2015

    WASHINGTON — The end is near. Or not. At various points in American history, popular preaching has warned that history itself was about to culminate and cease. Many sermons of the revolutionary era (with more patriotic zeal than theological sophistication) identified King George III as the antichrist and associated the founding of America with the onset of the Millennium. This was enough to frighten Thomas Jefferson's 11-year-old daughter Martha, who received a comforting letter from her father. "I hope you will have good sense enough to disregard those foolish predictions that the world is to be at an end soon," wrote Jefferson.

  • Washington Examiner: Ultimately, Webb wasn't far enough left

    Washington Examiner Editorial | Published: Mon, Oct 26, 2015

    WHEN former Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., announced he was dropping out of the Democratic presidential race, possibly to run as an independent, the media were eager to hint that his candidacy had been a sham. “How often were you out campaigning, meeting with voters?” asked Buzzfeed's Olivia Nuzzi, a former Democratic campaign volunteer. “Where were you campaigning?” She also asked how many people he had on staff. The line of questioning implied the possibility that Webb had been running a Potemkin campaign as a Democrat, designed chiefly to generate attention for a pre-planned independent candidacy. One can only guess whether this was so.

  • OCPA president: Tax increase not the answer for Oklahoma education

    By Michael Carnuccio | Updated: Fri, Oct 23, 2015

    Declaring education is in “crisis,” University of Oklahoma President David Boren wants to increase the state sales tax by 22 percent. The Boren tax increase is designed to grow government spending on common education and higher education. Ironically, according to the state Department of Education,  available revenues for Oklahoma's public schools have consistently reached all-time record annual highs — per pupil — the past few years. Calls around the state for teacher pay raises suggest too much of this record high funding isn't making it into classrooms. Many Oklahoma teachers no doubt deserve six- figure salaries.

  • Leonard Pitts: Where there is no police accountability, justice is tenuous

    Leonard Pitts Jr. Tribune Content Agency | Published: Sun, Oct 25, 2015

    The question was first posed by Juvenal, a Latin poet whose life spanned the first and second centuries: Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Translation: "Who watches the watchmen?" The old question finds new relevance in an era of heightened concern about police brutality, where cameras are omnipresent and police misbehavior routinely goes viral. These days, all of us watch the watchmen, a de facto citizen's review board armed with cellphone cameras. Why not? Police certainly use sophisticated versions of the same gadgets to watch us. Cameras catch us speeding and running red lights. There is even a camera that reads your license plate and checks for warrants. All that notwithstanding, police have long resisted the idea