Top Stories

  • Policy analyst: Governments shouldn't be in the Internet business

    BY KUPER JONES | Published: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    The rosy picture painted by proponents of government-owned broadband, people such as Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler, couldn’t be more misleading. Wheeler and other backers of big government are now considering whether to block state laws that seek largely to keep government out of the Internet business. Wheeler and others seem to hold a misguided belief that there’s a shortage of competition in broadband services, and that government is the only solution. The truth is fierce private-sector competition has made the Internet an epicenter of innovation and technological development. Proponents of this kind of government overreach typically rely on the tired example of the Chattanooga, Tenn.

  • Washington Examiner: As Obamacare premiums rise, Democrats' fortunes fall

    Published: Tue, Aug 26, 2014

    OBAMACARE has hit a lull. The president’s signature domestic policy program isn’t causing quite as much chaos right now in people’s lives as it did last October and November during the incompetent launch of The absence of an immediate crisis has prompted smug suggestions from the usual suspects in government, on campus and in the news media to declare that the law is working and people like it. Obamacare is working only in the unlikely event that its goal is to deliver the Senate to Republicans this fall. Disapproval of Obamacare hit an all-time high last month, in part because premiums keep rising. PriceWaterhouseCoopers finds that the average insurance premium in the Obamacare exchanges will rise by 8

  • Paul Greenberg: The anatomy of terror

    Published: Tue, Aug 26, 2014

    The on-again, off-again war in Gaza and Israel is on again, with a massive barrage of rockets fired at whatever targets Hamas can hope to reach in the Jewish state — Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, anything and everything in between. The Israelis then strike back with an air assault that, by all signs, will be followed by their next land invasion of the Gaza Strip, their third of the decade. Or maybe fourth or fifth. It’s not easy to keep count. Once again the casualties, military and civilian, mount — with many more in the offing. Till the only military objective remaining will be to make the rubble bounce. This much is clear: Until this cancer is completely excised, it will metastasize again.

  • George F. Will: In defense of the defenders

    Published: Sun, Aug 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON — What is called “the” 1964 Civil Rights Act is justly celebrated for outlawing racial and other discrimination in employment, “public accommodations” and elsewhere. But that year’s second civil rights act, the Criminal Justice Act, which is 50 years old this month, is, some say, largely a failure because of unanticipated changes in the legal and social context. Is it? In 1961, Clarence Gideon allegedly broke into a Florida pool hall and its vending machines. Gideon, who was indigent, requested a defense attorney, was refused and was convicted.

  • David Ignatius: The hooded face of evil

    Published: Sun, Aug 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON — The propagandists of the Islamic State must have imagined that their brutal video of the beheading of journalist James Foley would intimidate and terrorize the world. But people aren’t built that way, not in Muslim countries or anywhere else. When they see sadistic, uncivilized behavior, they are disgusted — and angry. President Obama spoke with special precision and moral clarity in reacting to the video’s release Wednesday. The Islamic State, he said, “speaks for no religion. Their victims are overwhelmingly Muslim, and no faith teaches people to massacre innocents. No just God would stand for what they did yesterday, and for what they do every single day.” The videotaped beheading was a sign of the

  • Dana Murphy: Corporation Commission committed to furthering work on Oklahoma quakes

    BY DANA MURPHY | Published: Sun, Aug 24, 2014

    There is no lack of opinions regarding the cause of significant increases in earthquake activity in Oklahoma. For many of us, including me and numerous employees of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, this isn’t just a professional issue. It’s also a personal issue since our homes haven’t been spared from the shaking. In the midst of research and rhetoric, no definitive answer exists as to whether the earthquakes are the result of natural forces or triggered by man’s activities, or some combination of the two. So what do we actually know? We know that researchers agree that hydraulic fracturing isn’t the cause of the major earthquakes in Oklahoma.

  • Michael Gerson: No time to lead from behind

    Published: Sat, Aug 23, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Responding to the horrifying murder of photojournalist James Foley, Secretary of State John Kerry declared, “ISIL (the Islamic State) and the wickedness it represents must be destroyed.” President Obama said, “people like this ultimately fail.” The first is a pledge; the second an observation. Obama remains a rhetorical spectator to events in Iraq and Syria he does not want to own, and that he believes America has a limited ability to influence. Obama called the Islamic State a “cancer.” But the actual pledge found in his remarks was consistent with earlier pledges: “The United States of America will continue to do what we must to protect our people.

  • Oklahoma oil-gas industry official: This isn't your grandmother's well — it's much better

    BY KIM HATFIELD | Published: Sat, Aug 23, 2014

    At a recent public meeting in Norman, New York attorney David Slottje encouraged Oklahoma communities to ban hydraulic fracturing. Slottje, executive director of the Community Environmental Defense Fund, told the audience that the oil and natural gas industry must prove hydraulic fracturing is safe to the environment. His comment came just months after marking the 65th year in which the well completion process has been used in Oklahoma, with no evidence to show hydraulic fracturing has impacted the state’s ground water resources.

  • Leonard Pitts Jr.: What's next in Ferguson? Let's try a little education

    Published: Sat, Aug 23, 2014

    What next? That’s what should concern us now. When the nightly dance of angry protesters, opportunistic criminals, and inept police clashing over the shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown finally ends, what steps should civic-minded people take to address the ongoing abuse of African Americans by the criminal injustice system? Not just in Ferguson, Mo., but in America? There will be no shortage of good ideas: dashboard cameras, community policing, the hiring of more black cops, the removal of military hardware from police arsenals, sensitivity training. To these, I would add a suggestion that is admittedly less ”sexy” than any of those, but which I think has greater potential to make fundamental change in the

  • Oklahoma mom: Vaccinations a key piece of public health

    BY SHANNON BAIR | Published: Sat, Aug 23, 2014

    In August, parents are rushing around trying to get their children prepared for school. My children were always up-to-date on their school vaccinations, but I’d never really thought about how state immunization laws protect my children and our community until the summer of 2012. That summer our daughters attended a sleep-away camp. Upon their return, the 10-year-old had a terrible cough and was diagnosed with bronchitis. A few days later, while on vacation, we learned that she’d been exposed to pertussis (whooping cough) from a fellow camper. “Whooping cough! Great!” I thought. My husband and I made the quick decision to get a second hotel room, and I stayed in the hotel room with my daughter.

  • Washington Examiner: Regarding ISIS, decision for Obama should be clear

    Published: Fri, Aug 22, 2014

    WHEN the book is closed on the Middle Eastern caliphate established this summer by the ISIS terrorist group, historians may view Aug. 19, 2014, as the turning point in this monster’s existence. That was the day ISIS disseminated its video of the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley. Foley had spent years as a freelancer, bravely documenting wars for Western audiences. He was kidnapped by loyalist forces during the Libyan civil war and lived to tell the tale. Sadly, he fell into the merciless hands of ISIS, the self-styled “knights of Islam,” two years ago in Syria. ISIS hoped that its latest atrocity would intimidate Americans, especially this nation’s president, from taking further military action

  • Charles Krauthammer: Stopping the worst people on earth

    Published: Fri, Aug 22, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Baghdad called President Obama’s bluff and he came through. He had refused to provide air support to Iraqi government forces until the Iraqis got rid of their divisive sectarian prime minister. They did. He responded. With the support of U.S. air strikes, Iraqi and Kurdish forces have retaken the Mosul dam. Previous strikes had relieved the siege of Mount Sinjar and helped the Kurds retake two strategic towns that had opened the road to a possible Islamic State assault on Irbil, the capital of Kurdistan. In following through, Obama demonstrated three things: the effectiveness of even limited U.S. power, the vulnerability of the Islamic State and, crucially, his own seriousness, however

  • Ed Apple: An effort to produce better public servants

    BY ED APPLE | Published: Fri, Aug 22, 2014

    Few callings offer a better chance to help citizens than serving the public in an elected or an appointed position. Many dedicated citizens in Oklahoma are doing just that. However, there are times when officeholders have failed to properly carry out their duties or to maintain the public trust. Too often, the law and job specifications have been ignored or misunderstood. What can we do to better prepare people for public duty? Below are some recommendations that have been discussed by a nonpartison, nonpolicy group of former office holders and educators. First, we want to create an online database to list and describe every elected and appointed position in Oklahoma.

  • Clarence Page: Even Obama seems trapped by racial divide

    Published: Fri, Aug 22, 2014

    Some of President Barack Obama’s supporters sound notably disappointed by his third speech on the Ferguson, Mo., crisis. Too timid, they say. Here are some representative tweets. Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic: “Feel like he is utterly exhausted. Actually feel bad for him. Not sarcastic pity. Like really feel bad.” Jamelle Bouie of the Daily Beast: “Barack Obama is either very tired, doesn’t believe a single word he’s saying re: Michael Brown, or both.” Saeed Jones, editor of BuzzFeedLGBT: “He does know he’s not running for a third term, right?” Tepid reviews from three of the brightest young African-American lights in punditry doesn’t make the best day for Obama.

  • George F. Will: Fed up with cupcake cops

    Published: Thu, Aug 21, 2014

    WASHINGTON — In physics, a unified field theory is an attempt to explain with a single hypothesis the behavior of several fields. Its political corollary is the Cupcake Postulate, which explains everything, from Missouri to Iraq, concerning Americans’ comprehensive withdrawal of confidence from government at all levels and all areas of activity. Washington’s response to the menace of school bake sales illustrates progressivism’s ratchet: The federal government subsidizes school lunches, so it must control the lunches’ contents, which validates regulation of what it calls “competitive foods,” such as vending machine snacks.

  • Michael Gerson: Rand Paul's bogus outreach

    Published: Wed, Aug 20, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Why should Republicans engage in outreach to African-Americans, even though the level of suspicion is so high and the yield in votes is likely to be so low? Even among some reform-oriented conservatives, what might be called the Kemp project — after the late Rep. Jack Kemp, who spent a career engaged in minority outreach — is viewed as a secondary concern. They consistently pitch their approach toward the middle class — in part to distinguish it from previous iterations of compassionate or “bleeding heart” (Kemp’s phrase) conservatism. The cover of the reform conservative manifesto — “Room to Grow: Conservative Reforms for a Limited Government and a Thriving Middle Class” — features a lawn mower

  • Ruth Marcus: When to police political behavior

    Published: Wed, Aug 20, 2014

    WASHINGTON — The headlines bring the accidentally colliding tale of two governors and, with it, a valuable debate about the proper role — and proper limits — of criminal law in policing political behavior. Exhibit A is the questionable — “sketchy” was the apt word used by, of all people, Democratic strategist David Axelrod — indictment of Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry. Exhibit B, a responsible contrast to the Perry mess, is the ongoing federal trial of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, also a Republican.

  • Renzi Stone: Gov. Fallin's call offers hope for children with epilepsy

    BY RENZI STONE | Published: Wed, Aug 20, 2014

    Seizures are scary. I witnessed my first seizure when my son, Isaiah, was 4 months old. My wife, Lee Anne, held Isaiah, his eyes fluttering, legs uncontrollably jerking in rhythmic fashion and his lips turning blue. That first seizure lasted 10 minutes. Subsequent seizures were longer. There are 30 kinds of epilepsy and more than 40 varieties of drugs to treat people who have seizures. For one in three people who have epilepsy, seizures are uncontrollable, even with medication. Surprisingly, no cure is in sight. Watching Isaiah’s seizure, I never felt so powerless. Later, as medication after medication failed, and his seizures continued, that feeling turned to hopelessness. We never found a medicine to control his baffling

  • Washington Examiner: Judge's ruling should help shed light on IRS activities

    Published: Tue, Aug 19, 2014

    IRS officials should have known better than to trifle with U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan. Thanks to his ruling last week, Americans may soon learn much more on why a key IRS employee’s emails remain beyond the reach of Congress. After IRS employees were caught in 2013 systematically delaying and harassing tea party and conservative groups seeking nonprofit status, Lois Lerner, former head of the agency's tax-exempt organizations division, pleaded the Fifth before Congress. Since then, it has emerged that many of Lerner’s emails from the key period in question were conveniently lost in June 2011.

  • George F. Will: In a stew over inversions

    Updated: Mon, Aug 18, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Barack Obama, presiding over an unusually dismal post-recession economy, might make matters worse with a distracting crusade against the minor and sensible business practice called “inversion,” more about which anon. So, consider his credentials as an economic thinker. Obama, who thinks ATMs and airport ticket kiosks cost America jobs, gave a 2013 speech regretting that Maytag workers in Illinois lost their jobs when the plant moved to Mexico, but rejoicing that more Honda cars “are made in America than anyplace else” and that Airbus is “building new planes in Alabama.” Maytag moved partly because in Illinois, which is not a right-to-work state, the price of unionized workers made Mexico a sensible