Columns

Irish eyes — not always smiling

There was a lot more drinking in Washington, D.C., before May 15, 1978. That was the date, as of this writing, I had my last drink. This may help explain why I, as an Irish-American, so dread March 17 and St. Patrick's Day, which has regularly been turned into an excuse for officially ...

US budget deficit totals $192.3B

WASHINGTON - The federal government ran a slightly smaller deficit in February than a year ago but the imbalance through the first five months of the budget year is still running ahead of last year.The Treasury Department reported Thursday that the deficit in February was $192.3 billion, down ...

Michigan referee’s death prompts calls for tougher laws

LANSING (AP) - Attacks on Michigan referees so alarmed Jim Dworman, an accomplished lawyer who also officiates high school basketball and football games, that he contacted his lawmaker two years ago about toughening penalties for such actions."People just weren't that interested," he ...

Russian leader in ‘really perfect’ health

MOSCOW (AP) - Speculation is swirling in Russia about the state of Vladimir Putin's health, as an unusual spell outside the public eye fuels the rumor mill. On Thursday, the Russian president's spokesman sought to quash such talk, saying in an interview that Putin's health is "really ...

Parents can reduce teen alcohol use

Over 80 percent of young people ages 10-18 say their parents are the leading influence on their decision to drink or not drink. In fact, kids themselves say that losing their parents' trust and respect are the most important reason to not use alcohol, tobacco or other drugs. Keeping the lines ...

The ‘disparate impact’ racket

The U.S. Department of Justice issued two reports last week, both growing out of the Ferguson, Missouri shooting of Michael Brown. The first report, about "the shooting death of Michael Brown by Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson" ought to be read by every American.It says in plain ...

Killer Whales say ‘Thanks’

To the editor:The Copper Country Killer Whales would like to thank everyone involved in our most recent swim meet for contributing to its success.Thanks to the parents, siblings, family members, friends, the Brothers of Phi Kappa Tau, the cadets of AFROTC Det 400/Arnold Air Society, and Silver ...

Ferguson is not an exception

By now, it should come as news to no one that Ferguson, Missouri, has a lousy excuse for a police department.The behavior of many of its officers, as seen in news reports during last year's protests and rioting over the shooting of Michael Brown, was thuggish, unprofessional and contemptuous of ...

Job openings reach 14-year high

WASHINGTON - U.S. employers advertised the most jobs in 14 years in January, and more workers quit - both signs of a steadily strengthening job market.Job openings rose 2.5 percent to nearly 5 million, the most since January 2001, the Labor Department said Tuesday. The number of people quitting ...

Jury in Boston bombing trial sees photos of writing in boat

BOSTON (AP) - Jurors in the trial of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Tuesday saw photographs of a blood-stained, hand-scrawled note speckled with bullet holes inside the boat he was captured in days after the deadly 2013 attack.Prosecutors consider the note a confession and say it ...

Syrian magnate denies buying Islamic State oil

DAMASCUS, Syria - A Syrian businessman facing European Union sanctions denied on Tuesday allegations that he bought oil from the Islamic State group for President Bashar Assad's government.The EU put sanctions last week on George Haswani and six other prominent Syrian businessmen, freezing ...

Officials say bombings across Afghanistan kill at least 13

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (AP) - A series of bombings across Afghanistan, including one targeting a police checkpoint in the country's south, killed at least 13 people Tuesday, authorities said.The day's deadliest attack targeted the checkpoint on the outskirts of Lashkar Gah, the capital of ...

34 killed in explosion at market in Nigeria

BAUCHI, Nigeria (AP) - At least 34 persons were killed by a teenage girl suicide bomber on Tuesday at a crowded market in the northeastern Nigerian city of Maiduguri, said witnesses.The blast by a female teenager occurred in the market near the Old Elkanemi Cinema in the late afternoon, said ...

In grief, Tamir Rice’s mother stands alone

Even when Samaria Rice is surrounded by others, as she was at March 3's news conference, she still seems so alone.She is Tamir Rice's mother, and her public demeanor telegraphs the enduring shock of grief. Flanked by garrulous attorneys, surrounded by family and community leaders, she stood ...

Selma plus 50

I liked the movie "Selma," though it could have done without the rap song during credits that referenced "hands up, don't shoot," a slogan that emerged from the shooting of Michael Brown by a Ferguson, Missouri, police officer whose actions the Justice Department recently determined did not ...

Email scandal won’t doom Hillary

Historically, the Clintons have proved to be politically indestructible. To paraphrase the movie "Aliens," to truly destroy the Clinton Industrial Complex, you'd have to nuke it from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.Given that alone, I doubt that the unfolding controversy over Hillary's ...

Why Rubio is strongest possible nominee

It has become conventional wisdom that Republicans are blessed with a talented crowd of potential candidates this cycle. Fine. But here's my case for why only one of them is likely to win the general election.Forget the triumphalism that followed 2014. It will do the GOP exactly as much good in ...

GOP meltdown bodes ill for 2016

I'm getting that deja vu feeling as House Republicans these past several days have failed to alter the public's perception that they're incapable of governing.This week marked Episode 2, Season 2 in the series "Homeland Security Face-Off." Subtitle: "How Republicans Forfeit the White House in ...

America needs the New Hampshire primary

An incorrect statement left uncorrected leads often to deception, disillusion and dishonesty. Take this hypothetical: I've agreed to speak at a local event, and the emcee, in her introduction, says something like, "Mark Shields went to the University of Notre Dame, where he played basketball." ...

Understanding preventive care

Did you know the Affordable Care Act requires insurers to cover certain preventive services at no cost to you? Many people who now have insurance fail to take advantage of the preventive care benefits provided simply because they do not understand their benefit coverage. Patients will often ...