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Thu, Jul

Does Vietnam Even Matter Any More? Does Ken Burns?

PERSPECTIVE--Do you remember when, in first grade, you made mosaics out of colored construction paper?  You carefully cut the different pieces of paper into little half inch tiles and patiently pasted them onto a bigger paper with many other little tiles to make a picture of a whale, or George Washington, or a house.  Remember?  

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‘Alternative’ Capitalism Could Save the Middle Class

GUEST WORDS-It never ceases to surprise me how the mere suggestion that our current global capitalistic system is not the best humanity can do for itself, is so often met with virulent hostility. One would think that when we are still recovering from the economic crisis of 2007-2008 (and many economists see an even worse crisis on the horizon), when inequality has been steadily rising since the neoliberal turn of the early 1980s, when real wages have remained virtually stagnant, and the list goes on – one would think that perhaps we would keep an open mind regarding alternatives; instead of buying the tired old argument that anything else must either lead to totalitarianism, or be incurably utopian.

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Harassment … Sexism … Ageism … Everything ‘Old’ is New Again

MY TURN-Having just had a birthday, I must admit I am considered chronologically old. At this stage in life, we are happy to still celebrate birthdays but they seem to come around a lot faster than they used to. But I don't feel old! And therein lies the problem. Gail Sheehey wrote in her book, "Passages," that all of us are ten to fifteen years younger than our parents were at the same age. 

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No, We Can’t

BELL VIEW-While Trump angles for war anywhere he can find it, many of his supporters are asking for peace. We need a reasonable debate, they say. We need to pull together as Americans. Mass shootings like the one in Las Vegas will only stop, they say, when we stop the hate. Can’t we all just get along? 

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Cognitive Deficit? Time for Americans to Read up on the DSM-5

TRUMP WATCH-An elderly elephant with a blond pompadour inhabits the Oval Office. The elephant is not the physical being of Donald Trump but rather his unbalanced mental health. Trump is mentally unstable in a fashion and to a degree which is properly characterized as mentally ill. As often occurs with elephants in the room, the nation has refused to deal with this looming nightmare. An intervention is long overdue.

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I'm Szechuan R-i-i-i-i-ick!!!!!

ALPERN AT LARGE--Man, there's a lot of things we didn't ask for, but we're getting, anyway.  On the other hand, we NEED some McDonald's Szechuan sauce.  You know, from the McDonald's promotion of the 1990's Disney Mulan movie?  That was AWESOME, and what do we do when we don't have Rick Sanchez's ability to go back in time to GET that awesome Szechuan sauce! 

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Annulling the Iran Deal: A Dangerous Strategic Mistake

MIDDLE EAST WATCH--The concern that Iran will pursue the development of nuclear weapons once the current Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) deal expires in ten years is legitimate. But addressing these concerns cannot be achieved by nullifying the current agreement, which would only strengthen Iran’s resolve to acquire nuclear weapons. 

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Patriotism Is for White People

PERSPECTIVE-The American flag, drenched in the blood of American Indians and enslaved Africans, has been romanticized as a symbol of guardianship for all citizens of this nation. One of the main centerpieces of patriotism encapsulated in the flag’s meaning is military service.

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Racism … Nazism … Trumpism … the Historical Role of Myths

CORRUPTION WATCH-As one of my favorite actors-celebrities, the former Marky Mark, says, “Food, water, Internet, we need it to live.” Ah, yes, the Internet. In addition to streaming porn, it constantly feeds us our national myths. Indeed, man does not live by bread alone. More fundamental to society are its self-defining myths. 

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Our Right Not to Pledge Blind Allegiance

THE ISENBERG FILE-Lord Action said, "Power corrupts and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely." I would argue that if one is unquestioningly required to pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States irrespective of what the political leadership and others do in derogation of our constitutionally guaranteed rights, then what we have lost is the real value of the laws and rights our democracy stand for. 

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Here’s Why Trump Can Call Kaepernick an SOB

URBAN PERSPECTIVE-Just in case you thought that Trump went way off the reservation in virtually calling former San Francisco Quarterback Colin Kaepernick an SOB to loud crowd hoots at a campaign rally for Alabama Senate Republican candidate Luther Strange, he didn’t. The truth is that Trump has kept a vengeful close eye on the Kap-NFL debacle from day one. Last March at a post victory rally in Louisville, Trump commanded NFL owners not to even think about bringing him back into the league. To quote, “they don't want to get a nasty tweet from Donald Trump.” 

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