As a writer of fiction, and a fellow veteran of the Vietnam War, I can't help but appreciate the deep symbolic meaning of President Obama's nomination of Chuck Hagel for defense secretary. Hagel will undoubtedly have an impact on the policies of the Pentagon if his nomination is confirmed by the Senate.
Alabama Coach Nick Saban might be the greatest college football coach in history—but only because he gave up on the pro game.
Here we go again. Because the fiscal cliff deal left the debt ceiling issue untouched, Americans can count on a rerun of the mid-2011 “debt ceiling” debate over whether the United States government should be allowed to pay its bills.
Just a few weeks ago, Beltway tongues were gossiping about Vice President Joe Biden being a second-term neuter. See, for instance, the Politico article, "Joe Biden waits on sidelines," which opened like this: "Vice President Joe Biden walked the halls of Congress and hosted top-level talks at Blair House during the last fiscal showdown. This time, he’s roaming the aisles of Costco." Then, all of a sudden, Obama gave Biden charge of the gun violence task force he formed in the wake of the Newtown massacre.
In the aftermath of the FTC's settlement with Google yesterday, too many reporters fell for the line that Google used some fancy combination of executive charm and lobbying prowess to beat the federal government at its own game. You'd easily believe, from reading what has become the conventional wisdom, that Google managed to avoid any sanctions by meeting with John Kerry or paying off think tanks.