Columns, Perspective

  1. Column: Economists agree, but does public notice?

    Columns

    For two years, the Initiative on Global Markets, based at the University of Chicago, has been regularly polling a panel of leading economists, representing a wide spectrum of schools and political leanings. Last week, it asked the panel whether the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act — the Obama "stimulus" …

  2. Castor: Energy efficiency saves money, creates jobs

    Columns

    Florida investor-owned electric companies recently asked the Public Service Commission to "free" them from energy efficiency and conservation standards. Such an anti-consumer move would be misguided.

    Imagine what Duke Energy ratepayers could have done with the $3 billion they spent on the broken Crystal River nuclear power plant or the jettisoned Levy County plant. Consumers are on the hook for $3 billion that did not produce a single kilowatt hour of energy.
  3. Perspective: Rubio seeks the sweet spot

    Perspective

    WASHINGTON

    In the 2010 campaign that shot him to national prominence, Marco Rubio deftly straddled tea party anger and his deep roots in the Republican establishment. Now, considering a run for president, the Florida senator is attempting a far bigger and riskier balancing act.

    Sen. Marco Rubio is an ambitious man of many political positions. Where some see opportunism, others see pragmatism. As the son of Cuban immigrants, his heart clearly falls on the compassionate side of the conservative debate on a range of issues, and his halting move toward the center may be more than the manifestation of presidential ambition.
  4. Maxwell: Why college athletes are not employees

    Columns

    In just three weeks, college football will cast its powerful spell on millions of Americans. Packed in stadiums and glued to TV screens, we will become obsessed with the performance of elite Division I teams and star athletes.

  5. Morgan: Florida politicians never learn

    Columns

    You might think our elected officials could learn from their mistakes.

    Is it any wonder that sugar has fared well when it comes to passing legislation that determines the future of the Everglades and agricultural issues?
  6. Ruth: Obama, Congress and executive orders

    Columns

    From all the Old Yeller mouth-foaming in the U.S. House of Representatives one might have concluded the nation was being led by a fiendish Ernst Stavro Blofeld stroking his cat while plotting to turn the land over to al-Qaida, the Medellin cartel and the most evil criminal enterprise of them all (cue The …

  7. Column: Government exaggerates college cost

    Columns

    The government's official statistic for college tuition inflation has become somewhat infamous. It appears frequently in the news media, and policymakers lament what it shows.

  8. Column: At Market Basket, profits with purpose

    Columns

    Who is a company? If we speak of the men and women of Boeing, say, or Wal-Mart or Market Basket, a supermarket chain in New England, where this question is being posed most emphatically of late, are we referring to the company's employees? Its founders? Its founders' grandchildren, even if they play no role in the …

    Market Basket employees picket in front of the supermarket this month in Haverhill, Mass.
  9. Column: Government shackled by 'dead men'

    Columns

    In theory, the American people's elected representatives decide every so often how much to tax the public and how to allocate the revenue among various priorities, both short-term and long-term. In practice, however, Congress and the president have almost no such fiscal latitude. The vast majority of anticipated tax …

  10. Perspective: Save America: End partisan primaries

    Perspective

    WASHINGTON — Polarization and partisanship are a plague on American politics.

    We need open primaries.
  11. Perspective: Twitter takes followers to war's front lines

    Perspective

    My social media feed has taken a bloody turn in the last few weeks, and I'm hardly alone. Along with the usual Twitter wisecracking and comments on incremental news, I have seen bodies scattered across fields and hospitals in Ukraine and Gaza. I have read posts from reporters who felt threatened, horrified and …

  12. Guest column: Voting lets us touch the future

    Columns

    During our July 4th Honor America Celebration in Tallahassee, where I was a Kiwanis Club volunteer, 18 of our neighbors took an oath to become naturalized U.S. citizens. It was such an emotional event, with tears of joy and hugs of accomplishment from family members, friends and complete strangers.

    Jack Levine
  13. Guest column: Protecting public's health is role of health departments

    Columns

    When the Florida Department of Health opened its doors in 1889, Floridians were afflicted with smallpox and yellow fever, and the idea that government should intervene to help keep residents healthy was a new one.

    Jocelyn Howard is the Community Health Improvement Plan coordinator at the Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County.
  14. Perspective: The Great War and the death of illusions

    Perspective

    TURNER, Maine

    One hundred years ago the guns of August let loose. On July 29, Austro-Hungarian artillery and gunboats on the Danube began shelling Serbia — the first shots of the great cataclysm that over the next 4½ years would remake our world for the worse, in every conceivable way.

    American draftees gathered to enter the service and prepare for the trenches in 1917, in the war that most certainly didn’t end all wars.
  15. Perspective: GOP may boast best field ever

    Perspective

    WASHINGTON — What if they held a presidential campaign and a think tank broke out? House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., who is considering running for president, recently offered his thoughts on poverty. Sen. Marco Rubio has been giving regular policy speeches on poverty, college loans and helping …

    Rick Santorum
  16. Perspective: Where reason ends and faith begins

    Perspective

    STANFORD, Calif.

    Not long ago, I was at an event in which many people, most of them professors, were arguing for the existence of things that many of their colleagues did not believe in. Someone gave a talk in which he explained that he knew that UFOs existed even though evidence for them turned out to be false. …

  17. Ruth: Florida politicians all hail King Sugar

    Columns

    This could have been very messy. Since the famed King Ranch in Texas is known as a très chichi hunting preserve, it's a wonder the freeloading Florida politicians schlepping through the woods weren't mistaken for fat, juicy wild hogs as they tore up the landscape in the search for six-figure campaign …

  18. MEMENTOS FROM CAPTIVITY: Items saved by Harald Ickler, a Swede living in Germany, from his 54 days as a hostage in 2003. He was on what he thought would be a four-week adventure vacation when he was kidnapped in the Algerian desert by jihadists who would soon become an official arm of al-Qaida. A ransom was paid to release him and other hostages — and a pattern was set.
  19. Column: Paul Ryan's plan for the poor: It's a start

    Columns

    Cover your eyes and hide the kids: A Republican is talking poverty.

    Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., proposes an “Opportunity Grant,” consolidating federal antipoverty programs into 50 chunks of money to be administered by each state as it sees fit.
  20. Column: Drug war's racial targets

    Columns

    Excerpted from a New York Times editorial:

    The drug war aims overwhelmingly at African-Americans on the street, while white users smoke safely behind closed doors.