July 31, 2014 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Guest Observer Archive

Choking Off Fraud | Commentary

Networks come in many forms. There are highways for commuting, broadband Internet for web surfing, wireless communications for text messages and phone calls — all constituting infrastructure that underlies vital daily activities. As valuable as they are, these networks can also be used for crime — drunk driving on our roads, predatory online activities, violent threats communicated over a call or text. Because of the unquestionable utility of our nation’s networks, law enforcement pursues such crime directly — and not the innocent and uninvolved infrastructure over which the crime occurs.

Placing the Health and Well Being of Patients First | Commentary

Every day many Americans have to weigh how they spend each dollar.

New EPA Clean Air Rule Is a Moral Imperative for Future Generations | Commentary

While many of my colleagues are focused on the endless and overheated political debate surrounding the newly proposed Environmental Protection Agency rule on reducing carbon emissions, when you remove the rhetoric and weigh the plain facts, this decision rests on two primary questions: (1) What kind of planet will we leave to future generations? (2) Do we have the backbone to put public health ahead of profit?

EPA's Backyard Blitz Imperiled | Commentary

President Ronald Reagan once said our “government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.” Twenty-eight years later, anyone who cashes a paycheck, files their taxes, picks up the local newspaper or turns on the TV knows these words ring true just as they did in 1986.

EPA Proposes Radical Regulatory Agenda | Commentary

The Environmental Protection Agency’s effort to expand its regulatory reach across the U.S. represents a regrettable trend. Under the Obama administration, the EPA has issued regulations that are far more costly and more intrusive than under any previous administration.

Ban BPA and Other Toxic Chemicals | Commentary

In 2012, a six-year study was published that examined the occupational history of more than 1,000 women, finding that those who worked in the automotive plastics and in the food packaging industries were five times more likely to develop premenopausal breast cancer than women in the control group. One of the main chemicals used in their workplaces? Bisephenol A, better known as BPA.

Education Official Who Left Under Ethical Cloud Returns to Washington | Commentary

My organization, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, recently requested information from the Department of Education and the University of California system about the role former Education official Robert Shireman — and the organization he heads, California Competes — are playing in the development of education policy. CREW believes Shireman’s coziness with Wall Street short sellers, and his overall indifference to playing by the rules, should make government officials wary of working with him.

A Special Prosecutor is Needed Now | Commentary

For months, the president and his administration have called the bipartisan uproar over the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of conservative non-profits a “phony” scandal. The Attorney General has done absolutely nothing to pursue those responsible for this infringement of taxpayer rights. And now they are writing off the disappearance of emails by the lead perpetrator of this scandal as a computer glitch.

America's Children Are Not for Sale | Commentary

The FBI’s recent successful operation targeting child sex trafficking revealed some impressive but shocking numbers. There were 281 pimps arrested and put behind bars for selling children, and nearly 170 children were rescued from being bought and sold for sex.

Putting Our Nation's Economy Before Politics | Commentary

The American people believe jobs, a dysfunctional government and the economy in general are the most pressing issues facing the country, according to Gallup’s most recent monthly poll.

Adding U.S. Jobs Through Increased Tourism Is an Easy Goal | Commentary

With all eyes focused on Brazil as the host of the World Cup, we are witness to the hospitality and welcoming spirit of Brazilians as they entertain the world. Wouldn’t it be great if the U.S. could reciprocate and entertain more Brazilians here in our country? Unfortunately, Brazil visa treaty negotiations are stalled before the game has even started.

The World Has Changed, It's Time Our Music Licensing System Did Too | Commentary

Digital media industry lobbyist Daniel Horowitz’s recent opinion piece, “Congress Should Consider Reality Over Rhetoric in Copyright Reform,” (Roll Call, July 2) dismisses the arguments made by “star-studded messengers.” So perhaps he’ll permit someone who toils behind the scenes of the music industry to weigh in? You see, most people won’t recognize my name. But they are familiar with my music, which includes scores for television shows such as Glee and American Horror Story.

Supreme Court Takes Power from Working Women and Families & Hands It to Corporations | Commentary

It appears the buffer zone in front of the U.S. Supreme Court is so large that the justices have lost touch with the real world. The five conservative justices have told us loud and clear that the hard work of Americans — especially American women — is not valued. It’s a very good time to be a corporation and a dangerous time to be a working woman.

No More Gimmicks To Fix Student Loan Debt | Commentary

As President Barack Obama indicated when signing his memorandum on student loans, the student debt crisis shows no sign of abating. Though the obvious causes are the ever-growing cost of college and the weak job market for recent graduates, the real culprit is congressional inaction.

Drill More, Produce More, Pay More? | Commentary

In recent months, the petroleum industry has boasted about U.S. crude oil production reaching its highest level in more than a quarter-century. But what they fail to note is that increased domestic drilling has done nothing to ease the pain at the pump for American families.

Immigration Reform Proponents Must Consider Results From 100 Years Ago | Commentary

The effect on the congressional immigration debate after House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s surprising primary loss should not be about whether to have reform, but whether that reform should be about increasing foreign labor or reducing it.

Congress, With Help of Private Ryan, Can Save the VA | Commentary

Nothing short of fundamental reform from Congress will ensure the nation’s veterans receive the medical care they deserve. A new report from the White House on the dramatic failures at the Department of Veterans Affairs indicates how deep the problems run and how much reforming Congress must do.

F-35: The Plane to Nowhere | Commentary

When the Defense Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee meets to mark up the FY 2015 Pentagon spending bill next week, it has a chance to strike a blow for fiscal discipline and sound national security policy. It can do so by scaling back the troubled F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program.

We Need Affordable Child Care for Working Families | Commentary

Our children deserve the best care and education possible, but working parents in Chicago and across the country face a frustrating lack of access to affordable, quality child care. At a time when many families need two incomes just to make ends meet, quality child care is an absolute necessity and one of the biggest financial burdens working families face.

A Dispatch From Dave Brat's College: Teaching Politics at the Center of a Political Storm | Commentary

Thanks to Eric Cantor, at least one part of my job should be much easier this year: getting my students to pay attention to local political races.

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