In an email to LAObserved.com, our erstwhile antagonist Cynthia Rawitch responded yesterday to our Friday reminiscence of our long-ago college free-speech dispute. Here are her comments in their entirety: Writing more than 7,000 words about an event that took place in college nearly 25 years ago seems to represent a level of obsession that I can´t understand. James leaves out a number of salient facts because they don´t fit the narrative he recalls.
Comments: If you missed the first column, it´s a good read:
In short, Cynthia now says she ordered Taranto NOT to run the cartoon, and he disobeyed her. An outright lie, as he explains.
For months, all eyes in the sky have pointed at the comet that´s zooming toward a blisteringly close encounter with the sun. The moment of truth comes Thursday — Thanksgiving Day. The sun-grazing Comet ISON, now thought to be less than a mile wide, will either fry and shatter, victim of the sun´s incredible power, or endure and quite possibly put on one fabulous celestial show. Talk about an astronomical cliffhanger. Even the smartest scientists are reluctant to lay odds. Should it survive, ISON, pronounced EYE´-sahn, would be visible with the naked eye through December, at least from the Northern
The Anthem Blue Cross representative who answered my call told me that there was a silver lining in the cancellation of my individual P.P.O. policy and the $5,400 annual increase that I would have to pay for the Affordable Care Act-compliant option: now if I have Stage 4 cancer or need a sex-change operation, I’d be covered regardless of pre-existing conditions. Never mind that the new provider network would eliminate coverage for my and my son’s long-term doctors and hospitals. The Anthem rep cheerily explained that despite the company’s — I paraphrase — draconian rates and limited network, my benefits,
At a time when over 4 million people have had their health insurance canceled, it’s good to know that some Americans can still access prompt medical treatment, even if they don’t want it. David Eckert was pulled over by police in Deming, N.M., for failing to come to a complete halt at a stop sign in the Walmart parking lot. He was asked to step out of the vehicle, and waited on the sidewalk. Officers decided that they didn’t like the tight clench of his buttocks, a subject on which New Mexico’s constabulary is apparently expert, and determined that it
Sen. Lindsey Graham says he will lead the charge in the Senate on federal legislation banning abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The Republican senator said on Fox News Sunday that he plans to introduce the bill this week. It would allow abortions after 20 weeks only to protect the life of the mother, or in cases of rape or incest. The Republican-controlled House passed its version of the bill in June. It´s not expected to go anywhere in the Democratic-controlled Senate. The U.S. Supreme Court´s 1973 decision legalized abortion until a fetus could viably survive outside of the womb,
Democrat Terry McAuliffe leads Republican Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II by 4 points in the Virginia governor’s race, according to a Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday — a considerably narrower margin than other recent public polling has shown. The businessman and former chairman of the Democratic National Committee leads Mr. Cuccinelli, the state’s attorney general, 45 percent to 41 percent, the poll showed, with 9 percent of likely voters opting for Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis. That lead is down from a 46 percent to 39 percent advantage for Mr. McAuliffe in a Quinnipiac poll last week, when Mr. Sarvis was at 10
During a game that turned into a 19th nervous breakdown for Cardinals’ fans, the home team drove everyone half-mad on an utterly bizarre Saturday night at Busch Stadium. Fitting, then, that this long, strange trip ended on a basepath trip that gave the Cardinals a mind-bending 5-4 victory over Boston’s angry, Red-Faced Sox in World Series Game 3. After an evening that spun out of control, the Cardinals took control of the 109th Fall Classic _ on a classic fall by Allen Craig. The Cards grabbed a 2-1 series lead in the craziest, zaniest and most improbable way. A limp-off
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called US President Barack Obama after receiving information that the US may have spied on her mobile phone. A spokesman for Mrs Merkel said the German leader "views such practices... as completely unacceptable". Mrs Merkel called on US officials to clarify the extent of their surveillance in Germany. The White House said President Obama had told Chancellor Merkel the US was not snooping on her communications. "The United States is not monitoring and will not monitor the communications of the chancellor," White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Wednesday.
One afternoon last winter, a man with a shaved head walked into Twisters, a burrito joint in Albuquerque. He was wearing a yellow helmet and Hazmat suit and carrying a gas mask. He put on the mask, struck various poses throughout the restaurant and then sidled up to the counter to buy a burrito topped with French fries, one of the restaurant’s specialties. At a different fast-food restaurant, the manager might have been alarmed. But this particular one had doubled as Los Pollos Hermanos, the chicken joint owned by a ruthless leader of a methamphetamine cartel in “Breaking Bad,”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel won an overwhelming endorsement for a third term as her Free Democratic ally plunged out of parliament, probably forcing her to seek a new governing partner, television projections showed. Merkel’s Christian Democratic bloc took 42.3 percent of today’s vote to 26.3 percent for the main opposition Social Democrats of Peer Steinbrueck, her first-term finance minister, according to projections on ZDF television. If confirmed, that would be the highest tally since Chancellor Helmut Kohl’s 1990 result after reunification. (Snip) With unemployment near a two-decade low
Well, college football endings don’t get much weirder than this. Down 32-30 in the final minute of the fourth quarter, Wisconsin QB Joel Stave positioned the Badgers for a potentially game-winning field goal Saturday night by centering the ball at Arizona State’s 15-yard line for a chip shot. But Sun Devils linebacker Anthony Jones mobbed the ball, making the case that Stave’s knee had not touched the ground and that the play should be ruled a fumble. Officials didn’t seem to buy into Jones’ explanation, but they didn’t clear him off the ball. Stave discussed the situation with an official,
Johnny Manziel again authored moments of offensive brilliance, and Texas A&M again built a surprising first-quarter double-digit lead against the national champions. But Alabama rewrote the rest of the script Saturday, proving to be the more opportunistic, balanced team in a 49-42 victory that earned the No. 1 Crimson Tide a measure of revenge against the sixth-ranked Aggies. After months of hype surrounding this rematch between Manziel, the sport´s most polarizing player who also has a Heisman Trophy in his name, and the two-time defending national champions, the Crimson Tide appeared to suck all the drama out of the SEC
Norway´s center-left Labor Party rode a wave of sympathy in local elections following the 2011 massacre of 69 people, mostly teenagers, at its youth division´s annual summer camp. At the same time, the anti-immigration Progress Party, to which the Islam-hating attacker had once belonged, saw its support crumble by a third, despite unequivocally condemning the attack. As Norwegians head to the polls Monday for the first parliamentary election since the July 22, 2011, tragedy, the tables appear to have turned. The Progress Party looks likely to come into power for the first time, as part of a center-right coalition that polls
President Obama requested Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu take a “breather” from his harsh criticism of the U.S. strategy regarding Iran during a call betwee the two leaders, The Washington Post reported on Thursday. The request came as the administration girds up for a push in the next six months to reach a final settlement on Iran´s nuclear program. The president reportedly urged Netanyahu to tone down his rhetoric for the sake of diplomacy and urged him to dispatch officials to Washington who could help negotiate a resolution agreeable to both countries. The president called Netanyahu last Sunday, promising to
In 1947, Sen. Harley Kilgore (D-W.Va.) condemned a proposed constitutional amendment that would restrict presidents to two terms. “The executive’s effectiveness will be seriously impaired,” Kilgore argued on the Senate floor, “ as no one will obey and respect him if he knows that the executive cannot run again.” I’ve been thinking about Kilgore’s comments as I watch President Obama, whose approval rating has dipped to 37?percent in CBS News polling — the lowest ever for him — during the troubled rollout of his health-care reform. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats have distanced themselves from the reform and from the president.
Cher told her fans on Wednesday that she does not celebrate Thanksgiving. In fact, she appears to deplore the American holiday, calling in the “beginning of a great crime.” Cher said that the American settlers were guilty of taking land from native Americans who had no concept of property ownership and also intentionally infected them with smallpox. “You don’t celebrate the holiday I thought?” a fan asked Cher. “I DON’T,” Cher replied emphatically. She said that, to her, Thanksgiving is a day to see family, eat food together and watch a movie. “Not 2 celebrate the beginning of a GREAT Crime.” When asked
For all the gnashing of teeth over the lack of comity and civility in Washington, the real problem is not etiquette but the breakdown of political norms, legislative and constitutional. Such as the one just spectacularly blown up in the Senate. To get three judges onto a coveted circuit court, frustrated Democrats abolished the filibuster for executive appointments and (non-Supreme Court) judicial nominations. The problem is not the change itself. It’s fine that a president staffing his administration should need 51 votes rather than 60. Doing so for judicial appointments, which are for life, is a bit dicier. Nonetheless, for
President Obama's weekly remarks: Hi, everybody. On behalf of all the Obamas — Michelle, Malia, Sasha, Bo, and the newest member of our family, Sunny — I want to wish you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving. We’ll be spending today just like many of you — sitting down with family and friends to eat some good food, tell stories, watch a little football and. most importantly, count our blessings. And as Americans, we have so much to be thankful for.
LEE COUNTY - The Lee County Sheriff´s Office has arrested a juvenile in connection with two random attacks reported in Lee County. Traveshia Blanks, of Fort Myers, is charged with two counts of battery on a person 65 years of age or older. On Tuesday around 3:50 p.m., deputies responded to a report of a group of people who randomly attacked an unsuspecting victim (Snip)We talked to students from nearby Cypress Lake High School who didn´t seem to think the teens did anything wrong. "I´m not gonna say it´s not right and it´s not fun, because it is fun," said
Economics: It seems the official position of Pope Francis is that the free market is a wicked enemy that must be restrained. With all due respect, he´s mistaken. The free market has been a heavenly blessing. Two days before our American Thanksgiving, the Argentinian pontiff, in his first apostolic exhortation, called the free market a "new tyranny." "Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world," he wrote in the Vatican report. Claims of free-market success, he said, have "never been confirmed
President Obama is concerned these days with the "young invincibles," the 20-somethings he needs now to buy into his program, but who probably won´t because they feel (you guessed it) invincible and think they will stay so for quite a long time. But it takes one to know one, as the irony is Obama himself is, or once was, an ultra-invincible, unstoppable and doing what people said couldn´t be done. Could he become world famous on the strength of one speech? Yes, he could. Could he beat Hillary Clinton, a president´s wife and a feminist icon? Yes, he could. Could he
One day after a new poll showed that only a minority of Americans trust President Barack Obama, the president told an audience that his policies are based on kindness. “Kindness covers all of my political beliefs,” Obama told his audience of wealthy investors, high-tech donors, journalists and fellow Democrats Tuesday, only two months after he slashed at GOP legislators, calling them arsonists, nuclear blackmailers, economic wreckers, hostage-takers, obsessives and irresponsible extremists. “When I think about what I’m fighting for, what gets me up every single day, [kindness] captures it just about as much as anything,” he told his audience at the DreamWorks
In the wake of the Obamacare fiasco, President Obama’s poll numbers are collapsing in two industrial Midwestern states — the quintessential swing state of Ohio and his home state of Illinois. In Illinois, the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling found Obama’s approval rating falling to just 50–46 positive in a state he carried by 17 points just a year ago. His biggest drops in support came among women voters (only 50 percent positive) and Hispanics (only 51 percent positive). Without his overwhelming support among African-Americans (92 percent), his approval rating would easily be in the low 40s. The liberal website
So this is how first lady Michelle Obama imagines Americans should spend their Thanksgiving dinner: Talking about Obamacare. That’s her call to supporters, via an email invitation to Democratic Party backers, The New York Post reported. “As you spend time with loved ones this holiday season, be sure to talk with them about what health care reform can mean to them,” she said, in the email that contained 14 talking points that could be raised. Among her touted topics, The Post reported: Talk about the need to sign up for Obamacare. And, ask guests to bring W2 tax forms, or
A self-described non-partisan organization promoting affordable health care has received a $1.1million grant to create a database of Obamacare success stories, it was revealed today. The Washington, DC-based non-profit group Families USA was awarded the grant October 4 by The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. On the foundation´s website it states that the money was made available to Families USA ´to publicize the available insurance options under the Affordable Care Act.´ The description of the grant goes on to say that the $1.1million will be used to increase the organization´s capacity ´to expand its well-established story-bank operation to produce´ more stories