Tokyo policy makers have been engaged in diplomatic overdrive in an effort to resolve a territorial dispute with Russia over four southern islands in the Kuril Island chain. This dispute has stunted bilateral relations for six decades.
Those Americans who find themselves dismayed at the current lack of ethical and statesmanlike leadership in our country, replaced by the plodding puerile purgatory of partisan political power peddled to the highest bidder, need to be reminded that it was one of New York’s earlier self-styled political heroes, who preempted the Jeffersonian model of : “equal and exact justice to all… of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political;” as he spelled it out in his first inaugural Presidential address.
Well, I guess this is information for TV's “Jeopardy”, but it was the physicist Dominique Francois Jean Arago, born 50 years after the birth of another statesman/scientist – Ben Franklin.[Ref.1].
Some may remember from high school a demonstration called “Arago's disk”, wherein a copper or aluminum disc is spun underneath an ordinary compass, and the compass needle begins to swing round also. This is just one of the many experiments Arago did.
“Sequestration” is a government word that for those in the military has a synonym: castration. When a bipartisan committee was established by the administration to motivate Democrats and Republicans to compromise on limits for federal spending, it was assumed some understanding could be accomplished. One provision of mutual disagreement and a stalemate is sequestration or automatic budget cuts should stasis be the result of congressional deliberation.
As you think about whom you’ll vote for, let me tell you about two decisions of the Roberts Court where the Court sprang to the defense of prosecutors whose denials of constitutional protections had put innocent men in prison for decades.
In Van de Kamp v. Goldstein,[i] prosecutors complained to the Supreme Court that they were being held liable in damages for denying a man due process and putting him in prison. Here is how counsel for Goldstein described what happened:
In 1835, a mere 59 years after the American colonies became the world’s most advanced republic, thereafter known as The United States of America, our most surprising and enabling ally – France – sent its most distinguished political historian, Alexis deTocqueville, to study and report on the status of this monumental experiment in popular self-government, as stipulated: ‘of, for and by its people.’
New York State’s efforts to reduce smoking have had a tremendous impact. Between 2003 and 2010, the adult smoking rate in New York fell by 28 percent. During that time, the nation’s smoking rate slipped only 11 percent. New York high school students’ smoking rate dropped an incredible 38 percent, more than twice the nation’s decline.
With the election of a U.S. president much in the news, one soon-to-be-released film takes on extra-special resonance. That film is HYDE PARK ON HUDSON, which was screened at the Toronto Film Festival and is scheduled to open theatrically in December.
You had a lot to say on the WAMC listener comment line this week on everything from Joe Donohue's interview with Jesse Ventura, Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney's '47 %' remarks, and several of our WAMC commentators. Segments of these comments ran Friday Sept. 21 on Midday Magazine and Northeast Report.