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Andrew Gumbel

Entries by Andrew Gumbel

How Silicon Valley Billionaires Are Creating A New Economic Order

(35) Comments | Posted February 18, 2015 | 1:49 PM

This piece was originally published on Capital & Main.

In Silicon Valley, there are the good billionaires and the bad billionaires. Or so the standard press coverage would have you believe.

On the side of the angels is, say, Mark Zuckerberg, who announced last year that he and...

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What The Oklahoma City Bombing Investigation MISSED

(18) Comments | Posted April 27, 2012 | 11:50 AM

Ever since Timothy McVeigh's execution, four months to the day before 9/11, a certain conventional wisdom has taken hold that the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing was the work of just two disenchanted guys from the heartland who did something colossally heartless and stupid, got caught and paid the price.

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Time to Watch Those CARBs -- and Oils

(1) Comments | Posted April 23, 2009 | 12:50 AM

The California Air Resources Board has a less than glorious record on furthering the cause of alternative fuels - hardly reassuring as it takes up a crucial issue in the fight to curb global warming.

A few years ago, CARB caved to pressure from the oil and car industries and...

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Hollywood Betrays its Own

(1) Comments | Posted February 9, 2009 | 2:15 PM

Something doesn't smell right at Hollywood's retirement home for actors, technicians and studio workers. The stench isn't coming from the corridors or the bathrooms of a facility widely admired for its impeccable nursing standards. Rather it's coming from the executive offices of the Motion Picture & Television Fund, the...

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America 2008, Or Berlin 1989?

(18) Comments | Posted November 5, 2008 | 10:39 AM

A truly remarkable thing happened in Washington last night, as the world finished watching Barack Obama deliver his victory speech in Chicago and hundreds of election-watch parties being held by Democrats in raucous bars and shi-shi hotel ballrooms across the capital broke up after hours of non-stop whooping and cheering.

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Whose America Now? Not Gore Vidal's

(200) Comments | Posted October 31, 2008 | 6:20 PM

I recently interviewed Gore Vidal, one of the last old-school aristocrats left in this country, and asked him how he felt about the state of the American republic -- the subject that has fired his political radicalism and a large portion of his literary output over the past half-century.

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Masking Justice, Supreme Court Style

(31) Comments | Posted April 16, 2008 | 5:59 PM

Nobody can be surprised that the Supreme Court gave a free pass today to proponents of execution by lethal injection. Justices Roberts, Alito, Scalia et al were hardly going to be sympathetic to the idea of suspending executions indefinitely in the 35 states that have adopted lethal injection, just...

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The Swill from Bill

(164) Comments | Posted April 11, 2008 | 4:51 PM

Political lies are intriguing things.

Sometimes they are just a panicky attempt to keep a floundering career afloat: I am not a crook. I did not have sex with that woman.

Sometimes they are a short-term means to a longer-term end that may or may not pan out:...

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Hillary Goes Orwellian on Iraq

(135) Comments | Posted March 4, 2008 | 12:37 AM

Hillary Clinton may fancy she opposes the war in Iraq, but she has a funny way of showing it. On Monday night in Austin, she had this to say about what the United States military has done over the past five years:

"We have given them the gift of freedom,...
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George W. Obama?

(299) Comments | Posted February 25, 2008 | 5:53 PM

Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, as we now know, began falling apart the moment her husband compared Barack Obama to Jesse Jackson back in South Carolina. Its final death rattle may well end up being her latest gambit - comparing him to George W. Bush.

Twice in the last three days,...

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Hillary's Other Foreign Policy Judgment Call

(140) Comments | Posted February 22, 2008 | 5:41 PM

Hillary Clinton once again touted her foreign-policy experience in Thursday night's debate with Barack Obama, and once again found herself flat-footed by a very real instance of her own poor judgment. Iraq was the topic that Obama picked up on, for understandable electoral reasons -- her willingness to give...

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Obama Rewriting Rules of Conventional Campaigning

(55) Comments | Posted February 2, 2008 | 5:11 PM

Los Angeles, California -Barack Obama is striving to rewrite the rules of tradtional campaigning by sharply escalating the value of canvassing and field operations. And if Obama comes close or even surpasses Hillary Clinton's vote totals in California and the other big Super Tuesday states, it won't just keep him...

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A California Politician Does Her Job

(52) Comments | Posted August 6, 2007 | 5:30 PM

Everyone who cares about American democracy should raise a toast -- or a hat, or a loud cheer -- to California's Secretary of State, Debra Bowen, a politician who has somehow resisted the pressure of special-interest lobbyists, campaign fundraisers, and the rest of whole dubious cabal surrounding modern politics and...

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Bush the Compassionate

(16) Comments | Posted July 2, 2007 | 11:09 PM

Some of us aren't quite as smart as the marketing gurus and razor-brained apparatchiks responsible for George W. Bush's political successes. So forgive me if it's taken me, what, seven years to fully understand what they mean when they call him a "compassionate conservative".

Now, though, I get it. The...

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Bush, Translated

(29) Comments | Posted May 31, 2007 | 3:26 PM

George Bush on global warming is one of those marriages of speaker and subject that can't help but generate its own peculiar brand of spectacular bullshit. The president's speech to the United States Global Leadership Council today was no exception. In fact, it generated enough hot air to create its...

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Kramer the Anti-dentite

(37) Comments | Posted November 21, 2006 | 5:44 PM

So Michael Richards goes on stage at the Laugh Factory, makes a few jokes that fall flat, yada yada yada, he can never work in show business again.

Funny, isn't it, how some people seem to be having a hard time getting their head around the idea that Michael Richards...

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Karl Rove Re-aligned

(41) Comments | Posted November 8, 2006 | 3:59 PM

Bye bye, Turd Blossom. Karl Rove's dream of refashioning the American political landscape and ushering in a generation of Republican rule is officially dead. The radical Republican revolution, which began with Barry Goldwater, hit paydirt with Ronald Reagan and reached its highwater mark with the 1994 Contract With America, has...

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Uncovering the Truth About the Oklahoma City Bombing

(27) Comments | Posted February 22, 2006 | 7:15 PM

We've heard plenty about intelligence failures and manipulations in the run-up to the Iraq war. We've also heard plenty about the missed warnings and bureaucratic self-justifications surrounding 9/11. But we've heard a whole lot less about the screw-ups and cover-ups surrounding an earlier American calamity, the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.

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Yanking 'Em Out of Their Wheelchairs: Justice, Arnie-Style

(20) Comments | Posted January 13, 2006 | 7:06 PM

For the second time in a month, Arnold Schwarzenegger has denied clemency to a prisoner awaiting execution on California's Death Row, and for the second time in a month he has made a politically convenient but morally indefensible decision.

Last time it was Stanley Tookie Williams, a man whose well-documented...

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Tookie Dies, So Arnold Can Live

(86) Comments | Posted December 12, 2005 | 6:10 PM

Nobody should be surprised that Arnold Schwarzenegger has denied clemency to Stanley "Tookie" Williams. Politicians rarely suffer for taking the toughest possible stance on questions of criminal justice, and Arnold is in quite enough trouble with his Republican Party grassroots not to want to go looking for more -- which...

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