ROME -- Understanding the culture and history of a host country enables one to be accepted and heard there. Thus, Pope Francis could raise as gently as possible some of the most debated issues in the U.S. while still ending his speech in Congress with a standing ovation.
Weldon Angelos is a young father who wouldn't have been able to be in his two children's lives until he was 80 and his children were old and grey themselves. Angelos made mistakes and sold some marijuana.
The pending resignation of House Speaker John Boehner is being greeted as a great victory by his Tea Party tormenters, but their glee will be short-lived. Boehner will be replaced by someone else, most likely House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and the impotence of the Tea Party will continue.
In a few weeks, I will be introducing Bianca Jagger at a breakfast in Denver hosted by America's Latino ECO Festival. According to MassMedia, Bianca Jagger is the highest-paid activist in the world. Over the past year, she pulled in $58 million between September 2014 and September 2015.
For the first time, TNC trustees from all 50 states and both political parties will visit Capitol Hill on Tuesday to tell their legislators that they need to fix this mistake as soon as possible.
Those politicians celebrating Boehner's ouster, however, are not interested in debate about what is an appropriate balance; they instead elevate ideology over sensible policy insights. In the meantime, the rest of us are held captive to their ignorance and intransigence.
As two outsiders to Washington, we thought we could offer some advice to Congress on how to get things done. We are legislators from Portland, Oregon and Jamestown, North Dakota, and let's just say, we govern very differently out in the states.
If fealty to the goal of limited government -- strangling budgets to shrink government to the size it can fit and be drowned in a bathtub -- is the litmus test of Republican leadership, how do these caretakers of "government-designed-to-fail" protect the American people?
On October 3rd we mark the 50th anniversary of our current immigration policy. But be warned: Most of those who rightly remind us of this event -- with President Lyndon Johnson having signed this monumental Hart-Celler Immigration Law at the Statue of Liberty -- nonetheless misconstrue the act's legacy in ways that actually aid Donald Trump, the candidate whose immigration rhetoric most of them detest.
While it would be an overstatement to say that the Republican Party has been in a civil war since Boehner became Speaker, there's definitely been a great deal of friction between "establishment" Republicans--legislators like Boehner who were holdovers from the Gingrich-led "Contract with America" era (or earlier), and those who have joined Congress more recently.
With the monkey off his back, Boehner is expected to push through a bipartisan government funding bill that avoids a government shutdown. But paying the light bill isn't exactly a valiant bow-out or a game changer for his party's ailing long-term health.
Beyond the small-scale farmers who grow your coffee are countless millions of farmworkers -- the men, women and children who toil in anonymity in the coffee fields to make your daily habit possible, sometimes under conditions that are an affront to human dignity.
IRS Commissioner John Koskinen appears to be headed toward issuing new IRS regulations that will continue to license section 501(c)(4) groups to improperly launder massive amounts of secret contributions into federal elections.
What would happen if we eliminated the House of Representatives entirely?
Pope Francis is able to attract the masses as they thirst for hope and hunger for love. As we struggle with the dangers of climate change, social inequality, racial division, and xenophobia, the Pope does not turn a blind eye to these issues, he challenges us to face them and to make changes and act to work for justice.
It made me feel more confident that I can accomplish my personal goal of helping my fellow Americans wake up to the realization that nature is the expression of the "God" we claim to love, and that we have an urgent responsibility to address the damage we've caused.