Some columnists write New Year's columns chronicling the mistakes over the last year. I don't, but as this January has rolled on, it's become clear I've made many about the 2016 presidential race.
Federal Trade Commission head Edith Ramirez put the matter plainly: "If I'm wearing a fitness band that tracks how many calories I consume, I wouldn't want to share that data with an insurance company."
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, elected to a third term earlier this month, often notes that the presidential cycle is harder for his party than midterms because the electorate is more diverse and Democratic. “For us to win a presidential election, we have to be just about perfect, and the Democrats have to be good,” he told Kyle Cheney of Politico .
For most of history, people suffered in miserable poverty.
Then, in a few hundred years, some new ideas made life hugely better for billions of us -- things like running water, the printing press, the steam engine, electricity, the Internet.
We want people to keep coming up with new and better ideas. But there's a problem: Why would you bother to spend years inventing something if other people can just steal your idea? Who will devote years and millions of dollars to making a big movie? Or a dozen years and billions of dollars to bringing a new drug to market? Almost no one.
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It's good that many Republicans have joined Democrats in declaring the growth of economic inequality a problem. And some are even looking to solutions beyond making the rich richer through tax cuts. As we've seen, rising stock prices do not necessarily lead to jobs -- for Americans, that is.
Public policymakers and political pundits tend to focus on problems -- understandably, because if things are going right they aren't thought to need attention. Yet positive developments can teach us things as well, when, for reasons not necessarily clear, great masses of people start to behave more constructively.
It's not in the printed text, but the most revealing words in President Obama's seventh State of the Union address came near the end. After the scripted line, "I have no more campaigns to run," elicited Republican applause, Obama ad libbed, "I know, because I won both of them."
Google Glass has entered the annals of spectacular product failures. Many bright ideas have foundered on the shoals of consumer rejection. The Product Failure Hall of Fame is too small to contain them all. But a few fall from such enormous heights of hype and hope that they deserve special recognition as awesome.
As such, Google Glass (2013) joins the Edsel (1957), Crystal Pepsi (1992) and Clairol's Touch of Yogurt shampoo (1979) as one of the greats.
Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarrop. She can be reached at email@example.com. To find out more about Froma Harrop and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Web page at www.creators.com.
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With the 2014 midterm election in the rearview mirror, the attention of pundits and political prognosticators has quickly shifted to the outlook for the 2016 presidential election. On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State, First Lady, and U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton appears to be the prohibitive favorite to emerge as the nominee. On the Republican side, however, there is no clear frontrunner, and early maneuvering by prospective candidates has intensified with the announcement by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush that he is seriously considering a run for the White House. In addition to Bush, several prominent current and former Republican officeholders have already signaled their interest in running, including 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.
President Obama sure is consistent. His State of the Union address sounded like his other speeches: What I've done is great! America is in a much better position. We've created a manufacturing sector that's adding jobs. More oil is produced at home. I cut deficits in half!