Net neutrality won the day in Washington, and that wasn't supposed to happen. Republicans indignantly opposed regulating Internet service, currently dominated by a few cable giants. Texas Republican Ted Cruz called it "Obamacare for the Internet" (in his world, fightin' words).
The lobbying money and muscle of Comcast, AT&T and Time Warner no doubt stoked the lawmakers' passions. And when the Federal Communications Commission voted to prevent Internet service providers from establishing fast lanes for favored customers, its two Republican members voted against it.
The people of Denton, Texas, recently voted to ban fracking within the city limits. They were tired of the noise, lights and fumes caused by the 277 gas wells, some placed right next to housing developments. A blowout in 2013 covered homes in clouds of benzene. Some had to be evacuated.
As things now stand, the U.S. Department of Agriculture oversees steaks, chicken thighs and eggs out of their shells. The Food and Drug Administration keeps an eye on salmon, apples and eggs in their shells.
Fifteen government entities now supervise food safety, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (seafood).
Lupita Nyong'o picked up an Oscar last year for her searing portrayal of a scarred captive in "12 Years a Slave." But many in the Academy Awards audience -- just reminded of the misery depicted in a film clip -- must have felt a bit mixed up when the woman they associated with a tormented slave floated up the stage stairs in a sumptuous sky-blue Prada gown, holding up the pleated skirt lest she trip on the yards of luxury.
We've seen senior discounts for buses. We've seen senior discounts at movie theaters. We've seen senior discounts in supermarkets.
Most make some sense, helping businesses attract older customers at slow times when others are working. What makes no sense whatsoever is applying senior discounts to economic policy.
Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarrop. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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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Sen. Rand Paul believes that vaccinating children should be up to the parents, an increasingly unpopular view after recent outbreaks of measles, mumps and other diseases. And throwing a newt's eye of quack science into the vat, the Kentucky Republican promotes the myth that these shots put children at risk.
The political results have been toil and trouble.
She was a lawyer, noisy but nice. He was a Marine, quiet and even nicer. They seemed an attractive, comfortable couple, so I was greatly surprised when -- after he left to use the men's room -- she leaned over to me at the next table and asked, "What do you think of him?"
They had connected through Tinder, the hot dating site known for emphasizing pictures. This was their first meeting.
"I think he's a prince," I responded, not knowing what else to say.
The second-most jarring scene in "American Sniper" takes place not in the urban maze of wartime Iraq but in the domestic tranquility of Chris Kyle's home in Texas. Disoriented after his fourth tour in the cauldron of Iraq, the heralded Navy SEAL is shown stalking his wife from room to room with a pistol. For a moment, we worry that he has flipped out and is going to shoot her. Turns out this was his playful way of initiating sex.
Foreplay, with a handgun.
The genius of "American Sniper" is its portrayal of a culture obsessed with guns. One expects heavy weaponry in war, but here there are guns all over the placid homefront, too. Guns are not just owned but waved. Guns as personal statements.
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."
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.