NewsBusters Columns

This week, President Donald Trump began openly considering at what point the American government ought to take steps to reopen the American economy. He explained: "Our country wasn't built to be shut down. America will again and soon be open for business," suggesting that the timeline will be weeks instead of months.



A recent report by Chris Stewart has shed new light on some of the educational problems faced by black youth. The report is titled "The Secret Shame: How America's Most Progressive Cities Betray Their Commitment to Educational Opportunity for All." Stewart is a self-described liberal and CEO of Brightbeam, a nonprofit network of education activists who want to hold progressive political leaders accountable. The report asks, "So how do we explain outstandingly poor educational results for minority children in San Francisco -- which also happens to be one of the wealthiest cities in the country?"



One of the more tiresome partisan polkas we’ve witnessed in the Trump years is the herky-jerky dancing around the White House briefing. First, journalists insist it’s a dangerously undemocratic practice to avoid a daily briefing. Then when suddenly there are daily briefings for a public-health crisis, journalists insist it’s a dangerous practice to air these briefings live because the president spews so much “misinformation.”



If anything good can come from the coronavirus pandemic, it is the revelation of America's overreliance on China, especially when it comes to drugs. Interviewed by NBC News, retired Brigadier General John Adams said, "Basically, we've outsourced our entire industry to China. That is a strategic vulnerability." Adams spent his 30-year military career as an intelligence officer, a military attache in South Korea and deputy U.S. military representative to NATO.



Silver linings accompany most catastrophic events, and one major one with the coronavirus is the remarkable way Americans (and people throughout the world) have come together to fight this outbreak. Though the stock market has reflected a nation in panic, in other respects Americans, for the most part, have reacted responsibly, unselfishly and cooperatively, and I pray we are making substantial progress toward flattening the growth curve of this virus.



It is a remarkable thing to read. Hop into the wayback machine and park it in front of this article that appeared as part of a China series in The New York Times Magazine on November 18, 2018. The author is Philip P. Pan, he the Asia editor of The New York Times. The title of the piece?



In her effort to boost our spirits in the face of the current crisis, "Wonder Woman" Gal Gadot worked better than she could have realized. Only the impact wasn’t what she had in mind. At all. The actress organized a group of famous friends, including Norah Jones, Will Ferrell, Sarah Silverman, Mark Ruffalo and Amy Adams, to sing John Lennon’s classic single, “Imagine.” The response was vociferous. 



Every once in a while, the liberal journalists at PolitiFact grant President Trump a rare rating of “Mostly True.”  Most recently, they revisited a "Pants on Fire" rating they gave Vice President Joe Biden in 2009 for answering a swine flu question from NBC's Matt Lauer that "when one person sneezes, it goes all the way through the aircraft." Here's the important part: the networks energetically circled the "news" wagons to protect Biden.



Some years ago, I wrote a book titled "The Things That Matter Most." It was a critique of the continuing impact the '60s generation has had on the country. The coronavirus pandemic, too, offers us an opportunity to consider what matters most in our nation and individual lives. We are told to stay indoors, not travel, avoid restaurants and bars and crowds of more than 10 people. Many have been ordered to work from home. Some are being laid off or have had their hours reduced. Entertainment seems limited to the few things worth watching on TV.



Washington -- There is a new book out that bids fair to win this year's J. Gordon Coogler Award for The Worst Book of the Year, and remember, the year has just begun. The dreadful effort is "The Ones We've Been Waiting For: How a New Generation of Leaders Will Transform America." Its author is Charlotte Alter. The book takes its dreadful title from a dreadful speech given back in 2008 by presidential candidate Barack Obama, entitled, dreadfully enough, "The Ones We've Been Waiting For.