Essays

ESSAY- U.S. policy: We don't win wars; we just disrupt
Published on Jul 29th, 2010
0 comments Hamid KarzaiIMAGE BY FLICKR/ISAMEDIA Like all Afghans, Hamid Karzai knows history. Which is why he's talking to the neo-Taliban. The postmodern heirs to the Islamist government Bush deposed in 2001...
ESSAY- U.S. policy: We don't win wars; we just disrupt
Published on Jul 22nd, 2010
0 comments IMAGE BY FLICKR/ISAMEDIA Like all Afghans, Hamid Karzai knows history. Which is why he's talking to the neo-Taliban. The postmodern heirs to the Islamist government Bush deposed in 2001, the...
ESSAY- Cap this: What's lost in the BP clean-up
Published on Jul 22nd, 2010
0 comments Finally but tentatively Uncle Sam and BP are declaring the largest oil spill in off-shore history capped. BP's latest approach has halted the flow of a guesstimated 184 million gallons of crude...
ESSAY- Bottle scam: Why you're wasting money on water
Published on Jul 15th, 2010
1 comments We think of ourselves as shrewd and thrifty shoppers. And yet, when it comes to bottled water, North Americans are annually conned to the tune of eight billion gallons and 15 billion dollars, paying...
ESSAY- Sky man: Would he like to come and meet us?
Published on Jul 8th, 2010
5 comments PHOTO BY JANIS JAQUITH When you're pedaling away on your bike, you don't expect to look up in the sky and see the head of a gigantic man. But that's what happened to me. Looming over the mountaintop...
ESSAY- Texas Taliban: Why they still fear Jefferson
Published on Jul 1st, 2010
117 comments The impending celebration of Independence Day comes about four months after the powerful Texas Board of Education voted to undermine one of our Constitutionally-guaranteed freedoms; namely, that of...
ESSAY- Free speech: Helen Thomas learns it's just a myth
Published on Jun 17th, 2010
22 comments This is why a lot of people think Jews control the media. Not me. I've worked in the media most of my life. So I know that the media is controlled by morons. Still, what happened to Helen Thomas...
ESSAY- Playing God? Synthetic biology offers promise, not peril
Published on Jun 17th, 2010
3 comments Better medicines, carbon neutral fuels, cheaper food, and a cleaner environment– who could be against that? Well, quite a few people, as it turns out. A research team led by private human...
ESSAY- Runaway spending: The wrong kind of Toyotathon
Published on Jun 10th, 2010
0 comments Tales of runaway cars have a long history. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) conducted its first study of sudden acceleration in 1978. By 1987, it was investigating sudden...
ESSAY- Crime and no punishment: Why it's time to nationalize BP
Published on Jun 3rd, 2010
11 comments The Supreme Court says that corporations have the same rights as individuals. When they misbehave, shouldn't they face consequences as serious as those imposed upon an individual? It goes without...
ESSAY- Granny Rx: A little-known way to help the elderly
Published on May 27th, 2010
0 comments   How hard could this be? I keep hearing that we have the best health care on planet Earth, so how hard could it be to find a doctor who specializes in the care of old people?   Seriously...
ESSAY- BP: It stands for Bad Petroleum
Published on May 20th, 2010
3 comments The White House recently warned BP that it expects the oil giant to pay all damages associated with the disastrous oil leak into the Gulf of Mexico, even if the costs exceed the $75 million...
ESSAY- Cap this: Why I feel oily, not vindicated
Published on May 13th, 2010
0 comments My saddest moment came a few weeks ago when I was proven absolutely correct. As a former roughneck and present transportation demand management consultant, I'd been predicting for three years, since...
ESSAY- Abusing students: How universities treat them like children
Published on May 6th, 2010
0 comments Four year ago, Duke University became the center of a national controversy about sexual assault, wrongful accusations, and campus politics when four lacrosse players were falsely accused of raping...
ESSAY- Brave bounders: How I met the living dead in Boston
Published on Apr 29th, 2010
4 comments Charlottesville's Boston Bounders, a few hours post-marathon, on April 19th, in BostonPHOTO BY JANIS JAQUITH They staggered through the hotel lobby– men and women who were curiously fit, yet...
ESSAY- Footprints, indeed: Why we can't innovate away our carbon
Published on Apr 22nd, 2010
6 comments   The architect speaking at UVA showed illustrations of buildings with three-deep, metal skins. Those moving screens, he envisioned, will soon track the sun across the sky and maximize light...
ESSAY- Flat Stanley: Up in space with our astronaut
Published on Apr 15th, 2010
0 comments Briton in his 2nd grade class and "Auntie Dottie" (center) with her Shuttle Discovery class.NASA Some time in first or second grade, most kids in the US are sent home with a stack of envelopes for...
ESSAY- True radical: Jefferson wanted revolutions, guns, liberty
Published on Apr 8th, 2010
0 comments Jefferson had the coolness, forecast, and capacity to introduce into a merely revolutionary document an abstract truth applicable to all men and all times, and so to embalm it there that today and...
ESSAY- Bloody Kansas: Why incivility can be dangerous
Published on Apr 1st, 2010
3 comments Prior to the Civil War, Jefferson Davis (while a member of the U.S. Senate) spoke against slavery spreading north of the 36th parallel, arguing that the institution everywhere would soon die on its...
ESSAY- Roger and we: Mr. Ebert returns to Charlottesville (sort of)
Published on Apr 1st, 2010
0 comments Ebert meets the press outside the Regal cinema in 2002COURTESY VIRGINIA FILM FESTIVAL It was October 1992 when I got the call. It was an administrator with the Virginia Film Festival, which was...
ESSAY- Blue Bird: Have we lived up to our early potential?
Published on Mar 25th, 2010
6 comments There's something you should know about me: I was in the Blue Bird reading group in Mrs. Prolman's first grade class. Impressed? You should be. And every morning, we would drag our little wooden...
ESSAY- Sham recovery: Why the economy's not getting any better
Published on Mar 18th, 2010
1 comments Are we finally in a recovery? Who's "we," kemosabe? Big global companies, Wall Street, and high-income Americans who hold their savings in financial instruments are clearly doing better. As to the...
ESSAY- First stone: Why I won't be protesting John Yoo
Published on Mar 11th, 2010
0 comments Almost the minute the announcement that the Justice Department ended the possibility of censuring lawyers who wrote memos backing extreme measures to question potential terrorists in the immediate...
ESSAY- Spineless sack: <i>Style</i> sacrifices talent for political correctness
Published on Mar 4th, 2010
0 comments Channel 6's Mark Holmberg has also taken up the cause.WTVR Autocomplete wasn't the only thing that screwed Chris Dovi. Sure, the now-former reporter at Richmond's Style Weekly did himself no favors...
ESSAY- One-minute warning: How to really reform campaign finance
Published on Feb 25th, 2010
3 comments Now that the hoopla is dying over the Supreme Court's decision to allow political giving by corporations, it's time to time to consider real political reform, reform that might address the "deficit...
ESSAY- On shoveling: One step closer to the grave?
Published on Feb 18th, 2010
0 comments Oh, that scrape... scrape... scrape of the shovel. Having grown up in New England, that's a sound as familiar as my own heartbeat. As a little kid, lying in my blissfully snug bed, I'd hear that...
ESSAY- For Salinger: With love and squalor
Published on Feb 11th, 2010
0 comments An author who wrote 'a key book of the present decade.'man: Lotte Jacobi. book: Flickr/Andy Field (Hubmedia) At times, it seemed like he was long dead; and the news that he had in fact passed away...
ESSAY- Trapped in Haiti: A true story with a tragic ending
Published on Feb 4th, 2010
0 comments "What do you need?"MSNBC The network news video showed French rescue workers digging through rubble of a Port-au-Prince luxury hotel and cutting through the rebar, and there was my brother-in-law. "...
ESSAY- After Robertson: God and man in Haiti
Published on Jan 28th, 2010
0 comments Rising like a headland of hope out of a sea of heartbreak, one of the most touching scenes out of Haiti on the Sunday after the earthquake was a religious ceremony held in a makeshift church in the...
ESSAY- American Made: Why Haiti's earthquake started here
Published on Jan 21st, 2010
4 comments As grim accounts of the earthquake in Haiti began arriving, the accounts in U.S.-controlled state media all carried the same descriptive sentence: "Haiti is the poorest country in the Western...