October 20, 2022

Can Russia’s use of a nuclear weapon in the Ukraine war be prevented?

President Joe Biden surprised his top advisers along with everyone else when, at a fundraising event, he referred to “Armageddon” in the Ukraine war: Russia’s possible use of a nuclear weapon. Though United States officials were quick to stress that they knew of no imminent threat by Russia, Biden’s remark underscored recent reports suggesting deepening U.S. concern about what Putin might do as Russian forces retreat in eastern and southern Ukraine.

September 29, 2022

Casting a discerning eye on political theater

The term “political theater” has taken on some pointedly negative connotations in recent days. When Florida Governor Ron DeSantis flew two planeloads of migrants from San Antonio, Texas to Martha’s Vineyard on September 14, critics condemned the action as “political theater.”

August 25, 2022

Elections and the threat of uncritical political discourse

Primary elections are a routine occasion of frustration for many Americans. The recent primary elections continued this trend. Central questions included ideas about the amount of power still wielded by Donald Trump, whether the accomplishments of the Biden administration have been promoted enough, and can election results be trusted?

August 18, 2022

We must move beyond plastics

Back in 1967, people were electrified by the movie, “The Graduate,” especially the scene of 40-something Anne Bancroft seducing 21-year-old Dustin Hoffman. But there was another iconic moment, when one of his parents’ friends definitively pronounces one word to Hoffman’s character that would assure his future business success: “plastics.”

August 11, 2022

Will salmon finally win this year?

For the last 35 years I’ve been covering what we call the “salmon wars” in the Pacific Northwest, writing so many stories about salmon heading toward extinction that I’ve lost count.