Any chef will tell you that you need great ingredients to pull off a great meal. Less discussed but just as true: You need to cook the ingredients in the right order.
I'm getting that deja vu feeling as House Republicans these past several days have failed to alter the public's perception that they're incapable of governing.
Canaries are not very formidable birds, but they have their uses. For instance, coal miners learned over a century ago that when canaries gag and drop dead at the bottom of the cage, it's a sign that maybe there's something wrong with the air in the mine.
A sunset clause?
Is Hillary Rodham Clinton a McDonald's Big Mac or a Chipotle burrito bowl? A can of Bud or a bottle of Blue Moon? J.C. Penney or J. Crew?"
Republicans seem ceaselessly enamored of litmus tests, but the newest one - Do you believe President Barack Obama loves America? - makes birthers seem witty.
I've been radicalized. By Harry Reid and Barack Obama. Goodbye moderation and sweet reason. No more clinging to constitutional and procedural restraint. It's time to go nuclear.
"Could this argument be any dumber?"
Channel-surfing the nightly cable news, one is reminded that certitude is the enemy of sanity.
I once asked my late father if he had any experiences with anti-Semitism. There weren't many. Although that was probably in part because of his scoring methodology. The Irish kids who beat up the Jewish kids in his Bronx neighborhood didn't do so because they were anti-Semitic, but because "they had to fight somebody," as my dad put it. Today, such behavior would probably be called a hate crime.
There's a very 2001 feel to President Barack Obama's request for authorization to use military force and the nauseating sense that we'll be at war indefinitely.
As soon as the news broke Tuesday evening, anyone near a TV, radio or computer heard that three Muslim students were murdered near the University of North Carolina.
His secretary of defense says "the world is exploding all over." His attorney general says that the threat of terror "keeps me up at night."
By now everyone knows about his transgressions. If even only some of the reports are true, Brian Williams is a serial embellisher, a self-aggrandizing fabulist.
These are tough times for NBC's Brian Williams - and tougher times for journalism.
Everyone has an idea of what the role of parent means.
About one month after getting approved as foster parents, my husband and I got our first placement.
It's 5:30 a.m. on a Saturday, and my husband taps me.
We got the call at 3 p.m. on a Monday. Two little ones needed a home.