DISPATCHES FROM THE EDGE:Sanctions & the Dollar: A Fall From Grace?

Conn Hallinan
Saturday August 23, 2014 - 11:52:00 AM

The recent round of sanctions aimed at Moscow over the crisis in the Ukraine could backfire on Washington by accelerating a move away from the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. While in the short run American actions against Russia’s oil and gas industry will inflict economic pain on Moscow, in the long run the U.S. may lose some of its control over international finance. -more-


Jack Bragen
Friday August 22, 2014 - 02:08:00 PM

Many people who are involved in the mental health treatment system, or people who believe they know something about persons with mental illness, are under the impression that we would be just fine if only we would take our medication. In fact, mere compliance to the wishes of treatment professionals and sometimes families is not adequate to make our lives workable. The willingness to take medication entails a great deal of sacrifice. -more-

ECLECTIC RANT: Is GOP Lawsuit against Obama Based Partly on Racism?

Ralph E. Stone
Friday August 22, 2014 - 01:40:00 PM

On July 30, 2014, the Republican-led House approved a resolution authorizing Speaker John Boehner to sue President Barack Obama over claims he abused his powers at the expense of Congress and the Constitution. Republicans argue Obama's executive orders in a number of areas were unlawful because it's the job of Congress to make or change laws. However, the GOP are basing their lawsuit on his handling of the Affordable Care Act. And there are persistent rumors that the House plans to impeach Obama. -more-

ECLECTIC RANT: John Yoo and the Senate Torture Report

Ralph E. Stone
Friday August 22, 2014 - 01:33:00 PM
John Yoo (from

Professor John Yoo stepped away from his lectern at the UC Berkeley School of Law to send an e-mail to the San Francisco Chronicle criticizing the forthcoming Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) torture report saying that if "torture was used and it didn't work, she [Senator Dianne Feinstein] is flat wrong." Yoo claimed the report failed to maintain "bipartisanship" that "will undermine its conclusions." I suspect that this is a preemptive attack by Yoo as the release of the Senate torture report will probably place Yoo on the hotseat again. -more-

SENIOR POWER : more about the G word

Helen Rippier Wheeler,
Friday August 22, 2014 - 01:14:00 PM

Sunday, September 7, is National Grandparents Day, an annual secular holiday celebrated in the United States since 1978. Then-President Jimmy Carter signed the proclamation. It is expected to grow in significance as the number of grandparents in the United States rises as a result of the baby boom. A national grandparents day is officially recognized in a number of countries on various days of the year. -more-