This past week, we came to know the meaning of "Polar Vortex." The cold converged on Midwest and the Eastern regions of the country without mercy. Health issues became a matter of life and death for humans and other animals. Frostbite was threatening exposed skin. Schools were closed, and people were told to stay indoors. More than 1,000 flights were canceled. It was too dangerous for the news reporters to continue reporting on how dangerous it was. If some of us had forgotten words like "Fahrenheit" and "hypothermia," we remembered them in a hurry.
There's little debate among academic economists about the effect of minimum wages. University of California, Irvine economist David Neumark has examined more than 100 major academic studies on the minimum wage. He reports that 85 percent of the studies "find a negative employment effect on low-skilled workers." A 1976 American Economic Association survey found that 90 percent of its members agreed that increasing the minimum wage raises unemployment among young and unskilled workers.
A friend recently wrote me, "What the 'Duck Dynasty' affair means to me is that, finally, some have had the courage to say 'ENOUGH' within the context of the media."
Just three days after Christmas, I ventured into a store and was greeted by a massive display of pulmonary confectionery: Valentine's Day candy in heart-shaped boxes, as it's known on the streets. I marvel at the power of capitalism and its never-ending push for the next source of revenue, but seeing Valentine's candy while the Christmas tree is still glowing is just too much!
Before President Barack Obama's health-care law was passed, Americans were frustrated that insurance companies had too much control over the medical care they received. Now, Americans are frustrated that the government has too much control.
When our oldest child was an infant, I talked to her nonstop. It was an ongoing monologue, a narrative of her life in progress. Topics included what we were doing, where we were going, what I was dressing her in, what the weather was like and what was happening next.
I've reached an age of almost knowing about life. Sometimes, I still believe I know nothing, yet I know more than I did the day before yesterday.
I called Junior E. Lee, general manager of the Yarbrough Worldwide Media and Pest Control Co., located in Greater Garfield, Ga., to see what kind of reactions he was getting from the public to the recent shutdown of the federal government.
My husband loves watching the Cooking Channel. He often tries some recipe he has seen or asks me to look it up on the Internet and print it out for him.
Shortly after the end of World War II, a pair of allergists gave some medication to a patient suffering from hives. Surprisingly, the patient reported her lifelong battle with carsickness had disappeared. After follow-up testing, Dramamine quickly became standard issue for fighting motion sickness.
Last week's column discussed the political tradeoffs made by black politicians and civil rights organizations that condemn whole generations of black youngsters to failing schools (http://tinyurl.com/6mmlsf). Similar political tradeoffs in labor markets condemn many blacks, particularly black youths, to high rates of unemployment and reduced economic opportunities. Let's look at this, starting with a few historical facts.
Candidate debates have created many memorable moments in American history, many of them arising from the televised debates of the 20th and 21st centuries.
The news this week of two arrests in the case of a 12-year-old suicide is a reminder of how middle school drama can go awry.
Five years ago, my husband and I moved to Covington. My only knowledge of Covington was that the TV drama "In the Heat of the Night" was filmed here. I watched that show at every opportunity; I even came to an auction of articles from the show once.
Bummer. I just learned that I did not win the Nobel Peace Prize again this year. This is getting old. I was so confident this time that I had my tuxedo pressed and new laces put in my Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star high-top sneakers.
The political disappointments in today's government abound. The national debt is out of control, the ideological divides are gaping, and the government has been shut down for more than a week. The average person has not yet felt the effects of the shutdown, but the concern for our nation's future is clear. Just about everyone has an opinion, but it's hard to find the real factors that must be considered in the current economic environment.
My recent "do-it-yourself" oil change debacle brought me to a painful crossroads: Do I keep fiddling with this myself, or do I let a professional help me?
Not long ago, the conventional wisdom in official Washington held that the so-called sequester spending cuts would be a disaster for the Republican Party. People were expected to rise up in vehement protest once the "cuts" went into effect.
Tradeoffs apply to our economic lives as well as our political lives. That means that getting more of one thing requires giving up something else. Let's look at some examples.
When was the last time you felt really stupid? Stupid, as in, "I wish I were invisible." Stupid, as in, "What was I thinking?" Stupid, as in, "I must have been out of my mind." Or stupid, as in, "I didn't really say that, did I?"