Jeff Jacoby
Jeff Jacoby
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 

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Does free speech fly at City Hall Plaza?

January 12, 2022  •  The Boston Globe


NEXT WEEK the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Shurtleff v. Boston, a freedom-of-speech case that concerns a flagpole on Boston's City Hall Plaza.

The facts of the controversy are simple. The issues at stake are profound.

There are actually three flagpoles in front of City Hall. One always flies the American flag. The second is reserved for the flag of Massachusetts. The third pole is handled differently.

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The filibuster has been bad, but repealing it would be worse

January 9, 2022  •  The Boston Globe

IN A "Dear Colleague" letter on Jan. 3, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer issued a warning: If Republicans continued to block the Senate from passing two sweeping elections-related bills supported by Democrats, he wrote, then the chamber would "debate and consider changes to Senate rules on or before January 17." That was a threat, as everyone understood, to invoke the "nuclear option" and blow up the filibuster. If successful, Democrats would no longer require 60 votes to pass their controversial measures; a bare majority would suffice.

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Bye-bye, Bay State

January 5, 2022  •  The Boston Globe

A FRIEND of mine who lived for many years on the North Shore of Massachusetts relocated to Kentucky in 2018 and has rejoiced ever since that it was among the best decisions he ever made. Compared to the Bay State, he reports, the housing where he lives now is more affordable, the taxes are lower, the winters are milder, the people are friendlier, and the politics are more congenial. Not even the tornadoes that tore up western Kentucky last month have dampened his satisfaction in no longer having to put up with all the things that he found so irksome about life in Massachusetts.

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Nobody knows anything

January 2, 2022  •  The Boston Globe

In Adventures in the Screen Trade, his 1983 memoir about life in Hollywood, the late William Goldman summarized the movie industry in three words: "Nobody knows anything." A two-time winner of the Academy Award for best screenplay, Goldman wrote some of the big screen's biggest hits, including "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "All the President's Men." If anybody was an expert on successful movies, he was. But experts, he wrote, are as clueless as everyone else about the future.

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Elizabeth Warren's one-trick inflation pony

December 29, 2021  •  The Boston Globe


PRICES IN the United States are rising faster than they have in decades. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this month that inflation was up 6.8 percent over the past year, the steepest annual increase in consumer prices since 1982.

There is no mystery about why inflation is exploding: Prices spike when too many dollars are chasing too few goods. The federal government has massively increased spending over the past two years in the name of economic stimulus and COVID-19 relief: too many dollars. At the same time, the pandemic's upheaval has led to a global labor shortage and snarled supply chains, preventing commodities of every description from being produced or from reaching vendors: too few goods.

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