Picture of Marty Kaplan

Marty Kaplan

Marty Kaplan holds the Norman Lear Chair at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. His Jewish Journal columns have won First Place in the Southern California Journalism Awards six times in the past six years. Reach him at martyk@jewishjournal.com

Health Care Scare

We’re about to find out whether Americans are as suspicious of the right’s anti-health care reform propaganda as Iraqis are dismissive of America’s lame hearts-and-minds campaign in Iraq.

It’s Tough Love Time for Obama

First I worried that Obama was foolhardy to put Goldman Sachs alumni and other Wall Street geniuses in charge of fixing the mess that they’d made in the first place. But then I bought the pragmatic argument that these masters of the universe were the only people with enough inside experience to understand the derivatives con game well enough to shut it down.

The Food Fight Online

If there\’s a metaphor for the way that Americans do politics online that\’s less apt than “a national conversation,” I can\’t think of one, except perhaps for “a great debate.”

The Virtue of Hate

“If he didn’t hear from her at night, he’d go frantic.” This is Carmen Bachan, speaking through tears about her husband James and her daughter Adrianna.
“That night he told her to be careful, and she was. She was crossing on a green light until that animal took her life and injured that beautiful young man.” That young man is Marcus Garfinkle, who was thrown onto the windshield of the car of the hit-and-run driver who killed Adrianna Bachan. He was carried 300 to 400 feet until the car stopped, and a passenger got out, dislodged him from the windshield, dumped him on the street with two broken legs and then sped away.

The Upside of Outrage

A big reason that the Iraq war never ignited nationwide outrage on the scale of Vietnam protests was the absence of conscription. As long as the volunteer army confined the consequences of George W. Bush’s Oedipal acting-out to one slice of America, taking it to the streets was just not how the country channeled its anger; telling it to the pollster was more like it.

Solidarity For Never

Since conservative orthodoxy has turned out to be voodoo economics after all, now would be an excellent time to unmask its demonization of labor unions as yet another con job that big business has pulled on the American people.


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