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A little of this, a little of that

Sometimes I have an idea for a column, write a few paragraphs and leave it until later. Much later. I just reviewed my recent document file and found several such unfinished ideas for today’s column. Friend Maj Ragama recently returned from an extended trip to Europe and the Mideast. He brought a lot of pictures […]

India’s river waters cleanse spirits at Hindu festival

NASIK, India — It’s just water. But to the millions of Hindus expected at the Kumbh Mela festival, held this year along the Godavari, touching that water is reverential. It’s a way to cleanse themselves of sin, to come close to God, to immerse themselves in a tradition that dates to antiquity. They have come […]

Cecil and Caitlyn heat up the Halloween costume wars early

NEW YORK — Who gets to decide what grown people wear for Halloween? Apparently everybody. The Halloween wars focused on pop culture costumes have heated up early this year. Petitions and social media outrage are already flying over a blood-spattered dentist’s smock paired with a Cecil-like lion head, along with a replica of Caitlyn Jenner’s cream-colored […]

Publishers Weekly best-sellers

Publishers Weekly best-sellers for week ending Aug. 23: HARDCOVER FICTION 1. “Go Set a Watchman” by Harper Lee (HarperCollins) 2. “The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins (Riverhead) 3. “Friction” by Sandra Brown (Grand Central Publishing) 4. “Alert” by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge (Little, Brown) 5. “Silver Linings” by Debbie Macomber (Ballantine) 6. […]

Why Fed won’t rescue markets with QE4

The recent financial turmoil already is fueling speculation about a fourth round of quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve, which would again step in to buy financial assets, boosting prices and repressing volatility. This wishful thinking is unsurprising for markets that have been conditioned to view central banks as their best friend. Yet the Fed […]

What 6 years of ‘reset’ have wrought

WASHINGTON — On Sept. 5, 2014, Russian agents crossed into Estonia and kidnapped an Estonian security official. Last week, after a closed trial, Russia sentenced him to 15 years. The reaction? The State Department issued a statement. The NATO secretary-general issued a tweet. Neither did anything. The European Union (reports The Wall Street Journal) said […]

Va. shooting aftermath reveals politics of murder

It’s happened again – too much news to settle on just one item, so let me start with my favorite characters, one Democrat and one allegedly Republican. Most of you are probably familiar with the Quinnipiac Poll, conducted by the Hamden, Connecticut university of the same name. It is nonpartisan and unbiased and highly respected. […]

Fairfield police log: Aug. 25, 2015

12:20 a.m. — Drunken driver, EASTBOUND AIR BASE PARKWAY 6:19 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 1300 block of TAFT STREET 6:26 a.m. — Residential burglary, 1700 block of BLOSSOM AVENUE 8:21 a.m. — Fight with a weapon, 2200 block of NORTH TEXAS STREET 8:30 a.m. — Vehicle theft, 1000 block of WEBSTER STREET 8:33 a.m. — […]

Ex-Olympian pens memoir on track career, call girl stint

MADISON, Wis. — Former Olympian and University of Wisconsin track star Suzy Favor Hamilton says she plans to publish a memoir next month that will touch on mental health issues that she says drove her to become a call girl. Favor Hamilton told her Twitter followers Wednesday that the book, entitled “Fast Girl,” will go […]

Ahead of pope’s visit to US, some friction over LGBT issues

  The World Meeting of Families, the central religious event of Pope Francis’ first visit to the United States, is intended to convey a message of love and joy as it seeks to promote church teaching on marriage. Yet four weeks away from its opening in Philadelphia, friction is mounting as lesbian, gay, bisexual and […]

Biography of Jimmy Carter scheduled to be released in 2018

NEW YORK — The author of books on Presidents Barack Obama and Franklin Roosevelt is working on a biography of Jimmy Carter. Simon & Schuster announced Tuesday that Jonathan Alter’s book on Carter will have “extensive cooperation” from the former president and those who know him. The book is scheduled to be published in 2018 […]

Travis Credit Union named to Top 200 list

VACAVILLE — Travis Credit Union was named to the 2015 edition of the Top 200 Healthiest Credit Unions in America recently released by DepositAccounts. The Vacaville-based financial company was 31st on the list. The credit union stood out in all of the primary evaluation categories, including Texas ratio, deposit growth and capitalization, according to a DepositAccounts […]

ReStore launches alternative to estate sales

FAIRFIELD — Solano-Napa Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore has started a new program to assist those who are downsizing, moving or liquidating the estate of a loved one. ReStore will pack up and transport estate items that include furniture, appliances, housewares, lighting, tools and other hardware and remodeling-related items. “This is a convenient alternative to the hassle […]

3 finalists for Thurber Prize for American Humor are women

NEW YORK — Thurber Prize judges have made it official: Women are funny, too. Nearly 20 years after its founding, the all-male winners’ circle for the Thurber Prize for American Humor is finally changing. New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast, actress-writer Annabelle Gurwitch and novelist Julie Schumacher were the finalists announced Monday by organizers of the […]

Question of the week: Should children get a trophy just for participating in a sport or event?

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison took to Instagram recently to say he was returning two awards his sons James III and Henry received from a local athletics event, saying he doesn’t want his sons to feel entitled, adding “cause sometimes your best is not enough, and that should drive you to want to do better.” they are entitled […]

Gunfire, tear gas as Lebanese police fight Beirut protesters

BEIRUT — Police firing tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannons battled thousands of Lebanese protesters Saturday demonstrating against government corruption and political dysfunction amid a trash crisis, with the sound of gunfire echoing through the streets into the night. Riot police used batons to beat back protesters among downtown Beirut’s Ottoman-era buildings and lavish apartment […]

Puerto Rico, USVI prepare for weakening Hurricane Danny

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — A weakening Hurricane Danny approached Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands on Saturday, but was expected to bring little relief to residents of the drought-stricken northern Caribbean. The Category 1 hurricane was located 570 miles east of the Leeward Islands late Saturday afternoon, with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph. […]

Prep school tackles ‘hookup’ culture amid rape case

CONCORD, N.H. — A New Hampshire prep school that has educated some of the nation’s elite for more than a century and a half is confronting a campus practice of sexual conquest after a senior was charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman girl. In a series of letters over the past year to students, parents […]

Female Rangers sparking debate over women combat roles

FORT BENNING, Ga. — The first female soldiers to complete the Army’s rigorous Ranger School pinned on their black-and-gold Ranger tab at a raucous graduation ceremony Friday, capping their history-making week and putting a spotlight on the debate over women in combat. With family members, friends, an unusually large media contingent and an all-star cast […]

Florida woman says she secretly recorded Jared Fogle

INDIANAPOLIS — A Florida woman says former Subway pitchman Jared Fogle told her years ago about his interest in having sex with minors and that she went to authorities who told her to record the conversations. Rochelle Herman-Walrond, a former journalist, told media outlets she wore a wire to record conversations of Fogle, who agreed […]

PTSD patients sue over Colorado pot ruling

DENVER — Colorado’s decision not to allow marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress disorder has prompted a lawsuit by PTSD sufferers. Five PTSD patients filed suit Thursday in Denver District Court. They’re challenging a July decision by the Colorado Board of Health not to make PTSD the first condition added to Colorado’s medical pot eligibility list […]

Trump drags GOP into immigration swamp

“This was not a subject that was on anybody’s mind until I brought it up at my announcement.” — Donald Trump, on immigration, Republican debate, Aug. 6 WASHINGTON — Not on anyone’s mind? For years, immigration has been the subject of near-constant, often bitter argument within the GOP. But it is true that Trump has […]

Measure Q won’t go away

It’s been almost three years since voters approved Measure Q, giving the Solano Community College District $348 million to do almost anything it wants. Recall, Proposition 39 (now part of the California Constitution) enabled school construction measures to be passed with 55 percent of the vote. It came with a handful of requirements, among them […]

Week’s news hits new low

It’s no secret that I look for stories that are, as they say, grist for my mill. And, most days you-know-who’s name comes up. But there was a narrative Thursday that so far exceeds in its bloody awfulness anything that goes on in our own political arena. If you haven’t seen it, you’re not surprised […]

Fairfield police log: Aug. 18, 2015

7:03 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 2800 block of DOVER AVENUE 7:57 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 1300 block of HOLIDAY LANE 8 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 1400 block of TRAVIS BOULEVARD 8:48 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 1000 block of WEBSTER STREET 8:51 a.m. — Residential burglary, 900 block of BRETON DRIVE 9:50 a.m. — Commercial burglary, 1600 block […]

Suisun City police log: Aug. 18, 2015

12:22 a.m. — Trespassing, 700 block of WHISPERING BAY LANE 8:45 a.m. — Vehicle theft, 500 block of COOT LANE 1:11 p.m. — Fraud, 200 block of RAILROAD AVENUE 5:33 p.m. — Vehicle burglary, PARK N RIDE LOT 5:59 p.m. — Reckless driver, BOAT RAMP 6:51 p.m. — Hit-and-run property damage, LAWLER RANCH PARKWAY / HIGHWAY 12 8:15 p.m. […]

Obama’s Iran deal may well survive on Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON — The fiercely contested Iran nuclear deal will likely survive in Congress despite unified GOP opposition and some Democratic defections, the top Senate Republican says. That would mean a major foreign policy win for President Barack Obama. Obama has “a great likelihood of success,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in his home state […]

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