Missouri’s tax strategy: Give to the rich and take from the poor

GOP-controlled legislatures rarely spend much time worrying about taxing ordinary citizens unduly for essential goods and services. That concern would be front and center in a public vote, however. To set the stage with a huge income tax break for the wealthy would be politically foolish and morally bankrupt.

Positive actions to celebrate Earth Day

GOP lawmakers should pull back on attempts to undermine the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency to carry out its mission — created by a Republican president — to shield the nation’s air, water and land from long-lasting damage. The EPA, if anything, needs a bigger stick to carry in enforcing strong federal laws.

Tipster power leads to shooting arrest

As Mayor Sly James said at the news conference announcing the arrest of Mohammed Whitaker in connection with the series of recent highway shootings, it takes some bravery to report suspicious behavior or step forward as a witness. But it’s far better for all of us than living in fear.

Guatemala must create more jobs and end poverty

All the while my partner, Bette, and I toured Guatemala, we wondered how life could be better. Topping the list, all groups providing outside intervention should “endeavor to walk a tightrope” respecting Guatemala’s people, culture and traditions. Often that doesn’t happen.

On Ukraine, lend this savvy Soviet great-grandchild an ear

President Barack Obama is wise to reserve judgment on Vladimir Putin’s sincerity, but a betting man would do well to put his money on Nina Khrushcheva’s crystal ball. Her understanding of Putin’s psyche is several notches above the talking points that news consumers have heard repeated ad nauseam.

As a community, we must move beyond silence

There is much harder work to do in recognizing the real threat to society that exists in the shadows. As Rabbi Arthur Nemitoff remarked, there is great power at times in silence, but silence will not heal and “silence is no solution.”

Yet another reason to like the Boston Marathon

Runners start the Boston Marathon in Hopkinton, Mass., 26.2 miles away from the finish line, in a place filled with its own traditions. One of the best will occur again Monday. As runners shed hats, gloves, sweatshirts, sweatpants and other clothes used to keep themselves warm before the race, charity officials then pick up and reuse the clothing.

Nostalgia for disaster is found in Barry Goldwater race

The Republican Party needs internal debate and populist energy. The problem comes in viewing the events of 50 years ago, when presidential candidate Barry Goldwater objected to the extension of federal power in the the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as an example rather than a warning.

Kansas City is living down to its high-crime reputation

The recent highway shootings are among the grim reminders that Kansas City’s unacceptably high rates of violent crime and murder affect its reputation. It’s essential that leaders keep trying to reduce these rates. They are bad for businesses, bad for tourists and especially bad for residents.

U.S. founding documents are the root of political divide

The fundamental division in American politics is between those who take their bearings from the individual’s right to a capacious, indeed indefinite, realm of freedom and those whose fundamental value is the right of the majority to have its way in making rules about which specified liberties shall be respected.

Fairness, not envy, drives the debate over money

If America’s distributional game continues to create a few big winners and many who consider themselves losers by comparison, the losers will try to stop the game — not out of envy but out of a deep-seated sense of unfairness and a fear of unchecked power and privilege. Then we all lose.