In the Public Eye

jtaylor's picture
Monday, August 11, 2014 - 2:15pm

Although DC insiders skewer each other all the time, it still can be fun to listen when someone who’s carried himself with the gravity of a deadly serious job – being Secretary of Defense – plunges into retirement, sells his memoir and lets loose with the snarkiness that he was forced to stifle during his lengthy government service. I’m referring to Robert Gates whose service included heading the Central Intelligence Agency and serving on the National Security Council.


In the Public Eye

Monday, March 24, 2014 - 9:35am

The obituary was nicely written, sprinkled with loving memories and jovial asides in a few short sentences. It was posted on Facebook. It drew scores of “likes” from the writer’s friends and families. Wait, now. “Liking” an obituary? Is that just the way it is, just enough time spent in our hurly-burly lives?

Did any of the “likes” also invest $7 in a Hallmark card? Slip a handwritten note into an envelope? Make a donation in the deceased’s name? Call the friend to offer condolences?


Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 3:20pm

Enter hospital. Observe, and ask one question: “Am I in a social fabric that is safe and caring?” Expected answer, from stressed, overwhelmed patient, “I should be.” From caregiver, “We try to make it that way.”


Friday, January 17, 2014 - 9:16am

It’s amazing how keeping people out of hospitals and getting crooks into jail can travel along similar paths. The other day, healthcare futurist Joe Flower reflected on the important forces driving the biggest change in healthcare in anyone’s memory --- demographics, economics and technology.


Friday, January 3, 2014 - 11:49am

He stood typing on a keyboard behind the United Airlines counter. He flashed me a look. “You don’t really see me,” he said, “because I’m not really here.” So much for asking about changing flights. Soon, I’d be watching him trying to queue up folks to board a plane – so clueless that other United staff had to do his work for him.  So much for United's “bug off” brand of customer service in San Francisco.


Friday, December 6, 2013 - 3:21pm

It’s 4 a.m. About 40 emails have accumulated since I last checked my phone six hours ago --- news alerts, various listserves, political updates.

It’s 5:30 a.m. If I’m lucky, the delivery driver has left three newspapers at my door – the Fresno Bee, New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Print is not dead, but some days it takes three papers in a blue bag to keep the wind from blowing the contents away. Before I head to work at 6:30 a.m., I will have read two, saving the Journal for later.