Bill Asher

About Bill Asher

Bill Asher is a writer and retired executive. He lives with his family in Massachusetts.

Up in Smoke: California’s War Against E-Cigarettes

The California State Capitol disproves the idea that great civic architecture attracts great civic leaders, that the strength of our civil religion corresponds to the symbols of our devotion. The columns and pilasters, the arched windows and drum walls, the red curtains and green tones, the granite dome and gold rotunda—all of these things are

By | 2019-07-24T18:06:17-07:00 July 24th, 2019|

Once Upon a Time in Hell

What if there were a chemical reason for the chain reaction of the summer of 1969? A series of odorless but nonetheless noxious fumes: Ben Day dots that color the smog and shape the layers of subterranean gases that swirl from sewer grates and lifted slabs of sidewalk. A demonic air of delusion that surrounds

By | 2019-07-18T13:49:14-07:00 July 18th, 2019|

Nike: Goddess of Ignorance

The flag of 1777, not 1861. The Stars and Stripes, not the Stars and Bars. The flag of Betsy Ross, not Nicola Marschall. The flag of the United States, not the Confederate States. The flag of Union blue, not rebel gray. The flag we salute, not the one a critic condemns.  A critic who kneels

By | 2019-07-03T21:21:17-07:00 July 3rd, 2019|

To the Moon, Jill!

A trio of flags: one raised in victory by six Marines atop Mount Suribachi, a second lifted in defiance by three firefighters at Ground Zero, a third planted by two astronauts on the moon.  To Jill Lepore, professor of history at Harvard, that flag—the first of six to pierce the lunar surface—symbolizes the moral waste

By | 2019-06-24T14:41:38-07:00 June 24th, 2019|

A Soldier’s Story

He wrote four sentences, totaling 65 words. He said more, in fewer words, than America’s greatest economizer of words. He wrote about the bravery and devotion to duty by the troops, the air, and the Navy. He faulted them nothing; he blamed himself for everything. He wrote the words but never sent the letter, because

By | 2019-06-06T11:04:02-07:00 June 6th, 2019|

Stubborn as a Mueller

In the history of fatuous statements, somewhere between Bill Clinton’s disquisition on what the meaning of the word “is” is and theologians debating how many angels can stand on the point of a pin, which, given the discovery of quantum mechanics and the advent of nanoscopy, is no longer an absurd argument; in the last

By | 2019-05-29T13:56:48-07:00 May 29th, 2019|

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