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A Change Election—in the Wrong Direction

The furious and frustrated electorate should be careful when they demand change in the upcoming midterm elections—because what they get may well be very different from what they actually want.

Posted on Jul 14, 2010 READ MORE


Show Us the Money

We could easily slip into another Great Depression if our leaders continue to heed the chattering class on the deficit. But cutting spending is not just bad economics; it’s bad politics, too.

Posted on Jul 7, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Wagner T. Cassimiro "Aranha" (CC-BY)

Save the Trees, Save the Planet

What would the wealthy nations of the West (and their rising rivals in the East) do if they actually wanted to prevent catastrophic warming? Here in Africa, the obvious answer is that they would find the ways and means to discourage deforestation.

Posted on Jun 23, 2010 READ MORE


Why We Can’t Just ‘Look Forward’

The years of detainee abuse and constitutional violations cannot be dismissed so easily, because the past is still with us—and so are the dangers that drew America’s leaders toward the dark side.

Posted on Jun 9, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Ariel Schalit

Israel From 10,000 Feet

The government of Israel is supposedly run by the Jewish state’s toughest and most ardent defenders, but so far they have inflicted worse damage on its security and its future than its enemies ever could.

Posted on Jun 3, 2010 READ MORE


What Rand Really Believes

Rand Paul, tea party flavor of the month, is said to be avoiding “overexposure.” When he emerges from hiding and explains his most extreme positions, even many Republicans may think twice or three times before they vote for him.

Posted on May 27, 2010 READ MORE


Oil Rules

The more we learn about the BP oil well blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, the more we ought to question the basic assumptions that led us here.

Posted on May 19, 2010 READ MORE


Obama’s Feminist Touch

The Kagan nomination reminds us that Barack Obama is the first president raised on feminist principles.

Posted on May 12, 2010 READ MORE


What We Learned From Times Square

Within hours after the car bomb fizzled in Times Square, the nonstop noise resumed on Fox News and talk radio, warning that the Barack Obama administration is failing to protect us.

Posted on May 6, 2010 READ MORE


It Takes Power to Control Power

Discredited as the financial powers are, their wealth alone continues to provide them with wildly disproportionate influence over the political process.

Posted on Apr 28, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The World Prefers Obama’s America

As approval ratings for Barack Obama decline at home, world opinion of the United States is rising steadily under his stewardship.

Posted on Apr 21, 2010 READ MORE


Let’s Have a Real Debate About the Court

A serious debate on “constitutional issues” might reveal our fundamental differences: Republican extremists would use the Supreme Court to prohibit every social and political advance since before the Civil War.

Posted on Apr 14, 2010 READ MORE


Rebuilding an American Legacy

The collapse of American infrastructure is a shamefully old story by now, featuring scary statistics that must be updated regularly as the situation worsens.

Posted on Apr 8, 2010 READ MORE


Democracy and Domestic Violence

When the Department of Homeland Security released a cautiously worded report on the potential dangers of right-wing extremism last April, the talk-radio wingnuts and certain Republican lawmakers went into spasms of indignation.

Posted on Mar 31, 2010 READ MORE


The Right-Wingers Who Cried Wolf

Going too far for Bill O’Reilly is going very far indeed, but the madness of the conservative reaction to the health care bill has yet to abate.

Posted on Mar 25, 2010 READ MORE


Glenn Beck
Flickr / Gage Skidmore

Right Wing Gone Wild

American fanatics tend to self-destruct. Today’s right-wing nihilists, led by Elizabeth Cheney, William Kristol and Glenn Beck, are crossing that threshold of decency.

Posted on Mar 17, 2010 READ MORE


The New McCarthyism

When Elizabeth Cheney, William Kristol and their media friends slander Justice Department attorneys as the “al-Qaida 7” and malign the “Department of Jihad,” they are engaging in the smear tactics that became synonymous with Joseph McCarthy.

Posted on Mar 10, 2010 READ MORE



AP

The Politics of Earthquakes

If the earthquakes in Chile and Haiti carry any message for those of us fortunate enough not to live in those places, perhaps it is that government regulation could save your life—while right-wing ideology may kill you someday.

Posted on Mar 3, 2010 READ MORE


Zazi Case Vindicates Traditional Methods

Before Najibullah Zazi is finally dispatched to a secure cellblock for good, it is important to remember how the taxi-driver-turned-terrorist was brought to justice—and why the critics who jeered his civilian prosecution were dead wrong.

Posted on Feb 24, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Mixed Medicare Message

For voters listening to the Republican leadership over the past year, the most startling surprise was the shift in the GOP attitude toward Medicare.

Posted on Feb 17, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Double Standard on Terror Trials

Preparing for what they hope will be their return to power in Washington, Republican congressional leaders have revived the fear-mongering and flag-flapping used by Karl Rove to win the 2002 midterm elections.

Posted on Feb 10, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Dubious Populism

The most revealing moments in President Obama’s State of the Union address were not in his remarks, but the reaction to them by those listening on the Republican side of the aisle.

Posted on Feb 3, 2010 READ MORE


Hope in the Deep Freeze

There are many reasons why Barack Obama’s spending freeze, which appears to be nothing more than pandering to the angry right, will not work as policy or politics.

Posted on Jan 28, 2010 READ MORE


No Obama Obituaries, Please

If scored strictly by his legislative attainments, Obama is a highly effective president. In fact, the scrupulously nonpartisan Congressional Quarterly rated him the most effective president of the past five decades, as measured by congressional votes on which he took a position.

Posted on Jan 20, 2010 READ MORE


Reid’s Motive Does Matter

If the Senate majority leader’s private remarks about the skin tone and speaking style of Barack Obama was offensive, the Republican crusade to oust him from his leadership position is worse.

Posted on Jan 14, 2010 READ MORE


Partisan Hysteria Hypes (and Helps) Al-Qaida

The latest terrorist attack against the United States proves that the Republican exploitative response to terror is as predictable as al-Qaida’s urge to kill.

Posted on Jan 6, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / The Gifted Photographer / CC-BY-SA

Fair and Balanced (and Phony) Science

Evading the challenges of climate change—and the human responsibility to save the planet—is simple enough even for the laziest citizen.

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


The Crushing Legacy of Bush and Cheney

Now it’s “Obama’s war,” but we should not ignore the events that led us to this moment and the inexplicable decisions of the Bush administration.

Posted on Dec 2, 2009 READ MORE


Understanding Our Hollow ‘Centrists’

The puzzling thing about politicians of either party who claim to be “centrist” or “moderate” is how much they sometimes sound like party-line right-wing Republicans.

Posted on Nov 25, 2009 READ MORE


What Is So Patriotic About Hysteria?

The loudest voices on the right never tire of telling us that they are the truest patriots, but when did fear-mongering in a time of war become an act of patriotism?

Posted on Nov 18, 2009 READ MORE


Testing Next Year’s Lies Today

Republicans have made it clear they aren’t going to let honesty become an obstacle in the midterm elections.

Posted on Nov 11, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Why Obama Must Spend More

If the president and Congress don’t come to the aid of workers, the political consequences will be severe, and deservedly so.

Posted on Oct 7, 2009 READ MORE


‘Socialism’ and Sham in the Senate

Listening closely to the politicians with the most clout in the debate over health care, it is startling to discover how little they actually seem to know about the subject.

Posted on Oct 1, 2009 READ MORE


Joe Wilson’s Confederate Cronies

The stupid misconduct of entertainer Kanye West and the South Carolina politician demonstrated, if any fresh proof is necessary, that thoughtless rudeness isn’t confined by ethnicity, ideology or background.

Posted on Sep 16, 2009 READ MORE


Law, Not Torture, Protects National Security

Former Vice President Dick Cheney and his supporters love America so much they would transform it into Stalinist Russia.

Posted on Aug 27, 2009 READ MORE


The Real Death Panels

The ugly fact is that every year we fail to reform the existing system, that failure condemns tens of thousands of people to die—either because they have no insurance or because their insurance companies deny coverage or benefits when they become ill.

Posted on Aug 13, 2009 READ MORE


What Are the Birthers Really After?

Why this obsession over Obama’s birthplace persists is a question that evokes disturbing answers.

Posted on Aug 5, 2009 READ MORE


A Time, Again, for Bill Clinton

Perhaps the time has come, if it isn’t already too late, for President Obama to ask for help from President Clinton.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE



DoD / Cherie A. Thurlby

Blue Dogs: The Special Interest Pets

Fiscal conservative is one of those terms used by politicians of all sorts to describe themselves, without any real justification. That phrase is often used to mislead the public about the priorities and policies favored by those who claim to embody budgetary prudence.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Susan Walsh

Pelosi’s Toothless ‘Commission’

Congressional leaders are expected to announce a new commission to investigate the causes of America’s financial disaster. But unless the speaker and her colleagues summon much greater courage than they have displayed to date, it will only highlight the failure of the Democrats to live up to their heritage.

Posted on Jul 15, 2009 READ MORE


Party of Franken, Party of Palin

Al Franken left showbiz to prove himself a serious policy wonk as well as a devoted family man; Sarah Palin transformed herself and her family into a reality television show. Their long, odd trips reflect the journeys of their respective parties.

Posted on Jul 8, 2009 READ MORE


John McCain
AP photo / Charles Dharapak

Suddenly, a Trillion Dollars Is Too Expensive?

The senators who now claim we cannot afford to spend a trillion dollars to make long overdue changes in health care know exactly what that amount can buy. They know because they have spent it, year after year, on military misadventures and subsidies to big banks and corporations.

Posted on Jul 1, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Charles Dharapak

The Sickening Influence of Campaign Contributions

Democrats who are talking down Obama’s health care initiative tend to have something in common—their abject dependence on campaign contributions from the insurance and pharmaceutical corporations fighting against real reform.

Posted on Jun 24, 2009 READ MORE


The AMA’s Unhealthy Obsession

The real question is not what the AMA will support or whether the attitudes of the AMA have changed, but why anyone would still heed its policy prescriptions. Very few national organizations have been so wrong for so long about the matters most salient to their own members.

Posted on Jun 17, 2009 READ MORE


Why So Scared of a Public Plan?

Big insurance and pharmaceutical companies are lobbying frantically (and spending millions of dollars) to foreclose the possibility of the most promising aspect of health care reform: a public insurance option.

Posted on Jun 11, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / steve9567

Domestic Terrorism by Any Standard

If right-wing broadcasters don’t want to be blamed when someone murders a person they have demonized repeatedly—as in the case of George Tiller, the doctor shot dead in his Wichita, Kan., church last Sunday—then they ought to moderate their rhetoric.

Posted on Jun 4, 2009 READ MORE


Why Obama’s Court Pick Is Already a Winner

The same impulses that have long driven the Republican Party toward ethnic polarization and immigrant-bashing seem certain to infect its opposition to Judge Sonia Sotomayor—in ways that can only benefit the Democrats and Mr. Obama in elections to come.

Posted on May 28, 2009 READ MORE


Bush
AP photo / John Raoux

Those Brand-New Humble Republicans

Hoping to re-brand their declining party, a group of prominent Republicans recently launched a national “listening tour,” presumably as an exercise in market research. They would like to know why voters—and especially younger voters—increasingly reject the GOP.

Posted on May 7, 2009 READ MORE


Combating Epidemic Ignorance

Some on the right are blaming immigrants for swine flu in the U.S. Actually, the outbreak had nothing to do with immigrants and everything to do with ordinary travel and commerce.

Posted on Apr 29, 2009 READ MORE


Armey’s Tea Party Army

At the apex of the tea party movement is FreedomWorks, headed by former Rep. Dick Armey. His past career should be instructive to any starry-eyed citizens who believe that they have at last found the true right-wing revolutionary path.

Posted on Apr 16, 2009 READ MORE


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