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By Robert G. Kaiser
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Romney
mcclatchydc.com

Romney Faces Facts

Mitt Romney dropped out of the presidential campaign Thursday, but you’ll probably still have him to kick around, as he hinted that he might run again. He said he made the difficult decision because he didn’t want to help the Democrats—and, by some illogical extension, the terrorists—win: “And, frankly, in this time of war, I simply cannot let my campaign be a part of aiding a surrender to terror.”

Posted on Feb 7, 2008 READ MORE


Division Problems

The Super Tuesday primaries were a test of strength that demonstrated weaknesses in both parties and pointed to problems each could confront in the fall.

Posted on Feb 6, 2008 READ MORE


The McCain Divide

If the Arizona senator secures the Republican presidential nomination, his victory would signal a revolution in American politics—a divorce, after a 28-year marriage, between the Republican and conservative establishments.

Posted on Jan 31, 2008 READ MORE



nytimes.com

Schwarzenegger Backs McCain

California’s celebrity governor has thrown his muscle behind the McCain campaign. Despite the occasional pander, McCain still plays better with California’s moderates than Mitt Romney, who appears to have been embraced, if reluctantly, by the more conservative elements of his party.

Posted on Jan 31, 2008 READ MORE


European Conservatives Join Forces

Four far-right European political parties have allied with each other, hoping to form a European Union umbrella party opposed to “Islamization” and immigration. Europeans, you see, will never give up their welfare states, so conservatives there spend much of their time bashing immigrants. Unlike America, where xenophobia is, though popular, something of a passing fancy.

Posted on Jan 25, 2008 READ MORE


book cover

Chalmers Johnson on the Myth of Free Trade

A powerful new book by a young South Korean-born economist at Cambridge University provides a compelling critique of the contradictions and hypocrisies of globalization and neoliberalism. The perfect antidote to the nostrums of Thomas Friedman.

Posted on Jan 24, 2008 READ MORE


The Stimulus Swindle

Stimulus—you’ve probably heard this nebulous, scientific-sounding word this week. Every politician suddenly wants economic “stimulus,” and wants you to think this “stimulus” is unequivocally good.

Posted on Jan 24, 2008 READ MORE


Thompson
nytimes.com

Thompson Drops Out

Fred Thompson was supposed to be the political savior of his party, but instead he sputtered and fizzled his way through a disappointing few months of campaigning. After poor showings in every primary and caucus to date, Thompson has decided to call it quits. Next up, Rudy Giuliani?

Posted on Jan 22, 2008 READ MORE


Crunch Time for McCain

John McCain is feared by Democrats and liked by independents. That, paradoxically, is why he may yet be rejected by Republicans, even though he has bent over backward to satisfy conservative demands.

Posted on Jan 22, 2008 READ MORE


Running Away From Bush

The turmoil in the Republican presidential contest, which seems to produce a new front-runner every month, owes to President Bush’s unpopularity and the fact that even members of his own party want to turn the page on the last seven years.

Posted on Jan 15, 2008 READ MORE


The Coming Attack on Barack

Conspirators with a “Swift boat” style are looking at the Illinois senator and sharpening their knives. One of their delicious subjects of attention is the candidate’s provocative spiritual adviser.

Posted on Jan 9, 2008 READ MORE


Huckabee
usnews.com

Huckabee Takes Iowa

Mike Huckabee is the Republican winner of the 2008 Iowa caucuses, with a significant lead over Mitt Romney, who came in second despite spending more time and money in the state than his rivals.

Posted on Jan 3, 2008 READ MORE


Olbermann

Olbermann Slams New York Times

The New York Times made it onto Keith Olbermann’s “worst person” list with the news that the paper had hired William Kristol: “You guys at the Times can hire any conservative columnist you want, but why did you pick the really dumb one?”

Posted on Jan 3, 2008 READ MORE


Hollywood’s Thumbs-Down on Abortion

Pregnancy is way cool on the big screen these days. Moviemakers seem to be reflecting a cultural tide that has shifted key positions on both the left and the right.

Posted on Jan 2, 2008 READ MORE


Picking a President

Our next leader will have a huge task: to repair the worldwide damage done to the nation’s image and its foreign policy interests over the past seven years.  Americans must choose well.

Posted on Jan 1, 2008 READ MORE


Huckabee
AP photo / Steve Mitchell

The Evangelical Rebellion

Mike Huckabee represents a new and potent force in American politics, and the neocons and corporate elite, who once viewed the yahoos of the Christian right as the useful idiots, are now confronted with the fact that they themselves are the ones who have been taken for a ride.

Posted on Dec 23, 2007 READ MORE


Huckabee the Rebel

The rise of the Baptist minister—an “evangelical populist”—has put the fear of God into the Republican establishment.

Posted on Dec 20, 2007 READ MORE


Huckabee: ‘Take Your Best Shot’

The candidate who has gone from microscopic numbers to front-runner status is starting to feel the heat, but Mike Huckabee would rather suffer the slings and arrows of his opponents’ attacks than go back to toiling away in conservative obscurity: “It’s almost like ‘take your best shot, people.’ ” Now if the marginalized Democratic candidates could replicate Huckabee’s success, we’d have an exciting race on our hands.

Posted on Dec 11, 2007 READ MORE


Conservative, or Just Plain Corrupt?

Through their ethics scandals, Republicans in Washington long ago began making the word conservative synonymous with the term corrupt. Surprisingly, though, it is a group of Democrats that is cementing this definitional conversion for good.

Posted on Nov 30, 2007 READ MORE


Bush’s ‘Stem Cell Victory’

Scientists may have found a way to grow stem cells without using embryos. The president’s people are claiming this as a White House victory, causing a flood of gall on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Posted on Nov 28, 2007 READ MORE


Conscience of a Liberal cover

Nicholas von Hoffman on ‘The Conscience of a Liberal’

Why is it that so many voters continue to elect reactionaries who do their best to disenfranchise them? The answer, says Paul Krugman in his new book, is racism.

Posted on Nov 15, 2007 READ MORE


A Faith-Based Boondoggle

Countless studies show that abstinence-only sex education just doesn’t work, so why is it getting more money than ever from the federal government?

Posted on Nov 15, 2007 READ MORE


giuliani and robertson
nytimes.com

Robertson Backs Giuliani

Conservative Christian blowhard Pat Robertson has endorsed Rudy Giuliani for president, possibly giving the candidate a boost with fundamentalist voters. Robertson came to the decision because, as only he could possibly put it: “The overriding issue before the American people is the defense of our population from the blood lust of Islamic terrorists.”

Posted on Nov 8, 2007 READ MORE


McCain Capitalizes on Conservative Anxiety

The strangest thing about John McCain’s campaign for president is that it’s supposed to be dead, but it isn’t. This is a real nuisance for his competitors.

Posted on Nov 6, 2007 READ MORE


Racist, Distorted and Effective

A contemporary Willie Horton has turned up in the Democratic presidential campaign, and so far he is winning. No such person sat in the Drexel University auditorium during the Democrats’ debate on Tuesday night. But the candidates, especially the unprepared front-runner, Hillary Clinton, should long ago have recognized that Republicans and a shrill conservative chorus intend to make Hispanic illegal immigrants the Willie Hortons of 2008.

Posted on Nov 1, 2007 READ MORE


Giuliani in drag

Top 5 Political Costumes

In the spirit of Halloween and the idea of dressing up as something you’re not, we’ve decided to pay tribute to the five best political poses from the other 364 days of the year.

Posted on Oct 31, 2007 READ MORE


Moral Minority

Those who went to the Values Voter Summit left without a candidate to call their own. But the lack of a golden boy isn’t their only problem: There are signs of ideological rigor mortis among the old guard.

Posted on Oct 24, 2007 READ MORE


Bar Fly

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Posted on Oct 23, 2007 READ MORE


Speaking Truth to Nonsense

Triangulation aside, when it comes to the phony Social Security crisis, Hillary Clinton has stood up for the truth: There isn’t one.

Posted on Oct 23, 2007 READ MORE


The Mormon Issue

Let’s say it unequivocally: Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith should not be an issue in this presidential campaign. Period. And then let us explore why the Mormon “issue” may be unavoidable—and what Romney and the rest of us should do about it.

Posted on Oct 23, 2007 READ MORE


Living With Climate Change

Because the problem is likely to stretch on for decades, even centuries, even if humankind acts immediately, we had better get used to the idea of adapting.

Posted on Oct 23, 2007 READ MORE


The Senate’s Strange Double Standard

For an object lesson in the distorted values of the Senate, contrast how it is handling the Larry Craig case with how it is handling the Ted Stevens case.

Posted on Oct 17, 2007 READ MORE


Drowning in Denial

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Posted on Oct 17, 2007 READ MORE


Sweeping Our Inhumanity Under the Rug

By simply deciding that something is a “state secret,” the Bush government has avoided answering for its brutal treatment of innocent victims in the war on terror.  This is a perversion of the principle of American justice.

Posted on Oct 15, 2007 READ MORE


How Did a 12-Year-Old Become No. 1 Enemy of Conservatives?

Conservatives claim to be in favor of stable families, small businesses, hard work, private schools, investment and homeownership. So why in the world are so many on the right attacking the family of Graeme Frost?

Posted on Oct 11, 2007 READ MORE


Why ‘Socialism’ Evokes No Fear

Once among the most frightening epithets in American political culture, “socialized medicine” seems to have lost its juju. Today that phrase sounds awfully dated, like a song on a gramophone or a mother-in-law joke or a John Birch Society rant against fluoridated water.

Posted on Oct 11, 2007 READ MORE


Hannity and Dobson

Dobson Says No No No to Giuliani

In case you think conservative Christians are just bluffing with their threats to split from the Republicans, take a gander at this clip of Sean Hannity begging James Dobson to support Rudy Giuliani. Dobson refuses, standing on principle and the promise of a more frenzied and loyal base under a Clinton presidency.

Posted on Oct 9, 2007 READ MORE


A ‘Third Way’ for Liberals and Conservative Christians

You know the religious right is in trouble when some of its leaders threaten to bolt the Republican Party if it nominates a candidate who supports abortion rights. But the well-publicized warning directed against Rudy Giuliani earlier this month is decidedly not the most important sign that religious conservatives are facing the disintegration of their movement.

Posted on Oct 9, 2007 READ MORE


God’s Only Party

The creator will campaign for a third-party candidate if Rudy locks up the GOP nomination. How do we know this? Well, it seems God whispered in the ears of certain evangelical leaders.

Posted on Oct 7, 2007 READ MORE


The Quickest Way to End the War

Would conservatives and Republicans support the war in Iraq if they had to pay for it? This is the immensely useful question that Rep. David Obey, the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, put on the table this week by calling for a temporary war tax to cover President Bush’s request for $145 billion in supplemental spending for Iraq.

Posted on Oct 5, 2007 READ MORE


Limbaugh’s ‘Phony Soldiers’ Slur

The controversy over what Rush Limbaugh meant when he uttered the phrase “phony soldiers” last week isn’t just another broadcast sideshow. As the political power of conservatism declines, the symbolic authority of figures such as Limbaugh is likewise shrinking.

Posted on Oct 3, 2007 READ MORE


If It’s Broke, Fix It

Hillary Clinton’s health care proposal won’t please progressives looking to do away with corporate insurance or conservatives who prefer unaffordable micromanaged care to government “bureaucracy,” but at least it’s a step in the right direction.

Posted on Sep 18, 2007 READ MORE


The New Majority

As Virginia goes, so goes the Senate—and the nation? The decision of former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner to run for the seat of retiring Republican Sen. John Warner is more than just bad news for the GOP.

Posted on Sep 14, 2007 READ MORE


Fred Thompson

Fred Thompson Announces His Candidacy

All we can say is he either really believes in what he’s saying, or he really knows how to work a camera. We suspect the latter is true. Cheese Alert: Get ready to duck when the video hurls this doozy at you toward the end: “Fred needs you, and America needs Fred. Together, we’re a winning team!”

Posted on Sep 7, 2007 READ MORE


Thompson
conservapedia.com

Nine’s a Crowd

Fred Thompson has at long last thrown in his lot with the other (long list of) Republicans running for president. Frequently painted as an eleventh hour hero to conservatives, Thompson’s shtick so far strikes us as canned Gingrich opened long after its expiration date. What do you think?

Posted on Sep 7, 2007 READ MORE


Lost in the Wilderness

Fred Thompson, who proposes to be what Republicans need to overcome their malaise, may himself be part of the problem.

Posted on Sep 6, 2007 READ MORE


An Absurd Debate

One of the most predictable arguments is also one of the most useless: that politics come down to a choice between being for “big government” or “small government.” Those catchphrases explain remarkably little about what politicians do, or what voters want.

Posted on Jul 31, 2007 READ MORE


O'Reilly

Fox Attacks Bloggers

Fox News is out to smear the blogosphere with a slew of unsavory tactics, such as comparing liberal bloggers to the Klan and Nazi Germany. It has already met with some success, prompting JetBlue to pull its sponsorship from the YearlyKos convention.

Posted on Jul 27, 2007 READ MORE


Murdoch’s Minions Smear Bloggers

Right-wing ideologues Bill O’Reilly and William Kristol are on a campaign to marginalize the “netroots,” but on issues such as the war, Rupert Murdoch’s pet pundits are the ones barking from the fringe.

Posted on Jul 25, 2007 READ MORE


Trashing Precedent

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Posted on Jun 29, 2007 READ MORE


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