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The Tyranny of Dead Ideas

The Tyranny of Dead Ideas

By Matt Miller
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Tag: Midterms

The Scandal of 2010

If you travel any place where there is a contested race for the House or Senate, you are bombarded with attack ads, almost all against Democrats, paid for by groups that do not have to reveal where their money comes from.

Posted on Oct 25, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Fibonacci Blue (CC-BY)

Tea Party Robber Barons

While our media wizards report a groundswell of anger against the president, tea party candidates and financiers appear to be as bothered by the policies of Franklin Roosevelt as those of Barack Obama.

Posted on Oct 24, 2010 READ MORE


The Tea Party Test Case

The only way to objectively define the tea party is to find a test case. And thanks to Wisconsin’s Senate race, we have exactly that.

Posted on Oct 22, 2010 READ MORE


Thugs on the Right

Sometimes tea party ideologues are described as libertarians, but the behavior of their leading candidates betrays an authoritarian streak just beneath all the sonorous rhetoric.

Posted on Oct 21, 2010 READ MORE


A National Election, Like It or Not

While Republicans hammer away at a key set of themes, from jobs to the deficit, Democrats have left loyalists who deserve better without the support of a driving national message.

Posted on Oct 21, 2010 READ MORE


Christine O’Donnell’s Staggering Ignorance

We’ve been trying to ignore a certain Senate candidate, but her latest display is so shocking (as the audience gasps during this debate confirm), it simply must be witnessed.

Posted on Oct 20, 2010 READ MORE


Don’t Man Up, Grow Up

In this, the year of the Mama Grizzly, let’s stop stirring the moose chili for a moment to ponder three words—man up and whore—and what they have to tell us about the muddled state of gender politics.

Posted on Oct 19, 2010 READ MORE


Waiting for Another Watergate

What is the most powerful political operation in the country in this 21st century? It’s the United States Supreme Court. The men and women in black are on their way to deciding their second national election in just the first decade of the century.

Posted on Oct 19, 2010 READ MORE



Bush’s Brain’s Brain?

Today on the list: Meet Karl Rove’s Karl Rove, what happens when you Facebook friend request yourself, and the third-party candidates who still can’t catch a break.

Posted on Oct 19, 2010 READ MORE


The Wave and the Reality

It’s easy to imagine how Democrats, facing near-unanimous predictions of a wipeout, could bestir themselves to narrow the enthusiasm gap by just enough to turn a potential “wave” election into a regular midterm setback for the party in power.

Posted on Oct 18, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Triple Play

The Republican Party is running a three-level campaign this year that gives its candidates a wealth of advantages—in flexibility, deniability, and determination.

Posted on Oct 17, 2010 READ MORE


Auction House

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Posted on Oct 17, 2010 READ MORE


Existence of Tea Party Candidates Casts Doubt on Evolution

Two of the theory of evolution’s most vociferous doubters, Sarah Palin and Christine O’Donnell, may be living proof that Darwin was wrong, leading scientists believe.

Posted on Oct 17, 2010 READ MORE


Looney, and That’s No Debate

Sorry, but I just can’t do it anymore. When has there been an election with so many looney tunes running under the banner of one of our major parties?

Posted on Oct 14, 2010 READ MORE


They All Do It

Both parties and their allies exploit and stretch campaign finance laws. To expect otherwise is to expect lions not to eat zebras when the opportunity arises.

Posted on Oct 14, 2010 READ MORE


‘Crazy Carl’ and the Limits of Anger

To call Carl Paladino brash and a loudmouth understates the case. The New York Daily News has taken to referring to the Republican nominee for New York governor as “Crazy Carl,” and his latest series of outbursts demonstrated why.

Posted on Oct 13, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Douglas Muth (CC-BY-SA)

West Virginia Republican Wants 1,000 Sky Lasers

Aspiring senator John Raese has said some strange things, but it’s hard to top “We need 1,000 laser systems put in the sky and we need it right now. That is [of] paramount importance.” Raese is so worried about nuclear attack, you see, he would like to deploy “right now” a technology that probably won’t be workable for at least 20 years.

Posted on Oct 13, 2010 READ MORE


Trick, Treat or Talking Points

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Posted on Oct 10, 2010 READ MORE


The Shadow Class War of 2010

The 2010 election is turning into a class war. The wealthy and the powerful started it. This is a strange development.

Posted on Oct 10, 2010 READ MORE


Needed: Competition for Black Votes

In politics, as in business, competition is good. Monopolies inevitably take their customers for granted.

Posted on Oct 7, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Gregg O'Connell (CC-BY)

Chamber of Commerce Goes on a Political Shopping Spree

The pro-business and, more often than not, pro-Republican group is spending $10 million on TV ads this week alone, and it doesn’t have to say who is paying for any of it. The ads, part of a reported $75 million campaign to shake up Congress, represent the biggest one-week spending spree by a non-party group, reports AP.

Posted on Oct 7, 2010 READ MORE


Tom Perriello’s Political Experiment

Rep. Tom Perriello is this election’s test case of whether casting tough votes is better than ducking them, and whether a progressive who fashions an intelligent populism can survive in deeply conservative territory.

Posted on Oct 6, 2010 READ MORE


The Cash Cow of Anonymity

How sweet and innocent they seem, these mysterious organizations with names like Americans for Job Security. Who could argue with that? Who wants job insecurity?

Posted on Oct 4, 2010 READ MORE


Health Care’s Second Wind

Despite the conventional wisdom, more and more Democrats are proudly campaigning on what the health care bill has achieved—and they should.

Posted on Oct 3, 2010 READ MORE


Democrats to Employ Man Who Played Obama During 2008 Campaign

According to preliminary plans, the guy who played Obama in 2008 will be used to fire up huge crowds in key races, while the actual President Obama will remain behind in Washington giving boring speeches about electronic medical records.

Posted on Oct 3, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The Real Democratic Whiners

“Democrats, just congenitally, tend to [see] the glass as half empty,” President Obama said last month during a $30,000-a-plate fundraiser at the Connecticut home of a donor named (no joke) Rich Richman.

Posted on Sep 30, 2010 READ MORE


Obama and the Progressive Paradox

A couple of hours before President Obama offered a boffo revival of his 2008 campaign persona during a boisterous rally at the University of Wisconsin, Sen. Bernie Sanders was analyzing why the president was in a political pickle in the first place.

Posted on Sep 29, 2010 READ MORE


Ass

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Posted on Sep 28, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama Finds Lack of Enthusiasm ‘Irresponsible’

Rolling Stone has a fascinating, sprawling interview with President Obama, who sees the tea party as an amalgam, says Gen. Stanley McChrystal didn’t meet his standards, and defends his administration as “the most successful ... in a generation in moving progressive agendas forward.” (continued)

Posted on Sep 28, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Achilles’ Region

It will be very hard for Republicans to take the House if they don’t break the Democrats’ power in the Northeast—and they still have to prove they can do that.

Posted on Sep 26, 2010 READ MORE


Promises, Promises

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Posted on Sep 26, 2010 READ MORE


Return of the ‘Contract With America’

Why do John Boehner and his colleagues want to remind voters of their political descent from the likes of Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay, and the legacy of misconduct, fakery and error that they represent?

Posted on Sep 26, 2010 READ MORE


The Party of Nonsense

The Republicans were doing pretty well for themselves as the Party of No. So why did they decide to rebrand themselves as the Party of Nonsense?

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE


Bewitched

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Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Michael Mulvey (CC-BY)

Democrats Celebrate Small Business Victory

After much fuss, congressional Democrats managed to push through a modest jobs bill that will have to do in the place of anything grander with which to campaign. The package of tax breaks and cash is directed toward small businesses, with the hope of creating employment.

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Tambako the Jaguar (CC-BY-ND)

‘A Pledge to America’

Republicans may not have any ideas, as the Democrats are fond of saying, but they do have plenty of momentum and, now, a pledge. Instead of a “Contract With America” it’s “A Pledge to America,” and, because we’re still taking baby steps here, the Republican leadership is not urging any Republicans to actually make the pledge. (continued)

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE


Sloppy Seconds

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Posted on Sep 22, 2010 READ MORE    


Tough Love for Obama

The Wal-Mart moms were pessimistic, bordering on despondent, about the state of the country, but they were also surprisingly understanding about the president’s plight.

Posted on Sep 22, 2010 READ MORE



Gallup.com

Gonna Party Like It’s 1994

A new Gallup poll shows that American attitudes about the Republicans and Democrats are similar to attitudes in 1994, when the Democrats lost Congress. More Americans, Gallup claims, say they share Republican values and a Republican view of government. Americans feel that neither party, however, really understands their problems.

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

President Obama to the Whiny Left: ‘Wake Up’

President Obama apparently blames the enthusiasm gap—the lack of support from his dispirited base—on the unenthused. Speaking at a fundraiser, Obama said Democrats who are displeased with his watered down legislation need to “wake up.”

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE


Let’s Party

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Posted on Sep 19, 2010 READ MORE


Master of the Palin Affect

Not to spoil the fun, but Democrats shouldn’t take the Republican Party’s bitter internal warfare—and the inexperienced, flaky candidates who’ve emerged from the fray—as any kind of reassurance about November.

Posted on Sep 16, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Keith Allison (CC-BY-SA)

Will Big Tobacco’s Former Bagman Really Be the Next Speaker?

There is nothing fresh or surprising about Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the would-be speaker, a figure so closely associated with corporate special interests that he looks, sounds and behaves exactly like a lobbyist.

Posted on Sep 16, 2010 READ MORE


The Strange Death of Moderate Republicanism

After two decades in which moderates fled a party increasingly dominated by its right wing, the Republican primary electorate has been reduced to nothing but its right wing.

Posted on Sep 15, 2010 READ MORE


Scary Primary Results

Partisan Democrats are delighted about Christine O’Donnell’s Republican primary victory over Rep. Mike Castle in the race for the open Delaware Senate seat. I’m despondent.

Posted on Sep 15, 2010 READ MORE


Enthusiasm

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Posted on Sep 13, 2010 READ MORE


Axelrod on ‘Politically Toxic’ Health Care Reform

The president’s political guru defends health care reform, which appears to be the redheaded stepchild of American politics, and Obama’s handling of the economy.

Posted on Sep 13, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Elise Amendola

Do Not Pity the Democrats

Do not fear Glenn Beck or Sarah Palin. Fear the underlying corporate power structure, which no one, from Barack Obama to the right-wing nut cases who pollute the airwaves, can alter.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Jim Champion (CC-BY-SA)

Democrats Afraid of the D-Word

Judging by their television commercials, the Democrats aren’t too thrilled with their legislative accomplishments. A New York Times analysis of ads finds that Republican candidates bring up health care, for instance, more often than the opposition and some Democrats don’t even identify themselves by party.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Why Barack Is Behind

Among the very puzzling aspects of the midterm election—and the Democratic debacle that appears to be looming in November—is why voters would return the opposition to power only two years after the multiple disasters of the Bush administration.

Posted on Sep 9, 2010 READ MORE


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