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The Tyranny of Dead Ideas

The Tyranny of Dead Ideas

By Matt Miller
$16.50

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Tag: Politics

Is America Too Corrupt to Keep Up?

As “Buy China” policies now economically supercharge the world’s most populous nation, the White House and congressional Republicans have opposed many of the very “Buy America” proposals that might help us keep up—and that obstruction has come at a steep price.

Posted on Jan 21, 2011 READ MORE


It’s Repeal That’s Ailing

This whole health care thing isn’t quite working out the way Republicans planned. My guess is that they’ll soon try to change the subject—but I’m afraid they’re already in too deep.

Posted on Jan 21, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / cursedthing

Al Franken Blasts the FCC

Speaking to a Netroots gathering, the Minnesota senator called net neutrality the “free speech issue of our time” and condemned the FCC’s decision to “create essentially two Internets.” Franken also said of the FCC-approved union of Comcast and NBC, “I hate this merger” ... (more)

Posted on Jan 20, 2011 READ MORE


Lieberman’s Retirement Party

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Posted on Jan 20, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / House GOP Leader (CC-BY)

House Huffs, Puffs, Blows Health Care Down

House Republicans, joined by three Democrats, finally got around to passing their repeal of President Obama’s health care law. Were the measure to pass the Democrat-controlled Senate and be signed by President Obama, it would be a development as miraculous and inexplicable as John Boehner’s tan.

Posted on Jan 19, 2011 READ MORE


JFK’s Eloquence, 50 Years Later

It’s remembered as a day chilled by “a Siberian wind knifing down Pennsylvania Avenue” and illuminated by “the dazzling combination of bright sunshine and deep snow.”

Posted on Jan 19, 2011 READ MORE


My Dream

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Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE    


Palin Map

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Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Cliff Owen

The Cuts Are Coming

Republicans have their biggest statehouse majority in more than 80 years, and they’re taking orders from a man who wants to take government and “drown it in the bathtub.”

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Christophe Ena

With Friends Like These, Who Needs Democracy?

American officials were for Tunisia’s ousted despot before they were against him. Across the Middle East and Central Asia it’s the same: U.S. allies are invariably corrupt dictators, maintained in power by lavish patronage and the military.

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE


Health Care and the New Civility

President Obama’s call for “a more civil and honest public discourse” will get its first test much sooner than we expected.

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Healer in Chief

Listening to Obama’s speech brought back memories of Obama the candidate, a mesmerizing orator with the power to summon visions of a better America.

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 READ MORE


Finding the Forgotten Majority

The new media economy encourages ever more violent vitriol because that’s now become the most reliable way to build a following and, thus, generate profit.

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 READ MORE



Daily Kos

Obama and Palin Speeches Compared

Daily Kos blogger Jed Lewison plugged the president and Sarah Palin’s respective speeches about the tragedy in Tucson, Ariz., into a word cloud generator to create a visual representation of the rhetoric. (more)

Posted on Jan 13, 2011 READ MORE


How Violent Talk Blocks Sane Gun Laws

The descriptions of President Obama as a “tyrant,” the intimations that he is “alien” and the suggestions that his presidency is illegitimate are essential to the core rationale for resisting any restrictions on firearms.

Posted on Jan 13, 2011 READ MORE


How Many Bullets Do You Need?

“High Capacity Magazines ... When ten rounds isn’t enough,” the Internet site offers. When, exactly, would that be? Enough for what?

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Eve Chan (CC-BY-ND)

‘Surely Some Revelation Is at Hand’

David Sirota calls this Steve Almond essay the best take he’s seen on the Giffords shooting and it’s hard to disagree. “What happens when a large and well-armed portion of our citizenry can no longer apologize?” Almond asks. “When humility becomes another form of humiliation? Their heroes exhort them: Never retreat. Reload.”

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / M Glasgow (CC-BY)

Gun Crazy

We may not be sure that the bloodbath in Tucson had anything to do with politics, but we know it had everything to do with our nation’s insane refusal to impose reasonable controls on guns.

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 READ MORE



AP / James Palka

Gabrielle Giffords: Tragic Prophet

There is one commentator whose words should enlighten us on the meaning of Saturday’s shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the savage murders that took the lives of, among others, a federal judge and a 9-year-old girl. The person is Giffords herself.

Posted on Jan 9, 2011 READ MORE


Turning the Tables on Health Care

Rule One of politics: When you have the advantage, don’t allow your opponents to turn the tables. House Republicans violated this rule, a mistake that will haunt them for years.

Posted on Jan 9, 2011 READ MORE


Steve Jobs Snoozes, Apple Loses: It’s Cause for Alarm

Also in this edition of the Borowitz Report: Birthers Challenge Hawaii to Produce Statehood Certificate.

Posted on Jan 9, 2011 READ MORE



Photo from Rep. Giffords' Facebook page

Gabrielle Giffords’ Favorite Quote

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head Saturday, on Facebook lists her favorite quote as this line from Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address: “With malice toward none, with charity for all, ... let us strive on to finish the work we are in, ... to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.” (more)

Posted on Jan 8, 2011 READ MORE



Mr. Fish / Truthdig

Mr. Fish’s New Year’s Dissolution

I was 14 years old and it was just after dinner on the last day of summer vacation in the Alabama portion of Southern Jersey, where the only black people I ever saw were sunburned Italians.

Posted on Jan 7, 2011 READ MORE    


Washington Loves a Paradox

In a Washington circus that features as many morons as oxymorons, we have self-described deficit hawks who promote tax cuts, alleged war opponents who back war escalations and supposed anti-government conservatives who press to expand the National Security State.

Posted on Jan 7, 2011 READ MORE


The GOP Is Holding the Economy Hostage, and It’s Time to Call Its Bluff

In their ideological zeal, the new Republicans on Capitol Hill seem eager to gamble everything—even the chance of a worldwide depression—on a showdown over the national debt ceiling.

Posted on Jan 6, 2011 READ MORE


Underwhelmer of the House

If you programmed a computer to generate a speech laden with cliches; solemnly vowing to achieve the unobjectionable; and all but devoid of substance, it would have come up with something approximating John Boehner’s remarks.

Posted on Jan 6, 2011 READ MORE


The House of Professors

Alas for all of us and for American conservatism in particular, the new Republican majority that took control of the House on Wednesday is embarked on an experiment in government by abstractions.

Posted on Jan 6, 2011 READ MORE


Filibuster This Plan

Liberal activists are demanding filibuster reform—now. They should be careful what they wish for.

Posted on Jan 5, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Gerald Herbert

Wrong Again, Sen. Graham

Sen. Lindsey Graham has been wrong about almost everything in the Middle East for a decade and a half, so his harebrained proposal to build permanent bases in Afghanistan is hardly surprising.

Posted on Jan 4, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / TheTruthAbout (CC-BY)

Gag Me With a Banker

Having learned nothing from his midterm drubbing, President Obama is reportedly considering making JPMorgan Chase executive William Daley his chief of staff. Because what this administration needs is more sympathy for the hooligans on Wall Street.

Posted on Jan 4, 2011 READ MORE


Emperor Has No Shame

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Posted on Jan 3, 2011 READ MORE    



Flickr / Marc Nozell (CC-BY)

When Conservatives Celebrate Terrorists

What to make of conservatives Rudy Giuliani, Michael Mukasey, Tom Ridge and Fran Townsend celebrating the officially designated terrorist organization Mujaheddin-e Khalq? Glenn Greenwald has some ideas.

Posted on Jan 3, 2011 READ MORE


We Need to Move the Capital to Hawaii

There’s no nicer place in America, as demonstrated by this photo juxtaposition of the president signing the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act and the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill.

Posted on Jan 3, 2011 READ MORE


Celebrating the New GOP Majority

Welcome to the Republicans who take over the House of Representatives this week. Since it is a new year, let us be optimistic about what this development means for our nation.

Posted on Jan 3, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Nick Bygon (CC-BY)

‘The Left Has Nowhere to Go’

“The more outrageous the Republicans become, the weaker the left becomes,” Ralph Nader said when I reached him at his home in Connecticut on Sunday.

Posted on Jan 3, 2011 READ MORE


A Snow-Filled Glimpse of America’s Future

“Welcome to the New Normal.” Those words should be displayed at New York’s airports as a welcome to bedraggled travelers during the Northeast’s latest “snowpocalypse.”

Posted on Dec 31, 2010 READ MORE


How Bad Weather Can Bury a Politician’s Career

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should ask former Washington Mayor Marion Barry what winter can do to one’s political ambitions.

Posted on Dec 31, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Maya Hitij

Is Congress More Progressive Than Hollywood?

Who would have thought that the political capital of Washington would be ahead of the entertainment capital of Hollywood when it comes to allowing gay folks to serve openly?

Posted on Dec 31, 2010 READ MORE


A Recess Appointment That Makes Sense

The treatment of President Obama’s nominee to be second in command of the Justice Department exemplifies the dysfunctional nature of the current confirmation process. It’s not broken—it’s shattered.

Posted on Dec 30, 2010 READ MORE


Will Liberals Learn From Adversity?

Was 2010 American liberalism’s Waterloo? If there is one thing the Obama White House most underestimates, it is the dispirited mood of its troops.

Posted on Dec 30, 2010 READ MORE



YouTube / Christine4Senate

O’Donnell Accused of Dipping Into the Campaign Till

Christine O’Donnell raised a record $7.3 million in her 2010 bid to represent Delaware in the U.S. Senate, but allegations about how she spent that money and funds from previous campaigns have led to a criminal investigation by federal prosecutors and the FBI. ... (more)

Posted on Dec 29, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Andrew Mason (CC-BY)

Conservative Brains Have More Fear, Less Courage

Scientists at University College London went poking around the noggins of a couple of MPs and 90 students and were surprised to discover that the brains of right-wing subjects were more prone to fear and anxiety and less so to courage and optimism when compared with their counterparts on the left.

Posted on Dec 29, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Yutaka Tsutano (CC-BY)

Save Us From Our Devices

Mr. Speaker, please don’t. Go ahead, if you must, and cut taxes. Slash spending. Repeal health care. I understand. Elections have consequences. But BlackBerrys and iPads and laptops on the House floor? Reconsider, before it’s too late.

Posted on Dec 28, 2010 READ MORE


A Reality Check for the GOP

It’s been not quite two months’ time since Republicans won a sweeping midterm victory, and already they seem divided, embattled and—not to mince words—freaked out. For good reason, I might add.

Posted on Dec 28, 2010 READ MORE


Let’s Not Spin the Civil War

The Civil War is about to loom very large in the popular memory. We would do well to be candid about its causes and not allow the distortions of contemporary politics or long-standing myths to cloud our understanding of why the nation fell apart.

Posted on Dec 26, 2010 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: What’s in a Political Label?

For this special holiday edition of “Left, Right & Center,” the show’s regulars—Robert Scheer, Matt Miller, Arianna Huffington and Tony Blankley—take their talk to the meta level to discuss what it means to own their respective political labels at this particular moment.

Posted on Dec 24, 2010 READ MORE


Don’t Ask Don’t Tell

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Posted on Dec 23, 2010 READ MORE


Sept. 11 Heroes Disdained on the Right

To understand the depths of shame and cynicism in the partisan stalling of health legislation for 9/11 first responders, it is only necessary to recall how eagerly Republican politicians once rushed to identify themselves with New York City’s finest and bravest.

Posted on Dec 23, 2010 READ MORE


The Pride of ‘Obama’s Orphans’

This will go down as the most productive Congress since the 89th. And 52 Democratic House incumbents, most elected in 2006 or 2008, lost their seats.

Posted on Dec 22, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Alex Brandon

‘Don’t Ask’: Not Quite Fa La La Just Yet

It would appear that all us gay folks should don our gay apparel and go caroling from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. to the Capitol, thanking our elected representatives for finally giving us the right to kill and be killed without simultaneously hiding in the closet.

Posted on Dec 22, 2010 READ MORE


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