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AP photo / Seth Perlman

No Child Left Behind Fails Us All

Truthdig asked Demitrious C. Sinor, an inspirational educator, to sound off on the state of our schools. He warns that unless the No Child Left Behind regime ends soon, America’s classrooms could unravel. It’s a reality that neither presidential candidate seems to fully understand, but one he sees every day, from where he sits.

Posted on Oct 21, 2008 READ MORE


Palin

Logic Lessons With Sarah Palin: Gay Marriage Edition

Just to go out on a limb here, doesn’t supporting a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage on the federal level represent a very real form of “judgment” about the people and relationships that are granted the official stamp of legitimacy and those that aren’t?

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE


End of a Catholic Commandment?

Catholics, who are quintessential swing voters and gave narrow but crucial support to President Bush in 2004, are drifting toward Barack Obama. And this time, some church leaders are suggesting that single-issue voting—such as on abortion—is by no means a Catholic commandment.

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE


How to Win Votes and Influence People

Conservatives fear a “period of unchecked left-wing ascendancy” should Barack Obama and the Democrats sweep in November, but the voters care more about competent government than ideology.

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE


Stuck in the Primary

John McCain’s debate performance almost certainly did him good among those whose votes he already has: very conservative Republicans who share Joe the Plumber’s view that Obama is some kind of socialist.

Posted on Oct 17, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Sounds Worse Than He Looks

Grouchiness, twitchiness and haughtiness didn’t help John McCain in Wednesday’s debate, but what he said hurt him more than how he said it.

Posted on Oct 17, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Madalyn Ruggiero

Joe, the Plumber Who Wasn’t

Things really aren’t going well for John McCain, but then he has only himself to blame. Take Joe the Plumber, whom McCain mentioned more than 20 times in Wednesday’s debate. For the record, Joe’s name is Sam, and he’s not a plumber.

Posted on Oct 16, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / J. Scott Applewhite

Obama 3, McCain 0

Although the pundits were impressed with John McCain’s debate performance, the polls showed another win for Barack Obama, who once again kept his cool against an angry, negative opponent.

Posted on Oct 16, 2008 READ MORE


Fixing the Economy Has to Start With Jobs

The last thing we need is another “economic stimulus” package. What we need is a jobs package. And we ought to start calling it that.

Posted on Oct 16, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Jeff Kubina

Can You Hear Me Now? Telecoms Paid to Give Team McCain More Bars

It’s hard to get cell reception in an out-of-the-way place like Sedona, Ariz., but it helps if you sit on the Senate committee that oversees the telecommunications industry. The Washington Post has learned that AT&T and Verizon, both of which have lobbying ties to the McCain campaign, provided cell towers for the McCains’ ranch at no charge to the couple.

Posted on Oct 15, 2008 READ MORE


The GOP Identity Crisis

Can any Republican candidate claim with a straight face to represent the party of small government? For that matter, can any Republican candidate plausibly explain what the party is supposed to stand for these days?

Posted on Oct 13, 2008 READ MORE


Barack Obama
Flickr / Allison Harger

Obama’s New Deal

Barack Obama unveiled his $60-billion economic rescue plan on Monday and urged Washington not to wait for a new president to take up his proposals. The Obama plan includes tax breaks for companies that hire new workers, a short moratorium on foreclosures and, with an eye on job creation, federal financing for public works and infrastructure projects.

Posted on Oct 13, 2008 READ MORE


Carter 'Woah'
guardian.co.uk / Barry Batchelor

Carter Kicks Bush While Economy Falls Down

Following the Dow’s 600-point drop, former President Jimmy Carter had some pointed words for the Bush administration on Friday, blaming the current economic crisis on the “atrocious” policies of the past eight years and declaring the economic situation to be an “entrenched problem” that will “take years to correct”.

Posted on Oct 10, 2008 READ MORE


Obama and McCain debate
AP photo / Charles Dharapak

Obama Wins in Nashville

As was the case in the first presidential debate, Barack Obama emerged from Tuesday night’s confrontation with John McCain in Nashville, Tenn., in command of the situation. The Democratic nominee looked calm, confident and presidential as he won their second contest.

Posted on Oct 7, 2008 READ MORE


Nowhere for McCain to Go

Tuesday night’s debate, a town-hall discussion dominated by economic questions, made it clear that John McCain’s effort to change the campaign’s focus to the culture wars of the 1960s is not going to work.

Posted on Oct 7, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org

Bailout Gains More Support in the House

The Bloomberg news service counts 10 lawmakers who may be ready to switch their votes when the bailout proposal takes another run at the House of Representatives. The original measure failed by only 23 votes and has since been substantially fattened by the Senate.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE



npr.org

Evangelical Leader Goes All In For McCain

And to think that anyone thought James Dobson would sit out this presidential race. The Christian right leader and his advocacy group, Focus on the Family Action, are planning a multistate strategy to help elect McCain, and to prevent Democratic gains in Congress while they’re at it.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE


Making the Bailout Less Toxic

The initial failure to pass bailout legislation reflected a political system as bereft of confidence as the financial markets.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Qfamily

Bailout Bill Skates Through Senate

Well, that was easy: While the House had to contend with round-the-clock negotiations and a last-minute revolt, the Senate just threw more money at the problem. That was enough for 74 lawmakers to say yes to the $810-billion package. The House will take another crack at it on Friday.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE



White House / Susan Sterner

Senate Fattens Up Bailout Package

The House couldn’t swallow the $700-billion bailout proposal, so the Senate added about $100 billion of incentives—mostly in the form of tax cuts. The Senate will vote on the proposal tonight and the House could decide as early as Friday whether $700 billion is too much, but $800 billion is just about right.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Is Guilty Enough

Americans are reluctant to make John McCain pay for George W. Bush’s sins, but with so many crises on so many fronts, the country can’t afford to cut him any slack.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE


Socialism for Dummies

So this is how the “ownership society” works. We own all the bad stuff.

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Susan Walsh

Fleecing What’s Left of the Treasury

The lobbyists and corporate lawyers, the heads of financial firms and the crooks who control Wall Street, all those who spent the last three decades assuring us that government was part of the problem and should get out of the way, are now busy looting the U.S. treasury.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / jurvetson

Pelosi Balks at Bailout Scheme

Nancy Pelosi isn’t buying into the idea of a $700 billion gift basket for Wall Street without any strings attached. The House speaker is all for a bailout, so long as it’s clear that “the party is over for the Bush administration’s anything goes, failed economic policies.” Update 2

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


Fiddling While Wall Street Burns

Obama shows more promise than McCain, if only because he correctly sees deregulatory zeal as a culprit. But Obama’s economic strategy simply can’t be implemented now: He wants to spend on necessary investments such as health care, but would have no money to do it.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Crisis ad

McCain Campaign Ads: Impending Economic Cataclysm Edition

John McCain’s campaign would like to nominate—who else?— John McCain and Sarah Palin as just the ticket to get Americans out of financial crisis, claiming they’ll fight “special interest giveaways” on Wall Street(?!), cut taxes and, of course, drill, baby, drill!

Posted on Sep 15, 2008 READ MORE


A Campaign Without Ideas

There was a time when Republicans campaigned on their ideas, programs and values. This year—lacking ideas, programs or values—John McCain and Sarah Palin are running for the White House on an elaborate fictional narrative of victimhood.

Posted on Sep 11, 2008 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT

Obama on Death and Taxes

Keith Olbermann began the second part of his interview with Barack Obama with a tale of two conservatives: “One guy who makes about $40,000 a year said, ‘Ask him why he’s going to raise my taxes.’  Another guy makes about a million dollars a year, said, ‘Ask him why he’s going to raise my taxes.’ ”

Posted on Sep 10, 2008 READ MORE


Memoir Politics

Talk about role reversal. The Republican Party, which scoffs at the nonsense of “identity politics,” has staked everything on the compelling life stories of its presidential and vice presidential candidates.

Posted on Sep 4, 2008 READ MORE


A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Denver

Twenty-two Electoral College votes in the Rocky Mountain West are up for grabs, meaning this vast expanse is more pivotal than Ohio. And that’s only the beginning of the region’s burgeoning influence on energy, taxes, trade and health care.

Posted on Aug 7, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Steps Up Celebrity Attack

John McCain has found a theme he likes and he’s sticking with it: Barack Obama is popular and that’s bad. Much worse, apparently, than the Reagan-era economic philosophy the presumed Republican nominee is peddling.

Posted on Aug 6, 2008 READ MORE


A Common-Sense Approach to Social Security

In this summer of our economic discontent, it isn’t necessary to manufacture a financial crisis or to make political hash out of discussing a nonexistent one.

Posted on Aug 4, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / PetroleumJelliffe

The Rich Get Richer

According to the most recent data from the IRS, the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans took home a greater share of the nation’s income in 2006 than in any year of the previous 19. It’s possibly the biggest income disparity Americans have seen since the Great Depression. The average tax rate of the super-rich was at its lowest level in at least 18 years.

Posted on Jul 27, 2008 READ MORE


Early Estimates of Bailout Range to $100 Billion

The independent Congressional Budget Office has announced the expected federal taxpayer bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will appear as a $25 billion budget expense, but that the real bill could be anywhere from zero to $100 billion. This, even though the once-governmental agencies were formally privatized in 1968.

Posted on Jul 22, 2008 READ MORE


There’s More to the Economy Than Taxes

Using taxes as the centerpiece of—or as a substitute for—a more comprehensive economic policy is the idea that has dominated Washington since the rise of Reaganism nearly three decades ago, but the global forces shaping the U.S. economy are more powerful than a mere tax cut, or tax hike.

Posted on Jul 21, 2008 READ MORE


book cover

William Pfaff on General Motors

Are workers to blame for the fix that General Motors (along with many other corporations) is in? A new book by Roger Lowenstein argues that they are. He couldn’t be more wrong.

Posted on Jul 18, 2008 READ MORE


Republican Song billboard
gawker.com

Enterprising GOP Troubadour Blends Poetry, Politics in ‘Republican Song’

With all the subtlety of a jackhammer, an enterprising right-wing artiste by the name of Mike Meehan has recorded an election-year anthem, “Please Don’t Vote for a Democrat,” and has launched a corresponding PR campaign via the Internet and billboard ads—like this one in noted liberal stronghold Orange County, Florida—in hopes of striking fear and indignation into the hearts of undecided voters.

 

Posted on Jul 16, 2008 READ MORE


The House That Gramm Built

Phil Gramm’s dismissal of America’s economic suffering has forced him to the political sidelines, but as one of the congressional architects of Republican economics, the mess he made will haunt Americans no matter who the next president is.

Posted on Jul 14, 2008 READ MORE


Cold-Filtered Economics

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain unveiled details of his economic policy today, telling an audience in Ohio that if elected he would support a real-estate tax holiday for beer heiresses.

Posted on Jul 6, 2008 READ MORE


Taxes, Integrity and Character

Once upon a time, there was a fiscally and socially responsible senator named John McCain.

Posted on Jun 18, 2008 READ MORE


fighter plane
AP photo / LM Otero

Indefensible Spending

What should be the most important issue in this election is one that is rarely, if ever, addressed: Why is U.S. military spending at the highest point, in inflation-adjusted dollars, than at any time since the end of World War II?

Posted on Jun 1, 2008 READ MORE


Cindy McCain Flaunts Her Privilege

Double standards are endemic in American journalism. But Cindy McCain, wife of the Republican presidential candidate, displayed poor taste in flaunting her family’s special immunity from press scrutiny.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE


Obama’s Weather Balloon

The first important election result for the senator in May—coming before his North Carolina victory—was the outcome of a little-noticed U.S. House contest in Louisiana.

Posted on May 8, 2008 READ MORE


The Power of a Stupid Idea

There’s something maddening about this presidential campaign. It has become irrelevant whether anything the candidates say actually makes sense. Case in point: cutting the gas tax.

Posted on May 2, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr/ Captian Giona

Italians Outraged, Yet Curious

Imagine going to the Internet and being able to see how much everyone in the United States, including you, earned and paid in taxes. The outgoing Italian government just made everyone’s private business public. Needless to say, Italians were outraged as they rushed to the Web to see the income of their neighbors and the rich and famous.

Posted on May 1, 2008 READ MORE


White House Life

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Posted on Apr 27, 2008 READ MORE


Bush
boston.com

Bush Ready to Stimulate America

President Bush announced that rebate checks will start winging their way to taxpayers as early as Monday, helpfully observing that Americans need a little help paying for necessities like groceries and gas during this economic “slowdown”—a slightly different story from his initial justification for this economic stimulus plan, and one that wasn’t lost on his critics.

Posted on Apr 25, 2008 READ MORE


McCainomics

Fittingly, and with dreadful predictability, John McCain used April 15—tax day—as the day to release his economic plan. Fittingly, and with dreadful predictability, it offers more of the same. But more of the same what?

Posted on Apr 21, 2008 READ MORE


Substance for Those Who Were Patient

Once the meaningless inquisition about loose semantics and questionable acquaintances was done, Wednesday night’s debate between Obama and Clinton got interesting.

Posted on Apr 17, 2008 READ MORE


Clintons
commons.wikimedia.org

Clinton Releases Tax Returns

Hillary Clinton has released seven years of tax returns, which she filed jointly with her former president husband. While there is much poring over to do, one piece of information stands out: The Clintons are rich. America’s most famous power couple made about $109 million in seven years, thanks in large part to Bill Clinton’s speaking fees.

Posted on Apr 4, 2008 READ MORE


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