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“Now that Obama appears poised to push substantial parts of Social Security and Medicare over the ‘fiscal cliff’ -- in exchange for a paltry, largely symbolic, increase in the top marginal income-tax rate -- we might ask whether liberals will once again rise to Obama’s defense, no matter how indefensible his actions,” writes John R. MacArthur, publisher of Harper’s Magazine.

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Robert Caro has so far spent 36 years writing the saga of Lyndon Johnson -- more time than the ambitious Texan spent climbing from Congress to the White House. Caro just released his fourth installment, “The Passage of Power,” which chronicles Johnson’s exit from a strong position in the Senate into the relative powerlessness of the vice presidency.

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