Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Enough With This ‘100 Days’ Nonsense
By Stanley Kutler —
On what basis have the cable channels decided that President Obama’s first hundred days are the most important thing to happen in the history of the world? As in the case of FDR before him, much has happened in the beginning of the president’s first term—and there is much more to come.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Specter Joins Democrats; Senate Count May Reach 60
The decision by Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania to switch parties potentially presents Democrats with a 60th vote and the power to break Senate filibusters.

The Specter of a shrinking GOP
Arlen Specter's defection likely means a filibuster-proof Democratic Senate majority. Choose your metaphor -- rats, ships, small tents -- but will the last Republican to leave please turn out the light?
By Mike Madden

Specter's "Happy 100 days!" gift to Obama
The Pennsylvania senator ditches the GOP. Is one of our major political parties on its death bed?
By Joan Walsh

Monday, April 27, 2009

Frank Rich: The Banality of Bush White House Evil
President Obama can talk all he wants about not looking back, but this grotesque past is bigger than even he is. It won’t vanish into a memory hole any more than Andersonville, World War II internment camps or My Lai.

by James Wolcott
Washington has always been out of sync with the rest of America, but since Obama’s election, Beltway pundits seem more stubbornly and stupendously irrelevant than ever. Have three decades of being wired for Republican power blown their jittery, Twittering minds?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Reagan and Nixon Greeted Despots, Too
By Joe Conason —
Few aspects of American politics are as ridiculous and dangerous as the right-wing urge to substitute macho posturing for foreign policy.
100 Down, 900 More to Go
by Katrina vanden Heuvel:
After 100 days, some important and worthy markers have been laid down by President Obama. But the big battles lie ahead in the next 900.

Lessons from the GOP in Retrograde by Terence Samuel The modern-day Republican Party is not so much a political party as it is a cautionary tale.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Judge Jay S. Bybee provided the legal framework for torture to the Bush administration. If he had even a particle of decency, he'd resign.
By Gene Lyons
Editorial: Openness
There needs to be a detainee abuse investigation with subpoena power.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

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Torturers Should Be Punished By Amy Goodman —
The door to bringing torturers to justice is open only a crack. Whether it is kicked open or slammed shut is not up to the president. Though he may occupy the most powerful office on Earth, there is a force more powerful: committed people demanding change.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Progressivism Goes Mainstream
by John Halpin and Ruy Teixeira

New research on ideology refutes the conservative myth that America is a "center right" nation.
Barack Obama's agenda reflects deep and growing consensus among the American public about the priorities and values that should guide our government and society.

WATCH: Boehner Cites Cow Farts To Downplay Global Warming

Sunday, April 19, 2009

by Sam Stein

Rahm Emanuel had a message to critics of the administration's decision to release torture memos: the information is already out there, read the New York Review of Books.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

Once the masters of evil politics, Republicans have been reduced to half-assed buffoonery, providing comic relief for desperate times

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Armey’s Tea Party Army
By Joe Conason —
At the apex of the tea party movement is FreedomWorks, headed by former Rep. Dick Armey. His past career should be instructive to any starry-eyed citizens who believe that they have at last found the true right-wing revolutionary path.

World's Stupidest Argument
Posted by Joe Klein

Bush flunkies trying to argue that Obama is more polarizing than Bush was. Given the fact that Obama had to take dramatic action, at home and abroad, to start lifting the country from the mess Bush made almost everywhere--and also begin to turn the country away from the myopia and greed of the Reagan era--it's amazing that he hasn't raised more dust or teabags. And, I should add the fact that the alleged polarization mostly results from the fact that Obama gets extremely low ratings from self-identified Republicans, who constitute an extremist shard of a party at this point, is a badge of honor. (Commenter sgwhiteinfla points out that the polarization is also the result of overwhelming--88%--support from Democrats.)

In the long run, it's a safe historical bet that Bush will prove more polarizing than Obama because he was such an abject failure in the job--I doubt we'll ever see Obama submerge to approval ratings in the mid-20s, or launch wars peremptorily without cause or purpose. The constant sniping from Rove, Wehner and the others during Obama's first 100 days is a deeply neurotic reaction to the enormity of their own cockups in office. It shows a profound lack of class or grace, but then, that's no surprise with these guys, is it? They ran the country like thugs, and thugs they remain.
Robert Reich: A Short Citizen's Guide to Kooks, Demagogues, and Right-Wingers On Tax Day

No one likes to pay taxes, so tax day typically attracts a range of right-wing Republicans, kooks, and demagogues, all of whom tell us how awful we have it. Here's a short citizen's guide (that is, a citizen's guide that's short rather than a guide for short citizens) responding to the predictable charges.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Three-judge panel: Franken wins Minnesota Senate seat
Coleman lawyer Ben Ginsberg plans appeal, but the end is near.

Salon just got a news alert from the Democratic National Committee announcing that the three-judge panel that has been supervising the Minnesota Senate race recount has declared Democrat Al Franken the winner.

"Franken received the highest number of lawfully cast ballots in the Nov. 4, 2008 general election," the ruling stated. With recently added absentee ballots counted, Franken upped his lead over incumbent Norm Coleman to 312 votes. The panel determined that Franken is entitled to receive the certificate of election.

Coleman's lawyer Ben Ginsberg insists he'll appeal the ruling to the Minnesota Supreme Court. But the state's Democratic Secretary of State Mark Ritchie insists he welcomes that appeal, because it has to come within 10 days of this ruling, and could provide bipartisan closure.

It may be too early to say "Welcome Sen. Franken," but it looks like we're roughly 10 days away from being able to say exactly that. We'll keep you posted.

-- Joan Walsh

Monday, April 13, 2009

Tea Parties Forever

This is a column about Republicans — and I’m not sure I should even be writing it.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The great right wing freak out
Symptoms of the conservative crack-up were on full display after President Obama's trip abroad. Bill Kristol, take a bow.
By Juan Cole

Republicans Tripping by Terence Samuel

Conservative critics used Obama's recent diplomatic trip to demonize the president. Unfortunately for them, their histrionics don't seem to be working.

Glenn Beck and The Consequences of Crazy Talk
by Bob Cesca
Broadcasters like Beck ought to take responsibility for some of their more incendiary remarks -- remarks which appear to be ginning up the darker, uglier, fanatical tendencies in an already militaristic, jingoistic, reactionary audience.

Obama: The Extremists’ Nightmare
By Joe Conason
In the struggle against the extremists and terrorists, the new president understands how to divide the enemy and neutralize their base—and is uniquely suited to accomplish the mission. He got elected in the United States of America, after all.

Editorial: Health Care

Republican senators are hyperventilating over the possibility that Democrats might try to pass health care reform with only a majority vote — depriving them of the chance to try to block legislation with filibusters that can only be overcome with the votes of at least three-fifths of all senators.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

The Real Pelosi
By E.J. Dionne Jr.

"I give Republicans credit for this: They vote the way they believe. . . . I think that they vote with more integrity than they get credit for."
That review of Republican motivations and commitments comes not courtesy of a partisan blog but from Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic speaker of the House.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Springtime for Equality
by John Nichols:
Following the breakthrough for gay rights in Iowa, the Vermont victory serves as a prime example of how political organizing can bring about real social change.
The Pope's Nightmare:

Monday, April 06, 2009

Health Care Reform at Last By E.J. Dionne
Yes, this is the year Congress will finally give every American access to health insurance. For the first time since the passage of Medicare in the 1960s, the forces favoring action on health care reform are stronger than the forces of cynicism and obstruction.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Close These Refuges for Scoundrels By Joe Conason
The story of former AIG executive Joseph Cassano points up once more how tax and regulatory havens across the world encourage nefarious conduct, lack of transparency, evasion of taxes and corporate criminality.

The Nobelists vs. Obama and Geithner By E.J. Dionne
The president’s plan to bail out the banks reveals a deference to the existing financial system that puts him at odds with Nobel Prize-winning economists Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz.

Putting the ‘Care’ in Health Care By Ellen Goodman
Sadly, we have developed a system that rewards procedures over primary care. The incentives tip toward the kind of medicine that is performed with hands, tools and technology over the medicine that is practiced with eyes, ears and mind.

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

The money involved in the auto bailout is chump change compared with what Wall Street got, and it is far better spent.

by Adam Serwer

New York is set to repeal some of its harsh drug-offense-sentencing laws. But do the reforms go far enough?

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