Are Reform Conservatives Serious?
A crop of young thinkers trying to steer the right toward the future needs to both vanquish the Tea Party and show it has more than just a marketing campaign.
Jeanne Safer writes
about being "married to [Richard Brookhiser
] with whom I violently disagree on every conceivable political issue, including abortion, gun control, and assisted suicide. I thought the recent government shutdown was absurd, infantile, and destructive; he was a fan. And not only is he a conservative Republican, he’s a professional conservative Republican, a Senior Editor of National Review
, the leading journal of conservative opinion in the country."
Mothers, Sisters, Daughters, Wives.
"In 2011 the Texas state legislature slashed family planning funds, passed a new sonogram law, and waged an all-out war on Planned Parenthood that has dramatically shifted the state’s public health priorities. In the eighteen months since then, the conflict has continued to simmer in the courts, on the campaign trail, and in at least one PR disaster. Meanwhile, what will happen to Texas women—and their fathers, brothers, sons, and husbands—remains very much unclear."
"It's his charm. It's his gift. It's his political liability, and it's part of an American conundrum. We beg for authenticity, and then when we get it, oh man, it's hilarious. [Vice President Joe] Biden can be fantastic when he's on his game. At the 2012 Democratic National Convention, his speech got higher Nielsen ratings than either Bill Clinton's or Obama's. He killed the debate against Ryan, pumped air back into a campaign deflated after Obama's miserable first performance against Romney. Watching those performances, it's almost impossible to see him as a person once crippled by speech."
Netflix House of Cards
series starring Kevin Spacey was a remake of a very popular British political thriller of the same name that aired during the 90's. The show begins
by tracking the dark political machinations and skullduggery of an urbane Chief Whip of the Conservative Party, who is conspiring to become Prime Minister after Margaret Thatcher's resignation. [more inside]
"The Ideology of Hatred": An interview with Niza Yanay
- "Once we understand how hatred operates as an apparatus of power relations, and particularly how the discourse of hatred is motivated and mobilised in national conflicts, serious questions about misrecognition, veiled desires and symptomatic expressions arise. These questions have, to a large extent, been left unaddressed in studies of hatred between groups in conflict." [more inside]
In 2008, the National Journal
released The Hidden History of the American Electorate
, an analysis of exit poll demographics conducted by multiple news organizations from US presidential elections between 1988 and 2004. The study looked for "pressure points in the electorate": trends which were likely to decide the outcome of the 2008 presidential election. They've released an update for 2012, by adding exit poll results from the 1980, 1984, and 2008 presidential elections
. It gives a more comprehensive look at voting trends over a 32 year period of the groups whom they believe are likely to influence the outcome in November. Charts: Voting Preferences of the American Electorate, 1980-2008
Chris Hedges interviewed by Bill Moyers
is profound, insightful and inspiring. In one of the most pointed, sweeping and personal public conversations about Chris Hedges' life and work yet, Bill Moyers speaks with the journalist after the release of "Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt," the book Hedges co-authored with fellow reporter and artist Joe Sacco. The 50-minute conversation is followed by a segment on Sacco, who talks about the thinking and experiences that moved him to become a "comics journalist." Previously
"It’s been nearly 6 years since the series finale of The West Wing, and more than 12 since the one-hour drama, which [Aaron] Sorkin created and largely wrote, first walked and talked its way through NBC’s Wednesday-night lineup; and yet you might think the series never ended, given the currency it still seems to enjoy in Washington, the frequency with which it comes up in D.C. conversations and is quoted or referenced on political blogs. In part this is because the smart, nerdy—they might prefer “precocious”—kids who grew up in the early part of the last decade worshipping the cool, technocratic charm of Sorkin’s characters have today matured into the young policy prodigies and press operatives who advise, brief, and excuse the behavior of the most powerful people in the country.
"The Man Who Never Was."
Vanity Fair editor Todd S. Purdum
follows up his 2007 profile of then-Senator John McCain
and a scathing
2009 profile of Sarah Palin
by asking whether McCain, "...the leader so many Americans admired — and so many journalists covered — ever truly existed." (Previously)
Happy 5th birthday YouTube! WYNC's Brain Lehrer Show
has put together a list of their favorite videos form the last 5 years
. Mostly political - some pandas.
When he's not writing for The Adventures of Chico and Guapo
, Colin Quashie
is creating his own brand of political art (with some help from elementary school kids on that last one)
. He has even put together a free coloring book
to help you sort out the civil rights movement
. What does it all mean? He'll tell you
Hating Dick Cheney
- Our vice president is so widely hated as being an evil puppeteer
, but this seems to be far from the truth. He's really "a frazzled, heart attack survivor who's barely hanging on—to life, his job, his position, his sense of self-esteem."
Friday scary-flash spook-a-thon: The Minister of Fear [via Kos]
Cheney not to run again.
Rumours have been flying on the net for hours and now Drudge has it. Interesting development, if true...
Difficult questions asked without political bias.
is a nonprofit that's working to reform the presidential debate
process for the american election. they have some pretty big names on their board from across the political spectrum, including john b. anderson
, angela "bay" buchanan
, and randall robinson
From the website:
Currently, the presidential debates are secretly controlled by the major parties, through the private bipartisan corporation called the Commission on Presidential Debates, resulting in the stultification of format, the exclusion of popular candidates, and the avoidance of pressing national issues.
The major party candidates never pay a political price for their antidemocratic practices; posing as an independent sponsor, the Commission on Presidential Debates shields the major party candidates from public criticism and public accountability.
Bush's campaign commercials feature footage from 9/11
, but anger firefighters and families of victims
. Is it disingenuous to defend the ads
when you claimed just nineteen weeks after the tragedy that you would not use the disaster for politcal gain? If anyone should be able to use the event for political purposes, it would be Giuliani, who defends
Former Davenetics publisher and CSPAN fanatic Dave Pell is now blogging at Electablog
. After a couple years of earnest "soapbox 'n rants" style of political blogging, it's nice to see political-themed sites with a sense of humor and humility popping up (like wonkette
as well, mentioned last week
Porn star Mary Carey
officially launched her gubenatorial campaign in front of a sports bar in Sacaramento, today. Her platform? Legalize gay marriage, tax breast implants and set up a live, streaming webcam in the Governor's Mansion. God help me, this is starting to sound appealing to me. Are politicians so bad that porn stars
look good by comparison?
Dr. Seuss, politcal cartoonist.
Before the Cat strode in wearing a Hat, and before Horton heard a Who, Dr. Seuss drew for a liberal New York newspaper called PM. Through most of 1941 he drew images
that criticized isolationists who thought we could sit out the war. He already had developed his idiosyncratic style, and the University of California at San Diego has all 400 of his PM cartoons on its site. Here's what he drew Dec. 5, 1941
, and this is his cartoon of Dec. 8
. Later in the war, he wrote scripts for 28 "Private Snafu
" animated cartoons, which taught servicemen what not to do. Some were directed by Chuck Jones.
Oh, I So Wish So-And-So Were On The Other Side!
Just move over, dude
! For conservatives, it's often the case that our allies are a damn sight worse than our worst so-called enemies. Here's a prime example, extremely rare
in its totality: an embarrassing piece by an embarrassing neo-con, John Laughland
, about an even more embarrassing neo-con, Michael Ledeen
, in a totally embarrassing magazine, American Conservative
. Do liberals and lefties have it any easier? Who are the Center's and the Left's most difficult-to-explain compagnons de route
dudes? Quite honestly - and although they're certainly not immune to the exquisite unease of political companionship - I enviously fear that they do.
"Fighting the Left - Doing it Right"
- protestwarrior.com is founded on the basis of letting the "pro-government" people who might be the "silent majority" protest in their own way. so while it's not just a pro-troops rally cry, in essence it's protesting for the war... or any war, for that manner. kind of a novel idea.. looks like they're viewing this as a starting point for people to have a retort against other protestors.
(NYT reg req) The law enforcing the soft money ban goes to court tomorrow. Opponents of the law will be led by Kenneth Starr (!), while the defenders of the law will eventually be led by Bush's solicitor general, Theodore Olson, the guy who argued the case that made George W. Bush president. Gee, that sounds fair --- everyone's an arch conservative. This law is toast. Back to the trough!
Australia and Europe incensed over U.S. lies on free trade
Bush: "The final provisions of the farm Bill are also consistent with America's international trade obligations, which will strengthen our ability to open foreign markets for American farm products".
In other words, free trade good when we sell to you, bad when you sell to us.
Foreigners and Rulers,
this is an issue that albeit being an old one keeps cropping up, here is her official position.
I am interested in opinions of whether you think it is okay for a foreigner (born and raised to "adulthood") to become a political leader of another country. And is anyone aware of a similar situation in others parts of the world where this has either been considered or has occurred.
Syria on brink over conflict with Lebanon
Our good friends on the far Left never address this other occupation in the Middle East, an occupation that is not the Israelis in Palestinian lands; and our policy makers in Washington almost never discuss the issue either, but to the people who live in Lebanon it is their country that for many years has been occupied by some 35 thousand man army of Syrians against their will. And it is beginning to anger them.
blair to declare state of emergency, suspend human rights
there is some scary stuff included in these proposals. including internment without trial
there are serious implications here, and i find it frightening.
The Twelfth Amendment to the Constitution
looks like it states that Texas cannot, in fact, cast its electoral votes for Bush and Cheney. Although he was careful to be photographed in Jackson Hole, WY, Cheney is in fact a resident of Texas and has a Texas driver's license. (Overheard from radio news) (Discuss)