Archive

October 1st, 2015

Uniting a house divided

    The revolt that brought down Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, was rooted in the Republican right's frustration that the House, under Boehner, has failed to keep its promises. It has not abolished Obamacare, defunded Planned Parenthood or advanced many kindred right-wing causes.

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The Most Important Thing, and It’s Almost a Secret

    We journalists are a bit like vultures, feasting on war, scandal and disaster. Turn on the news, and you see Syrian refugees, Volkswagen corruption, dysfunctional government.

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The Failure Of Boehner

    Nothing so became John Boehner's tenure as House Speaker as his manner of leaving it. Subjectively speaking, he has never appeared to believe very much of the arrant nonsense his position required him to utter. An old-school politician who literally grew up working in the family bar, his conservatism is of the traditional Midwestern kind -- more Bob Dole, say, than Ted Cruz.

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Say no 'free stuff' for anybody, Jeb

    Jeb Bush wants you to know that he's not running for president in order to give "free stuff" to black folks. I don't have a problem with that, as long as he says he won't give any "free stuff" to white folks, either.

    That's right, Jeb. It's only fair. Tell us, the American voters, that you won't give any of us any free stuff. Your lavish campaign donations will dry up like spilled lemonade in a desert.

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Pope Francis and the Pain of Prisoners

    During his historic U.S. visit, Pope Francis made headlines for speaking truth to power at the United Nations and the Capitol.

    But the “people’s pope” also addressed the powerless. Everywhere he went, he called on Americans to treat our undocumented immigrants better. In Washington, he dined with the homeless. In Philadelphia, he went out of his way to meet with survivors of clergy sex abuse and visit incarcerated people.

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Planned Parenthood Talks

    Ten years ago, did you imagine that Planned Parenthood would be the center of our national political life? No, 10 years ago we were just worried about George W. Bush and high oil prices. Sometimes I miss high oil prices.

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Message To Congress

    Mr/s. Congressperson:

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Francis Gets Served the House Specialty

    With his gentle grace, disarming humility, and penchant for saying “God bless America” like he means it, Pope Francis appeared to sweep Washington off its feet. Cheering throngs accompanied his every move. The powerful and powerless alike made a fuss.

    Take Senator Lisa Murkowski, an Alaska Republican who cherishes the oil industry. She swooned over “the love that this man radiates” after Francis blessed her rosary beads.

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Junipo Serra’s Unsaintly History

    I greeted the pope’s visit with enthusiasm. I might not be Catholic, but I appreciate Francis for his humility, his kindness, and his call for action to address the climate crisis.

    Then I heard the shocking news: During his visit, Pope Francis canonized Father Junipero Serra.

    If you aren’t from California, your response to this development might be, “Who?”

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For presidents, Congress is merely the first hurdle

    Why shouldn't Republican party actors choose Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina or Ben Carson as their nominee for president? That's simple: They have the wrong talents for the job.

    You don't need someone who is correct on policy as you see it (that's easy to find). You want someone who is a master politician -- someone who has a particular skill set to succeed at the job.

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