Saturday November 29, 2014
November 13th, 2014
Of all the instruments government might employ to fight income inequality and reward work, the federal minimum wage, currently $7.25 per hour, is one of the bluntest.
Congress sets it based on nothing but politics. It works as a tax on business, whose benefits often accrue to middle-class teenagers, and whose costs - fewer jobs and higher prices - are partly borne by needier intended beneficiaries.
Free speech has gone a step too far. Oh, no. I don't mean true speech, the kind that humans make with a sound coming from their throats, or even the written word. I mean the kind generated from money, the kind ruling elections in our great nation.
The Republican takeover of the Senate majority really shouldn't matter much to progressives. Even when Democrats have the majority, precious little gets done in a body that lets a minority of members obstruct.
The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet midterms to men of understanding. Or as I put it on the eve of another Republican Party sweep, politics determines who has the power, not who has the truth. Still, it's not often that a party that is so wrong about so much does as well as Republicans did on Tuesday.
The dramatic, across-the-board victory engineered by Republicans in Tuesday's elections would seem to bode well for the party's chance to capture the White House in 2016. The GOP took full control of Congress, flipped at least four governor's offices from blue to red, and prompted much talk of a resurgent Republican movement.
The Keystone XL oil pipeline is so popular! Ever since the Republicans won control of the Senate, it's become the Taylor Swift of political issues.
"We can act on the Keystone pipeline," the House speaker, John Boehner, said as he launched into his description of the next Congress.
What does it mean to be anti-Israel? This is a question that arises in Washington. Republicans have argued for years that President Barack Obama is anti-Israel, and -- just a wild guess here -- we will hear this charge even more frequently as 2016 approaches.
All right, all right, I didn't see the wave coming. All those margin-of-error polls seemed to suggest that Democrats would likely hold their own -- probably not keep the Senate but make a respectable showing overall. Wrong.