Thursday February 11, 2016
August 27th, 2015
The central assumption of democracy -- beyond the assumption of fair elections, which is disturbingly questionable -- is that voters are the possessors of their own "interests," and vote for the candidate most sympathetic to them.
But of course those interests are fair game for advertising, bombast and propaganda -- and the psychology of fear.
Jeb Bush has a legacy problem. Its name is George. Two presidents named George Bush, to be exact. The problem is that Jeb focuses attention on the wrong relative, his brother, President George W. Why not his father, President George H.W.? Isn't he the one with the more appealing legacy?
When I served on a large urban school board we had all manner of complaints about "all those do nothing high paid folk downtown." Of course, they were referring to the central office support staff that provided the classroom teachers with the latest subject matter information, teaching techniques, regulations and miscellaneous assistance designed to help in the mission of teaching in a very complex world.
Rand Paul said something funny the other day. No, really — although of course it wasn’t intentional. On his Twitter account he decried the irresponsibility of American fiscal policy, declaring, “The last time the United States was debt free was 1835.”
Many find politics frustrating because problems that seemed to be solved in one generation crop up again years or decades later. The good thing about democracy is that there are no permanent defeats. The hard part is that some victories have to be won over and over.
Millions of Americans travel overseas every year, whether it’s across the border to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls or Tijuana or to more exotic locales. But nobody expects to die violently while abroad, and especially not a 17-year old.
That’s what happened to Alex Villamayor.
Donald Trump's immigration proposal rests on three assumptions: that immigration hurts American workers; that illegal immigration, in particular, is linked to violent crime; and that illegal immigrants drain government resources. Each of these beliefs is belied by the available academic evidence.
Phil Gramm, the former right-wing senator from Texas, has surprised me.
I assumed he had zero charitable instincts. In office, he kept trying to kill safety net programs, such as food assistance: “We’re the only nation in the world where all our poor people are fat,” Gramm smirked back in 1981.
Same as it ever was. Once again, according to pundits on the influential Washington, D.C. cocktail-party circuit, Hillary Clinton is in deep trouble. The National Bitch Hunt is definitely on.
Surely you didn't think we could have a woman presidential candidate without one?
Nearly 40 years ago, a fictional television anchor called Howard Beale captured a public mood of despair by telling his viewers to go to the nearest window, throw it open and shout: "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!"