Political Animal

March 2013 Archives

March 31, 2013 8:55 PM Sheryl Sandberg, take two

Last week, Kate Losse's review of Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In unexpectedly made headlines when one of Sandberg's PR people sent Losse a startling private tweet that read, "There's a special...

By Kathleen Geier

March 31, 2013 3:26 PM Review: Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In

This is my review of Sheryl Sandberg's best-selling book, Lean In. I tried to place various incarnations of it elsewhere, but by the time I pitched them most publications were...

By Kathleen Geier

March 31, 2013 12:06 PM On gay adoption, and finding your baby in the subway

This week was potentially historic in the battle for gay rights, as the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that could significantly advance the right to same-sex marriage. During...

By Kathleen Geier

March 31, 2013 8:13 AM Happy Easter!

Good morning and Happy Easter to one and all! In honor of the day, I'm posting this clip from the 1948 MGM movie Easter Parade, which I love for many...

By Kathleen Geier

March 30, 2013 7:21 PM A fascinating feminist punk video from 1996, gone viral in 2013: Dirty Girls

This week, someone hipped me to this amazing YouTube video, which I wanted to share with you all. It's an 18-minute film made in 1996 about a group of ostracized...

By Kathleen Geier

March 30, 2013 4:43 PM What Michelle Rhee doesn't want you to know

What's good enough for other people's kids apparently isn't good enough for the daughter of Michelle Rhee. As The Washington Post's Valerie Strauss reports, one of education reform advocate Michelle...

By Kathleen Geier

March 30, 2013 11:50 AM Something to celebrate for workers for a change: paid sick leave in New York City

This is a real cause for celebration: yesterday, a compromise was reached that at long last will bring paid sick leave to New York City. As always, the devil is...

By Kathleen Geier

March 30, 2013 9:19 AM Scripps Howard writes a puff piece on the KKK. No, really!

Is this an early April Fool's prank, or has everyone at the Scripps Howard News Service been hit with the stupid stick -- hard? I read the piece with ever-increasing...

By Kathleen Geier

March 30, 2013 7:45 AM Morning music: Corin Tucker's angry protest song about our stalled feminist revolution

I'm going to be writing a lot about gender this weekend, and I thought there was no better way to kick off that theme than to post this song from...

By Kathleen Geier

March 29, 2013 4:30 PM Day's End and Weekend Watch

This being a Friday, and a religious holiday for many of us, I'm bringing today's blogging to an early close after eleven posts. This step will also enable me to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 4:01 PM What Latino Outreach?

It seems newly elected Republican Gov. Pat McCrory of North Carolina did not get the memo about his party needing simple "outreach" to Latino voters even more than it needs...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 3:50 PM Scalia Very Confused About Gay Adoptions

Paul Glastris did a post yesterday noting that during oral arguments in the Prop 8 case, Justice Scalia didn't seem to know that gay adoptions were legal in California, reflecting...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 2:14 PM Let the Lobbying Begin

I mentioned this morning that the president's budget, to be released on April 10, will likely be the occasion for major public campaigns from various directions focused on whatever, if...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 2:03 PM Lunch Buffet

Another posting session from a moving car, now headed towards the Atlanta airport. My arrival at the ATL is being delayed, according to the electronic highway billboards, to "Spring Break...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 11:59 AM Affirmative Action: Necessary But Not Sufficient

In all the well-justified furor over the Supreme Court's review of voting rights and marriage equality issues, it's easy to forget that when this term's opinion roll out, the odds...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 11:10 AM Bee-Huggers

Exhibit #5,000 in the fight against the false choice between environmental protection and economic growth is the bee crisis centered in California's vast food producing areas, which has been around...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 10:31 AM What To Expect When Obama Releases His Budget

So the official release-date for the president's FY 2014 budget is April 10. You can expect to hear lots of GOP yammering about the budget being "two months late," which...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 10:13 AM Look Out, Virginia!

WaPo's Karen Tumulty has the first big media preview of this year's Virginia governor's race featuring Republican Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe. And here's the real lede: "Both sides...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 8:30 AM When Is a Filbuster Exceptional?

Probably like a lot of you, when I heard that senators Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and Mike Lee (later joined by Marco Rubio) announced they would filibuster any legislation restricting...

By Ed Kilgore

March 29, 2013 8:00 AM Daylight Video

For Good Friday, here's the Choir of King's College, Cambridge, performing "O Sacred Head Sore Wounded" in 1973....

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 5:08 PM Day's End and Night Watch

I'm writing this from a physician's office, where I'm waiting to see if I can get a good antibiotic to deal with the Galluping Never-Get-Overs. Here are some final items...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 3:50 PM The Afterlife of the Anti-Marriage Equality Movement

Yesterday I wrote about the whining of Christian Right folk over the terrible indignities they are suffering as their grip on marriage laws is being loosened. At about the same...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 3:31 PM Another Blow To the Christian Objectivist Movement

Because a remarkable number of conservative middle-brow "intellectuals" (one thinks of a certain congressman from Wisconsin) are forever trying to square circles by embracing Ayn Rand's perspectives on political ethics...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 2:59 PM SNAP Demagoguery

As you probably know, complaints about the size and cost of the food stamp program (now known as SNAP, for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) has become an ever-more-prominent part of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 2:28 PM Lunch Buffet

Blogging from a car creeping between two outposts of Atlanta exurbia where clearly the U.N. Agenda 21 conspiracy for "planning" has never taken hold. Here are some mid-day samplings of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 1:30 PM Under the Gaydar: How Gays Won the Right to Raise Children Without Conservatives Even Noticing

A few decades ago, openly gay and lesbian Americans did not have the legal right to raise their own biological children, much less adopt. Today, more states recognize same-sex parenting...

By Paul Glastris

March 28, 2013 12:02 PM The Enclave Option For the Christian Right

In a reasonably conventional analysis of the question of how the Republican Party handles the toxic "social-issues" views of its Christian Right/Tea Party "base," Tom Edsall hits on one option...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 11:21 AM See Where That Got You

In the midst of a meditation at TNR on the apparent opportunism of the Obama administration second-term legislative agenda, Todd Lindberg makes a point about the appropriations sequester that makes...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 10:53 AM Reconciliation and Obamacare Repeal

Speaking of Mitch McConnell, there may be a few people out there who believe the Republican identification with the vast expansion of filibusters in the Senate is a matter of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 9:41 AM Will Mitch Suffer or Skate?

Mitch McConnell is one of those politicians who evoke powerfully negative personal reactions from his opponents. I mean, even if you knew it was impossible to defeat him for re-election,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 8:34 AM Medicare and Health Care Costs

If you need any further evidence that the two major political parties have wildly different and entirely incompatible approaches to health care policy, check out Ezra Klein's piece on how...

By Ed Kilgore

March 28, 2013 8:00 AM Daylight Video

After a really bad night of wheezing and coughing, this song came to mind pretty quickly: Van Morrison performing "TB Sheets" in Germany in 1999....

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 5:35 PM Day's End and Night Watch

It's very timely that SCOTUSblog just given Peabody Award for excellence in electronic media (first blog so honored). Here are some final items of the day: * At Slate Fred...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 4:17 PM Christian Right Climbs Up On the Cross

What with all the adverse trends (even to a small extent among its own bought-and-paid-for Republican Party) on public opinion about same-sex marriage, it's not surprising that the recent habit...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 3:44 PM Marriage Equality KO and TKO

After the oral arguments in U.S. v. Windsor (better known as the DOMA case) today, it's becoming obvious that the desire of the political community for a clear "pro-" or...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 2:55 PM Marriage Equality and the Democratic Class of 2014

With Kay Hagan having joined Mark Warner and Mark Begich during the last few days as a convert to marriage equality, the idea that vulnerable red-state Dems facing re-election in...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 1:50 PM Lunch Buffet

What with travel, borrowed archaic laptops, varying ISPs and routers, etc., etc., I'm in no position to know if the reported slowdown of the internet due to a cyberwar between...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 1:10 PM Up the Down Staircase of the Eurozone

In more counter-intutitive news, just as citizens of Cyprus mull the mixed blessings of membership in the Eurozone, Poland's leadership is trying to join the club, as the FT's Jan...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 12:25 PM Promoting Maya?

Today's oddest story involves John Brennan's reported quandry over whether to permanently appoint the acting head of the CIA's clandestine service, who happens to be a woman. She also happens...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 12:06 PM The Race For Drone Dollars

Connoisseurs of state economic development strategies and their amoral (if not immoral) character will love this story from TPM's Alicia Chang: [T]he Federal Aviation Administration last month put out a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 10:43 AM Political Junkies Hold Breath As King Mulls Senate Bid

Those of us who as a hobby or as a professional obligation are already thinking ahead to 2014 remain on tenterhooks as the protagonist of what would be a marquee...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 9:52 AM Next Year's SCOTUS Sensation?

As commentators begin to run out of words to speculate about the murky maneuverings of the Supreme Court on same-sex marriage issues as reflected in oral arguments, it's occurring to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 8:21 AM Act Two

Today's Supreme Court oral arguments over the federal benefits portion of the Defense of Marriage Act will partially displace the post-mortem over yesterday's oral arguments involving Prop 8, but will...

By Ed Kilgore

March 27, 2013 8:00 AM Daylight Video

Felt like some inspired silliness, so here are the Hombres with the 1967 hit, "Let It All Hang Out."...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 5:24 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Thank God we've got another big set of oral arguments before the Supreme Court tomorrow on the same general subject so that speculation over today's doesn't get ridiculously out of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 4:59 PM Kiss Me, I Want To Cut You Less!

One of the many "rebranding" ideas for conservatism and the Republican Party you hear an awful lot is that the Right's ideology just needs to be explained in ways that...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 4:27 PM Anthony Lewis RIP

It's an accident of fate that one of America's periodic uprisings of public interest in constitutional law happens to have coincided with the death of Anthony Lewis, who is universally...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 3:59 PM If It Hadn't Been For Iraq!

One of the more interesting byproducts of Tenth Anniversary reflections on the Iraq War has been the effort of many conservatives to blame it for all the problems of the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 3:05 PM Supreme Evasions, Serious Consequences

So after the Supreme Court's oral arguments in the Prop 8 case this morning, the general consensus is that Anthony Kennedy, astride a sharply divided Court, will tilt the decision...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 1:15 PM Lunch Buffet

As happened yesterday, here in EDT "lunch" is interfering with the timing of the "lunch buffet," so I hope you will forgive me for starting without you. Here are some...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 12:46 PM Sanford, Not Parties, Polarizing Factor in SC 1

Time flies when you're in a Deep South two-week special election primary runoff, and Republican voters in South Carolina's first congressional district will choose between former Gov. Mark Sanford and...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 12:05 PM Foreign Policy Cold War Within Conservatism

In a development we should get used to, Marco Rubio went to Rand Paul's state and made a speech that included some pretty clear if indirect shots at the Junior...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 11:30 AM Back to Basics on Crime Policy

From a glass-half-full perspective, we are in a period where the dismal and often counter-productive patterns of the "crime debate" in American politics are finally yielding some grounds for optimism....

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 10:20 AM Budget Procedures and the Path Not Taken

If, like me, you came of age in the heyday of the Congressional Budget Act and expect things to unfold in a certain, predictable way, it's time for a quick...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 8:32 AM Why the Clock Won't Be Turned Back

This is reasonably well known by now, but worth understanding clearly as the Supreme Court hears oral arguments on Proposition 8 today: support for marriage equality among Americans has been...

By Ed Kilgore

March 26, 2013 8:03 AM Daylight Video

For those who, like me, are struggling a bit to escape from sleep, here are the Electric Prunes performing "I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night" on American Bandstand....

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 6:51 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Still adjusting to life in EDT, where supper can come awfully early, but I'll be more timely tomorrow. Here are some remainders from today's news: * At The Atlantic, Simone...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 5:33 PM Revolutionary Rhetoric?

The U.S. news cycle has quickly passed over Barack Obama's trip to Israel last week, and a speech he made in Jerusalem that struck a strong chord at the time....

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 5:05 PM The New Stockman?

Jonathan Chait looked a little more closely than I did at Jonathan Martin's Politico piece this morning on Paul Ryan's recent loss of cool-kid status, and found something interesting that...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 3:59 PM Defining "Victory"

I've written as much as anyone you'll find about how historically anomalous it that the Republican Party keeps responding to presidential election defeats by moving farther from the political mainstream....

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 2:55 PM U-G-L-Y You Ain't Got No Alibi!

I'm at my father's house right now, and as always, he has MSNBC on the tube. In a report on the congressional wrangling over gun legislation, there was a clip...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 2:13 PM Lunch Buffet

Sorry for the occasionally erratic posting, but I'm in Georgia traveling from relative to relative, and relying on an old HP laptop that is rapidly slipping into technological senility. And...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 1:43 PM Tangents Not Taken

I don't want to perpetuate to any great extent last week's story about the 2012 Santorum-Gingrich (or Gingrich-Santorum) "unity ticket" that never happened. But since TNR's Nate Cohn went to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 11:27 AM Big Swinging Polls

Perhaps when looking down the barrel of massive public support for universal gun sales background checks, the NRA and its Republican allies just think public opinion is more malleable than...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 11:09 AM Shifting Tectonics On Guns

As the Senate moves towards a vote on Harry Reid's gun violence package, which now (after the excision of a renewed assault gun ban and high-capacity ammo clip restrictions) centers...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 10:04 AM War Is Over

There will be a lot of talk this week about our culture and even our politics quickly outpacing the legal system on the subject of same-sex marriage, as the Supreme...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 8:14 AM Quote of the Morning

Sometimes you see a single sentence that so perfectly sums up an element of the zeitgeist that you just have to pass it on. This is from a Jonathan Martin...

By Ed Kilgore

March 25, 2013 8:03 AM Daylight Video

To get the week going with a kick, here are the Yardbirds performing "Shapes of Things To Come" on French TV circa 1966....

By Ed Kilgore

March 24, 2013 9:31 PM Political Animal readers continue to stick it to "Fix the Debt"

I have been overwhelmed - in the best possible way - by your responses to Fix the Debt's appeal for stories about how the national debt is supposedly affecting American...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 4:52 PM Georgia House Republicans to play musical chairs for Chambliss' seat and other Sunday evening reads

*Get ready for a bumfight: four of the nine House Republicans from Georgia are vying for the Senate seat that will be vacated by Saxby Chambliss. According to the Hill,...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 2:47 PM FCC chair nomination process important, but Senate bust up not expected

The FCC often fails to get the attention it deserves. Communications regulations might not be sexy, but they profoundly affect every aspect of American life. This piece of wisdom from...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 1:05 PM House Intelligence Committee chief with dodgy intel on Syria

House Intelligence Committee chair Mike Rogers was on "Face the Nation" this morning, throwing around what President Obama might term "loose talk" about possible U.S. intervention in Syria. The Michigan...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 11:51 AM Former War on Terror ally Musharraf returns to Pakistan

I suspect this story will affect the region quite substantially as it develops: former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf has returned from self-imposed exile in Dubai. According to the Guardian, he...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 10:44 AM Bloomberg's billions to counter NRA muscle in 2014

New York Mayor and gun control advocate Michael Bloomberg said that he will fund ad campaigns in 2014 against senators who oppose an assault weapons ban and stronger background checks...

By Samuel Knight

March 24, 2013 9:44 AM Mr. Kerry goes to Baghdad and other Sunday Morning Reads

*John Kerry made an unannounced visit to Baghdad today. He reportedly asked Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki to stem an alleged flow of weapons, via Iraqi airspace, from Iran to...

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 5:26 PM WaMo readers respond to "Fix the Debt"

Heeding my call to bombard their inbox, WaMo commenters have stuck it to “Fix The Debt.” Frequent commenter "c u n d gulag" unleashed a “massive word turd” on them....

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 4:49 PM Manchin approaches NRA about gun control and other Saturday afternoon reads.

*Conservative West Viriginia Democrat Joe Manchin is in talks with the NRA to explore how the Senate might be able to pass tougher background check laws. According to POLITICO “if...

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 2:29 PM Apparent suicide of oligarch to raise eyebrows at State Dept. Russia desk

Here's a story that's bound to turn some heads in Washington: oligarch Boris Berezovsky, a Russian exile and adversary of Vladimir Putin, has died in London. According to the Guardian,...

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 1:31 PM "Fix the Debt" wants to hear from you. So let them.

“Fix The Debt” - the astroturf, defense contractor-linked lobbying group seizing upon the manufactured debt crisis to ram through a corporate agenda at the expense of everyone else - is...

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 11:40 AM Kerry push for Israel-Palestine dialogue pointless if settlements aren't addressed immediately

John Kerry faces a tough task as he shuffles between Amman and Jerusalem today in a bid to kickstart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. The Secretary of State is asking Palestinian National...

By Samuel Knight

March 23, 2013 9:43 AM "Vote-a-rama" and Middle East turmoil dominate Saturday Morning Reads

Happy Saturday, y'all. Here are some note-worthy stories: *The Senate (kind of, sort of) passed a budget for the first time in four years in the wee hours of the...

By Samuel Knight

March 22, 2013 5:35 PM Day's End and Weekend Watch

Tomorrow I'm heading to Georgia to see family and will be there all week, so the good news is I'll get to sleep later and the bad news is that...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 4:59 PM The Jimmy Fallon Tax Credit

Here's one shoe dropping (via the New York Times): NBC has settled on two new stars for “The Tonight Show”: Jimmy Fallon and New York City. The network has made...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 4:40 PM K Street Guesses Wrong

There's an interesting piece by Anna Palmer and Elizabeth Titus up at Politico about the disproportionately Republican affiliations on K Street these days, a bit of an anomaly at a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 3:27 PM Tough Crowd

All of the rightward forces in the Republican Party have a not-so-secret and powerful ally: the Iowa Caucuses, which have increasingly served as a crucible for presidential candidates who (unless...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 2:42 PM Trapped By the Base

On the outside chance that you don't believe me or other scribblers who think the radicalization of the Republican Party is the single most important development affecting American politics and...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 1:47 PM Lunch Buffet

Feeling a bit better today, and did manage to catch a bit of NCAA basketball last night--notably Harvard's improbable win over New Mexico. I gather the Crimson started the year...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 1:01 PM The Indispensable Health Care Program

Since I've been writing about health care policy this morning, thought I should mention a book review I wrote that appears in the current issue of the Monthly. The book...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 11:45 AM DeMint Declares Period of Introspection Over

So the brief and generally shallow period of Republican post-election introspection is officially over, before it really ever got to the difficult questions of ideology. How do I know that?...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 11:02 AM Inside the Anti-Obamacare Resistance

The two largest states that have so far failed to join in the Medicaid expansion provided for in the Affordable Care Act are Florida and Texas, where Republicans control the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 10:11 AM The Four-Headed Beast of Obamacare Implementation

Today is the third anniversary of the final House vote on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. And the main noise you hear about that is from...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 8:17 AM The Scaaaaaary Unity Ticket

Don't mean to frighten readers this early in the morning, but hey, news is news, this time from Joshua Green at Bloomberg: It’s one of the great untold stories of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 22, 2013 8:05 AM Daylight Video

Don't know why, but I felt like listening to sea chanties this morning. Here's Stan Rogers performing "Rolling Down To Old Maui." UPDATE: No, Blue Girl, I didn't hear Fresh...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 5:59 PM Day's End and Night Watch

With the assistance of DayQuil, managed to get through the day without breaking down and crawling under the covers. Here are some final items of a relatively busy day: *...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 5:25 PM Simple Plan

Of all the vast literature on the current plight of the Republican Party, this fairly simple statement from Rich Lowry makes the most sense to me: [S]o much depends on...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 5:10 PM The One In Israel?

It will take a while to sort through reactions from various perspectives, but it appears the president did one of his Big Speeches in Jerusalem today, and though the specific...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 4:22 PM Ayn Wouldn't Have Apologized!

Not being a practitioner of yoga in any way, shape or form, I was only dimly aware of the brouhaha over the discovery that yoga apparel products sold by a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 3:37 PM Break Up the Big Banks (And De-Regulate Them!)

As a follow-on to Haley Sweetland Edwards' post yesterday on the hard slog to implement Dodd-Frank (and her fine article on the broader subject of regulatory implementation in the latest...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 1:52 PM Lunch Buffet

Woke up with a nasty cold this morning, and hope I'm not coming down with the bronchitis that is afflicting the Central Coast at present. I'll pull poor Ryan Cooper...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 1:14 PM The Paul Broun Mainstream

Some of you may recall a post I did yesterday on the vast and nearly uniform pressure on Republican elected officials (particularly those involved in or vulnerable to primaries) to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 12:23 PM The 50-Year March

I'm glad there's a renewed interest in reassessing the Iraq War thanks to this week's Tenth Anniversary of its formal initiation. But there's another anniversary this year that bears recognition...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 11:23 AM South End of a North-Bound Brontosaurus

There's a Manu Raju piece at Politico today on the growing gap between opinion on same-sex marriage between Congress (mainly among Republicans, but also among many red-state Democrats) and the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 10:40 AM No, Paul Wolfowitz and Dick Cheney Did Not Enact Obamacare

The Washington Examiner's Phillip Klein is one of the Right's more sensible pundits. But in his column on the Tenth Anniversary of the Iraq War, he sneaks one of the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 9:43 AM Tactics, Strategy and Substance

It's hard to argue with Brian Beutler's assessment that in the short run Democrats lost (even if in some respects Republicans did not quite win) the "battle of the sequester,"...

By Ed Kilgore

March 21, 2013 8:15 AM Daylight Video

Another random item from the memory banks: Gil Scott-Heron's "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised." If you've never heard this, it had quite an impact back in 1970....

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 5:44 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Closing with dispatch today because I have to cook a big pot of Brunswick Stew for a church group that had never heard of this exotic southern fare until the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 5:08 PM Stop Whining and Act on Filibuster Reform

Yesterday at the Plum Line Jonathan Bernstein succinctly described the need for a serious filibuster reform in the face of what appears to be increased Republican obstruction: The big picture...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 4:27 PM Blame Benen

I first noticed this story at the blog of the Poynter Institute, a journalism education outfit, and figured they were reflecting special solicitude for the work-load of their charges: The...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 4:01 PM Drawing Attention To Dog Whistles

When I read the headline of the AP story--"Dems slam Cuccinelli comment on slavery, abortion"--I wondered what ol' Cooch had done to gussy up that ancient RTL chestnut. So I...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 2:29 PM Hey! Bummer!

So we learn today from The Telegraph that the armored limo the President is using in Israel broke down this morning en route to Jerusalem because someone filled its fuel...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

After posting the Spirit video this morning, my strange old-guy distant memory regurgitated a bad, obscure movie from the late 1960s titled Body Shop (not to be confused with the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 1:27 PM Elephant in the Room

In his glass-half-full reaction to the RNC's "2012 autopsy report," David Frum absolves its authors for their rather conspicuous avoidance of the ideological elephant in the room: [A]s Reihan Salam...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 11:57 AM Keep Your Eye on Dodd-Frank

Take a look at these two articles in today's New York Times. Both talk about how the same bank, JPMorgan Chase, is maneuvering in the rough-and-tumble, post-Dodd-Frank world of financial...

By Haley Sweetland Edwards

March 20, 2013 11:08 AM Now As Always, Jobs Over Deficit Reduction

This isn't a huge surprise to those who have been paying attention to public opinion, but Gallup has found once again that sizable majorities of Americans--and of independents and Republicans--favor...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 10:17 AM Students, Hooch and Shooting Irons

As a follow-on to my last post on the sad realities of gun politics, here's a fascinating dispatch from my home state of Georgia, fast becoming a wingnut paradise to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 10:02 AM More Kabuki on Guns

Perhaps the least surprising development in the slow progress of gun legislation in Congress was yesterday's separate announcements by Harry Reid and Diane Feinstein that the latter's legislation restoring the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 9:44 AM Run 'Em All & Let God Sort 'Em Out

This year's fun special congressional election, in South Carolina's primevally conservative First Congressional District, featured a vast Republican primary field of 16 candidates all trying to out-conservative--and in some cases,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 20, 2013 8:16 AM Daylight Video

A random neuron fired and I remembered this great band today: Spirit performs "Mr. Skin" in Germany in 1978....

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 5:24 PM Day's End and Night Watch

In noting this is the tenth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, I discovered another March 19 anniversary: Nevada legalized gambling on this day in 1931. Lotta tumbling dice since...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 4:53 PM Could the Middle Eastern Tourist Spring a Surprise on Bibi?

At TAP the indispensable Gershom Gorenberg offers a succinct analysis of the opportunity associated with Barack Obama's visit to Israel this week: If Obama is coming to Israel to kick...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 3:59 PM Two House Handicappers Punch the Donkey

By coincidence, I assume, two big names in the electoral handicapping biz came out with initial thoughts about the House landscape for 2014 today. At the Wall Street Journal, Larry...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 3:28 PM This Day in History: "Our Nation Enters This Conflict Reluctantly"

Though it seems like we've all been talking about it for weeks, today is the actual tenth anniversary of the military invasion of Iraq by U.S. and "Coalition" forces. I...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 1:54 PM Lunch Buffet

So the "First Four" games of NCAA men's basketball tourney begin today, even as many bracket-managers give pool participants until Thursday to turn in their picks. What happens if a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 1:25 PM Near Frontiers of the Fight for Voting Rights

The latest issue of Democracy features a symposium on voting rights, and since we were just talking about the difficulties Democrats will face in the midterms, I'd like to call...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 12:44 PM The States Are Not An Alternative America

There are two perpetually silly memes going around the commentariat these days in connection with the very limited but loudly expressed self-examination of the Republican Party, both involving the GOP's...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 11:58 AM Covering Government

There is no subject nearer and dearer to the abiding mission of the Washington Monthly than how news media cover the operations of government. So the ongoing crisis in U.S....

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 10:39 AM 'Scuse Me, Amigos, While I Go Nuts

In his own indirect answer to the question of how seriously we should take Reince Priebus' "2012 autopsy report," Greg Sargent notes the rather glaring contrast between its urgent language...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 9:47 AM Papal Ploy

Here's Editor-in-Chief Paul Glastris on The McLaughlin Group discussing the deeper meaning of Pope Francis' election:...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 9:39 AM RNC "Autopsy:" Less Than Meets the Eye

I'd say the debate over the greater meaning, if any, of the Republican National Committee's "2012 autopsy" report--more formally the report of its Growth and Opportunity Project--is best summed up...

By Ed Kilgore

March 19, 2013 8:15 AM Daylight Video

In 2008 (I think), in Germany (I think), here's two guys who really got around: Jack Bruce and Robin Trower performing "White Room."...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 5:57 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Actual news slowed down after commentariat wore itself out on Priebus report, Obama-as-Satan, and Cypriot banks. But here are some remains of the day: * Petition demanding apology for CNN's...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 5:27 PM Frum's Reminiscences on the Iraq War

Long before he became generally known as the Republican critic Democrats most like to quote, David Frum was mostly famous outside conservative circles as one of the proudest authors of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 4:36 PM Supremes Could Undermine Voting Rights, Beyond Voting Rights Act

Most of the attention among voting rights advocates in this session of the Supreme Court have been quite naturally focused on the challenge to Section 5 of the Voting Rights...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 4:12 PM Here Comes Paid WaPo!

It's been rumored to be on the way for many months and even years, but it seems paying for unlimited digital access to the Washington Post is finally happening this...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 2:53 PM Measuring Social Impact in the Charity Biz

The lede of Georgia Levenson Keohane's review of Ken Stern's With Charity For All in the March-April issue of the Washington Monthly got my attention as a college sports fan:...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

As one of the fruits of not working in an office anymore, I feel no particular pressure to participate in a March Madness pool or fill out a bracket. That...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 12:53 PM Panic!

So we should apparently all be panicked by the possibility that a bank deposit tax the Cypriot government has proposed as part of a broader EU "relief" package for that...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 11:39 AM Got 99 Problems But the Right Ain't One

So in a blare of hype (including a Press Club speech by Reince Priebus), the Republican National Committee released a big fat report this morning on the findings of its...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 10:57 AM A Simple Path to More Tax Revenue Requiring No Action from Congress

Watch Paul Glastris introduce this piece by David Kamin from our new issue: Read the whole thing....

By Ryan Cooper

March 18, 2013 10:20 AM So Much For Those Antiwar Youth

Another meme we're hearing a lot of in connection with CPAC is that libertarianism (or some variant thereof) is the wave of the future on the Right because young folk...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 9:25 AM Is "Fetal Personhood" A "Social Issue?"

If you didn't read Adele Stan's fine wrap-up report on CPAC 2013 yesterday afternoon, you should check it out. Her fundamental assessment that CPAC now is the Republican Party instead...

By Ed Kilgore

March 18, 2013 8:12 AM Daylight Video

For some lively wakeup music, here's Southern Culture on the Skids performing "Banana Pudding" at the Roots N Blues N Barbecue Festival in Columbia, MO in 2009....

By Ed Kilgore

March 17, 2013 7:32 PM Why you should (still) tip generously: a response to Michael O'Hare

Over at The Same Facts, Michael O'Hare posted a response to my earlier post about restaurant employees. Michael takes issue with my suggestion to tip generously. Here's his rationale: [T]o...

By Kathleen Geier

March 17, 2013 5:19 PM The minimum wage, part 2: Casey Mulligan fail edition; or, the $100 minimum wage gambit

I wanted to make a few points about this awful piece by economist Casey Mulligan, in which Mulligan not only opposes a minimum wage hike, but actively supports reducing the...

By Kathleen Geier

March 17, 2013 2:50 PM The latest infernal scheme from our corporate overlords: lowering the minimum wage -- or outlawing it altogether

And now comes the time to turn our beautiful minds to exciting new developments in the laboratories of democracy*. Have you been worrying lately that low-wage workers in this country...

By Kathleen Geier

March 17, 2013 1:40 PM Is CPAC the New Republican Party?

Editor's Note: We asked Adele Stan, who blogs for Political Animal from time to time on the weekends, to give us a dispatch from the Conservative Political Action Conference in...

By Adele Stan

March 17, 2013 12:17 PM Guilty verdicts in the Steubenville rape case: a blow against rape culture

Something happened today that is exceedingly rare in America, and the world -- justice was served in a rape case. News outlets are reporting that 17-year old Trent Mays and...

By Kathleen Geier

March 17, 2013 11:25 AM The impact of female bosses on women workers: a look at the research

Sheryl Sandberg is all the rage these days. I've read her book and my feelings about it are mixed, albeit more positive than negative. I'll have much more to say...

By Kathleen Geier

March 17, 2013 8:26 AM Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Legend has it that St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland (although actually, scientists say Ireland was always snake-free). But in today's Ireland, the slithery devils are back. As...

By Kathleen Geier

March 16, 2013 1:38 PM This just in: CPAC'ers support more publicly funded lawyers for the poor. In other news, hell goes Methodist.

Conservatives supporting publicly subsidized lawyers for the poor? At the CPAC conference, yet? Wait, April Fool's day is still two weeks away! Over at Ten Miles Square, David Dagan has...

By Kathleen Geier

March 16, 2013 11:16 AM Scott Walker dreams the dream, says he's "open" to a White House run in 2016

Oh joy! Politico is reporting that Wisconsin governor and enemy of working people everywhere Scott Walker is sending strong signals that he will be candidate for president in 2016. Politico...

By Kathleen Geier

March 16, 2013 9:31 AM Why are working conditions for restaurant employees so bad?

Why is that working conditions for restaurant employees are so dismal? This eye-opening Salon article documents the grim details. Nearly one in ten workers in the U.S. is employed by...

By Kathleen Geier

March 16, 2013 7:16 AM Vatican Rag, or: Meet the New Boss. Same as the Old Boss.

So, we have a new pope. Earlier this week, Salon's Mary Elizabeth Williams, a liberal Catholic, tried to make the best of it. Yes, Pope Francis, as he is now...

By Kathleen Geier

March 15, 2013 5:35 PM Day's End and Weekend Watch

Just got into a brief Twitter conversation with Erick Erickson on his view that Sen. Portman has exposed himself as something less than a real Christian. Made my point, heard...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 4:40 PM A "Rosa Parks Moment" In Idaho

I generally try to avoid posts on random outrages from obscure wingnuts (despite the constant provocation offered by members of the Tennessee legislature), but because it nicely caps off a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 4:13 PM Honky Chateau

Nicely coinciding with CPAC, in which conservatives are devoting equal time to alleged "outreach" to hostile voting groups and cries for additional holy war against the president and liberals, Charlie...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 3:32 PM The Anti-Choice Olympics

Ever since the 2010 elections, Republican legislators and governors have been in a competition to see who can enact the most blatantly unconstitutional--at least according to existing precedents--laws on abortion...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 2:23 PM Costs of a "War of Choice"

Next week will mark the tenth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, and will naturally spur some assessments of the costs and benefits of that "war of choice." The benefits,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 1:55 PM Lunch Buffet

I'm fighting the temptation to put on college basketball games in the background while blogging (just as I and many coworkers often did back when I had an office gig)....

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 12:39 PM Perils of GOP "Outreach"

As a follow-on to the last post on Matthew Continetti's analysis of the GOP's electoral dilemmas, it should be clear the problem isn't just the conflict between base and "swing"...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 11:35 AM We Have Met the Enemy And He Is Us

So what if the most honest self-evaluation of the Republican Party concluded "We're screwed!" That's sorta the impression left by Matthew Continetti's piece in the Weekly Standard entitled "The Double...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 10:54 AM How Republicans Killed Medical Cost-Effectiveness Research

Our editors Haley Sweetland Edwards and Phillip Longman introduce Phil's piece in our latest issue on how conservatives snuck a phrase into Obamacare forbidding any kind of government-funded medical cost-effectiveness...

By Ryan Cooper

March 15, 2013 9:49 AM We Don't Need No Stinkin' New Ideas

After some relatively happy thoughts about the direction of things on one subject even within today's conservative movement and Republican Party, I have to say things look pretty different at...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 9:20 AM Portman On Gay Marriage: Will Crumbling Walls Tumble?

It took me a while this morning to realize that Sen. Rob Portman's op-ed announcing he had changed his mind and now supported same-sex marriage (mainly as a result of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 15, 2013 8:35 AM Daylight Video

For no reason other than that I miss this band, here's Sleater-Kinney, in their last show in Portland in 2006, performing "You're No Rock 'n' Roll Fun."...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 5:35 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Thanks to Daniel Luzer for getting a solid post in while I dealt with a church obligation. I'm sure we'll have more goodies from CPAC tomorrow, but I'm hoping for...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 4:18 PM Why Law School Doesn't Work Anymore

Going to law school used to seem like a fairly stable career move. Sure one has to assume a lot of debt to get the degree, but the jobs looked...

By Daniel Luzer

March 14, 2013 3:45 PM CPAC's Greatest Hits

I had planned to do post making fun of some of the agenda items on the CPAC schedule, but MoJo's Tim Murphy beat me to the punch with a item...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 3:08 PM Is Cruz the Next Joe McCarthy--Or Strom Thurmond?

You know, if I had been recently and frequently compared to Joe McCarthy, I might want to tone down my act a bit for a while. That does not seem...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 2:42 PM Another Shoe Drops In South Carolina

I hope all those pundits who keep confidently predicting that once all the bluster ends the states will uniformly agree to implement the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion note that...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 2:11 PM Lunch Buffet

Thanks to a long conference call with Monthly folk I was on, the schedule's a little hinky today, so apologies for a Late Lunch. I'll try to make it tasty,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 1:11 PM "Slush Fund," or "War Chest?"

I’m glad to see that Slate’s Matt Yglesias agrees with most of the ideas I put forth in a piece in the latest Washington Monthly about what Washington needs to...

By Tammy Booth

March 14, 2013 11:59 AM The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves

Some of you may recall that the day after last November's elections, I published a fairly extensive piece at TNR answering the question of whether a chastened Republican Party would...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 10:46 AM We Don't Want To Fight, But By Jingo If We Do....

CPAC's under way, and the undercard stars are getting their moment. I just decided to check in on the PBS livestream of the event, and quickly heard the end of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 9:52 AM Another Gift From the Big Dog

So anyone who watched the 2012 Democratic National Convention is probably aware that former president Bill Clinton did the best job of anyone during the entire campaign to articulate the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 8:58 AM Explain Your Principles, Please

Today's opening meditation, coinciding with the beginning of that annual speechapaloosa of the Right, CPAC, is from a belligerant remark made by Paul Ryan in an interview with National Review's...

By Ed Kilgore

March 14, 2013 8:05 AM Daylight Video

In honor of CPAC, which begins today, here's Iggy Pop performing "I'm a Conservative" in San Francisco, circa 1981....

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 6:02 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Another one of those days that starts off slow and then gets crazy. I actually have a couple of topics left I may write about tonight to get an atypically...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 5:24 PM A Nice Big Glass of Whine With POTUS

Politico's Sherman and Bresnahan, doing what comes naturally to many reporters at that institution, already have an insider-y account of the president's meeting with House Republicans today. You can read...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 4:11 PM The Next Envoy to Benghazi! Benghazi!

In an announcement that the conspiracy-minded will undoubtedly assume was timed to coincide with the overriding news of the election of a new Pope, the White House is taking the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 3:41 PM Pope Francis I

So Habemas Papam and all that. Everything I know about Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, now Pope Francis I, is decidedly second- or third-hand: he's an Argentinian of Italian...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 3:06 PM Betting Odds on the New Pope

From our latest issue:...

By Ryan Cooper

March 13, 2013 2:37 PM A Look at Two Potential Trade Deals

Clyde Prestowitz, former Secretary of Commerce, has done some reporting for our new issue on the two big potential trade deals that are on deck here in Washington—the Trans-Pacific Partnership...

By Ryan Cooper

March 13, 2013 1:44 PM Lunch Buffet

This is a day when slower news-reactors are writing about the Ryan Budget, and us speed demons are realizing we missed a thing or two. Sic transit media, I suppose....

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 1:22 PM Jeb & Marco

In the runup to the annual CPAC conference, which begins tomorrow, one of the hot topics is the "rivalry" of two speakers, Florida's Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, who have...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 12:10 PM Ryan and the Curse of the Losing Veep Nominees

Back right after the 2012 elections, I did a little historical digging about the fate of failed vice presidential nominees over the years, and discovered the only one in the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 10:45 AM Tears of a Hawk

As noted here earlier, the original impetus for the particular framework of the latest iteration of the Ryan Budget was the need to get House Tea Folk to back off...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 10:13 AM Should Presidents Hustle Potential Insourcers?

As Ryan noted yesterday, Anne Kim has a piece in the March-April issue of the Monthly discussing various ways to revive American manufacturing. It made The Atlantic's "Five Best Monday...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 9:10 AM A Tug O' the Forelock

In the second-day discussion of Paul Ryan's latest budget proposal, the dominant theme among critics is that this document does not exactly reflect any growth or willingness to compromise by...

By Ed Kilgore

March 13, 2013 8:35 AM Daylight Video

Here's some good lively morning angst, with Fuel performing "Jesus Or a Gun" on Australian TV in 2000....

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 5:30 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Wondered why I was feeling cranky today (other than having to deal with the release of another Ryan Budget!), and my wife notified me I had missed Monday's National Napping...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 4:54 PM Mississippi's Fat If Not Happy

Mississippi under its current Republican management is very attached to the old Moonlight and Magnolias approach to economic development, whereby southern states proudly advertise their poverty and supine attitude towards...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 4:13 PM Deliberately Dumb With Numbers

If you think Republicans are able to play games by pretending not to understand "current services budgeting" when it comes to annual appropriations, it's nothing compared to the compounding of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 3:22 PM Judges Are (Nearly) Forever

The (silent) filibustering of Caitlin Halligan's nomination to the D.C. Circuit is getting attention mainly because of its very different style than Rand Paul's showy "talking filibuster" of John Brennan's...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 2:18 PM Not Just the Facts, Ma'am

In a post yesterday on the continuing discussion of how and whether journalists are compensated, I observed there was more to political journalism than just ferreting out facts; interpretation, analysis,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 1:47 PM Lunch Buffet

Lotta froth in the news this morning. A quick and surprising papal election would sure make a lot of news folk happy. Here are some mid-day bites: * Bolling renounces...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 12:43 PM Careful With Those Corporate Incentives

Anne Kim has an article in our latest issue which focuses on the recent "insourcing" trend in manufacturing—which is to say, companies deciding to forgo overseas operation and move their...

By Ryan Cooper

March 12, 2013 12:22 PM Love You To Death

You, liberal reader, probably think of Ted Cruz as this vicious neo-McCarthyite crank who is raging around Washington threatening not so much Democrats as the imaginary RINOs who control his...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 10:58 AM Ryan's Latest Bait-and-Switch

So Paul Ryan's latest budget proposal is out today, and there are no particular surprises to those familiar with earlier iterations. Yes, Ryan was forced by Tea Party pressure to...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 10:17 AM GOP's Health Reform Plan B in Action?

When the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services gave Arkansas the green light for a deal that would allow for expanded "Medicaid coverage" via enrollment of the uninsured in...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 9:35 AM Just 288 Shopping Days Until the War On the War On Xmas!

Since the public career of Sarah Palin was recently reburied for about the tenth time, when she lost her Fox News contract and thus her major platform, two news items...

By Ed Kilgore

March 12, 2013 8:35 AM Daylight Video

Certain songs I love so much that I periodically recheck YouTube to see if someone has posted new videos of them. I hit paydirt this morning with Delaney & Bonnie...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 6:11 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Interesting how a day with little or no actual political news can sometimes generate plenty to talk about. And I didn't even have to get into the Fake Krugman Bankruptcy...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 5:17 PM Hey! Aren't You That Guy On TV?

As part of the journalism-for-free discussion that has hit a lot of raw nerves among people in a position to write about it, Ta-Nehisi Coates and Paul Waldman mention an...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 4:09 PM The Devil's Tools For Angelic Projects

In the vast array of commentary about Rand Paul's filibuster last week, one of the more interesting raps was from Ross Douthat, who argued that Paul's visceral connection with the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 3:04 PM Lieberman To AEI

When Joe Liberman announced he would not be seeking another term in the Senate back in January of 2011, Jonathan Chait had an acute sense of his options: I'm guessing...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 2:28 PM Best Way To Address Violence By Mentally Ill: Implement Obamacare

Since the Newtown massacre, both supporters and opponents of tougher gun regulation have talked a lot about the parallel issue of inadequate monitoring of and treatment for violence-prone people with...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 1:30 PM Lunch Buffet

Lawyers, Guns & Money's Scott Lemieux informs me via Twitter that Brooklyn hipsters like Yes now! Who knew? What a relief! Here are some Monday mid-day news/views treats for your...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 1:00 PM Haley Edwards Speaks about the Rule-Writing Process

Here's a small video introduction of her piece on Dodd-Frank, filmed here at Washington Monthly world headquarters: Read the piece here....

By Ryan Cooper

March 11, 2013 12:25 PM Cutting Out the Journalistic Middle-Folk

In response to the buzz over Nate Thayer's post last week on The Atlantic not being willing to actually pay for online content (at least from freelancers), Ezra Klein offers...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 11:10 AM Jeb Bush's Bold (Or Bold-Faced) Gambit

You have to admire, in a sick sort of way, any politician that gets caught mispositioning him- or herself on a major issue and then just quickly flip-flops and denies...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 10:02 AM The Obamacare Referendum

Did you know that on November 6, 2012, in conjunction with the national election, the United States also had a referendum on Obamacare that Republicans won? No, I didn't, either,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 9:24 AM 2009 Redux?

For those of you vulnerable to a bout of deja vu, this could be a tough week. Here's the emerging MSM narrative of the national political scene: President Obama, having...

By Ed Kilgore

March 11, 2013 8:35 AM Daylight Video

At the risk of incurring heavy hipster disdain, I must say I enjoyed three hours of old hippie heaven last night at a performance by the ancient Prog Rock band...

By Ed Kilgore

March 10, 2013 2:42 PM Afternoon Reads

That's it for me, folks, Ed will be back on Monday. Here are some choice cuts from around the web: 1. Richard Feynman explains the difference between the mechanisms of...

By Ryan Cooper

March 10, 2013 1:52 PM John Boehner Has the Hardest Job in Washington

My estimation of John Boehner has increased quite a bit of late, as I've come to appreciate the extreme difficulty of dealing with his own unruly caucus, and the conservative...

By Ryan Cooper

March 10, 2013 1:01 PM Blockbuster Reporting on Drones

To ease off my Times bashing for a moment, they have an excellent, deeply reported piece today on the Obama administration's drone policy. It's the most comprehensive account yet of...

By Ryan Cooper

March 10, 2013 12:01 PM Chávez in Context

I was all set for a long post on Chávez and our dumb discussions thereof, but this Chris Hayes segment did it better: Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news,...

By Ryan Cooper

March 10, 2013 9:57 AM Why Does Jeff Sachs Not Know What Was In the Stimulus?

Jeff Sachs has long been known as the celebrity-hobnobbing economist with the seriously flawed "shock therapy" plan for economic development. Lately he's taken a weird turn in the public debate,...

By Ryan Cooper

March 10, 2013 9:13 AM Morning Jams

A nice indie-ish track I discovered yesterday on Rdio:...

By Ryan Cooper

March 09, 2013 1:39 PM Abandoning Green Coverage Is an Act of Journalistic Malpractice

Last week, the New York Times shuttered its Green blog, inviting a volley of criticism, especially after they closed their environment desk in January. Kevin Drum thinks the inherent boringness...

By Ryan Cooper

March 09, 2013 11:42 AM Filibuster Reform Is Not the Big Story for the DC Circuit Court

The Times has a piece on the recent filibustering of Caitlin Halligan's nomination to a seat on the DC Circuit Court. It's not a bad piece, but rather buries the...

By Ryan Cooper

March 09, 2013 10:22 AM A Obvious Pot of Money for an Increase in Social Security Benefits

Josh Barro has been teaming up with Duncan Black more and more these days. First it was the platinum coin option, now here he is endorsing an increase in Social...

By Ryan Cooper

March 09, 2013 8:50 AM Some Long-Haul Amtrak Routes Have Seen Spectacular Growth

I was poking around this Brookings report mentioned by Brad Plumer the other day and was fairly impressed at the growth numbers on even the longer routes. The Texas Eagle...

By Ryan Cooper

March 09, 2013 8:12 AM Morning Jams

A cut off last year's Deftones album, which is way better than it has any right to be:...

By Ryan Cooper

March 08, 2013 5:53 PM Day's End and Weekend Watch

'Twas a livelier week that it looked to be initially, what with the slow-moving riot of the sequester deadening news for a while. Here are some final news/view items of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 5:00 PM Double Plagiarism

Today's most depressing story involves former WaPo reporter and columnist, former host of NPR's Talk of the Nation, and current Fox News commentator and columnist for The Hill, Juan Williams....

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 3:55 PM How Low Can Democrats Go With White Folk?

Friday afternoons are a fine time to look at counter-intuitive analysis that keeps the synapses firing. A WaPo op-ed today by Harvard's Ryan Enos certainly qualifies: Since the November election,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 2:24 PM Gridlock Strategies

One of the abiding themes of the political battles of 2012 was the realization that the impending expiration of the Bush tax cuts at the end of the year provided...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 1:30 PM Lunch Buffet

Discovered this morning that getting up at 3:00 a.m. to take guests to an airport shuttle tends to produce an earlier start on the blogging day. I'll discover a long...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 12:32 PM Dissecting Randpaulism

As a follow-on to my last post, and in recognition of the fact that like it or not (and I don't), the junior senator from Kentucky is indisputably the Man...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 11:10 AM Standing In Rand's Quicksand

You have to hand it to Rand Paul. With an investment of 13 hours of his time earlier this week, the junior Senator from Kentucky (a) became the national hero...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 9:58 AM Conservatives and Cost-Benefit Analysis

The March-April issue of the Washington Monthly, in case you've missed our earlier posts on the subject, focuses on a little-discussed but central chimera of contemporary politics: conservatives are using...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 9:20 AM Reince Priebus' 50-State Strategy

For those of us old enough to remember the Republican Electoral College Lock of the 1980s, or even Howard Dean's plea for a Democratic "50-State Strategy" seven years ago, it...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 9:02 AM February Jobs Report: Surprise!

It's Jobs Report Friday, and the February numbers, expected to show a net gain of 160,000 jobs with steady unemployment, instead showed 236,000 new jobs and the unemployment rate dropping...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 8:26 AM Drilling Right On Down Into Hell

This morning I thought for the first time in many years of a paperback novel I read back in the 1970s wherein some coal miners in Tennessee drilled so deeply...

By Ed Kilgore

March 08, 2013 8:00 AM Daylight Video

Another recommendation from Will Marshall: Robert Earl Keen performing "Amarillo Highway" at the Ryman Auditorium. Fine music from the Cracker Diaspora....

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 5:44 PM Day's End and Night Watch

It was one of those days where you suspect bigger news was obscured by the supernova of one Big Story. We'll just have to wait and see. Here are some...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 5:20 PM RINO Hawks

In a final note today on the ironies of the Paul filibuster, you have to figure Sen. John McCain's head is spinning at the treatment he's getting from the Right...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 4:43 PM The Racism of "Good People"

If you are a white person who has on occasion felt aggrieved at the persistence of allegations of white racism in America, do yourself and your conscience a favor and...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 3:28 PM Against Filibuster Sentimentality

The reaction of Senate Democrats and progressives generally to Rand Paul's "talking filibuster" yesterday looks to be paradoxical. On the one hand, it has (if only in contrast to the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

Well, Rand Paul proved one senator with a good sense of timing and surprise can still dominate political news. But I fear the competition he may have spurred among media-hungry...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 1:30 PM Polarization and Voting Rights

The 48th anniversary of the bloody beginning of the Selma March at the Edmund Pettis Bridge is as good a time as any to talk about the possibly imminent evisceration...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 1:00 PM Why Is the Poisoned Austerity Chalice So Tempting?

Paul Krugman has been understandably frustrated at the state of the economic debate among the DC elite. With a brief respite during the Occupy Wall Street upheaval, Washington has been...

By Ryan Cooper

March 07, 2013 11:39 AM Broadening the Definition of "Entitlement Reform"

At the New York Times' Opinionater blog, Tom Edsall makes a very comprehensive case for dealing with the solvency issues of Social Security and Medicare via increasing the dedicated revenues...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 11:10 AM Murder!

Every now and then you'll read an item about some crazy right-wing legislator saying something like this Utah solon mocked at Think Progress yesterday: “In a state where we can...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 10:22 AM Giving Your Opponents A Choice

There's a lot of confusion (and in certain Republican and Democratic quarters, consternation) over the president's dinner with Republican senators last night, touted by all involved as focused on reviving...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 9:43 AM The Rand Paul Show

So there it was, more or less out of the blue: Rand Paul holding the Senate floor (with some help) for thirteen hours in opposition to John Brennan's nomination as...

By Ed Kilgore

March 07, 2013 8:59 AM Daylight Video

As suggested by my friend Will Marshall, here's Haim covering Fleetwood Mac's "Oh Well" in Santa Monica last year....

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 6:07 PM Day's End and Night Watch

If there's any actual American political news out there at the moment, I can't seem to find it. But here are some items hunted-and-gathered at various points in the day:...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 5:29 PM Mitt's Nemesis

While Jeb Bush is having one of those weeks, Mitt Romney has been doing his best to distract attention from the suddenly inept Floridian with his own questionable utterances, particularly...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 5:11 PM Jeb Misses Mount Everest

Sure has been a bad week for Jeb Bush. He's getting pounded from the left and center for releasing a book (apparently written back during the Nativist-Fest of the 2012...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 4:04 PM Filibuster Reform Or Futility

Nobody should get their hopes up until Harry Reid has addressed the subject again, but those of us who think the lost opportunity for real, and necessarily unilateral (or if...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 3:41 PM Winning Stupidly

If you took a power nap, or went around the corner for lunch, you may have missed the precise moment when Republicans suddenly started "winning" in their perpetual fiscal fight...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

I've got some out-of-town family visiting, so posting could be occasionally erratic in its timing, particularly on an excrutiatingly slow news day like this one (so far, at least). But...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 1:31 PM Those Damn RINO Bushes

Something that progressives have a little trouble understanding is the abiding suspicion and hostility many conservatives harbor for the Bush family. I mean, sure, Poppy Bush was a scion of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 11:09 AM GOP Pols Uninterested in Reform

Politico's Jonathan Martin gets to a basic truth about the so-called "struggle for the soul of the Republican Party" underway that won't be surprising to regular readers of this blog:...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 10:31 AM The Petro-State's Magician Passes On

There will be a lot of assessments in the next few days of the unlikely career of Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, who died yesterday of cancer at the age of 58....

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 9:48 AM Only In Washington....

As those of you who live in metro D.C. know, there's a much-awaited snowstorm hitting the Emerald City this morning. It's even effecting major political developments, as the House races...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 9:16 AM Ghost Riders

Yesterday I noted that the House Republican appropriations measure for the rest of the fiscal year generally confirmed the post-sequester level of spending for most major budget categories, but contained...

By Ed Kilgore

March 06, 2013 8:30 AM Daylight Video

Last night I watched the classic documentary about Kentucky coal miners and their fight for collective bargaining rights, Harlan County, USA. So here are the Country Gentlemen performing "Dark As...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 5:43 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Today's political news slowed to a crawl, but then there was this: * Hugo Chavez dies in Caracas at 58. Here are some other remainders of the day: * It's...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 5:21 PM Not Working for Free, But Thanks For Thinking of Me

Since I allude now and then to the rather straightened condition of the print/online journalism world these days--particularly for freelancers--I just had to give a shout-out to Nate Thayer for...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 4:53 PM Nice Work If You Can Get It

The first post-Citizens United presidential contest saw a lot of money of questionable provenance sloshing through the political system, including the spectacle of a single donor more or less sustaining...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 4:25 PM Bad Week For the Daily Caller

It's hard to remember just now, but Tucker Carlson's Daily Caller was initially ballyhooed as a serious non-partisan news gathering organization that would pursue stories the "liberal media" ignored for...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 3:50 PM Black Socialists Everywhere!

I generally try not to write about every right-wing raving I run across, but this one, from the hardy wingnut group Accuracy in Media (famous for considering Fox News insufficiently...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

Stretch of beautiful weather on the Central Coast about to end, but no complaints here so many miles from Storm Saturn. Here are some mid-day news/view bites: * House GOP...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 12:58 PM The Sabotage Device Within Obamacare

Much of the March/April issue of the Washington Monthly is about conservative efforts to sabotage key first-term accomplishment of the Obama administration via the regulatory and other implementation processes. But...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 12:11 PM More Austerity: But More Money For Memes

The House-drafted continuing resolution that would avoid a government shutdown and fund discretionary programs until the end of the fiscal year is most notable for its ratification of post-sequester appropriations...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 11:17 AM Asymmetrical Power Dynamics

Brother Benen and Greg Sargent are all over a bizarre series of statements by John Boehner yesterday arguing that Senate Democrats don't have a "plan" for replacing the sequester because...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 10:40 AM Happy Campers

I was amused to read Maggie Haberman's piece in Politico today that expressed her or her employers' frustration with the length of the post-2012 period of reflection in the Republican...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 9:30 AM Jeb Chases the Whirlwind

A lot of folk have wondered exactly why former Florida governor Jeb Bush put out a new book on immigration policy that backtracks on his own (and his presidential brother's)...

By Ed Kilgore

March 05, 2013 8:30 AM Daylight Video

The strange hits just keep coming from the memory banks: here's Rick Wakeman performing "Anne of Cleves" from his early-70s "concept album," The Six Wives of Henry VIII....

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 5:30 PM Day's End and Night Watch

Not the slowest Monday in recent weeks, but not a barnburner by any means. Good time to check out the March/April issue of the Washington Monthly. Here are some remainders...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 5:03 PM Premature Cheers for Medicaid Expansion in Florida

So a lot of folk who interpreted Rick Scott's flip-flop on the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion as reflecting an inevitable acceptance of the "sweet deal" offered by the feds,...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 4:49 PM Populist Libertarianism?

One of the memes bouncing around the blogosphere of late has been the quite natural suggestion from libertarians that the Republican Party ought to make opposition to "crony capitalism" a...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 3:36 PM A Congressional Strategy For Now and Later

It's a sad sign of the condition of political journalism (or of WaPo editing) that two solid reporters, Scott Wilson and Philip Rucker, make it through a fairly lengthy piece...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

Tried to watch first episode of History Channel's The Bible last night, but turned it off when angels escorting Lot's family from Sodom started sporting martial arts moves. Anyway, the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 1:30 PM Dodd Frank's Death By a Thousand Cuts

My colleague, Monthly editor Haley Sweetland Edwards, set to work a couple months ago on a big, tough story. The assignment was to take something awfully boring and complicated, yet...

By Ryan Cooper

March 04, 2013 1:01 PM Is Zoning "Liberal?"

Nestled in the latest of a long series of Wall Street Journal editorial-page pieces on the socialist dystopia of California which is driving people to such low-tax (and low everything)...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 11:53 AM Holes in the Insulation

One of the broad generalization you hear about the sequester is that it exempted the big programs that benefit the poor and elderly, notably Social Security, Medicare (the benefits, not...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 10:49 AM Empathy For the Devil

At New York Magazine, Jason Zengerle's got a long article on Mark Sanford's fall and rise, focusing on his very touchy relationship with his ex-wife Jenny, who could have easily...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 9:43 AM The "Scandal" of Current Services Budgeting

One of the ubiquitous but little-discussed problems at the heart of the endless fiscal debate in Washington is that progressives and conservatives have a very different way of defining "budget...

By Ed Kilgore

March 04, 2013 9:03 AM How Conservatives Control Government's Fine Print: Cover Package of the Latest Washington Monthly

Forget the sequester, gun control and immigration. The most consequential challenge of Barack Obama's second term will be to keep conservatives from undermining his landmark first term achievements, which, truth...

By Paul Glastris

March 04, 2013 8:30 AM Daylight Video

When I started doing Daylight Videos with every morning-theme tune I could think of, I missed this one: Beck, Bogert & Appice performing "Morning Dew" in Santa Monica in 1973....

By Ed Kilgore

March 03, 2013 5:12 PM Sunday Evening Reads

*This, via the AP, seems like kind of a big deal: "Baby born with AIDS appears to have been cured." "You could call this about as close to a cure,...

By Samuel Knight

March 03, 2013 2:47 PM Occupy the Shareholders Meeting

There was an interesting development in Switzerland today for those concerned with rising inequality at home: voters there passed a set of ballot initiatives designed to control executive compensation. The...

By Samuel Knight

March 03, 2013 12:26 PM "Historically high" tax rates for the rich expected? Good.

According to the AP, Brookings' Tax Policy Center is predicting that this year, the rich will pay some of the highest tax rates since the Congressional Budget Office began keeping...

By Samuel Knight

March 03, 2013 10:22 AM North Korea wants peace: Kim Jong Un expert and former NBA Defensive Player of the Year

Dennis Rodman appeared on "This Week" with George Stephanopoulos this morning to talk about the VICE magazine-arranged trip he took to North Korea, where he spent a significant amount of...

By Samuel Knight

March 03, 2013 10:00 AM Sunday Morning Reads

*Reuters profiled the Seattle teachers' rebellion against standardized testing central to the so-called "Accountability Movement." Teachers at the city's Garfield High School “decided in January to boycott the multiple-choice Measures...

By Samuel Knight

March 02, 2013 5:39 PM Saturday Evening Reads

*In an interview with Spiegel Online, a pro-legalization Harvard economist insisted that the equivalent to the opening round of sequestration cuts could be saved on an annual basis if the...

By Samuel Knight

March 02, 2013 1:07 PM CRA leader has chance to distance self from Akin, fails to "shut that whole thing down"

This, probably, isn't what the Republican Party needed -- especially the day after 138 House GOPers opposed the Violence Against Women Act, after months of reluctance among party leaders to...

By Samuel Knight

March 02, 2013 12:31 PM Kerry takes first trip abroad, invites unrest in Egypt with austerity promotion

John Kerry is in Egypt - his first trip abroad as America's top envoy - and he wasted no time pushing policies that are likely to send the unstable country...

By Samuel Knight

March 02, 2013 10:31 AM Presidential pardon with loose GOP ties?

Minor intrigue on the Presidential pardons front. One of the more serious offenders pardoned by the White House was James Anthony Bordinaro. The Gloucester, Massachusetts man had been found guilty...

By Samuel Knight

March 02, 2013 9:38 AM Saturday Morning Reads

By Samuel Knight

March 01, 2013 5:53 PM Day's End and Weekend Watch

Remembered today that I once wrote a document for state and local officials in Georgia entitled "Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Made EZ" about the original "sequestration" process. It's not online, and I'm not...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 5:11 PM Obama To Pundits: No "Jedi Mindmeld"

As we navigate another period of fiscal wrangling in Congress, pundit demands that the president provide some sort of "leadership" to overcome divided government (presumably brainwashing Republicans to relax the...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 4:43 PM Defense Contractor Blues

There's been a lot of varying numbers cascading around the chattering classes aimed at making the potential impact of the sequester more tangible. One of the hazier areas has been...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 3:59 PM Don't Forget the Great White Whale!

Under the most common scenario for what happens next on the fiscal front in Congress, Republicans can keep conservatives happy by providing a new continuing resolution (before the temporary one...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 2:51 PM Contra the "Obama the Lefty" Meme

Since in the spin wars over the sequester we are going to hear a lot more about how the president is representing the hard-core lefty activist "base" of the Democratic...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 1:57 PM Lunch Buffet

The news isn't terribly varied today, but at least it's abundant: six thousand takes on the sequester, only about half of which are as dumb as the sequester itself! In...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 1:09 PM Do Unto Others....

In an important column at The Guardian, debt relief advocate Nick Dearden reminds us--and reminds certain people in a certain prominent European country--how sovereign debt was handled after World War...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 12:15 PM Sequester: Stupid, But Not So Bad?

Matt Yglesias is right: as recently as a few months ago the prevailing attitude among progressives is that sequestration, in the very unlikely event it happened, would be worse for...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 10:50 AM The Sequester Is Stupid. Just Get Rid of It.

Our Editor-in-chief Paul Glastris was on The McLaughlin Group the other day, and made the (bizarrely) under-appreciated point that not only is the sequester a bunch of stupid, pointless cuts,...

By Ryan Cooper

March 01, 2013 10:37 AM Caddell To Woodward: Why Aren't You Writing About Benghazi! Benghazi!?

Perhaps the only really interesting thing about Bob Woodward's return to temporary Beltway celebrity is the ambivalence of conservatives about accepting this particular convert to their war-tents. A lot of...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 9:25 AM The Happiest Man in Washington

Today marks the beginning of hard times for a lot of people who are going to be laid off or furloughed, or who won't be able to do their jobs...

By Ed Kilgore

March 01, 2013 8:35 AM Daylight Video

On this troubled morning of political dysfunction, let's kick it off with Marvin Gaye performing "Inner City Blues" in Belgium in 1981....

By Ed Kilgore

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