Maiello: Defeat the Press
Wolraich: Obama at the Gates of... Gates
Ever since Rick Snyder soft-talked his way into the governorship in Michigan, throwing the doors wide open for his biggest donors, the Mackinac Center, ALEC and the Koch Brothers (All for One and One for All against the Rest of Us), I've grown used to reading the craziest stuff imaginable about my beautiful state.
I mean, it's been special.
Unconventional ideas need champions and they have to start somewhere. Today, Thomas Friedman pushes Arne Duncan, current Secretary of Education as the next Secretary of State. It's a quirky idea, but interesting.
First, though, Friedman has to deal with the very obvious problem of why he'd prefer such a contrarian pick over the front runner, current Ambassador to the United Nations and longtime Obama confidante, Susan Rice.
"I don’t know Rice at all, so I have no opinion on her fitness for the job, but I think the contrived flap over her Libya comments certainly shouldn’t disqualify her." [Read more]
My friends, America was born some 450 years ago in 1776 and has the documentation to prove it. Now, America has an expiration date – Dec. 31, 2012.
Yes, Christopher Columbus’ great experiment in democracy is set to sail over a cliff – a “Fiscal” cliff, as it were. According to economics experts such as David Gregory, the fiscal cliff is a combination of tax hikes and budget cuts that will paralyze the economy and bring about such calamities as a return of smallpox, forced incest and insects of above average size, according to economic expert such as Jake Tapper. [Read more]
Decided to torture myself with Meet The Press this morning. Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina was a guest. She admitted that taxes would have to rise on millionaires and billionaires. Then she made the familiar argument that families of four who live in high cost areas don't feel like millionaires when they make a quarter million dollars a year. Nobody challenged her on that. But, they never do. I'm used to it. And I'll bet you that Carly has probably had hard working executive assistants who she's paid in excess of $200k a year. It's not uncommon in big public companies and they're often worth every penny. [Read more]
"We must be vigilant," proclaimed Xi Jinping, China's new paramount leader. In his inaugural speech to the 25-person Politburo, he warned that rampant graft and corruption would "doom the party and the state" if it continued unchecked.
He has a point. From petty graft in far-flung villages to the regime-shaking Bo Xilai scandal, rampant corruption has fueled the social unrest that the long-toothed oligarchs fear so much. Payoffs have bumped China's vaunted high-speed trains off their shoddy tracks. Graft has nibbled away the roots of its famously fertile economy. [Read more]
Today my favorite Op-Ed writer of them all, Thomas Friedman, tackles the skills of America's workers. Based on the testimony of Traci Tapani, who inherited a small sheet metal company in Wyoming, Friedman has concluded that America's workers don't have the skills for what modern work requires. [Read more]
There's been a lot of post-election hand-wringing about how the Republicans can "reach out" to minority voters. If they can't win just by energizing their shrinking base of white people, what's next? Immigration reform? Marco Rubio? What's it going to take?
At the same time, you have former vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan blaming the Romney loss on voters from "urban areas." Nudge, nudge, wink, wink.
So, Luke, remember your dad, Tim Russert? Let's say he's sitting in a press room where House minority leader Nancy Pelosi is taking questions after announcing that she's staying put and is really excited about the next term, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Let's say he notices that she isn't alone up there on that podium; he sees there are maybe a dozen women who hold seats in the House of Representatives. They're standing behind her.
Fascinating piece in The LA Times about a call that Mitt Romney had with his donors. Romney basically repeats the 47% argument, without the blunt language. Obama won, says Romney, because he turned out throngs of people who want health care and the possibility of student loan forgiveness.
"Romney argued that Obama’s healthcare plan’s promise of coverage 'in perpetuity' was 'highly motivational' to those voters making $25,000 to $35,000 who might not have been covered, as well as to African American and Hispanic voters." [Read more]
David Petraeus's downfall at the CIA, resigning after his marital infidelity was exposed, has gotten the kind of press coverage generally reserved for winning the Nobel Prize or becoming the first man on Mars. Story after story about his resignation rhapsodizes about the greatness of Petraeus, his military brilliance, his reputation for "probity and integrity." He is hailed as the model of a modern general, without a whiff of Gilbert & Sullivan irony in that phrase. Some people even single out the resignation itself as a sign of Petraeus's lofty sense of honor, as if why he was resigning had nothing to do with it. [Read more]
Hi all. Just wanted to say thank you for the dialogue in the blogs about the recently-concluded elections. It was an exciting and sometimes harrowing ride, through the conventions, the debates, and a strange Election Day and night.
While doing so, I thought it fair to point out that for the second cycle in a row, yours truly outpicked Larry Sabato and Nate Silver in the Senate races, and in this cycle, the Presidential as well. [Read more]
Late in the week, The Daily called with the kind of assignment that no opinion writer could turn down. Obama has a chance to be the Reagan of the left, they said. If he gets a reasonable amount of what he wants in his second term, what will America look like? Writing this longer essay was an exercise in optimism and, though I tried to be realistic, I also found it kind of a tonic for cynicism. Things can get better, with just the ideas that Obama has expressed and hinted at. [Read more]
The pundits are pondering. They mention mandates and movements, margins and maneuvers and meetings in the middle. They wax wisely on who won and why they won and which way the wind will waft on Wednesday.
We love to mock them, these prattling experts and prognosticators. And yet we listen, we read, we react. We can't help ourselves. We want to know what it all means and what will happen next. We are determined to squeeze great meaning from great events. We are all pundits.
But the truth is that the great election of November 7, 2012, was all but meaningless. It represents neither a pivot point nor a portent. A poor candidate lost to a strong candidate, as as he was expected to do. A diverse majority of Democrats in the Senate will continue to play a weak hand weakly. A militant majority of Republicans in the House will continue to obstruct, ignoring calls for moderation as they have done for two decades. The federal government will hobble feebly along. [Read more]
It's noon and the Dow is down over 300 points (about 2.4% in this age of big numbers) and so, if it hasn't started already, people are going to try to say that the markets are rejecting the public's choice of a second Obama term, and of a larger Democratic majority in the Senate, or both of those things. [Read more]
President Obama won a second term last night and it wasn't even a squeaker. The Senate and the House stayed pretty much the same, but Elizabeth Warren, Tammy Baldwin and Tammy Duckworth are going to Washington.
Joe Walsh, Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin will wander off into an oblivion they so richly deserve.
Karl Rove was seen on Fox howling foul over Ohio with such naked grief his election night companions could only look on, astonished.
Donald Trump threw such an incomprehensible hissy fit on Twitter you just had to know the little guy was not happy. [Read more]
One of the interesting things about voting is that there isn't a good reason for it, especially from the perspective of modeling human behavior that's common in fields like economics. In order to illustrate why this is true, I've put today's Presidential election into a simple game theory framework:
For those interested, I'm doing a live-blog of Fox News Election coverage all day today. I will likely be in a home for the criminally insane tomorrow, but i do it for you.
5 AM EST.
I'm up and already nervous about what this election night will bring. I want the Democrats to win everything. I want the Republicans to lose in numbers large enough to show them the error of their ways. I'm so biased that way there's no pretending otherwise. I know it won't happen, but if I were wishing upon a star it's what I would be wishing for.
I'm an old-style liberal--a dreamer, an optimist, a pie-in-the-sky Pollyanna. There aren't many of us left, mainly because that kind of nonsense has been knocked out of the more sensible of us. With me it's still there, and at this late stage I have a feeling it's here to stay.
To vote in Ohio on Tuesday, November 6, 2012, you will need to bring a form of identification, either your driver's license or something that has your name and current address. If you're confused about where to go to vote, you can go to GottaVote Ohio or to the Ohio Secretary of State's webpage. Those sources also have information about the kind of ID you'll need to vote. [Read more]
Please join me Tuesday for a liveblog of the 2012 election. I have already explained in a separate post why I predict that Democrats will pick up one seat in an uphill Senate cycle. This blog details my view of the current state of the Presidential race, which explains why I believe President Obama is certain to win re-election, as well as the states and electoral vote total I think he will win. Would love to hear your different predictions, if any. Here we go: [Read more]