Alabama

Free Peter Diamond!
March 09, 2011

Few political spectacles depress and alarm me right now more than the stalled nomination of Peter Diamond. For those of you who don't already know, Diamond is the MIT economist whom President Obama has nominated to serve on the Federal Reserve Board. Diamond is widely considered among his generation's most brilliant economists.

Governor Bentley Is Interested In Your Soul
January 18, 2011

Alabama Governor-elect Robert Bentley has some unusually blunt words for non-Christians:   "There may be some people here today who do not have living within them the Holy Spirit," Bentley said. ''But if you have been adopted in God's family like I have, and like you have if you're a Christian and if you're saved, and the Holy Spirit lives within you just like the Holy Spirit lives within me, then you know what that makes? It makes you and me brothers.

Get Used To It
January 06, 2011

We’ve all heard that Democrats are in for a very difficult two years. The new GOP majority in the House of Representatives will wage a campaign to disable health reform, financial regulation, and the EPA; stonewall executive and judicial appointments; slash nondefense discretionary spending (thus undermining the economic recovery); gut Social Security and Medicare; and launch investigations into every possible White House indiscretion—potentially leading to a vote for impeachment.

Shelby to Nobel Committee: F*** Off
October 12, 2010

As you may know, Senator Richard Shelby voted against putting MIT economist Peter Diamond on the Federal Reserve Board and is, presumably, among the senators who have blocked that nomination via anonymous hold. Shelby, a Republican from Alabama, has questioned the qualifications of President Obama's nominee, suggesting the country can't afford a Fed governor who is "learning on the job." And while a lot of people were impressed with yesterday's announcement that Diamond had won the Nobel Prize for Economics, Shelby was not among them: ...while the Nobel Prize for Economics is a significant re

Karl Rove Outdoes Himself
October 07, 2010

I've written before about Karl Rove's hilarious tendency to project his own flaws onto others, a tendency that has pushed far beyond mere hypocrisy and well into pathology. A wonderful example comes in today's Wall Street Journal op-ed column, in which the former Bush advisor assails Democrats for nasty, vicious personal attacks: Personal attacks generally don't work unless they're seen as fair, credible and pertinent. Voters must think the character shortcomings are both persistent and relevant.

Understanding a Mad, Mad Primary Season
September 15, 2010

Christine O’Donnell is not someone you’d expect to be a Republican nominee for a competitive U.S. Senate contest, particularly in the staid state of Delaware, and particularly as the choice of primary voters over Congressman Mike Castle, who up until yesterday had won twelve consecutive statewide races. O’Donnell is a recent newcomer to Delaware and, since arriving, has managed to get into trouble with her student loans, her taxes, her mortgage, and her job. She also unsuccessfully sued a conservative organization for gender discrimination.

Populist Mama as Media Maven
July 13, 2010

Michelle Cottle’s piece on Sarah Palin’s media strategy (“Media Maven,” July 22) is a fine dissection of p.r. craftswomanship, one any magazine or website would be proud to run. But like too much reporting about the media, it scants the message that attracts so many people to a particular messenger. Palin is the most dangerous politician in America today. Her stated views are on the wildest fringe of conservative thinking. She opposes even the mildest forms of corporate regulation, thinks the New Deal made the Depression worse, believes the U.S.

Alabama Shake
July 13, 2010

So far this year, the script for Republican primaries has been easy to follow. There’s usually been a fight between the Tea Party movement and the Republican establishment; between “true conservatives” and those dismissed as RINOs; between fierce opponents of any cooperation with “socialist” Democrats and the occasional, hunted-to-extinction statesman interested in bipartisanship. You often don't need to have a program to know the players. But in today's Alabama runoff, you can forgive true conservatives for being a bit confused.

Austerity Nuts
June 24, 2010

“American families have done their level best to stay afloat—spending less and working more while trying to map out a financially sound future. They deserve that same degree of discipline and vigilance from their government.” That’s what House Minority Leader John Boehner had to say this past weekend, after President Obama proposed a new economic stimulus package. And precisely because the statement came from a Republican leader, it was difficult to take seriously. After all, Republicans have no compunction about running up deficits when they’re in charge by pushing tax cuts for the wealthy.

BP And Our Kick-Ass President
June 21, 2010

My hunch is that the hemorrhaging of oil in the Gulf of Mexico won't end until...well, until it ends. By which I mean until the last drop rises to the surface and there is no more below. No, I don't know when that will be, and neither apparently do the hot shot execs at what President Obama (in another swipe at London) called British Petroleum or. for that matter, the president himself. Of course, no one really does.

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