East Coast

The end of 2011 brought discouraging news for advocates of effective goods movement policy, as evidenced by new developments in the standoff between the ports of Charleston and Savannah. As reported by the Charleston Post & Courier (h/t to Peter T.

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The End Of The Affair

Jon Corzine's testimony before the House agriculture committee may mark the definitive end to the Democratic party's love affair with Wall Street. Once upon a time, Wall Street bankers were Republicans. Not terribly ideological, they preferred whenever possible a minimum of taxation, regulation, and government in general, but they didn't make a fetish of it. As the GOP moved right starting in the mid-1960s the east coast Republican establishment began to crumble, and by the late 1980s it was mostly gone.

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Urban dwellers on the East Coast and Northern Californians typically don’t have a lot of nice things to say about Greater Los Angeles. Most complaints are of the “it’s a big sprawling mess” variety. The city and region grew so rapidly from the mid- to late-20th century, and so dependent on the automobile, that it seems to take at least 45 minutes to reach any destination in the metropolitan area. For a minute, though, picture a very different Greater Los Angeles: one beset by inter-ethnic violence equivalent to a Watts riot every single week; with half its residents living in illegally built h

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A little over four years ago, a pair of wealthy businessmen made a foray into presidential politics on behalf of a charismatic, tough-talking, blue state Republican. Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone volunteered his considerable talents as fundraising chair of the candidate’s leadership PAC, while hedge fund billionaire Paul E. Singer served as the campaign’s east coast chairman. Charmed by the politician’s law and order bona fides, pro-business conservatism, and swing state appeal, the two billionaires helped raise an impressive $60.9 million dollars for their candidate in 2007.

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With Hurricane Irene and the nameless earthquake behind us, most on the East Coast would agree it’s been a busy week. For Michele Bachmann, though, these two plagues portend something more—a divine warning to Washington. At least that’s what she told a rally of supporters in Florida yesterday, asking when politicians would get the message. That message, which sounds suspiciously similar to Bachmann’s own platform, is to reduce government spending.

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This weekend will disappoint East Coasters hoping for a break from the recent spate of slightly-apocalyptic natural events. Earlier this week, the region was shaken and rattled; this weekend, it will be soaked and pounded by Hurricane Irene, a storm The Washington Post reports is “less than two days away from initiating a devastating blow to a large section of the East Coast.” When the storm makes landfall over the Carolinas, it is expected to bring along winds of over 100 mph—and in North Carolina’s Outer Banks, mandatory evacuations have already been ordered.

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Fair enough: Yesterday’s earthquake, as The Washington Post notes, “was not a killer quake, nor even a particularly injurious one.” And maybe the hyperventilating initial reaction out here on the East Coast deserved the snarky jabs of anonymous twittering West-Coasters. But if you’ve never experienced it before, there is something decidedly unsettling about feeling a normally-stagnant building shake and rattle while you’re working inside it.

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&c

 -- C-SPAN's tribute to presidential losers. -- The bright side of a slow economic recovery. -- A long look at Clarence Thomas.  -- Why do earthquakes happen on the east coast anyway?  

At almost precisely the minute that Michele Bachmann was declaring her presidential candidacy in Iowa at the end of June, I was interviewing Tim Pawlenty in a borrowed conference room in a midtown Manhattan financial firm. For much of our interview, the long-faced, dark-haired-flecked-with-gray, 50-year-old Pawlenty sat tall in his chair, rarely fidgeting, his hand gestures confined to occasionally pointing for emphasis. Though he maintained steady eye contact, many of his answers were campaign boilerplate, and his mind sometimes seemed miles away.

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Call me naive, but I have never before seen the kind of unvarnished East Coast snobbery displayed by New York Times media reporter David Carr here: That's actually repugnant. I don't actually think the sentiment reflects the general view of the Times, but I do think the Times deserves to be held accountable. If the newspaper lets reporter pop off on a talk show, then his opinions are going to represent the Times.

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