Idaho

Is "one-world government," whereby the United States would cede all sovereignty to a manipulative international force, a real threat to the country? Republican leaders in many states seem to think so: The platforms they've written this year explicitly ban it. This is just one example of the kind of language that's working its way into state Republican platforms this election cycle, perhaps thanks to the growing influence of Tea Party conservatives. TNR searched for some of the most outrageous planks out there.

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Who Versus Where

Last week on this blog, I riffed about one of the more interesting findings to emerge from our State of Metropolitan America report—that demographically, our nation’s major metropolitan areas didn’t always look very much like their geographic neighbors.  To illustrate the point, I looked at the Southeastern seaboard, which counts metropolitan members from each of the seven demographic categories we identify in the report, from the “Next Frontier” region of Washington, DC to the “Industrial Core” area of Augusta, GA.  We argue that metropolitan demographic peers may have more to learn from one

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Regarding my previous item, a couple friends have suggested that Rasmussen deserves the benefit of the doubt because it accurately predicted the 2008 election. Well, yes and no. Yes in the sense that a record of success carries real weight. But no in the sense that Rasumussen was not producing strong outlier results in 2008. Here, again, is Nate Silver: The bottom line is this: the sample included in Rasmussen's polling is increasingly out of balance with that observed by almost all other pollsters.

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For Richard Blumenthal to claim that he has been “misspeaking” in implying that he fought in Vietnam rather than obtaining multiple deferments and finally waiting things out in the Marine Reserves right here at home is repulsive. I am not exactly the first one out of the gate on that. However, he is also using language in the same way a great many Americans do when doing what they think of as The Right Thing. And as speakers of English always have – as well as speakers of any human language.

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When Franklin Roosevelt decided at the end of his third term to dump Henry Wallace as vice president, he of course had to choose someone else to run with him in 1944. He had more or less decided on Harry Truman but felt he needed his choice to be okayed by someone else. He told his aides, “Clear it with Sidney.” And clear it they did. That Sidney was Sidney Hillman, president of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, who was a confidante of FDR.

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Harold Pollack is the Helen Ross Professor of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago and a Special Correspondent for The Treatment. The New Deal was famously described as an arrangement whereby the South was forced against its will to accept billions of dollars every year. Something similar might be said of the current health reform. Washington is on pins and needles waiting to discern the votes of Blue Dog Representatives whose constituents have the most to gain from health reform.  I was reminded of this fact by Michael Tomasky's recent column.

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Las Vegas…Phoenix…Boise? Say what? That’s a frequent reaction from reporters and others looking this month at the list of especially weak performers in the first edition of the Mountain Monitor, our new Intermountain West companion of the Metro Program’s national MetroMonitor recession and recovery index. It underscores how easily it is to miss things when it comes to regional economic health. The interesting thing, in this respect, is how different Boise’s reputation has been during this decade from that of its southerly neighborhoods.

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Is a “record cold” in Idaho threatening your potato crops? Never fear, Matt Drudge will post a link. Snowing in Houston? Drudge has the scoop! Blizzard delaying your flight out of JFK? You get the picture. Drudge’s climate denialism is well known, but his tendency to cite Accuweather.com is, well, odd. Here’s a look at part of yesterday’s homepage:  Drudge links to weather reports a lot, and seemingly more in the fall and spring, when it should be cold outside but not that cold.

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The 'Going Rogue' Index

Sarah Palin’s autobiography Going Rogue doesn’t have an index. Why? Well, I’m not exactly sure. But it sure makes finding gems in the text--such as the defense of that $150,000 clothing bill, the petty attacks on Katie Couric, and Palin-isms like “maverick” and “dang!”—a pretty tough slog. So, here’s an index. A really, really long and thorough one. Want to know where Palin celebrated one of her baby showers with her gal pals? It’s in here. Want to know how she feels about the ACLU, or Ashley Judd, or Steve Schmidt? In here, too.

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State of Denial

Mitch Berger, a Washington-based lawyer, has a rare, incurable and very expensive-to-treat cancer.  He is not fond of insurance companies. As Democrats scramble to assemble a health care reform package that a majority of the party can support, Republicans have agreed on what they claim is a quick and easy way to reduce health insurance costs. In delivering the Republican reply to the President’s recent joint-session speech, Charles Boustany of Louisiana offered the GOP plan, saying "Let's also talk about letting families and businesses buy insurance across state lines.

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