This is the most recent item in a debate about humanitarian intervention. Click here to read the previous contributions by David Rieff, Leon Wieseltier, and Michael Kazin. I’m always suspicious of blanket arguments, even—as with David Rieff’s recent post on liberal interventionism—when made by a writer whom I greatly admire. In a nutshell, Rieff has no use for American interventions (either military or non-military) on behalf of idealistic ends.
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.
Nuclear policy analysts are apoplectic about his "shabby, misleading and … thoroughly ignorant" reasoning, and his arguments have already been rebutted on the merits in a number of places (including here, here, here, and here). But the question at hand isn't necessarily whether Romney's ghostwriter "has even the vaguest acquaintance with the subject matter." As with the "death panels," Romney's op-ed is an ideological statement, which does not require fealty to facts.
WASHINGTON–It's easy to understand why Democrats want Michael Steele to stay in the news. The Republican National Committee chairman is a wonderful distraction, a constant source of gaffes, laughs, clarifications and denials. But Steele recently scored a victory of sorts, even though you wouldn't know it from the coverage: His comments on Afghanistan got Democrats to recite GOP talking points from the Bush era.
President Obama is done waiting for the Senate to approve his nominee to run Medicare and Medicaid. On Tuesday evening, the White House announced Obama will use a recess appointment to make Don Berwick director of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). That means Berwick can serve as the agency's administrator without Senate approval, but only until the next congressional session expires in 2011. CMS director is always an important job. But it's even more important now, as the Obama administration starts to implement health care reform.
Last night I wrote that liberals show too little appreciation for Obama's accomplishments in office. Reader drofnats1 disagrees: The prescription to help Obama is the opposite of the proscribed by Cohn. What Obama need is loud, vocal Progressive /Liberal opposition.. maybe even an announced challenge. Obama has made it abundantly clear his highest goal is compromise between vocal factions. He got a vocal right.. he's had a mostly silent left. And don't give me BS about far socialist left.
This is part of a debate about humanitarian intervention. Click here to read other contributions by Richard Just, Leon Wieseltier, and Michael Kazin. There is a great deal of debate, not least in both the real and the virtual pages of this magazine, about what the United States should do to further global justice—to use a word that, unlike democracy and human rights, both of which have lost much of their original force by dint of their ideological instrumentalization over the past twenty years, has retained its dignity and its coherence.
Not surprisingly, conservatives are unhappy with President Obama. Somewhat surprisingly, liberals are too--or, at least, a lot of liberal commentators. On July 4, Robert Kuttner spoke for many of them when he wrote, on the Huffington Post, that “we voted our hopes that events could compel Obama to govern as a progressive. We are still waiting.” Bob was primarily upset about Obama’s failure to push through a new stimulus package.
Washington—Here's when you know something momentous has happened to our struggle over the Supreme Court's role: When Republicans largely give up talking about "judicial activism," when liberals speak of the importance of democracy and deference to elected officials, and when judges are no longer seen as baseball umpires. All these things transpired during Elena Kagan's confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week, though you might not know that unless you saw some of the most thoughtful blogs or news stories.
President Obama has threatened to veto the war funding bill that passed the House on Thursday night. The president's beef is with a provision to prevent teacher layoffs, which Democrats tacked onto the bill along with several other domestic priorities. To pay for the measure, the House agreed to cut money from some of the president's key education reform initiatives. Obama isn't happy about it. Nor should he be. Here's the back story: Thanks to severe cuts in state budgets, between 100,000 and 300,000 teachers could lose their jobs this year.