March 19, 2009

The Fed Fights Back
12:00 AM

I made the point earlier today that Treasury and the White House probably wanted to avoid antagonizing the Fed by scapegoating it for the bonus fiasco, since the Fed was in a position to fight back with damaging leaks.

What The Hell Does The Public Want, Anyway?
12:00 AM

Trying to tease out What Americans Think about climate change is incredibly frustrating. One will show people hand-wring over rising temperatures. But the next poll will suggest it's a low priority compared with other issues. Then a third poll will find that people are willing to trade some economic growth to protect the environment. Yet  another poll will show that people don't want to pay more for, say, gas—even if it'd reduce oil use. Obviously, responses are sensitive to the wording of the questions—a tweak here or there can lead to vastly different sentiments.

Tnr Slideshow: March Madness Hits Washington
12:00 AM

Politicians are hardly immune to the charms of March Madness. While not everyone had their own bracket fanfare--as Barack Obama did when he unveiled his picks to ESPN on Tuesday--plenty of political insiders are geared up for today's first NCAA tournament games. In today's TNR slideshow, we bring you a guide to Washington's insatiable basketball jones. --Katie Koch Image courtesy of Pete Souza/WhiteHouse.gov

Response: Massachusetts Reform Is Not A Model.
12:00 AM

Diane Archer is co-president of the Health Care for All Project, which is run by the Institute for America's Future. She's also the author of a report, about the results of health reforms in Massachusetts, that I criticized a few days ago. We asked her to respond and she has. Diane is also the founder and past president of the Center for Medicare Rights, where she got a close-up look at how American health insurance works. So it's worth taking her arguments seriously.

Now, About That Other Bailout...
12:00 AM

If you've followed the debate over the auto industry, then you know a key factor in assisting the Big Three was their relationship with suppliers. Some are big, some are small, nearly all are in trouble.

March 18, 2009

Mad Men
12:00 AM

Before last week, few of us had ever heard of Rick Santelli--despite Santelli's best efforts--and fewer still had any particular affection for him. Santelli is a CNBC TV personality whose most distinctive assets are a near- continuous state of agitation and a Billy Mays-like ability to project his voice, drowning out other shouting heads with ease. His persona is meant to make you pay attention to him, not to love him.

Up a Very Steep Hill
12:00 AM

Although Barack Obama has had plenty of domestic fights with Republicans over everything from earmarks to his stimulus plan, when it comes to his foreign policy, partisan politics have been relatively quiet. No longer. A cadre of Senate Republicans are now trying to bring down Obama’s pick for ambassador to Iraq, Chris Hill, But because the GOP is less interested in how Hill might handle Iraq than in venting grievances about his personality, and his role directing the Bush administration's North Korea policy, their surprise offensive appears to be stalling. Obama will get his choice.

Regulate, Baby, Regulate
12:00 AM

As the United States faces its biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression, Barack Obama and his team have been looking to Franklin Delano Roosevelt for help. The influence so far is obvious: The stimulus measure passed by Congress in February includes money for building infrastructure, strengthening unemployment insurance, and helping state governments--all reminiscent of FDR's New Deal. It is now necessary for Obama to take the model one step further.

Making the Grade

Randi Weingarten, the notoriously feisty president of the second-largest national teachers’ union, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), received a hero’s welcome at the National Press Club last November.

The TNR Roundtable Part 11: What Should Obama Do About Darfur?
12:00 AM

Click here to read Part 10: An on-the-ground reaction to the ICC arrest warrant.Click here for links to each part of the conversation.From: Eric ReevesTo: Alex de Waal, Richard Just, Andrew Natsios, Elizabeth Rubin, Alan WolfeAlex de Waal says in his most recent post that he wishes to "steer the debate back" to Obama administration policy; but despite declaring previously that the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and the Southern Sudanese self-determination referendum should be the administration's "single priority" for Sudan, he addresses none of the points I made in my first post about th