How the Debt Committee Could Turn Republican Against Republican
August 02, 2011
Grover Norquist is always filled with triumphalist theories, and his book elucidates one favorite Norquist claim, that shrinking revenue will turn the Democratic coalition (the "Takings Coalition") against itself in a cannibalistic orgy: The Takings Coalition can hold together as long as there is more money flowing into the state to finance the demands of each constituent group.
Do the surprise victories of Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell in the 2010 Senate Republican primaries mean that seemingly fringe candidates like Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, or even Ten Commandments judge Roy Moore have a chance? That’s what many pundits have been saying.
Ron Paul vs. Rand Paul!
June 02, 2011
[Guest post by Isaac Chotiner] Representative Ron Paul, in Iowa: "We're not on the verge of having a king, but we are on the verge of having way too much dictatorship in Washington, D.C.." Senator Rand Paul, in Washington D.C.: "I’m not for profiling people on the color of their skin, or on their religion, but I would take into account where they’ve been traveling and perhaps, you might have to indirectly take into account whether or not they’ve been going to radical political speeches by religious leaders. It wouldn’t be that they are Islamic.
Ron Paul's Racism
May 13, 2011
Last fall, Rand Paul briefly caused a stir when he suggested that his libertarian principles would require him to have opposed the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Paul danced around the subject, refusing the let himself be pinned down. Tonight his father and political idol, Ron Paul, appeared on "Hardball" and said, very forthrightly, what his son merely implied: Rand's statements on the law (which he later retracted) came during his first week as the Republican nominee for Senate in Kentucky in 2010.
Did Ayn Rand's Novel Prove The Case Against Climate Policy?
April 12, 2011
Fifty years from now, historians are going to study the way our political system handled -- or chose not to handle -- climate change. They'll be struck by moderates who were obsessed by other issues but attached no particular urgency to permanently altering the Earth's climate. They'll also be amazed that it was considered fairly unremarkable for a U.S. Senator to draw his understanding of carbon policy from cult novelist Ayn Rand.
March 03, 2011
On a Tuesday in early February, a Tea Party event at the National Press Club set off miniature waves of excitement over a rather unlikely guest: Orrin Hatch. Hardly a favorite of the movement, Utah’s longest-serving senator and elder statesman surprised just about everyone by showing up alongside Representative Michele Bachmann and Senator Rand Paul and proceeding to address the assembled activists like a patriarch reunited with his loyal disciples. “I’ve been watching what the Tea Party does. I’m very impressed,” Hatch said.
How the Tea Party Is Wrecking Republican Foreign Policy
December 04, 2010
Now that the midterm elections are over and voices of the Tea Party will soon be established in Congress, the movement’s views on foreign policy will come under closer scrutiny, and the results may prove surprising, not least to the Tea Partiers themselves. Those views are far from Republican orthodoxy. On some issues, the Tea Partiers will predictably line up with the Republican leadership, but on others they may find they have more in common with Democrats. They may even provide Barack Obama with unexpected support.
Why Tea Party Candidates Are Such Bad Orators (With Marco Rubio Being the Glaring, Terrifying Exception)
November 03, 2010
If there is one thing that remains untarnished in the Obama legacy thus far, it is that the man has raised the bar for public speaking in American political culture. Until a couple of years ago, this was a country where the last time anyone had made a speech worthy of anthologizing was Mario Cuomo in his “City on a Hill” speech way back in 1984.
Why Tea Party Candidates Are Such Poor Orators (With Marco Rubio Being the Glaring, Terrifying Exception)
November 03, 2010
Also, somewhere along the line, the Tea Party stars appear to have been taught that effective speechmaking requires regular incantation of swaggery little jabs of a “Make My Day” redolence. Presumably Ronald Reagan is the model, reinforced by Sarah Palin’s fondness for lines about pit bulls and reloading. But this works best when there is a certain “there” there to back it up; call it star quality, which all will admit even Palin has. Poor Ms. O’Donnell does not.
Sarah Palin Talks Trains, and Rand Paul Makes Me Feel Extreme Pain
November 02, 2010
Sarah Palin in the house on Fox! She just gave her thoughts (or "thoughts"), and she chose to run (ride?) a train-based metaphor to help explain to us, the lay viewers, what's going on in terms we can understand. (A snide person would say this is a strange choice on her part, given that an America run by Palin probably wouldn't have any trains at all, trains being a rather brazen example of the redistribution of transportation resources to those unable to afford cars.) What we're seeing out there in Real America, Palin explained, is that "the train's leaving the station.