Faced with a fork in the road, President Barack Obama and the Democrats have decided to take it, trying to do two things at once: Rekindle the glow of the 2008 rapture, and recapture the rage of the town halls a year later, and unleash it, this time for their side.
Phase one is not going brilliantly, as one can run on “hope” and “change” only once in one’s lifetime, and after that, change means voting oneself out of office.
Phase two — the hope that the Medicare-cutting plan advanced by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan will kindle the rage-in-reverse that Obamacare Read More
More than a few observers have noted that President Barack Obama regularly seems a few beats behind things; unable to anticipate what is developing and awkward when forced to catch up. When he responds, his answers seem lacking something.
Good politicians are in tune with their times, great ones foresee them. But Obama often seems out of step with his times. Read More
They have a dream. Not the dream Martin Luther King Jr. had of post-racial harmony, but a more personal dream of a less sweeping nature: that the fierce, hot flame of Obama-mania that ran from late 2008 through the spring a year later is not dead, only resting, and is ready and able to surge once again. Read More
How would state Sen. Barack Obama have reacted to President Barack Obama’s decision to authorize a no-fly zone over Libya, taken with no debate and no authorization from Congress, a commitment that could in real life become open-ended and involve this country in a prolonged civil conflict? Read More
Picture a hand on the wheel of the great ship of state, pushing it hard in a certain direction, say, to the left. It belongs to the president. Picture 29 smaller hands on the other side of the wheel, trying as hard as they can to wrench it back in the other direction. They belong to Govs. Chris Christie, R-N.J., Mitch Daniels, R-Ind., Scott Walker, R-Wis., and 26 other Republican governors, 12 of them elected in 2009 and 2010. Two years and four months ago, President Barack Obama was elected to enact his agenda. And four months ago, Republicans were elected to dismantle it. Read More
Republicans’ biggest problem in the 2012 presidential election isn’t President Barack Obama: it’s time. We don’t know where Obama’s poll numbers will be in 2012, but we do know that time is being quixotic: It has given the GOP an important election with a collection of candidates one can call underwhelming — and a huge crop of potential stars, turned up by the 2009 and 2010 elections, on the horizon and just out of reach. In themselves, the newcomers solve all the party’s old problems. Read More
When the French monarchy offered its help in 1778 to the struggling American colonies, it was in every way far more oppressive than the British government from which they were trying to separate.This fact did not keep the American rebels from eagerly taking their aid — although they detested everything that France stood for then. (France’s interest, of course, was to weaken England, which the colonists all understood.) Read More
There are red states and blue states, and there are states of denial that liberals turn to when things do not go well.
How come their side was trounced in the 2010 election? Chris Matthews of “Hardball” offered his views:
“[The Republicans] won the argument because they made [Obama] look lefty … [they] blocked everything the president tried to do, and forced him to the left. Forced him to build left-wing or center-left coalitions without help from the center-right.” Read More
With a new Congress meeting, and the many new members hiring staff, these new hires could do a lot worse than read Andrew Young’s “The Politician.” It’s a horror story in the guise of a political memoir, about a career move gone bad.
Young was 26, a lawyer and dabbler in politics, when he met and was blown away by John Edwards, who was beginning his first run for the Senate but was the subject of much buzz as a possible president. Read More
Boy, some people fly off the handle at nothing these days. “F--- the president,” an unidentified Democrat said at a House caucus, concerning the tax deal President Barack Obama cut with Republicans. At once, the keen ears of Maureen Dowd picked up a message: “Fair or not, what I heard was an unspoken word in the air: ‘F--- you, boy!’” There was no doubt in her mind that this was the message. “Some people just can’t believe a black man is president, and will never accept it,” Dowd said. Read More
Two years ago, two superstars lit up a dazzled political universe — young, stunning, lissome and bursting with talent — and were propelled ahead of their time into prominence after a minimal time on the national scene. Two years later, it seems as if this has done them no favors — President Barack Obama is widely seen as “overwhelmed” by his office, and Sarah Palin is meeting resistance establishing her credentials as a possible candidate against rivals with more seasoning. Read More
Their minds unhinged by the scope of the drubbing given President Barack Obama, a clique on the left has come up with the theory that the Republican House is scheming to sink the economy by blocking Obama’s agenda, hoping the voters will turn on Obama, and thus vote him out in a pique. Republicans “want the economy to stay weak as long as there’s a Democrat in the White House,” The New York Times’ Paul Krugman tells us. Columnist Andrew Sullivan calls the Republicans’ methods “as close to organized vandalism as one can imagine.” Read More
erfection fell short by 6 inches on Breeders’ Cup Saturday when Zenyatta lost by less than the length of one hand. She brought with her a lifetime record of 19 wins and no losses, including her win in the Classic a year ago when she became the first female to ever beat the world’s greatest males. Read More
Anne Applebaum, a serious woman wed to the serious Radek Sikorski, and the author of a great book on the Soviet Gulag, is defending the court of President Obama against charges made by Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, Ginni Thomas, et al, that Obama and similar Ivy League babies represent an arrogant and unseemly elite. Read More
Perhaps the Democrats are starting to realize that pushing health care through on a procedural loophole against the vigorously expressed will of the people wasn't such a great idea after all.
Long before health care was passed, or began to unravel, it became apparent that this bill would be a disaster for the party that passed it, a bomb that blew up in the hands of its maker, destroying not only the party in question, but the political climate, the trust of the voters, and the political discourse for cycles to come. Read More