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Showing posts from February, 2011

'Conservatism Understood'

I have always been fascinated by the modern day American conservative. When I grew up the word had none of the meaning it has today. The reactionary nature of conservative thought and activity is a given, but I am still amazed that an ideology that has no consistent core ideas can have such influence and also hold together so odd an assortment of apostles. It seemed to me for a long time that its only power lay in its oppositional force to change. Without liberalism conservatism would have to stand on its own legs, what would those legs consist of? George W. Bush was a conservative until he became president, then by some conservative magic he ceased to be what he claimed to be. Could it be he was just what he was, and then given power the legs just weren't up to the task? I'm sure he's still a conservative even as his revision goes on in the world of contemporary spin history. Soon he will be canonized.

I was listening to Herman Cain at CPAC, and I have to admit seeing a …

'Willie Sutton Wept'

by Paul Krugman

"There are three things you need to know about the current budget debate. First, it’s essentially fraudulent. Second, most people posing as deficit hawks are faking it. Third, while President Obama hasn’t fully avoided the fraudulence, he’s less bad than his opponents — and he deserves much more credit for fiscal responsibility than he’s getting."

[...]

"The whole budget debate, then, is a sham. House Republicans, in particular, are literally stealing food from the mouths of babes — nutritional aid to pregnant women and very young children is one of the items on their cutting block — so they can pose, falsely, as deficit hawks.

What would a serious approach to our fiscal problems involve? I can summarize it in seven words: health care, health care, health care, revenue." Read article here.

Youth As The Driving Force For Freedom And Democracy?

We often overlook the obvious in trying to understand events. Consider the sixties in America and the rise of youth power that started during the fifties as the boomers were catered to and pampered by Madison avenue. Buying power has great power, it is one of the reasons America today has moved more conservative, those boomers are now older, more secure, and less open to change and adventure. One wonders of the same impact in eighties Russia. New generations forget the issues of the past quickly, and history can become fantasy as some now make it in America.

America today has lost its youthful exuberance and the recent Republican Governor's stand against progress for tunnels and trains characterizes this loss of promise, the loss of the American spirit of 'can do.' Society grow or die from within, hopefully the latest idea that we 'can't do' because it will cost money and taxes dies or America dies.

So whereto the Middle East today. Time will tell and time will…

GOP Anti-Constitution?

I think by now it must be clear republicans are simply hypocrites when it comes to the US Constitution.

'House GOP Rejects Requirement That PATRIOT Act Surveillances Be Conducted in Compliance With Constitution'

by John Nichols

"Less than a month after making a show of reading the U.S. Constitution into the Congressional Record, the leaders of the Republican-controlled U.S. House engineered a vote to extend the surveillance authorities that both the Bush and Obama administrations have used to conduct “roving surveillance” of communications, to collect and examine business records and to target individuals who are not tied to terrorist groups for surveillance." Read article here.

'The Wrong Crisis'

'The FCIC forgets the housing bubble' by Dean Baker

"The problems with the FCIC’s report, released at the end of January, stem from the Commission’s very inception: it was focused on the wrong topic. The FCIC investigated risky investments, lax regulation, excessive leverage. And it downplayed the more mundane, but vastly more important, collapse of the housing bubble.

The FCIC was set up to investigate a sidebar rather than the real story. Given the definition of its mission, the Commission did a reasonably good job. However, its 662-page report is a distraction from the real reasons why 25 million Americans are unemployed, underemployed, or have given up looking for work altogether. The real story doesn’t require 662 pages; it can easily be summed up in a few paragraphs." Read article here.