Bookends, With Charles P. Pierce

It is certainly satisfying to see the almost-complete implosion of the tea party types in Congress today. Their most-harmful and most-lunatic demands have gone almost completely unmet: Obamacare is virtually unchanged, the government is reopened, and the threat of a default is off the table (for now). Best of all, their electoral prospects may have been badly damaged, especially in the Senate...

US Businesses NOT Being Strangled By Regulation And Taxation, World Bank Says

That's the title of an article over at that noted socialist rag, Forbes Magazine (yes, FORBES!). I capitalized the "not" in the title, because if one only listens to GOP Presidential candidates or the conservative media and talk radio, the cognitive dissonance from reading that article's title might very well lead the reader to simply elide the "not." One of the few (but distinct) downsides to...

Read My Lips: No New Texans!

I don't have a whole lot to add to what's already been said about Rick Perry’s (official) entrance into the 2012 GOP primary field. Lots of people have already weighed in on it, and the general consensus strikes me as pretty much correct: Perry is yet another loud, brash, tough talking intellectual lightweight with a folksy accent and manner who will likely suffer somewhat by comparison with...

What Obama Needs — Desperately

William Greider knows. In fact, this is by far the clearest analysis I've seen to date: Given the election results, the question Barack Obama has to decide for himself is whether he really wants to be president in the fullest sense. Not a moderator for earnest policy discussions. Not the national cheerleader for hope. Not the worthy visionary describing a distant future. Those qualities are...

Plus Ça Change…

(cross-posted at Offsprung) I was going to title this post "Meet The New Boss, Same As The Old Boss." But in truth, although the House of Representatives changed hands dramatically last Tuesday, that doesn't make John Boehner or the GOP "the new boss." In reality, Obama is still "boss" - if anyone is in our checks-and-balances system. The Senate is still in Democratic hands, albeit less firmly...

An Open Letter To Robert Gibbs

Dear Bob, That was quite the little tantrum you had yourself there on Monday. A little (OK, considerably) whiny for my taste, but hey: to each his own. Far be it from me to suggest strategy to you, or disagree with your choice of approach. I'm just an insignificant liberal base voter, after all. Though I have to tell you, Bob, in the abstract, it certainly added some nice comic irony to your...

White House Unleashes Torrent of Criticism For 'The Professional Left' *UPDATED*

(Updated a second time: Gibbs has apparently gotten his ears pinned back realized how wrongheaded his comments were) Woof. Robert Gibbs, speaking on his own behalf, but also that of the White House, stirs things up quite dramatically in this interview with The Hill newspaper. Read the whole thing to get the full bitter flavor, but here are a few of the more interesting and provocative quotes: "I...