25 December 2017

Orrin Hatch just made the Republican agenda startlingly clear

We can afford a trillion dollars in deficit-financed tax cuts. But "we don't have any money" for children's health care.

Dylan Scott

The Dollar General CEO just accidentally made clear how screwed up the economy is

"The economy is continuing to create more of our core customer."

Dylan Scott

19 December 2017

14 December 2017

Peggy Noonan’s Willful Blindness

Her latest column suggests that harassment is a product of the sexual revolution. She can’t possibly believe that.

Rebecca Onion

O’Reilly Among the Snobs

It takes one to know one.

Michael Kinsley

13 December 2017

Do Not Let Tom Cotton Anywhere Near the CIA

The senator is an extreme ideologue with the exact wrong temperament for the job.

Fred Kaplan

The case for normalizing impeachment

The Constitution's framers considered a few variants of the impeachment power. An early proposal would have restricted it to acts of "treason and bribery" only. That was rejected for being too narrow. A subsequent proposal would have expanded it to acts of "maladministration" as well. That was rejected for being too broad. "High crimes and misdemeanors" was the compromise, but it was never clearly defined.

Ezra Klein

11 December 2017

Why Evangelicals Stick with Donald Trump & Roy Moore

White evangelicals get their religion from their politics, not their politics from their religion.

Stuart Rothenberg

Worst Secretary of State Ever?

Rex Tillerson’s nonsensical explanations for hamstringing his own department only made things worse.

Fred Kaplan

01 December 2017

The Russia investigation’s spectacular accumulation of lies

How Trump walked into Putin’s web

The inside story of how a former British spy was hired to investigate Russia’s influence on Trump – and uncovered explosive evidence that Moscow had been cultivating Trump for years.

Luke Harding

13 November 2017

Booker calls on antitrust regulators to start paying attention to workers

Matthew Yglesias

Lost Cause

Lee wasn't the only Southerner—or the only Virginian—forced to choose between "his state" and "his country." Facing war, George Henry Thomas, one of Lee's subordinates, had to make the same choice. He chose Union. As did David Farragut, a native of Tennessee. As did Winfield Scott, another Virginian. The United States of 1860 was a different place, and Americans understood their relationship to the country in different ways. But in showing us other men in similar straits who took the opposite path, history doesn't exonerate Lee; it condemns him.

Jamele Bouie

18 October 2017

A Watershed Moment

Las Vegas should entirely change the way we think about preventing mass shootings.

That doesn’t mean you have to ban guns. You can keep the pro-gun talking points. You just have to honor them by agreeing that when they’re violated—when firearms become too fast and powerful to reconcile with freedom, public safety, and good guys fighting back—gun laws can be used to restore those principles. No sensible advocate of the Second Amendment wants to live in a country where people can’t defend themselves or safely assemble.

William Saletan

It is fossil fuels, not renewable energy, most supported by US public policy

David Roberts

28 September 2017

19 September 2017

Why Isn’t Hillary Clinton Even Angrier?

Michelle Goldberg

It’s Time to Talk to North Korea

"The complaint about the U.N. Security Council’s new sanctions against North Korea is that they aren’t strict enough to force Kim Jong-un to dismantle his nuclear program. But here’s the thing: Nothing is going to force him to do that.

"Kim follows the news. He saw what happened to Saddam Hussein and Muammar Qaddafi when they gave up their nuclear programs, whether through force or conciliation: They were invaded or overthrown anyway."

Fred Kaplan

15 September 2017

The Myth of Deep Throat

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The First White President

The foundation of Donald Trump’s presidency is the negation of Barack Obama’s legacy.

Ta-Nehisi Coates

24 August 2017

Businesses Are Finally Realizing That Trump Causes “Uncertainty”

And there's simply no evidence that "uncertainty" about the path of policy in Washington, however you define it, hampered business investments, hiring, and especially market performance in the period between 2009 and 2016. Because "uncertainty" doesn't really mean uncertainty—it's just code used by supply-siders and right-wingers. What they really didn't like was the fact that a guy named Obama was sitting in the White House, poised to raise their taxes. (Readers, he did. And the economy and S&P 500 survived.)

Daniel Gross

You're not imagining it: the rich really are hoarding economic growth

Dylan Matthews

11 August 2017

Jeff Sessions Is the Canary in the Coal Mine

Joshua Zeitz

Bosses want capitalism for themselves and feudalism for their workers

It's a reminder that economics isn't just about supply and demand. It's also about who has the power to make demands. Which actually has more to do with government policies than market forces. Things like how high the minimum wage is, how easy it is to form a union, and, yes, how tough noncompete laws are all affect the balance of power between capital and labor independent of the unemployment rate. So does the welfare state itself. Indeed, businesses have historically been opposed to Social Security, Medicare and, more recently, Obamacare not only because those programs cost them money, but also control over their workers. When the government helps people be able to afford to retire, companies can't afford to hire quite as many of them — not if they want to maintain their profit margins. That's because workers have more bargaining power when there aren't as many of them actually looking for, well, work.

The same kind of logic, by the way, applies to stimulus spending. As economist Michal Kalecki argued back in 1943, a government that hires unemployed people is a government that doesn't have to give business what it wants to get them to hire unemployed people. The more the government does, then, the less sway businesses have over the economy and everyone in it.

Matt O'Brien

10 August 2017

I’d Like to Report a Scam Against the Elderly

That Fox has ended up gulling a president is a programming accident. When the late Roger Ailes conceived Fox News two decades ago, he hoped to create shows that attracted—is there a polite way to put this?—an older demographic that seeks news that reinforces its prejudices and rarely challenges them. And he succeeded. It was only by chance that Ailes ended up creating a network that appealed to this particular flighty, low-attention-span 71-year-old.

The Ailes demographic wants to be told that the world is going to hell, a message that harmonizes with the declining status and health many of them experience. The Ailes demographic wants simple and reductionist viewpoints on America’s cultural and policy dilemmas—from crime to immigration to taxes to war and trade. The Ailes demographic seeks the restoration of the social mores it remembers from its youth, and if the past can’t be restored, it wants modern mores castigated. And it wants to be frightened and outraged. Fox almost never disappoints them.

Jack Shafer

How to Replace Jeff Sessions

Steve Vladek

08 August 2017

A Constitutional Crisis Is Inevitable

At this point, why would we expect anything else?

Yascha Mounck

Unpresidential Command

Trump is ordering service members to support the Republican agenda. That is terrifying.

Phillip Carter

25 July 2017

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at How MLK Turned JFK Into a Civil Rights Champion

Nathalie Baptiste

Don Trump Jr.’s Emails Are the Smoking Gun

The people closest to Trump intended to collude with Russia and had the blithe sense of corrupt impunity to spell out that intention in an email chain. They unapologetically sided with a hostile foreign power against their fellow citizens. The biggest question now is whether Republicans in Congress will do the same.

Michelle Goldberg

03 July 2017

Is Michael Flynn Cooperating with the FBI?

Jeremy Stahl

Trevor Noah on the Philando Castile verdict: the NRA should “be losing their goddamn minds”

"'How does a black person not get shot in America? Because if you think about it, the bar is always moving. The goalposts are always shifting. There's always a different thing that explains why a person got shot ... at some point you realize, there's no real answer.'"

"'It's interesting how the people who define themselves by one fundamental American right — the right to bear arms — show that once race is involved, the only right that they believe in is the right to remain silent.'"

29 June 2017

How to Deal With North Korea

There are no good options. But some are worse than others.

Watergate Fueled Conspiracy Theories, Too

Both today and back in the 1970s, defenders of the president wove wacky tales to explain away wrongdoing. And the myths just kept going.

David Greenberg

21 June 2017

This profile of Trump's budget director has an unintentionally revealing anecdote

Mulvaney was a US representative for South Carolina for nearly six years before being appointed to the Trump administration and calls himself a “policy wonk and government junkie.” Just not a jobs data junkie, perhaps.

Tara Golshan

We’re Not Even In Kansas Anymore

But what we’re getting instead is a raw exercise of political power: the GOP is trying to take away health care from millions and hand the savings to the wealthy simply because it can, without even a fig leaf of intellectual justification.

Paul Krugman

20 June 2017

A tweet from Trump’s legal team shows he doesn’t understand what being president is about

Trump, in short, ran the public company as if it were for his private benefit. And his legal team seems to think it’s okay for him to run the American government in the same way.

Matthew Yglesias

Watching the Detectives

As the Waldorf Astoria transforms into posh condos, there’s one luxury amenity it’s unlikely to get back: its intrepid in-house sleuths.

Katrina Gulliver

15 June 2017

Trump Can Commit All the High Crimes He Wants. Republicans Aren’t Going to Impeach Him.

The conservative movement takeover of the Republican Party began in the 1960s and took decades to complete. Conservatives still have not lost their sense of being an insurgent movement that might at any moment be betrayed by the party Establishment. Conservatives think of their role as quasi-independent, but they also imagine it as focusing exclusively on enforcing fealty to their doctrine by politicians who might otherwise be inclined to wander. The scenario they are built to fight against is the Republican president who colludes with Democrats, not one who colludes with foreign dictators. If the president is fighting against the opposition party, they assume he is acting correctly. Conservative organs like National Review originally viewed Richard Nixon with hostility, and — perverse as it may sound — came to his defense because of Watergate.