Hal Ginsberg's picture

    The Watchdog's Watchdog

    BrockThe front page of Friday's Washington Post includes reporter David Farenthold's hit piece on Bernie Sanders. Much closer in tone and content to Charles Krauthammer on a bad day than legitimate journalism, Farenthold's commentary is expertly debunked by former Labor Secretary Robert Reich at Huffington Post and macroeconomist Dean Baker of Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting.

    Ramona's picture

    Obama Says He'll Politicize Guns. NRA, Fox, GOP Say No Way, That's Our Job.

    . . .And, of course, what’s also routine is that somebody, somewhere will comment and say, Obama politicized this issue.  Well, this is something we should politicize.  It is relevant to our common life together, to the body politic.
    trkingmomoe's picture

    Watching the Outhouse Implode

    Since D Day is on a sabbatical, It is time for some of his type of political wisdom. I will try to fill in for him.

    Trump came along and has exposed the GOP base for what it is.  It is not Benghazi, or anything else like "no taxes" holds the GOP voter base together.  It is hate wrapped up in a pretty package called social issues. He throws nothing but hateful sound bites at the voter base and they lap it up. Lacking real ideas he say "Everything is going to be just great or Yuuge." He has not one policy in his campaign.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Cadillacs All Around

    In the U.S., most people get their health insurance through their employers because... well, because the government wants it that way. 

    During World War II, American industry needed workers to meet the industrial needs caused by a gigantic war.  That demand for workers resulted in enormous wage inflation and the government decided to stop that by putting compensation caps into place.  Remember that next time somebody tells you that the government can't interfere with the markets by, say, regulating drug prices.  When it came to wages for ordinary people, the government interfered in the markets without much regret.


    Planned Parenthood

    Okay, here's what I want to know.

    In all the kerfuffle over Planned Parenthood, the grilling of Cecile Richards, the shout your abortion hashtag, why doesn't anyone EVER talk about the guys ffs?

    Speaking as a white, middle-class, professional female, I would like to address the innocence/experience divide. Innocence is when you believe the guy when he tells you he'll pull out before orgasm, experience is when you know he's lying.

    Ramona's picture

    The Pope's Parting Gift to Bigotry

    While much of the country was still coming off of the Papal Visit high last week (it was a trip, wasn't it?), that parade was not only rained on yesterday, it was deluged.

    Less than a week after Pope Francis the Terrific thrilled the country with a visit that filled our very souls with joy (Right?), the Papal love-fest is threatening to become a veritable wash-out. How did this happen? How could it happen?

    (Posting at Crooks and Liars.  Read more here.)

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Religious Leaders Want Theocracies

    A common answer to a liberal who objects that Pope Francis decided to meet privately with Kentucky County Clerk and homophobic bigot Kim Davis is that, hey, he's a Catholic and he doesn't support same sex marriage anyway, so what's the problem?

    Hal Ginsberg's picture

    Elizabeth Warren's History Lesson

    warrenThis past Sunday Senator Elizabeth Warren gave a justly lauded speech at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the U.S. Senate. Warren focused on the interplay between racial and economic injustice in America over the past 80 years. “Prominent [Black Lives Matter] activist DeRay McKesson,” according to Salon, “praised Warren as better than any other politician on her understanding 'that the American dream has been sustained by an intentional violence[.]'” (Emphasis supplied.) I fear McKesson got Warren's message precisely wrong.

    Ramona's picture

    Okay Meanies, You Can Come Out Now. The Pope Is Gone.

    Is it just me or has anyone else noticed how quiet the resident meanies were while the Pope was here? Even Donald Trump gave it a rest for a few days.  Or am I wrong?  Did I just not notice because, to their credit (and my relief), the press took to covering the Pope every day in every way and kept it nice?

    Michael Maiello's picture

    We Brought Over-Policing On Ourselves

    Interesting piece in The New York Times about the origins of the Rockefeller drug laws and the tough on crime stance of Harlem social activists in the 1960s.  It seems a classic case of a community giving up power for safety and being abused for it.  I only take issue here with the total focus on black communities within the city -- over-policing is now a problem throughout America.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Ask Me About Shakespeare, Round Two

    So, last year I had an Ask Me About Shakespeare thread that people seemed to enjoy. (Answers to the first round of questions are at the link.) Let's try it again.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Winnowing the GOP Field with Jane Austen

    Scott Walker has left the Republican presidential primaries: the first dropout who was once considered a major contender for the nomination. That, and the departure of Rick Perry, leaves us with only fourteen or fifteen candidates left. In fact, the real number is much smaller than that, because of a statistical concept called the Pareto principle; there have never been sixteen choices, because the Pareto principle cuts the number down to a smaller number of practical options.

    barefooted's picture

    Danger In Donald's Name

    Donald Trump is becoming a dangerous leader of an ignorant, angry base of people who don't give a damn about politics. They aren't looking for ways to improve our economy, policies to help the middle class or the wealthy, taxes up or down, nor do they care about wars in general - their focus is clearly on nationalism with a very white bent. "Immigration" means keeping non-whites out, "unemployment" means a Mexican took your job. "Poor" equals black and dangerous, "religion" means Christian.

    Ramona's picture

    How Do You Shame The Shameless?

    Every now and then I get to thinking about shame; about its legitimacy as a teaching tool ("Kids are starving in China and you won't eat your peas?"), about its necessity in a civilized society ("Shut the door! Were you born in a barn?"), and about its mean-spirited use as a weapon ("What kind of #$&*% are you, anyway?").

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Trump, Evangelicals and Showbiz Politics

    The great thing about Donald Trump is how he totally freaks out The New York Times while making CNN salivate.  The day after the debate, we get Frank Bruni bemoaning the blurred lines between politics and entertainment, an objection that makes me wonder where Bruni has been since the 1980s, when Trump ascended into the popular culture, Yes, CNN salivates at the prospect of a president that it can probably cover through sitcom, but let's not give into Bruni's yearning for a serious politics of yore that never was.

    Hal Ginsberg's picture

    A Shameful Attack

    BrockReaders have pushed back against my varied criticisms of Hillary Rodham Clinton over the past few months. Some accuse me of cherry-picking her worst moments, e.g., her vote to authorize the invasion of Iraq. Others claim that I have misconstrued various statements and votes over the past twenty years or that I arrogantly believe that I know better than her supporters what's best for them.

    Richard Day's picture


    The election is only one year and  six weeks away for heaven sakes.

    A man named Trump leads the GOP polls and just under this guy a man Named Carson appears.

    Neither man has ever run for anything, except the first ran from his debts on several occasions whilst the other guy ran away from neurosurgery.

    This reality show is way ahead of schedule and so are the cable stations attempting to cover this debate tonight because twenty two million folks viewed the last debate.

    And Trump has not paid a dime in advertising. hahahhahah

    So we shall send in the clowns.

    Hal Ginsberg's picture

    William and I #feelthebern

    SandersCrowdYesterday evening, my 15-year old son William and I drove out to Manassas, VA, to see and hear Bernie Sanders. The rally began at 7:30 officially with Sanders due to appear at about 8. Here are my thoughts and experiences as they occurred.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Loving Shakespeare's Language, Then and Now

    This Sunday's New York Times Magazine carries an elegantly written lament by Stephen Greenblatt of Harvard University, who has come to believe that his students don't love Shakespeare's poetry as poetry anymore:


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