The Republicans have changed American politics…the Republican Party may no longer be a normal party. Over the past few years, it has been infected by a faction that is more of a psychological protest than a practical, governing alternative…The members of this movement do not accept the logic of compromise, no matter how sweet the terms. The members of this movement do not accept the legitimacy of scholars and intellectual authorities…The members of this movement have no sense of moral decency…if responsible Republicans don’t take control, independents will conclude that Republican fanaticism caused this default. They will conclude that Republicans are not fit to govern. And they will be right. The Mother of All No-Brainers by David Brooks
Think of it as a two-part strategy. First, obstruct any and all efforts to strengthen the economy, then exploit the economy’s weakness for political gain. If this strategy sounds cynical, that’s because it is… this obstructionism is real, and arguably is the biggest single reason for our ongoing economic weakness. And what happens if the strategy of obstruct-and-exploit succeeds? Is this the shape of politics to come? If so, America will have gone a long way toward becoming an ungovernable banana republic. Obstruct and Exploit by Paul Krugman, New York Times, September 9, 2012
…Any society that allows the market to constitute the axis and framing mechanisms for all social interactions has not just lost its sense of morality and responsibility; it is given up its claim on any vestige of a democratic future. Market fundamentalism along with its structure of extreme inequality and machinery of cruelty has proven to be a death sentence on democracy. The time has come…to rethink what a real democracy might look like and to consider what it will take to actually organize collectively to make it happen. Trickle-Down Cruelty and the Politics of Austerity by Henry A. Giroux
Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem by Thomas E. Mann and Norman J. Ornstein
The Mission of Government by Mike Lux …the fundamental debate we should be having is not the size of government but what the goal of government should be: What should government’s central mission be?…for both policy and political reasons, the Democrats need to firmly pick the side of middle class and low income Americans, and not worry so much about preserving and protecting the establishment.
Washington Has Been Stopped in Its Tracks by Republican Tea Party Types, and It’s Destroying the Country By Robert Reich, RobertReich.org, June 10, 2013 – Conservative Republicans in our nation’s capital have managed to accomplish something they only dreamed of when Tea Partiers streamed into Congress at the start of 2011: They’ve basically shut Congress dow…A great nation requires a great, or at least functional, national government. The Tea Partiers and other government-haters who have caused Washington to all but close because they refuse to compromise are threatening all that we aspire to be together.
The Greatest Story Never Told by Michael Tomasky, democracyjournal.org, Issue #23, Winter 2012 – Our political problem, in a nutshell: The party of government is afraid to defend government. Nothing will really change until that changes…The Bush era was the experience Americans had had with a conservative government that failed them…Bush had made things worse by nearly every measure, and this was before the economic meltdown. Maybe Americans would now be open to a different approach…Republicans let government fail while they are in power…by not executing the missions of the agencies…Oddly, no one on the liberal side really defends government much. In the progressive solar system there are groups devoted to every specific issue and cause you can name, but there is no group I’m aware of that is devoted to the simple premise of standing up in public and saying: Government does this, and it’s good.…Our current political dynamic will not change until someone puts forth a thorough, well conceived and articulated (and financed) long-term plan to defend the functions of government in principle and to show the American people that government in practice does in fact do many things well. full text
It’s Witch-Hunt Season by Paul Krugman, New York Times, August 29, 2010
Unshackling the Presidency to Fix the Government by Peter Baker