Government

 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

Why America Can’t Pass Gun Control

Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem by Thomas E. Mann and Norman J. Ornstein

Millionaires Are Now the Majority in Congress: The 1% Literally Rule Us

Happiness and Well-Being are NOT the same thing… huge implications for public policy! Cognitive Policy Works – August 2013

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.

The Biggest Engine of Economic Growth? 8 Ways Taxpayers and the Government Are Necessary to Capitalism

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

Bubble on the Potomac

Cliff After Cliff

Congress gives out end-of-year perks to interest groups

Obama in Command: The Rolling Stone Interview

Recommended Reading: Fiscal Cliff Deal

The Deadly Secret About the Fiscal Cliff Charade

Turning Congress’s partisans into problem solvers

Obama won but he still has to contend with millions of Americans who are taught to hate their own government

Why Government Should Not Be Run Like A Business

It’s Witch-Hunt Season by Paul Krugman, New York Times, August 29, 2010

Philosophic Clash Over Government’s Role Highlights Parties’ Divide By Peter Baker

Unshackling the Presidency to Fix the Government by Peter Baker

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