Category Archives: National

‘The past isn’t dead. It isn’t even past.’ Welcome to the 2016 election.

No two times or elections are identical. But American pasts loom large as the 2016 presidential election takes shape. On the Democratic side, the contrast between Progressives and Populists is on full display. The Republican side is combining the flavor of Dixiecrats and George Wallace with opposition to the policies of the most accomplished Democratic […]

The media narrative that Clinton garners less enthusiasm is wrong

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Since Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders emerged as a candidate who could generate big crowds, the media narrative has been that his supporters are more enthusiastic than Hillary Clinton’s. Reading the recent polls suggests that’s not true. You can see this in three different sorts of polls: ones that ask about people’s commitment to their candidate, […]

How a British philosopher explained Clinton vs. Sanders in 1953

Forget the polls and pundits for awhile. If you’re following the Democratic nomination, you’re better off getting insight from a 20th-century British philosopher, Isaiah Berlin, who wrote that you can classify thinkers into two groups. One knows lots of little things and another knows one big thing. Hillary Clinton’s and Bernie Sanders’ voting records are […]

GOP hyperbole on Obama’s gun executive orders doesn’t fit reality

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Reactions by conservatives to Obama’s executive orders on guns seem to have almost nothing to do with what he actually did nor the normal operations of government. In this newpaper, one conservative pundit called for Congress to launch an investigation even before the specific executive orders were announced. Another conservative pundit claimed the executive orders […]

Is Bernie Sanders more electable than Hillary Clinton?

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

  Some of my best friends are Sanders supporters* and lately a lot of them are touting a Quinnipiac poll that shows Bernie Sanders with a bigger lead over Donald Trump (+13) than Hillary Clinton has over Trump (+7). The reason why they’re bringing up this poll seems obvious. Some Democratic voters may be making […]

There are no magic wands in American politics

As those who celebrate Christmas take down their decorations, some wonder how much longer the children in their lives will believe in Santa Claus. While we all eventually put aside childhood’s mythological figures, a political version may persist for how government works — the magic wand theory of American politics, the idea that some politicians […]

Why the Republican establishment is freaking out

After four months of Donald Trump leading Republican primary polls, 20 Republican leaders gathered over dinner last week to talk about an astonishing option for their national convention. According to The Washington Post, “several longtime Republican power brokers argued that if the controversial billionaire storms through the primaries, the party’s establishment must lay the groundwork […]

A Holocaust heroine who saved 2,500 kids: ‘I did so little’

For the steps she took in the face of Nazi hate and power, she’s been called the “female Schindler.” Most likely you’ve never heard of her, but this weekend you’ll have a remarkable opportunity to learn more. As a young woman, Irena Sendler took real risks to help and save Jews after the Nazis invaded […]