Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Turning into Traffic over the Debt Ceiling

July 29th, 2011 No comments


On a family vacation, driving across country, a husband and wife get into a heated argument. The husband seizes the wheel from the wife, preventing her from turning away from oncoming traffic, and refuses to let go until he gets his way. The kids in the back are confused and scared, the husband and wife are screaming at one another, and meanwhile another car is barreling towards them. How do we feel about this man?


Let’s flesh out the story. The man and his wife have a longstanding, deep-seated ideological difference over how they should raise their children. The husband, with some reason, thinks the wife is too soft, and that her mollycoddling is destroying the character of their children. The wife feels the husband’s favored approach is too severe and uncaring. Now how do we feel?


It seems clear that even if the husband is correct about the issue at hand, his actions are unforgivable. They are, in fact, even worse because he has decided to risk the very tangible, immediate well being of the family for what he knows is a deep ideological divide. If this sort of thing is going to be resolved, it can’t be under the gun.


How should the media report about this story? Perhaps there should be intense reflection about the ethics of child-rearing, and it would be understandable if we spent some time debating that divided issue. But surely this is appropriate only after roundly condemning the actions of the father. The disagreements among Americans about the correct way to parent shouldn’t cloud the fact that the father’s handling of this situation was morally outrageous.


In the debates about the debt ceiling, something has gotten lost. Americans appear to think that both sides of the debate are being childish and unyielding, because the debate has become about fiscal responsibility. The Republicans have surely got a point: we are not being fiscally responsible, and something must be done. And they might be right that if the Democrats have their way we are in for some real problems in the long run. But the oncoming threat of voluntary default, which most agree would be devastatingly harmful to everyone involved, is only tied to that issue because the Republicans have seized the wheel, preventing us from avoiding harm until the Democrats cave. We must, they say, resolve these deep ideological disputes now, before Tuesday.


Whatever we think about the ideology involved, about the size of government or the fairness of taxing the wealthy, we should recognize the unreasonable behavior that has put us in danger. On this issue, there is only one party to blame. Blame aside, our path should be clear. We must assure our creditors that our political disagreements will not prevent us from paying our debts. This can only be done by raising the debt ceiling. After that, we can engage in the much needed debate about the way we balance our books.

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Explaining the Bailouts

March 27th, 2009 No comments

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Bobby Jindal Addresses the Nation

February 24th, 2009 No comments

My daddy told me “Americans can do anything!”

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The Bush Great Moments Montage

January 17th, 2009 No comments

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Top Bushisms

January 14th, 2009 No comments

Jacob Weisburg lists his top 25 Bushisms on Slate.

My favorite of the moment:

15. “It’s important for us to explain to our nation that life is important. It’s not only life of babies, but it’s life of children living in, you know, the dark dungeons of the Internet.”—Arlington Heights, Ill., Oct. 24, 2000

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Important New Texas Legislation!

November 11th, 2008 No comments

New Texas Legislation Would Require

Whiskey Bottles To Be Shot Out Of Air

Immediately After Being Emptied

AUSTIN, TX—A new piece of legislation proposed yesterday on the floor of the Texas Legislature would require that all whiskey bottles be tossed overhead and shot clean out of the air the moment they are emptied. “Every Texan is responsible for disposing of his or her whiskey bottles in the proper fashion,” Plano lawmaker Mitch Travelstead said. “By law, this means no longer stopping to wipe your lips with your shirt sleeve, or howling like some rabid dog at that big yellow moon. It’s time we got serious.” While the new law will likely be strictly enforced, legislators maintained that those without access to firearms could also dispose of their whiskey bottles by having their children toss them off the back of a speeding pickup truck, or by depositing them into the nearest recycling bin.

From: The Onion

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Post Party Depression

November 7th, 2008 No comments
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Bush: “Can I stop being president now?”

November 5th, 2008 No comments

WASHINGTON—In a press conference held this morning on the White House
lawn, President Bush formally asked the assembled press corps and
members of his own administration if, in light of today’s election, he
could stop being the president now. “So it’s over, right? Can I stop
being president now?” Bush said after striding to the podium in a Texas
Rangers cap and flannel shirt, carrying a fully packed suitcase. “Let’s
just say I’m done as of now. Presidency over.” When informed by
Washington Post reporter David Broder that his presidency would
continue through early January, Bush stared at him quizzically, sighed,
and shuffled silently back into the White House.
At The Onion.

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Early Voting in Dallas

October 30th, 2008 No comments

I voted yesterday, and despite the long line, I was in and out in half an hour.  FYI, it seems you can vote at any early voting location within your county, just bring your driver’s license or a government issued ID.  You can even, it seems, bring a utility bill to verify your id.  The machines are computerized, but easy to understand and not obviously messed up.

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Voting Machines Fucking Up on Tape

October 28th, 2008 No comments

I’m not saying the Republicans are stealing the election: it looks like this probably hurts everyone equally. But this is complete bullshit.

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