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Andrew Levine

Entries by Andrew Levine

Bipartisanship: Why the Obama Administration Has Been So Much Worse Than It Had To Be and Why It Will Probably Get Worse

(6) Comments | Posted December 30, 2010 | 10:13 AM

Democratic spin-doctors and liberal pundits are right: Barack Obama did get enough milquetoast legislation enacted to confer bragging rights. But unlike LBJ's vastly more substantial reforms, Obama's achievements further entrench the power of those who make reform necessary - from the insurance industry and Big Pharma all the way to...

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Obama's Good Day

(1) Comments | Posted December 23, 2010 | 10:18 AM

It has been a season of electoral "shellackings" and abject capitulations, but, finally, on December 22. Obama had a good day. The morning after, the spin doctors and pundits and the last remaining Obamamaniacs are playing it for all it's worth. Barack Obama is the new comeback kid.


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Two Cheers for the Repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell"

(8) Comments | Posted December 21, 2010 | 11:49 AM

Bravo to the Senate for joining the House in repealing "Don't Ask Don't Tell." It is a victory to relish, especially because the law epitomized the Clinton style of unabashed, two-faced opportunism and because John McCain and his gaggle of bigots lost. But two cheers only, not three.

The problem...

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Obama Winter and How to Combat It

(113) Comments | Posted December 17, 2010 | 3:45 PM

The rapidity with which the post-election Obama presidency has gone from awful to god-awful has been breathtaking. So is the ease with which he has brought briefly rebellious congressional Democrats along. So is mounting evidence of the totalitarian streak in the Obama administration: witness the machinations against Julian Assange and...

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Two Reaganite Presidents: Bill Clinton and Barack Obama

(2) Comments | Posted December 13, 2010 | 7:08 AM

Ronald Reagan was not a political (or any other kind of) thinker; he was a studio contract actor who went into politics and succeeded so well that he must have sold his soul to the devil -- or so someone who watched a lot of the kinds of movies he...

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Israel: Obama's Other Capitulation

(40) Comments | Posted December 8, 2010 | 1:10 PM

Obama's main capitulation this week, his surrender to Mitch McConnell, was so egregious that even liberal Democrats are up in arms; all power to them and shame on the media hacks and spin doctors who are desperately trying to make the case that Obama actually got a backdoor "stimulus package"...

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Is Obama Still Better Than Bush?

(6) Comments | Posted December 7, 2010 | 6:44 AM

Surely, this is a no-brainer; a turnip would be better than Bush, even Joe Lieberman would. But it's not a trick question. For at least a year now, since the Nobel Laureate announced he'd be escalating the Afghan War, the answer has become increasingly less than obvious. Since then, we've...

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Listen, Holder

(80) Comments | Posted December 3, 2010 | 3:44 PM

Say it ain't so, Eric Holder. After protecting George Bush and Bush era war criminals from justice -- in plain violation of American and international law, and common decency -- you are now talking about prosecuting WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, notwithstanding that pesky First Amendment and the fact that you...

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Needed: A New Nader

(22) Comments | Posted November 30, 2010 | 9:45 AM

I used to think that it would be useful if someone would challenge Barack Obama in the Democratic primaries; that it would force him off his rightward course. But that was before Obama and the Democratic leadership went from awful to worse; before they got it into their heads that...

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What Does Obama Want?

(25) Comments | Posted November 16, 2010 | 8:55 AM

Barack Obama, formerly the Rorschach Man upon whom so many projected so much hope, is by now an historical memory, but a vestige survives in core Democratic constituencies where a disposition to excuse almost anything he does or doesn't do persists. This is why Obama's astonishing post-election promises to be...

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Clinton Again? It Could Happen Here

(6) Comments | Posted November 1, 2010 | 10:01 AM

One of the more remarkable features of the Obama years is how "the Great Rightwing Conspiracy" switched its animosity from Hillary and Bill Clinton to Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama. The result: almost overnight, mindless Republicans and "independents" came to think of the Clintons, formerly embodiments of evil, as the...

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To Restore Sanity, Bring Back the Draft

(14) Comments | Posted October 25, 2010 | 10:18 AM

If Jon Stewart really wants to restore sanity, not just civility and pre-9/11 levels of insanity, he should hold a rally to bring back the draft. Nothing would be more salutary for the Home of the Brave. The Pentagon would hate it, of course; universal conscription is its worst nightmare....

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The Effectiveness Gap

(0) Comments | Posted October 18, 2010 | 11:33 AM

We'll know soon enough how consequential the so-called enthusiasm gap is for the 2010 elections; it doesn't look good for the Democrats. Neither does the effectiveness gap, and it is far more consequential.

I would care more about the enthusiasm gap if it weren't so richly deserved. But I...

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Another Reason to Vote for Democrats

(1) Comments | Posted October 11, 2010 | 10:13 AM

For a long time, I could think of only one reason to vote for Democrats: Republicans. As I have argued in several posts on this site (search under my name for examples), I thought, and still think, that there is nothing in the record of the past twenty months capable...

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The Best of Demonstrations, But...

(1) Comments | Posted October 4, 2010 | 9:48 AM

The "One Nation Working Together" demonstration on the national mall October 2 was remarkable in many ways; not least because it was largely a union affair. Union workers were there en masse, along with peace, civil rights and gay activists, among many others; young and old, black and white, Asian...

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When the Leaders Speak of Human Rights

(1) Comments | Posted September 28, 2010 | 10:14 AM

"When the leaders speak of peace," wrote Bertolt Brecht, "The common folk know/That war is coming./ When the leaders curse war/The mobilization order is already written out." I was reminded of those words when Barack Obama spoke at the United Nations last week, proclaiming that American foreign policy would no...

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Barack Obama: Neocon Despite Himself

(12) Comments | Posted September 23, 2010 | 9:57 AM

Never mind what people thought they voted for in 2008; that's ancient history. How about what they voted against? That would be, among other things, the foreign policy contrived by a gaggle of still unindicted war criminals, the neo-conservatives. Could people have been deceived about that too; could Barack Obama...

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Needed: A Democratic Tea Party

(23) Comments | Posted September 17, 2010 | 9:58 AM

The Tea Party's assault on establishment Republicans has been good for Democrats. It would be good too - for everyone, except Blue Dogs and the Democratic establishment -- if Democrats had a tea party of their own.

The Tea Party was a contrivance of political entrepreneurs, but it has grown...

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The Enthusiasm Gap: How To Combat It

(0) Comments | Posted September 13, 2010 | 8:25 AM

Premise: In midterm elections, the enthusiasm of a party's base is crucial for victory, and the Democratic Party's base is now much less enthusiastic than the Republican's.

This is a case where the conventional wisdom is probably right. Enthusiasm leads to turnout. The party better able to turn out...

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Populism and Equality: It's the Economy, Stupid

(2) Comments | Posted September 8, 2010 | 11:42 AM

"Populist" has been used throughout the world in a variety of ways over the past two centuries, but in the United States today there is some consensus on the term's meaning: populists side with "the people" against elites.

In our new Gilded Age, the gap between the many below...

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