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Drew Westen
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Blog Entries by Drew Westen

Let's Cap the Tax Cut at $253,571.33

(1028) Comments | Posted July 9, 2012 | 11:37 PM

Last year at this time, as the president was singing the praises of the "grand bargain," negotiating with Republican leaders a plan that, come January, will impose Herbert Hoover's economics on an economy that already can't create enough jobs to keep up with the number of kids graduating from high...

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Three Ways Democrats Could Choose to Lose in 2012, and What They Can Do to Avoid It

(819) Comments | Posted June 26, 2011 | 8:41 PM

Democrats have always found creative ways to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, so the title of this piece may unfairly limit the possibilities. And they could win or lose this time for a range of reasons that are largely or entirely out of their control, most importantly who...

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The Three Wings of the Republican Party

(796) Comments | Posted June 19, 2011 | 11:00 PM

Why Washington is Talking about Deficits While the Rest of the Country is Talking About Jobs and the Shrinking Middle Class

Today's Republican Party has three wings: the psychiatric wing, the corporate wing, and the Democrats.

The first wing, the psychiatric wing, is defined by severe psychological and intellectual...

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Gun Violence and the Lessons of Tucson: Will the Chambers Once Again Be Loaded Against the American People?

(1422) Comments | Posted January 9, 2011 | 11:50 PM

Like many people who have come forward to speak or write about the Tucson massacre, I know and adore Gabby Giffords. It is virtually impossible not to adore her. She has a presence and graciousness that light up a room.

That she survived a shot from a semi-automatic at...

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Could We Have Predicted What Happened Last Tuesday?

(463) Comments | Posted November 8, 2010 | 8:18 AM

Watching the Sunday morning talk shows and the president's various appearances since his "shellacking" on Tuesday, what was clear is that the Republicans and the president seem to have learned the same thing from both this election and from their respective years in power, which country singer Brad Paisley has...

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Bringing Up Boehner

(480) Comments | Posted October 8, 2010 | 9:23 AM

According to news reports, today Republican minority leader and Coppertone model John Boehner will give his "closing argument" to the American people on why they should throw out the Democrats and kill the Obama-Pelosi-Reid "job-killing agenda." He will be returning to his working class roots, speaking at a piping manufacturing...

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The Two Stories of the Election of 2010: A Biopsy Before the Autopsy

(523) Comments | Posted September 27, 2010 | 10:13 AM

Anyone who writes a party's obituary six weeks before an election is always in danger of penning the headline, "Dewey Defeats Truman." But if the debacle of 2010 does come as expected, and Democrats either barely hold the Senate and lose the House or lose both Houses of Congress, they...

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What Created the Populist Explosion and How Democrats Can Avoid the Shrapnel in November

(806) Comments | Posted August 31, 2010 | 8:29 AM

To say that the American people are angry is an understatement. The political brain of Americans today reflects a volatile mixture of fear and fury, and when you mix those together, you get an explosion. The only question at this point is how to mitigate the damage when the bomb...

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The Way Forward on Health Care

(426) Comments | Posted March 7, 2010 | 9:29 PM

Democrats in Congress are between a rock and a hard place on health care, and so, too, are the American people.

On the one hand, if Democrats do not pass health care legislation, they will be seen, rightly or wrongly, as unable to deliver on anything of substance to...

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Par for the Course: Is Tiger's Bogey Any of Our Business?

(44) Comments | Posted February 22, 2010 | 5:59 AM

I, for one, am not sure whether I'm more bored or annoyed by all the coverage of the Tiger Woods "scandal," particularly when real news that actually affects people's lives has been crowded out by his high-profile mea culpa. But the incident speaks to a level of deterioration of the...

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The State of the Union Is... It Depends on How You See It

(136) Comments | Posted January 28, 2010 | 1:26 PM

If last year President Obama had trouble pleasing anyone -- he frustrated Democrats and Independents by seeming to come down repeatedly on the side of big business over ordinary Americans, whether the issue was health care or lending, and frustrated Republicans by, well, being a Democrat -- in his State...

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Obama Finally Gets His Victory For Bipartisanship

(1644) Comments | Posted January 20, 2010 | 1:32 AM

You can blame a bad candidate, bad organization, bad timing of a vacation -- choose your rationalization. But the reality is that voters in Massachusetts were reacting to the same foul mist coming off Boston Harbor that New Jersey Voters smelled coming off the Hudson and Virginia voters off the...

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Why President Obama's 'Taurus Tax' Is the Wrong Medicine

(87) Comments | Posted January 13, 2010 | 12:40 AM

As someone who once enthusiastically supported this President and would like nothing better than to do so again, I've been pleased to see a change in the last couple of weeks in his willingness to step into the fray. On health care, for example, his modus operandi during his first...

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Leadership, Obama Style, and the Looming Losses in 2010: Pretty Speeches, Compromised Values, and the Quest for the Lowest Common Denominator

(4337) Comments | Posted December 20, 2009 | 8:34 PM

As the president's job performance numbers and ratings on his handling of virtually every domestic issue have fallen below 50 percent, the Democratic base has become demoralized, and Independents have gone from his source of strength to his Achilles Heel, it's time to reflect on why. The conventional wisdom from...

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Leadership, Obama Style

(606) Comments | Posted November 2, 2009 | 10:38 AM

It's been a year since that exhilarating night last year when we heard the news that Barack Obama would be our next president. Over the course of that year, we have seen the leadership style of our new president.

Some say it is too early to tell; he's only...

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All the President's Values

(535) Comments | Posted September 30, 2009 | 9:24 AM

I'm starting to gain new respect for President Bush. Wow, that's a scary thought.

Sure, he was an impulsive, narcissistic little man of at-best average intellect, who acted on his "gut" even when it was as empty as his head. Sure, he had a Manichean world-view and split the world...

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How Race Turns up the Volume on Incivility: A Scientifically Informed Post-Mortem to a Controversy

(244) Comments | Posted September 23, 2009 | 9:14 AM

Suppose, over the last 25 years, a half million Englishmen a year had entered the US. Most came on temporary work visas, whereas others came as visitors, but in both cases, they preferred it here and stayed. They were hard workers, but they didn't have papers, so they either took...

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Why the President Has Been Losing on Health Care, and What He Needs to Say

(304) Comments | Posted September 7, 2009 | 11:37 PM

Pundits have offered a range of reasons for why health reform that was wildly popular and on which the President and two houses of Congress were elected has turned so far south in public opinion: The White House overlearned the lessons of the Clintons by letting a dysfunctional Congress try...

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Change We Can Believe In: Feelings Toward the Administration by Those Who Elected It

(1905) Comments | Posted August 13, 2009 | 9:44 AM

Over the last couple of weeks I've been hearing rumblings. They're not from the staged or misinformed protestors at town hall meetings who have decided that shouting down a member of Congress is their right as American citizens. They're not from "the left" -- that wild, unruly group of bloggers...

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Who is the American Middle Class? Lessons for Health Care Reform

(93) Comments | Posted July 9, 2009 | 4:40 AM

Economists may define "middle class" as the group whose income lies some distance from the mean family income (the average of all households) or the median income (the income level above which half of American families fall below and half above). But in the United States, as surveys over many...

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