iOS app Android app

John Odum
GET UPDATES FROM John Odum

Entries by John Odum

Dems Must Stop Hiding Behind the Notion That Politics Is "The Art of the Possible"

(2) Comments | Posted September 26, 2011 | 1:07 PM

There's a political, conventional-wisdom axiom I'd really like to see consigned to the graveyard. Unfortunately, it's forever in chic in Democratic Party circles, and adherence to it explains a lot of what has been wrong with the Democratic Party since LBJ.

It's the most destructive quote in politics:

Read Post

Through a Glass Darkly: The Fox News Psychobubble

(2) Comments | Posted June 21, 2011 | 4:17 PM

This is one of those things that really doesn't need commentary, as it truly speaks for itself...

But really, how can one resist?

By now you've read plenty about the Chris Wallace interview with The Daily Show's Jon Stewart -- probably you've watched at least a clip, if you're a...

Read Post

Pop Quiz: What Have We Learned About Bin Laden?

(3) Comments | Posted May 2, 2011 | 2:29 PM

It's good to see that Osama bin Laden has been neutralized as a political force. Who would argue that that merits a celebration? Bringing bin Laden to justice would also be worth celebrating, but it's not clear to me that that's what happened.

Maybe he went down shooting as...

Read Post

Empowering Early Care and Education Providers Strengthens Society

(0) Comments | Posted January 7, 2011 | 2:10 PM

The early childhood care and education industry as it stands represents a dangerous vulnerability to the economic recovery as well as to a recovered economy's long-term stability. While it varies across the country, in my state of Vermont the nearly 10,000 early childcare providers' average income doesn't even crack the...

Read Post

Bernie's Rorschach Filibuster: What Was the Point?

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2010 | 6:03 PM

When is a filibuster not a filibuster?

Bernie Sanders' widely lauded/mocked/viewed-online "filibuster," of course, didn't "bust" anything. The eight-hour marathon speech did not prevent Obama's tax cut compromise (or capitulation, depending on your viewpoint) from passing the Senate. Indeed, from the overwhelming final vote (81-19), it...

Read Post

For Good or Ill, Vermont's Election Will Impact Millions of Other New Englanders

(24) Comments | Posted October 22, 2010 | 5:15 PM

Vermont has a population of 620,000. Of that, roughly 260,000 are expected to turn out to vote on Election Day.

The combined population of New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut is 11,300,000, quite a bit more than 260,000, and yet those 260,000 are about to make a decision that could...

Read Post

Prominent DC Republican Operative Declares Vendetta Against Local VT Candidate

(3) Comments | Posted September 30, 2010 | 3:44 AM

A prominent Washington lobbyist and longtime national Republican operative, now living in Vermont and working as an unpaid adviser to the campaign of GOP gubernatorial candidate Brian Dubie, has become the latest prominent Republican to engage in strange, disproportionate bullying behavior towards someone deemed a political enemy (see

Read Post

Looking Towards the "Fault Tolerant Society"

(10) Comments | Posted September 3, 2010 | 4:42 PM

It wasn't the collective gasp, followed by the sigh of relief I expected. Instead, the response among those I spoke with to the news of another oil rig disaster in the gulf, along with the follow-up report that its impact appeared to be minimal, was something more akin to a...

Read Post

Why McChrystal is a Gift to Obama (as Well as a "Teachable Moment")

(0) Comments | Posted June 23, 2010 | 5:45 PM

Josh Marshall, at Talking Points Memo, writes the following regarding the removal of General Stanley McChrystal as commander in Afghanistan:

I'm not sure I thought (Obama) had it in him. But he did. I've learned something.

What I like about this quote is how nicely it illustrates...

Read Post

A 10 year old boy in Vermont meets "The Mean Society"

(37) Comments | Posted May 2, 2010 | 6:05 PM

(UPDATE 5/4: Under a transparent excuse, the local league decided the growing negative publicity was too much and Matthew will be allowed to play... perhaps this victorious exercise in people-power will ultimately be a metaphor for addressing the Mean Society at large...)

In South Burlington Vermont, a ten-year-old...

Read Post

Elena Kagan and the West-Wingification of the Left

(125) Comments | Posted April 16, 2010 | 1:12 PM

Political observers are well into handicapping the process of replacing retiring Justice John Paul Stevens on the US Supreme Court. And at the top of every list of prospects for the job is Solicitor General Elena Kagan.

Also atop nearly every analysis of the process is a discussion of a...

Read Post

Doctor Who Movie? Some casting suggestions from politics.

(2) Comments | Posted February 15, 2010 | 3:23 PM

Good news for geeks like me everywhere. Word has it that there's a Doctor Who feature film in production, and that the project is being pursued with an eye towards turning more Americans on to the wildly popular British sci-fi series.

For any who don't know (and...

Read Post

Confessions of a John Edwards Supporter (and What I've Learned)

(10) Comments | Posted February 2, 2010 | 10:42 PM

You don't hear a lot from former John Edwards supporters these days.

There are a lot of us out here on the innernetz. In fact, the left wing blogosphere was a significant source of the former Senator's support during the last presidential primary. I daresay that without us, he wouldn't...

Read Post

Defend Corporate Personhood!

(5) Comments | Posted January 22, 2010 | 3:05 PM

There's been a lot of hand-wringing over the Supreme Court's decision to blow the lid off corporate campaign contributions and overwrite a century's worth of legal doctrine on the issue. The decision, of course, is predicated on the notion of "corporate personhood" - the idea that corporations are entitled to...

Read Post

Coakley or No Coakley, Health "Reform" Won't Die

(8) Comments | Posted January 19, 2010 | 8:09 PM

Call me crazy, but I don't think health care reform is done if (when?) Martha Coakley goes down in defeat (and to think I was boldly predicting only days ago that she would win. I probably jinxed it. Crap.).

I think the Senate's version of reform is still alive...

Read Post

A Response to my Senator, Bernie Sanders, on Where We Go From Here

(14) Comments | Posted January 15, 2010 | 8:59 PM

My Senator Bernie Sanders, whom I greatly admire (and even briefly worked for as an organizer during the 1996 campaign), has asked Huffington Post readers "where do we go from here?" It's a question posed to America in general, and the progressive movement in particular, given the compounded list...

Read Post

For the Angry Center, Reality Bites

(6) Comments | Posted January 14, 2010 | 6:35 PM

It;'s not news that the still-not-over health care reform debate has tapped a reservoir of raw emotion among activists on the left. Health care has always been an emotional topic for progressives, but a trip around the blogosphere at any point in the last few weeks reveals that its not...

Read Post

A Fractured Left Might Not Be Such A Bad Thing

(18) Comments | Posted December 29, 2009 | 2:09 PM

Consider a couple of tried and true axioms. "Divide and conquer." "Diversity is strength." When you think about it, they are, on the face of it, contradictory. Nevertheless, they both have an inherent wisdom, and there can be a fine line separating the two when you're talking about politics. While...

Read Post