The just-published book "Dark Money," penned by New Yorker staff reporter Jane Mayer, reveals that the Koch Brothers hired the former commissioner of the New York Police Department (NYPD) -- and his daughter, a former FBI agent -- to smear her as a "plagiarist" in the months after the release of her August 2010 bombshell article on the Kochs.
SEC Commissioner Michael Piwowar, said in a speech to Cato recently that the goal of the SEC should not be to "promote investor confidence," but instead to "promote investor skepticism." This is a scary example of a radically libertarian philosophy that could cause our financial system to melt down in a big way.
Only the worshipers of big business could root against George Bailey. The too-big-to-fail Wall Street banks that brought us the 2008 financial collapse and the Great Recession, the Koch brothers and their like, with their Ayn Randian "selfishness is good" philosophy, have sadly brought us an economy utterly dominated by the Henry Potters of the world -- except on steroids.
To my great sadness, the modern conservative movement has devolved into something quite different from the kind of Bob Dole conservatism I grew up around. It's not necessarily more conservative, mostly just a whole lot meaner. It is important to note, though, that there are two different kinds of meanness that animate it, and they are very different from each other.
We know it's important not to confuse day-to-day weather patterns with climate, which measure variations of things like temperatures and humidity over long periods of time, but it's clear that these disasters are made more powerful by global warming. The pain is only going to get worse for us and for future generations, unless we act now.
As the 2016 presidential election approaches, I feel uninspired by the Republican candidates who appear most likely to be pursuing the nation's highest office. With Democrats having at least one candidate who will likely be able to unite their base, I fear that Republicans may once again be without a visionary leader.