A new documentary took the SXSW festival by storm in Austin, Texas titled: Starving the Beast: The Battle to Disrupt and Reform America's Public Universities. No film better exposes the coordinated assault on public higher education that is going on right now across the country.
This time, the goal was not finding someone who could beat Trump to the 1,237 delegates needed for a first ballot victory in Cleveland in July, but instead simply to deny Trump a first ballot victory.
During the Reagan era, the Republican Party turned its back on democratic process and begun a dark slide into authoritarianism. Donald Trump is the culmination of this process. A no-nothing who flaunts his ignorance. A bully who resorts to insults rather than reason. A threat to democracy.
The shibboleths that have underpinned GOP strategy for a quarter century -- the rules set forth by Grover Norquist -- are no longer germane to GOP voters whose incomes have been stagnant for two decades or more. Instead, those voters have turned to the economic populism and nativism of Donald Trump.
It is this disconnect between the pain of Republican voters and leadership's response that provided Donald Trump his opening, which the mogul then drove a truck though. Why this shortsightedness, this narrowness, that explains so much? You can thank Grover Norquist.
So who are Marc Short and Andy Koenig? The Times identified them only as "the president and senior policy adviser, respectively, at Freedom Partners, which advocates for free-market policies."
Grover Norquist, unknown to most Americans, is the conservative boogeyman of the progressive big-government spending liberal left who vilify his defense of the American taxpayer.
When I hear tax-cutting expounded as an unassailable conservative virtue, my mind goes back to a lunch in Houston in the 1970s, when two of conservatism's rising stars and I were speakers at a meeting of the American Petroleum Institute.
For an example of how Big Money in politics is causing real harm to average Americans, look at the practice of dentistry in this country. The United States is facing a dental care crisis for a number of reasons.
A year ago, the script for 2016 was sealed -- Clinton II versus Bush III: advantage Clinton. But Jeb Bush's nomination is far from certain and Bernie Sanders is giving Clinton a run for her money. Indeed, her money is more liability than asset. If Rubio can win over the Republican base, he'd likely be the most trouble for Democrats.
But Jindal's time might have passed -- if it ever even existed. He's not as fresh a face on the political scene as he once was.
Trade deals are one subject (one of the very few left) which do not break down on party line. Both the Republicans and the Democrats are split over the issue, so it's not a repeat of the usual partisan battle lines. But it is a clear defeat for Obama, who lobbied hard to very little effect.
We've already seen how Barack Obama has been used to channel white America's racial fears into a complete shutdown of compromise, a cornerstone of American Democracy. A Hillary Clinton Presidency will look a lot like that. Lose the racism. Use the gender fear.
Frum and Reagan debate the growing Ukrainian civil war and Obama's 2015 budget in a growing economy. What happens if sanctions and arms don't stop Russian-backed separatists? Can the GOP credibly complain about a wealth/income gap they created, but then oppose tax reform that reduces it?
The 114th Congress was sworn in on Tuesday, opening the flood gates to legislation that will potentially damage the economy, hurt the middle class and the poor, and leave the retired Americans in the worst financial shape they've been in for years.
Make no mistake that what has happened in this country is a "coup", planned, not by foreign or domestic military forces, but rather orchestrated by Grover Norquist, the Koch brothers and their very wealthy cohorts as a domestic moral and financial coup.