So what do you get when you cross a community organizer-turned-president with union thugs? No one is really sure – yet, but one thing is for sure, Congressional Democrats have every reason to be afraid. President Obama's BFFs have them in their sights and promise to strong-arm them into submission should they dare compromise on the fiscal cliff. On MSNBC just before Thanksgiving, United Steelworkers Union boss Leo Gerard said any Democrats compromising with Republicans will suffer the same fate as former senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), the last of a dying breed of moderate Democrats.
President Obama's reelection was a triumph of Big Data, technological innovation, and precision targeting over the usual gravity of an incumbent president with a record of economic failure. This was facilitated by largest data trove in the world, Google, lending talent, expertise, and quite possibly data to the cause. Now Google CEO Eric Schmidt is being rumored as a potential Commerce Secretary or even Treasury Secretary – the top economic policy position – in Obama's second term. That's probably far-fetched, but the close relationship between the administration and Google deserves scrutiny.
Seriously? Both political parties talking pre-emptive smack barely a week after the election. Partisan politics? Again? So soon? Not even time to catch our breath? For crum's sakes, give it a rest, you guys. Besides, shouldn't you be out on recess? After all, it's Thanksgiving. Yes. Already. The earliest Thanksgiving possible. That's what happens when November first is on a Thursday. Merchants are dancing the happy dance. Shoppers too. Retail workers, not so much. Black Friday Creep seems destined to devour Halloween.
The older I get, the more I realize the importance of the little things that are right in front of me to appreciate all year long. So, once again, as we celebrate Thanksgiving, this uniquely American holiday, here is the list of blessings for which I am thankful in 2012.
"Good morning, class," says the sixth-grade teacher. "Today, we have a special guest from the U.S. Bureau of Engraving. Mr. Bob Johnson is going to tell us how money is made. Feel free to ask questions."
The great American conservative thinker Russell Kirk once observed that some disasters are so catastrophic they require a re-examination of first principles. On Election Day, the Republican Party suffered such an existential shock.
With Hamas Rockets falling on Israel, massive layoffs decimating America's family's finances, and Barack Obama demanding massive tax increases or he will drive us over the fiscal cliff, we cannot help but day- dream about four years from now. We dream of days when Barack Obama will finally be retired, and his ignorance of economics will no longer plague our homeland.
The fall of retired Army General David Petraeus is a story as old as the Garden of Eden. Sin has consequences. It does not undo a lifetime of service, nor does it negate every good deed ever performed, but it leaves a mark, a scar, like nails driven into a fine table top. The nails can be removed, just as transgressions can be forgiven, but the scars will remain.
On Friday, the House passed a massive National Defense Authorization for 2016 that will guarantee U.S. involvement in more wars and overseas interventions for years to come. The Republican majority resorted to trickery to evade the meager spending limitations imposed by the 2011 budget control act - limitations that did not, as often reported, cut military spending but only slowed its growth.
Operation Jade Helm has inspired a million jokes, and some of them have even been funny. But as much as comedians might jump on Greg Abbott for sending the Texas State Guard to monitor military exercises as the latest excuse to mock the reactionary rubes south of the Red River, Texas now faces an existential crisis: Is the Governor really this crazy?
As it appears we're smack dab in the middle of the 2016 presidential campaign announcement season, this might be the perfect time to ask the question on every American's lips: what kind of twisted psychopath chooses to do this? Who are these people that are so all fired up to enter this soul-sucking fray just to sit in an Office that is oval? Masochists? Sadists? Sadomasochists? Masosadochists? Folks who didn't pay attention during any previous election?
Tuesday night I went through a crash course in what really matters, in humanity, in mortality. I was watching the news reports about the Amtrak derailment, and amid my secondhand anguish for injured strangers I thanked God, literally thanked him out loud, for the fact that my immigration hearing in Baltimore had been canceled. Had it not been, I might have been sitting in one of those mangled cars.
We all know that the 2016 campaign will cost way more money than ever before - $10 billion is the latest head-spinning estimate - and that the reform laws aimed at curbing fat-cat clout have virtually collapsed. But still, it was shocking last week when the nation's top watchdog said that she's powerless to police the new Wild West.