Monthly Archives: February 2010

Democracy in the Middle East

Iraqi national parliamentary elections are right around the corner. It’s no surprise that electioneering and campaigning looks a bit different in Iraq than it does in other young democracies.  But there are refreshing mundane similarities when people anywhere decide to … Continue reading

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Politics vs. Policy: the Perennial Washington Grudge Match

Last week I wrote a post about the problem of treating serious policy issues as nothing more than extensions of horse race-style political campaign coverage. This leads to lots of stories not on the details of actual legislation but on … Continue reading

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California Knows How to Party, If By Party You Mean Go Bankrupt

PoliticsInVivo is heading out to California tomorrow, so I thought I’d check in on the Golden State political scene a little bit.  Wow, it ain’t pretty. The bursting of California’s housing bubble—one of the more toxic in the country—combined with … Continue reading

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Do Republicans Have a National Security Problem?

The upcoming midterm election season will certainly be heavy on domestic issues: the economy, health care, universities and hippies destroying America, etc. Even though we’ve got a few hundred thousand troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, there seems to be pretty … Continue reading

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Life’s NOT a Campaign, Thank God

George Packer has a great post at the New Yorker lamenting the horse-race style of political news analysis. You know this style well: it’s one in which we tend to not get substantive coverage of the thing-itself (be it health … Continue reading

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Murder, Disguises, International Intrigue, Oh My

I assume a journalist waits his entire career to be able to write a lede like this: A senior Hamas official was murdered in a Dubai hotel last month by a trained assassin squad consisting of 11 people with forged … Continue reading

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British Conservatives are Ready to Govern; the GOP is Just Ready to Win

It’s pretty assured that the GOP will gain a substantial electoral victory this November. They are certainly poised to win; but are they poised to govern? Below is British Conservative leader David Cameron’s final election sales pitch. It sounds extraordinary … Continue reading

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Health Insurance Reform and Doctor Wait Times

One of the more potent arguments against universal health insurance is that the medical system simply cannot handle an influx of tens of millions of newly-insured people. The market will be overwhelmed with people seeking care for the first time. … Continue reading

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Jane Mayer on Terror Trials

I very strongly recommend Jane Mayer’s new piece in the New Yorker, which profiles Attorney General Eric Holder and the partisan circus that has come to dominate the terror trial debate. (Really Jane is all you need to read on … Continue reading

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The Iranian Opposition Lost the Element of Surprise

It’s becoming clear that the problem with yesterday’s somewhat tepid protest in Iran is that everyone—regime and opposition alike—had the same day circled on their calendars for months. The regime had the Green’s battle plan in hand all along, and … Continue reading

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DC’s Underdeveloped Snow Etiquette

Jon Chait points to this Post piece on the fragile etiquette that prevails in snowy cities when it comes to shovelled-out parking spots: Boston has codified its citizens’ right to benefit from their backbreaking snow-clearing labor; a city law says … Continue reading

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Iran’s Nuclear Program: What’s Taking Them So Long?

I don’t really know what to make of Ahmadinejad’s big announcement this morning that Iran has reached the crucial 20% uranium enrichment threshold (20% is where we start calling it "highly-enriched"). Particularly in light of today’s Washington Post piece detailing … Continue reading

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Iran Protest Recap

These sites live-blogged throughout the night and early morning. There were reports of sporadic violence; government forces were out in overwhelming numbers and seemed to have prevented the opposition from ever coalescing into large groups. On Twitter, Green supporters in … Continue reading

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Marg Bar Dictator

It’s morning in Tehran now. I’ve no idea what will become of tomorrow’s protests. The regime is already out in full force, having bussed in thousands of Basij thugs from the provinces, and sealed off Azadi square in Tehran for … Continue reading

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Ladies and Gentlemen, Congressman Peter King

Republican Congressman Peter King of New York is a jingoistic hack. Now, that sounds like a conclusive personal attack against his fitness for public office, but dear reader, you don’t necessarily have to take it that way. Maybe hackery is … Continue reading

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