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Why Trump Blinked First

As I’ve been observing, his Republican Senate support was steadily crumbling. LaGuardia shutting down was the last straw, and more government employees were starting to refuse to work. You can imagine Trump’s fantasies about firing them all and finding temps to work as air traffic controllers (oops), but when Mitch McConnell defects, then Trump knows the game is up. McConnell took the pressure from the Senate Republican caucus as long as he could—and then turned the pressure on Trump. [...]

By |2019-01-25T17:42:34+00:00January 25th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Wall Street Journal Follies

I could write an entire blog just on the intellectual dishonesty of The Wall Street Journal. Just when I think they can’t sink any lower, they top their old record. Over the weekend, their lead editorial was titled “Harvesting Democratic Votes.” The Journal is mightily aggrieved that California has actually made it easier for citizens to vote—things like same-day registration, automatic registration, expanded use of provisional ballots and mail-in ballots. The Journal is doubly offended that so many Californians [...]

By |2019-01-24T10:23:19+00:00January 24th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

A Break from Walls, Shutdowns, and Tweets

The poet Mary Oliver died at 83 yesterday. I hope you’ve encountered her work. She is the great poet of being human, a lyrical poet who managed to touch a large audience with her simplicity and eloquent insight about making meaning from everyday wonder. Here is part of one of her best, from her poem titled “When Death Comes.” When it’s over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the [...]

By |2019-01-19T00:16:42+00:00January 19th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Seth Moulton, What Were You Thinking?

Like a fine wine, Nancy Pelosi just gets better with age. Disinviting Trump to give the State of the Union address in the people’s House, of which she is now Speaker, is a stroke of genius. It must be driving Trump nuts, if that’s not redundant. Trump is simply not accustomed to strong women, much less strong women exercising power that he can’t control. How could any Democrat have thought it would be smart politics to topple Pelosi, other [...]

By |2019-01-16T17:06:48+00:00January 16th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

More Hedge Fund Predators Buying Up Newspapers

You may have missed it, but an outfit called Digital First Media (DFM) is trying to buy the Gannett newspaper chain. Last year, I wrote a lengthy investigative piece on how private equity and hedge fund companies like DFM are destroying what’s left of America’s metropolitan dailies. You can read about it here. The basic model is to borrow money, buy a shaky newspaper (or in this case a whole shaky chain), charge the debt to the target company’s [...]

By |2019-01-14T22:43:15+00:00January 14th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

How the Shutdown Ends

It will likely end one of two ways. An increasingly demented Trump could go ahead and declare a national emergency, order the military to build the wall—and his order will end up being quickly reviewed by the Supreme Court. It’s not quite a slam-dunk that the Court would approve it, because Chief Justice Roberts is showing signs of disgust with Trump’s extra-constitutional tendencies. To the extent that Trump listens to political advisers at all, he’s being told that this [...]

By |2019-01-10T16:06:19+00:00January 10th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Needed for the Democrats—a Process of Elimination

With more than two dozen Democrats likely to declare for president, how on earth do they stage debates? We all remember what happened with the Republicans in 2016. With an immense field, there was no discussion of issues; it quickly turned even more nasty and personal than usual, paving the way for the most negative and outrageous candidate to win the nomination. Uh-oh. With a field this large and more than 15 candidates onstage, anything could happen. Supposed charisma [...]

By |2019-01-08T12:20:45+00:00January 8th, 2019|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Personal News and Prospect News

The very talented David Dayen, whose writing you probably know from our pages and other national publications, will be joining the Prospect in the spring as executive editor. In addition to adding immeasurably to our magazine, this will enable me to reach a long-sought personal goal of pulling back from management, to focus on writing, for the Prospect and other magazines and blogs. The rest of our leadership team will continue, joined by our wonderful new publisher, Ellen Meany, [...]

By |2018-12-21T21:52:32+00:00December 21st, 2018|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Corporate Free Speech and the Israel Lobby

As you may have read, the latest ploy by the Netanyahu government and its allies in the U.S. Senate is a provision that would apply criminal penalties against U.S. corporations that boycott companies that operate in the occupied West Bank. This is opposed by the liberal pro-Israel organization, J Street, and the ACLU. The measure, in the form of a Senate rider to the emergency bill to keep the government open, is one of those ideas that gives bipartisanship [...]

By |2018-12-19T18:04:09+00:00December 19th, 2018|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments

Republicans: Hazardous to Their Health

Just about everything they are doing manages to backfire politically: the threatened government shutdown, Trump trying to lie his way out of an increasingly likely impeachment, and now health care. On Friday, a federal judge in Texas, Reed O’Connor, who was appointed by George W. Bush, decided to overrule the Supreme Court and hold the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. He ruled that because the individual mandate was unconstitutional, the entire law is unconstitutional. Very ingenious. The only problem [...]

By |2018-12-18T00:25:46+00:00December 18th, 2018|Kuttner on TAP|0 Comments