The Wednesday Curator – 3/23/2016

March 22, 2016

President Barack Obama and his family spent Malia and Sasha’s last spring break in the White House in Cuba. Truly incredible, both that an American president went to Cuba, and that presidents from Kennedy to W allowed a small group of South Miamians to control American foreign policy for five decades. And the best piece I’ve read about the trip and the new order? David Graham’s What Does Obama’s Picture in Front of a Che Mural Mean?, written for The Atlantic on March 21.

George Will wrote Do Republicans really think Donald Trump will make a good Supreme Court choice? for the Washington Post last Friday. Mr. Will’s piece is lucid and pretty devastating, coming from him. (Remember George

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The Wednesday Curator – 3/16/2016

March 15, 2016

Neal Gabler has written Blowing the Biggest Political Story of the Last Fifty Years for Mr. Gabler “The shocking story isn’t the rise of Donald Trump but how the GOP slowly morphed into a party of hate and obstruction” is the tagline. Certainly, millions of Republicans are not hate-filled and find the obstruction offensive and wrong. But with respect to the institutional entity—which acts through elected and appointed Republicans—I find Mr. Gabler’s conclusion hard to argue with.

How Much Wealth and Income Does America’s 1 Percent Really Have? by Bourree Lam for The Atlantic takes a more nuanced look at wealth and income statistics. The piece relies on a Brookings Institution study which looks at more data than others—including

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The Wednesday Curator – 3/9/2016

March 8, 2016

Nancy Reagan passed on Sunday, four months shy of her 95th birthday. There was much about her and her Ronnie that left me cold. Still, she was a devoted spouse who nursed her husband past an assassination attempt that was surely closer to success than most of us ever knew. She was also there with him for more than a dozen dark years at the end of his life. Alzheimer’s and other dementia diseases quietly devastate lives. I’m not suggesting it’s extraordinary for a spouse to support a suffering husband or wife, but the fact that people are expected to stand by their man/woman does not lessen the burden. And, then, to live in old age for almost a dozen

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The Wednesday Curator – 3/2/2016

March 1, 2016

The drumbeat started on Saturday, with the posting of Inside the Republican Party’s Desperate Mission to Stop Donald Trump, the New York Times front-pager by Alexander Burns, Maggie Haberman, and Jonathan Martin. It’s a detailed and lengthy story about … well, just read the headline. It begins with Maine Governor and all-around despicable person Paul LePage fretting about the Donald, and ends with the governor endorsing him. Which takes us to Why Can’t the G.O.P. Stop Trump? by Hans Noel for the Times on March 1. Mr. Noel teaches government at Georgetown U. and wrote The Party Decides: Presidential Nominations Before and After Reform. Me thinks a new edition may be in the offing. (Peter Wehner, a fine

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The Wednesday Curator – 2/24/2015

February 23, 2016

Charlie Savage and Julie Hirschfeld Davis have Obama Sends Guantánamo Closing Plan to Congress for the New York Times. The plan will be going nowhere because: fear, and ya-da, ya-da. Alas, security within the United States was never the reason for sending anyone to Guantánamo. How Guantanamo Bay Became the Place the U.S. Keeps Detainees, written by Marine officer Scott Packard for The Atlantic in September 2013, explains the real story.* (If the story seems familiar, I used it in Core Issues about Public Discourse on July 15, 2015.)

Here’s John Cassidy’s latest analysis in for the New Yorker, A Huge Week for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. And the Nevada caucus results do nothing to questions Mr.

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The Wednesday Curator – 2/18/2016

February 17, 2016

Garry Wills is a quiet giant among writers. He has written extensively about the Catholic Church and about American politics. Pedigree aside, his piece for the National Review of Books, The Next Justice? It’s Not Up to Us, is exemplary for its scholarly takedown of the hucksters and fraudsters who, within an hour of the reporting that Justice Antonin Scalia had passed, were shamelessly ignoring the plain language of the U.S. Constitution they so revere. Best two sentences:

And Senator Ted Cruz, the presidential candidate, Senate Judiciary Committee member, and self-styled guardian of the Constitution, wrote on Twitter, “We owe it to him, [Scalia] & the Nation, for the Senate to ensure that the next President names his replacement.”

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The Wednesday Curator – 2/10/2016

February 10, 2016

Read The Rise of Donald Trump is a Terrifying Moment in American Politics, written by Ezra Klein for Vox. On his FB page Mr. Klein wrote:

This is the harshest thing I have ever written about a major American politician. But I think it’s deserved.

Boy howdy yes, on both counts!

Stay tuned for more, this weekend, about the stay —. Lyle Denniston has the goods in Carbon Pollution Controls Put on Hold. This weekend? Jefferson Wins … and We’re Effed!

So what’s the fuss? An activist group of Supreme Court justices—five, to be exact (Roberts, Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito)—stayed a set of regulations which were approved by a U.S. District Court judge and awaiting appellate review

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The Wednesday Curator – 2/3/2016

February 3, 2016

Iowa! Starting with the Rs, turnout was very strong, and that may be the big takeaway from Cornville. Republicans showed up, and they showed up in a voting system which makes showing up difficult. No mail-in ballots, or a quick stop at the neighborhood school on the way to work. Amy Davidson provided a fine set of thoughts for the New Yorker in Ted Cruz Wins Iowa, Trump Loses – For Now. From BBC News, here’s Donald Trump Wants Iowa Rematch, Accusing Cruz of “Fraud”. Nothing about the Donald is dull, although Ryan Lizza’s piece for the New Yorker, Ted Cruz’s Iowa Mailer’s Are More Fraudulent Than Everyone Thinks, should remind everyone that Senator Ted Cruz is

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The Wednesday Curator – 1/27/2016

January 26, 2016

I quit reading Maureen Dowd years ago. Too chaotic and crazy for my tastes. For reasons unexplainable, Sarah Palin Saves Feminism, from the Sunday, January 24 issue of the New York Times, caught my eye. It’s a fine piece of writing. Nicolle Wallace, a former W aide and, now, the writer of novels with political overtones, wrote Sarah Palin, Rage Whisperer for the Times on Monday. It, too, offers worthy insights into the woman for our times.

Senator Ted Cruz and Senator Ted Cruz, Redux reflect what MRW has done to expose Ted Cruz, charlatan. Why D.C. Hates Ted Cruz by Molly Ball for The Atlantic provides deeper insights and explanations for the Ted Cruz phenomenon. What’s really

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The Wednesday Curator – 1/20/2016

January 19, 2016

Paul Krugman wrote Health Reform Realities for the New York Times on Monday. It wanders into the thicket which has developed between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Secretary Clinton, who knows about the challenges of developing and implementing a national health care policy, advocates for incremental changes to the Affordable Care Act. Senator Sanders has, of late, been pushing for universal health care. Paul Krugman, wandering a bit from his usual perch as really smart economist, focuses on: (a) the power of incumbency which health insurers and an employer-based system enjoy; (b) the tax increases associated with a national health care system, which would be offset—and maybe more—by reduced health care costs; and (c)

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