Monthly Archives: July 2009

House Dems on Health Care

After yesterday’s posts on beer and football, let’s get back to health care, because President Obama doesn’t want us to get distracted from the big issues. Politico today publishes a memo from House Democratic leaders advising members on how to gin up support for a government takeover of health care during their August “District Work […]


As the Wall Street Journal reports today, “The president’s plan to toss back a few cold ones with some high-profile guests at the White House has the American beer industry hopping mad.”  Why?  Because the beers on tap — or at least in the presidential fridge — are supposedly Red Stripe, Blue Moon, and Bud […]

Brees Blows Through Guantanamo

It’s almost August and the smell of pigskin is in the air as teams hit training camps throughout football nation. (Yeah, I just wrote that.) While NFL news has focused on players getting out of prison, mostly avoiding prison, or heading to prison, one player is generating some delayed attention for just visiting a very […]

Look to Norway

In 1942, FDR gave a speech remembered for its peroration:  “Look to Norway!”  Today, as the United States tries to right our economic wreckage, we might well heed that counsel again. Check out this piece from NPR this morning, which describes how Norway has not only survived but thrived during the current recession.  To be […]

Unusual Americans Love Bailouts, Hate Ford

I find polls interesting not so much for the top-line issue they seek to illuminate, but for the quirky results that often lie underneath. Like, who are those 3 percent of respondents who can’t even identify the name Dick Cheney? Another example in today’s Playbook, as Mike Allen calls our attention to a Rasmussen poll […]

Boldy Going … North to the Future

Here’s Sarah Palin’s farewell speech from this weekend. Here’s William Shatner giving the beginning of the speech a poetic twist on last night’s Tonight Show.

It was NOT history’s worst Presidential Presser

That distinction belongs to Richard Nixon’s “I am not a crook” fiasco. For using the bully pulpit to bully yourself, Nixon’s noxious self-nailing ranks as a gold medal performance unlikely ever to be equaled. But President Obama’s outing last week surely takes the silver. By Sunday, Rasmussen was reporting that 40 percent of likely voters… […]

Cambridge Correction

Recognizing the escalating concern about his remarks in reference to the Cambridge, Massachusetts, police department during Wednesday’s press conference, President Obama went to the briefing room this afternoon to announce that he’d just spoken with James Crowley, the officer at the center of the story, and to acknowledge that he had probably gone too far […]

Obama Hits Rhetorical Touchstones in Chicago

At Wednesday night’s press conference, President Obama sought to get to the heart of Americans’ concerns about health care: I realize that with all the charges and criticisms that are being thrown around in Washington, a lot of Americans may be wondering, “What’s in this for me?  How does my family stand to benefit from […]

The Other Press Conference: Obama-Maliki

The big health care presser wasn’t the only press conference President Obama held Wednesday. Earlier in the day he held a joint press conference in the Rose Garden with Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki of Iraq. It was brief – just one question on each side – but each leader said something important. President Obama […]

Obama, Shaken and Stirred

Any doubt that Republicans (and conservative Democrats) are winning the argument over health care reform was erased within moments of President Obama opening his mouth at tonight’s press conference. While delivering his opening statement, the president looked and sounded chastened – like the teacher’s pet who got unexpectedly scolded in front of class. The president […]

Shop Talk

Clark Judge, Ed Walsh, Jeff Nussbaum and I recently had the pleasure of sitting down to lunch with the editors of Politics magazine (formerly known as Campaigns and Elections) for a lively, on-the-record discussion for the magazine’s “Shop Talk” section. We’ll post a link to that article when it comes out in a month or […]

Eloquence and Depth

Here is a sentence unsurpassed in American historical writing for its poetic power and its intimations of moral and philosophic depth: “No political contest in history was more exclusively or passionately concerned with the character of the beliefs in which the souls of men were to abide.” The author was Claremont professor Harry Jaffa.  The source […]

Vanity Fair Edits Sarah Palin … Poorly

Under the category of “never waste an opportunity to point out what a dope Sarah Palin is,” Vanity Fair edits her resignation announcement “to whip it into publishable shape.” Which would be awesome if Sarah Palin had written a piece for Vanity Fair. But she made a speech to the people of her state and to millions […]

We Beamed You In . . .

How would the media cover the moon landing today?  This video gives a taste.  The Wolf Blitzer moment is priceless.