• Thumbnail It seemed like the afterthought in the payroll tax cut extension fight, a small consolation prize to the Republicans on what should have been the easiest of bi-partisan votes. But the two-month clock is now ticking on whether Obama will approve the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada’s environmentally disastrous tar sands. If we want him [...]

  • Did you know Obama’s health care bill contained a $20 billion a year tax on the richest Americans? I didn’t until I stumbled onto a mention of this the other day, although writing about politics is my life and I knew enough to be angry at the gutting of a national public option. I asked a dozen [...]

  • Thumbnail The Occupy movement has done something amazing, getting Americans to start questioning our economic divides. It’s created spaces for people to come together, voice their discontents and dreams, creatively challenge destructive greed. It’s created powerful political theater, engaged community, an alternative to silence and powerlessness. But it also faces major challenges. I’m fine that this new [...]

  • Thumbnail Will Obama ever hold the Republicans accountable for their reckless and destructive actions? No matter how outrageous their demands, he keeps giving them legitimacy, first resisting, then compromising, then praising the result as bipartisanship. He’s forgotten the basic lesson of negotiation–you don’t hand everything over before you start, particularly to people who have utter contempt [...]

  • Paul Rogat Loeb wrote a new diary post: Glued to the Weather Channel While the World Burns

    2011-06-06 14:41:30View | Delete

    Following the weather is beginning to feel like revisiting the Biblical plagues. Tornadoes rip through Missouri, Alabama, Mississippi, Oklahoma — even Massachusetts. A million acres burn in Texas wildfires. The Army Corps of Engineers floods 135,000 acres of farmland and three million acres of bayou country to save Memphis and New Orleans. Earlier in the past [...]

  • But even before the Krakauer revelations, I was wary of heralding Three Cups as a prime model for engagement. The same story of unimaginable individual heroism and sacrifice that drew people in could also leave them feeling insignificant in comparison. “Three Cups is an inspirational story,” readers would tell me. “But I can’t climb Himalayan mountains. [...]

  • Paul Rogat Loeb wrote a new diary post: Go to Wisconsin, President Obama

    2011-03-03 17:40:13View | Delete

    Dear President Obama, I’m glad you’ve opposed the attacks on Wisconsin’s public workers, but you need to do more. You need to go there and speak out, or at least speak out again and more strongly, because Americans need to understand what’s at stake, and those who are standing up there and elsewhere need to see you [...]

  • Does Olympia Snowe really want to be the target of waves of anonymous attack ads in support of some conservative primary challenger? Wouldn’t a retiring George Voinovich prefer to leave some shards of our democracy off-limits to being sold to the highest bidder? Could John McCain remember why McCain-Feingold was once of his proudest legacies [...]

  • I admit it. 2008 was a whole lot more fun. We were riding a wave of change. We had the political momentum. We reached into states and districts we thought we could win and turned them with our energy and commitment. If felt like we just might be launching a period like that of FDR [...]

  • The Pew Research Center just released an immensely valuable poll, contrasting those who intend to vote this round, with those who will likely stay home. Among all adults the Democrats or those who leaned Democrat had a 50 to 39 margin, and Obama had a three point plus in job approval. But among those likely to [...]

  • Paul Rogat Loeb wrote a new diary post: The Republican War on Reality

    2010-10-29 11:53:26View | Delete

    Everett Dirksen is one of my heroes. The Senate Republican leader from 1959 to 1969, he pushed strongly for Vietnam escalation and took conservative stands that I’d have strongly disagreed with on economic issues. But he joined Lyndon Johnson in going to the mat to pass the Civil Rights and Voting Rights bills, and for [...]

  • Paul Rogat Loeb wrote a new diary post: Suppose Your Actions Swung the Election

    2010-10-24 20:45:17View | Delete

    Imagine if your actions made the difference in electing a Senator, Governor, or Congressional representative? Suppose the phone calls you made, money you donated, doors you knocked on, and conversations you initiated helped swing a critically close race, or two or three. Suppose the friends you dragged to the polls helped America reject the anonymous [...]