13 Sep 2018

Image of burning money, symbolizing our nation's fiscal insanity
Fiscally sane commentators are abuzz with the stark data coming out of the latest Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report, showing our nation's dire deficit situation after 11 months of this fiscal year have passed. As has been the case for a long time, the primary problem boils down to one simple fact... Partisan Ideologues Refuse to Accept Basic Fiscal Math Every time either major party has had control of the White House and Congress, they've pushed through legislation that made the debt and deficit worse, while rejecting plans (like the Simpson-Bowles Debt Commission recommendations, or Rivlin-Domenici from the Bipartisan Policy Center) that would start lowering the debt to manageable levels that don't pose a serious threat to our economic future, and stop stealing so much from our children, their children and future generations. That's true for both major parties, but the party, and administration, currently in power is - as it has with s...

16 Dec 2017

John Neely Kennedy
First in our new series aiming to highlight and commend partisan figures who rise above partisan pressure to do the right thing, our inaugural Transpartisan Trophy goes to Louisiana Republican Senator John Neely Kennedy, for fairly and directly highlighting the inadequate qualifications of a Trump court nominee. Kennedy's Transpartisan Trial for Peterson A great way to kick off this new series, there's a lot to like about this case. Not only so we have a Republican US Senator rising above partisan pressure to fairly lightlight the wea poor choice for a nominee to a high court, but his actions are also being dishonestly hyped by most of the stories I could find in the media (across the spectrum). The reality here is that Louisiana Republican John Neely Kennedy merely fulfilled his constitutionally stipulated responsibility. If you didn't know what the Constitution says the US Senate's job here is, and just read most coverage of this in the med...

22 Nov 2017

banner for term limits post
The argument for term limits is one of those rare cases that you can accurately apply the label of 'transpartisan'. For as long as I can remember, since I began engaging in political activity in the late '90s, polls have shown a super-majority of US citizens - myself very much included - support this idea, but apparently scientific studies in recent years now lend objective, measurable credence to the old truism that 'power corrupts'.  Research Shows Keeping Power for Long Dulls Empathetic Neural Processing A wonderful long-read article on the subject, by Jerry Useem at The Atlantic, outlines several lines of research that all point to the conclusion that there is a strong correlation between the collection of power (be is political, social, economic, etc) and a range of negative behaviors. These negative behaviors aren't merely bad habits, but - according to the evidence collected - stem from measurable neural impairment. That's right - powe...

16 Sep 2017

two-faced Trump is no independent
None of us can do much more than speculate over what President Trump's motivations were for siding with Democrats over the short term debt ceiling deal, but we can say that doing so doesn't magically make him an independent (much less a centrist), no matter how many absurd articles claim otherwise. Trump is a Nontraditional Republican - Not Centrist or Independent Donald Trump is as much of an independent centrist as water is dry. Not only is he a member of a party, which precludes someone from being an independent - by definition, but he's the leader of that party. Him not being the leader or a member of one of the two primary factions - establishment mainstream conservatives or Tea Party right wingers - doesn't mean he's not a Republican. Like it or not, he's a Republican. He defeated a slate of people who are what those pretending that Trump is a centrist and/or independent in a Republican primary. Millions of Republicans flocked to his ra...

12 Sep 2017

chart showing the tens of trillions in debt Bernie Sanders' single payer plan would add to the national debt
Left wing Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is set to release legislation based on his 'single payer', socialized healthcare plan soon, which means it's time to revisit the false claims he made about it during the his presidential campaign against Hillary Clinton, and especially the huge gap between the reality of how much it would cost, and how much Sanders falsely claimed it would cost.     In line with Sanders' pattern - falling  inline with that of corrupt politicians from time immemorial - of giving more than he takes and passing the bill to future generations to pay off, the Sanders campaign released cost estimates of around $13.8 trillion over the first ten years. The problem with that is it's completely disconnected from reality - independent estimates from economic think tanks put it around half of the actual cost. This chart, from the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget - a widely respected nonpartisan fiscal organi...

08 Jul 2010

a lighthouse in front of the Sleeping Giant at Thunder Bay
I was just thinking to myself just now that this is a great week to start a blog that will be tracking the 'rise of the center' (I should name something after that... wait...) of American politics, with all that has been coming out about centrist independents and moderates, but as I wrote those words just now, it occurred to me that this isn't an abnormal week at all. Over the last few months, I've been digging around for high quality centrist and independent bloggers, columnists and organizations, signing up for their email lists, RSS feeds and any other communications they have. What I've found, but is really only now just starting to sink in, is that it isn't so much that there isn't a constant stream of positive news coming out of what I call the 'centrist groundswell', but its that its so spread out that most centrists and moderates don't notice. That's not merely because we don't have a remotely fair number of centrist voices in the media,...