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Gallup poll: Americans increasingly embrace the liberal label

For decades, conservative Republicans enjoyed considerable success in their efforts to demonize the “liberal” label — even to the extent that some Americans who supported the Democratic Party agenda shunned the L-word. The situation got so bad that many liberals began to call themselves “progressives.” But, as Shakespeare once put it, a rose by any other name… And now, according to the Gallup poll, Americans generally are as likely to call themselves liberal as conservative — at least with respect to...

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Galling his critics, no doubt, Obama spoke today at Arlington National Cemetery

President Obama participated this morning in Memorial Day ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery, delivering a speech and laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This came as a disappointment, I’m guessing, to the operators of the right-wing noise machine who specialize in impugning Obama’s patriotism. A few years ago, Obama opted to appear at Memorial Day doings at a national cemetery near Chicago — and his pseudo-patriotic critics had conniption fits. They pretended that it had long been a presidential...

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If our choice in Iraq is to go big or go home, we should go home

It ain’t for nothing that columnist Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post has won a Pulitzer Prize. Simply stated, Robinson is more often right than not. America would do well, it seems to me,  to heed the advice Robinson offers in his LATEST SUBMISSION: If Iraqis won’t fight for their nation’s survival, why on earth should we? This is the question posed by the fall of Ramadi, which revealed the emptiness at the core of U.S. policy. President Obama’s critics are missing the point: Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how many troops he sends...

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Surprise! Ben Carson was against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — and also in Vietnam!

It’s my guess that most Republicans who see Dr. Ben Carson as a good choice for their party’s presidential nomination don’t know about this: Carson says it was a mistake for the U.S. to invade Iraq and adds that he wrote a letter to President George W. Bush advising against the war in Afghanistan as well. But wait! It gets better. Carson says this of America’s ill-fated military adventure in Southeast Asia: In the case of Vietnam, we were trying to stop the spread of communism, which seems like a noble cause to those...

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The political ignorance and apathy of the American people is shocking

It behooves me, I suppose, to begin this submission with an old joke: Question: Which is worse, ignorance or apathy? Answer: I don’t know, and I don’t care. That gag came to mind when I read THIS PIECE the other day: The data on American political apathy is rather consistent, and stunning. Begin with the fact that even in presidential election years, 40 to 50 percent of the voting-age public simply chooses not to participate in the voting process at all, while two-thirds chooses not to vote in midterm elections. Even more...

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Stupid answers to a stupid question

The mainstream media have been busying themselves lately asking politicians in general and presidential hopefuls in particular if they would have approved the U.S. military invasion of Iraq on the basis of what we know now. It’s the wrong question, and it elicits the wrong answers. James Fallows points out HERE: Leaders don’t make decisions on the basis of “what we know now” retrospectively. They have to weigh evidence based on “what we knew then,” in real time… The “knowing what we know” question presumes that the Bush...

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