In Tyler on November 7, 2012 at 11:00 am
Scott Sumner (wisely) writes:
In this election Romney destroyed Obama in West Virginia, winning by around 27 points, his biggest margin east of the Mississippi. A swing of 42 points from the 1996 election. And Romney didn’t just win West Virginia, he swept the entire Appalachian region. Meanwhile Obama won Virginia for the second time in a row.
West Virginia symbolizes the future of the GOP, while Virginia symbolizes the future of the Democratic Party. Which party has a brighter future?
Thanks to Tyler Cowen for the pointer.
In Tyler on September 17, 2012 at 11:00 am
Reihan Salam observes:
The reason these fault lines matter, or rather the reason these fault lines matter right now, is that, as Gabriel suggests, they complicate the critique of the president. The Frumian critique of the Obama administration is that he hasn’t done enough on housing, his approach to fiscal stimulus was wrongheaded, and his coverage expansion model is too expensive to be sustainable. The Tea Party critique, in contrast, is that he favors a radical expansion of the size and power of government that threatens our constitutional order. The nationalist critique is that he has emboldened our enemies by apologizing for America, and his defense cuts will limit our ability to project power. A Jacksonian realist, on the other hand, might argue that the president hasn’t been enough of a realist. That there are tensions and contradictions between these critiques is obvious.
Responding to some of Salam’s skepticism of the veracity of the market monetarist argument, Adam Ozimek writes:
For my part I surely overemphasize high skilled immigration as a potential solution to our problems. But like many of the most vocal proponents of market monetarism, you shouldn’t interpret the percentage of my blogging that is about high skilled immigration as necessarily proportional to how important I see it. Don’t get me wrong, it’s really, really important. But I talk about it all the time in part because it’s vastly underdiscussed by everyone else. This, I think, reflects the lack of reasonable debate that can be had about it. It’s pretty clear it would be really good for this country, and the benefits greatly exceed the costs. But just because writing about high skilled immigration doesn’t give us lots of chances to battle smart ideological opponents and demonstrate our cleverness does not mean we shouldn’t write about it all the time.
So to synthesize all of this, Republicans are a diverse crowd (Surprise!) and they don’t quite realize how much the disagree with each other, but oversimplification may be the cause of the apparent differences (although the differences are real on some level) and – at least on some level – simplification for the purpose of driving a debate is legitimate. I (probably not surprisingly) think I can buy into that complex, caveat ridden narrative.
In Tyler on August 13, 2012 at 11:00 am
As is typical for me, I’m still not quite sure where I fall in the Ryan pick. I think he’s an intelligent person who’s willing to ask the tough policy questions and offer his ideas. However, I think he has a little more of an ideological streak than I prefer. If you’d like some commentary from each side, I’d suggest reading The National Review‘s Agenda blog by Reihan Salam for the right and The Washington Post‘s Wonkblog by Ezra Klein for the left. Specific articles by Salam and Klein also dive into pick a little more. It is Josh Barro, though, who best explains my hesitations on what the Ryan pick means. Writing for Bloomberg he says:
I can imagine Ryan being a good partner for Romney on long-term fiscal policy. But on short-term policy — probably the more important issue — any advice he is likely to give Romney is bad.
Borrowing from another Klein post, I’m interested in knowing how the graph below happens. How does Paul Ryan believe we ought to change the spending patterns in this country and maintain growth?
In Tyler on July 3, 2012 at 11:00 am
Apparently Chris Christie has opened the door to a potential VP run. CNBC reports:
Outspoken New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, in a CNBC appearance Tuesday, opened the door to a vice presidential run should Republican candidate Mitt Romney choose him.
In Tyler on June 29, 2012 at 11:00 am
Read the post here. Here is a highlight:
The Republican Party, by the way, still doesn’t have a coherent alternative for health care reform, nor do they seem willing to embrace many of better parts of ACA, such as (partially) deregulating dentistry or the Medicare Advisory Board. Romney seems to want to replace the mandate with more expensive tax credits. Furthermore, I believe that many Republican legislators would rather run against an unpopular Obamacare than to have to craft an actual, legislate-able alternative.
In Tyler on June 11, 2012 at 11:00 am
In my constant effort to more clearly define my center-rightness, sometimes this takes the form of attempting to reclaim a pejorative of the right (i.e. progressive) by using it as a modifier to a word that represents more of the current mainstream right (i.e. libertarian). I, of course, am not the only person to do this. Progressive Republicans, Hip-Hop Republicans, Bleeding Heart Libertarians (thought they may not be Republicans) and others all do this much better than I do. One descriptor I sometimes use is “urban conservative,” or “UrbCon” for a nice substitute, to describe a sort of post-social conservative, conservatism. For me, it typically means pro-market oriented education reforms (more school choice, magnet schools and merit pay), no opposition to gay marriage, a preference for energy efficiency (through walkable cities and mass transit) and a willingness to spend on infrastructure development to promote economic development. Figures like Joe Scarborough are nominally in this group.
It turns out I was not the first person to come up with this label. Apparently Akindele Akinyemi came up with it back in 2010 and described the policy stances of urban conservatives here. There is some overlap with my concept, thought his ideas focus more on the urban poor than a broader definition of urban culture; mostly I thought it was an interesting policy outline that is worth sharing.
In Tyler on May 24, 2012 at 5:00 pm
I’m not always a Dionne fan but I found this to be worth sharing.
Romney is simply following the lead of Republicans in Congress who have abandoned American conservatism’s most attractive features: prudence, caution and a sense that change should be gradual. But most important of all, conservatism used to care passionately about fostering community, and it no longer does. This commitment now lies buried beneath slogans that lift up the heroic and disconnected individual — or the “job creator” — with little concern for the rest.
In Tyler on April 16, 2012 at 12:00 pm
From The Economist print edition the week of 04/16/2012.
For all intents and purposes, the 2012 Presidential Race is down to two candidates – President Obama and Mitt Romney. That means two things:
- We actually have an election between two relatively moderate individuals.
- Mitt Romney has to move to the center.
(follow the jump for more)
Read the rest of this entry »