“Punting the Pundits” is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.
Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”. (Click on images to enlarge)
The Sunday Talking Heads:
This Week with Christiane Amanpour: “It’s a special Easter edition of This Week. You won’t want to miss it.”
Actually, you most likely can pass on this.
Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: This week’s guests on Face the Nation are Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) along with Representatives Tim Griffin (R-Ark.) and Joe Walsh (R-Ill.).
The freshman class
The Chris Matthews Show: This Week’s Guests Katty Kay, BBC Washington Correspondent, Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Beast Editor, The Dish, Gillian Tett, Financial Times U.S. Managing Editor and Matt Frei, Washington Correspondent BBC chatting about these topics:
The Special Relationship Between the U.S. and Britain
How Brits See the Monarchy of the Future
THE Wedding is Friday
Meet the Press with David Gregory: Guests are Sen John McCain (R-AZ), who never saw a war he didn’t like and two members of the “Gang of Six”, Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND), and Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), who want to throw anyone who doesn’t own a corporation or makes millions under the train. Never mind the bus.
The round table guests, columnist for the New York Times and author of the new book “The Social Animal,” David Brooks; columnist for the Washington Post, Eugene Robinson; Republican strategist, Alex Castellanos; and former communications director for President Obama, Anita Dunn will babble about “The Donald” and the “Budget/Debt Battle”
I think they should include interviews with Ivana and Marla
State of the Union with Candy Crowley: Guests, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I(diot)-CT) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Gen. George Joulwan (Ret.) and former Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns, all get a turn adding their two cents or less about Libya.
Now, you can either go back to bed or eat some Easter candy for Breakfast. I’m going to have some coffee with a chocolate filled croissant. 😉
There is no doubt at all that there are demographic groups that can be accurately categorized as base voting blocs (of both parties) and as swing voting blocs, and politicians must appeal to both to win elections. The key is to position yourself in a way that genuinely does appeal to both — that both fires up your side and resonates with those in the middle. The great fallacy for Democrats is in thinking those two kinds of voters are so far apart on the most important issues in determining their voting. This debate keeps raging in Democratic circles, and I expect it will continue to for the foreseeable future.
Historically, swing voters tend to be, as Lee Atwater and most Republican strategists for the last 50 years have understood, economically populist. That is especially true in tough economic times, when more people are hurting and angry. Swing voters intensely dislike the idea of cutting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. They don’t like Wall Street bankers at all. They hate outsourcing jobs and are not fans of trade deals. They support taxing people making over $250,000 a year. They like the idea of firefighters and cops and nurses being able to unionize. Now, there’s no doubt: they are swing voters for a reason — they don’t like “big government” in general, they aren’t crazy about their own taxes going up, they are worried about government deficits. But here’s the deal: if the goal is to have a message and platform that appeals to both base and swing voters, you can do no better than populist economics. And here’s the other key thing: it is hard to unite them any other way. D.C. conventional wisdom centrism sure doesn’t do it.
Susan Collins slipped the knife in gracefully.
The Republican senator from Maine said that it took “courage” for House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, to advance what he would have Americans believe is a deficit reduction proposal.
But, she explained Friday, “I don’t happen to support Congressman Ryan’s plan…”
Collins’ announcement, made in an interview with a Maine television station, signals a break by a key Senate Republican with the Ryan bill, which received lockstep GOP support in the House. And Collins may not be the only senator from her side of the aisle to break ranks.
Indeed, while Collins is considered to be something of a moderate, honest conservatives should have just as much trouble with the fiscal folly that Ryan proposes.
No one who is serious about reducing deficits, responsible budgeting or the maintenance of a functional society could back Ryan’s scheme — a bait-and-switch scheme that does not even propose to balance the federal budget until 2040.
If all goes as planned for the G-20 this year, leaders of the world’s most powerful economies will convene to issue bold proclamations, talk past each other, and quietly agree to do virtually nothing. The stakes might be a little higher now, though, as the political poker table will be stacked with millions of the world’s hungriest people. Guess who’ll come away empty handed?
World Bank President Robert Zoellick warned at a recent World Bank-IMF meeting that the planet was hurtling toward a food crisis, akin to the chaos that erupted in 2007-2008 across the Global South. The context this time is in some ways more daunting: a perfect storm of social and economic upheaval in North Africa and the Middle East, natural and nuclear disasters in Japan, debt crises in Europe and the U.S., and epidemic unemployment worldwide.
Michael Winship: Congress: Teaching New Dogs Old Tricks
For all their talk of the Founding Fathers, the Constitution and core principles, you’d have thought that the current freshman class of Congress, the sprouted seed of Tea Partiers and the 2010 midterms, would have made a similar tour their first priority on arrival. And for all I know, many of them did just that. But for some, the siren song of cash and influence has proven stronger, already luring them onto the rocks of privilege and corruption that lurk just inside the Beltway. They’ve made a beeline not for the hallowed shrines of patriots’ pride but the elegant suites of K Street lobbyists, where the closest its residents have been to Lincoln is the bearded face peering from the five-dollar bill — chump change.
So much for fiercely resisting the wicked, wicked ways of Washington. These new members were seduced faster than Dustin Hoffman in “The Graduate.”