Politics

Trumpism: America’s Berlusconi Moment

800px-Berlusconi-comizio.jpg

Trump envisioned and created today’s city of white boxes for rootless new money types, who dominate the city even as they leave little mark here.

An old joke—that in heaven, the Italians do the cooking; in hell, they run the government—feels a lot darker now that American politics are taking an Italian turn.  read more »

Farewell, Grand Old Party

Donald_Trump_by_Gage_Skidmore.jpg

The increased likelihood of Donald Trump as the GOP presidential nominee, as evidenced by his win in Florida and other states last week, spells the end of the Republican Party as we have known it. Successful political parties unite interests under a broadly shared policy agenda. The Clinton Democrats may seem ethically challenged, condescending and bordering on dictatorial, but they share basic positions on many core issues and a unifying belief in federal power as the favored instrument for change.  read more »

California Valued for Cash, Not Candidates

Hillary_Clinton_Looking_Forward_(15534119751).jpg

California may be the country’s most important and influential state for technology, culture and lifestyle, but has become something of a cipher in terms of providing national political leaders. Not one California politician entered the 2016 presidential race in either party and, looking over the landscape, it’s difficult to see even a potential contender emerging over the coming decade.  read more »

Subjects:

Super Tuesday Analysis: How Race, Class And Geography Fed Trump And Clinton's Victories

Super_Tuesday_2016_(Republican_Party,_results).png

After Tuesday night’s primary results, the presidential race is now all but settled among Democrats, and the fractured Republican field seems far along on their suicide mission to hand the White House to Hillary Clinton, a woman who as many as two-thirds of all Americans dislike, according to a recent poll.  read more »

A Truly Historic Super Tuesday

Donald_Trump_by_Gage_Skidmore.jpg

This year’s Super Tuesday primaries will give both parties a chance to decide which of their candidates offers the best policy prescriptions to address the nation’s challenges.  Surprisingly for a campaign that is supposedly focused on America’s future, many of the ideas being proposed echo proposals from America’s past.  It’s almost as if the ghosts of not just Ronald Reagan, but Huey Long, William Jennings Bryan, and Norman Thomas have come back to haunt us, making this one of the scariest presidential campaign seasons in recent memory.  read more »

Subjects:

The Effect Race Could Have on the Race

Senator_of_Vermont_Bernie_Sanders_at_Derry_Town_Hall,_Pinkerton_Academy_NH_October_30th,_2015_by_Michael_Vadon_08.jpg

Until now, the presidential campaign largely has been dominated by issues of class, driving the improbable rise of both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. But as we head toward Super Tuesday – which will focus largely on Southern states – racial issues may assume greater importance.  read more »

Spreading the Wealth: Decentralization, Infrastructure, and Shared Prosperity

cou-housing-crisis-cover.jpg

This essay is part of a new report from the Center for Opportunity Urbanism called "America's Housing Crisis." The report contains several essays about the future of housing from various perspectives. Follow this link to download the full report (pdf).

The public’s preference and the views of the social and intellectual elite has never been greater.  read more »

We Now Join the U.S. Class War Already in Progress

Bernie_Sanders_at_Iowa_State_University,_January_25,_2016_(24502635102) (1).jpg

Neither Trump nor Sanders started the nation’s current class war—the biggest fight over class since the New Deal—but both candidates, as different as they are, have benefited.

Class is back. Arguably, for the first time since the New Deal, class is the dominant political issue. Virtually every candidate has tried appealing to class concerns, particularly those in the stressed middle and lower income groups. But the clear beneficiaries have been Trump on the right and Sanders on the left.

 read more »

The Religious Right is Being Left Behind

Senator_of_Texas_Ted_Cruz_at_New_England_College_Town_Hall_Meeting_on_Feb_3rd,_2016_a_by_Michael_Vadon_12.jpg

The religious right, once a major power in American politics, is entering an uncomfortable dotage. Although numerous and well-organized enough to push Ted Cruz over the top in Iowa, the social conservative base, two-thirds of them born-again Christians, was of little use in New Hampshire, one of the most secular states in the Union. In the Granite State, Cruz did best among evangelicals but still slightly trailed Donald Trump among this one-quarter of New Hampshire Republicans.  read more »

Millennials Heed the Siren Call of Socialism

Bernie_Sanders_in_Littleton,_NH,_on_August_24,_2015_(20703289249).jpg

The biggest story this election season is not Donald Trump or the fortunes of the two winners in Iowa, the unattractive tag team of Ted Cruz and Hillary Clinton. For all their attempts to seem current and contemporary, these candidates – and Trump as well – represent older, more established elements in American life, such as evangelicals, nativists and, in Hillary’s case, the ranks of middle-age women, seniors and public-sector unions.  read more »