I cover national politics and civil liberties issues for the Washington, DC bureau of Mother Jones. I have also written for The Economist, the Washington Monthly, the Atlantic, and Commonweal. Email me at nbaumann [at] motherjones [dot] com.
This post was originally titled “Remix to Rendition,” (apologies to R. Kelly) which for some crazy reason my colleagues did not embrace. I wrote lyrics, which I’m willing to share if you buy me a drink.
"Delaying the debt ceiling crisis until some time in 2015 as part of a larger bargain merely institutionalizes the idea that the debt ceiling is a bargaining chip and entrenches the idea that the president will cave."
"As a result, they believed the public/media polls were skewed - they thought those polls oversampled Democrats and didn’t reflect Republican enthusiasm."
CBS News reports that the very top levels of the Romney campaign actually believed the conservative media’s bullshit about “unskewed polls.” That shocks me. I can understand publicly saying you think the polls are biased against you in order to rev up the base. But internally, you have to have some grip on reality.
"Precisely because of the consequences of Carter’s failure, Obama was the more daring in making his go/no-go decision. That’s the case I argued last year, and nothing I’ve learned since then changes my view. As a college student, Obama had seen a marginally popular Democratic president come to ruin because he approved a helicopter-based secret mission into hostile Middle Eastern terrain. Obama went ahead with a helicopter-based secret mission into nominally “allied” territory, also with huge potential for trouble if things had gone wrong."
"In sum, without giving Congress unlimited powers under the Commerce Clause, the Court can uphold the mandate under the moral hazard/adverse selection theory, the interstate externalities theory, or the “It’s a tax, stupid!” theory. Tony Kennedy, John Roberts, are you listening?"