GPP's blog

There's Something Happening Here

The year started with creeping realization of just how much worse things might become, politically and economically, given the results of November 2010 elections (with the right wing takeover of the House of Representatives and many statehouses). Soon we started to hear about massive demonstrations in Tunisia. By mid-February we were completely mesmerized by the protesters in Tahrir Square, as we watched what would come to be called the Arab Spring.

Many Possible Futures

As I surveyed today's countless op-eds and commentary about commemorating the 10th Anniversary of the attacks that took place on September 11, 2011, I was pleased to find these thoughtful words in a New York Times editorial:

Obama Hits the Trap Running

The following blog was written by Steve Max. It contains a clear analysis of deficit falacies and the 'consensus trap.'

The Trust Deficit

All this talk about deficits and spending cuts got me thinking about something that is in short supply today: trust. Our trust deficit is far more corrosive to the body politic than fiscal deficits. Why? Because trust is a necessary ingredient for an open, democratic society. It is why we support programs that may not benefit us directly, for something called the 'common good.' Without trust, people are less inclined to get involved in the process of governing. They are less likely to interact with elected and appointed representatives who have been entrusted with doing the peoples’ business. Over time, they feel less connected to, or concerned about, their fellow citizens.

The Morning After

The headlines say a government shutdown was averted at the eleventh hour. But was a crisis averted? Instead of an abrupt shutdown of the entire government, where we all can see what's at stake, we face a slow and, to many, less obvious crippling of government programs that are part of our shared safety-net. A rolling shutdown of sorts.

Midnight Madness in Washington

Looks like there may be a government shut-down at midnight tonight. If so, it won't be about differing versions of what constitutes fiscal responsibility. It comes down to ideology, thinly veiled as concern over spending.

Send In the Clowns

GE not only pays no taxes, it gets billions in tax breaks. And yet, pundits continue to say corporate tax rates are too high. They also say the economy is on an upswing --- Wall Street profits and bonuses are as high as they were before the downturn. So you can stop worrying about unemployment, foreclosures, state and local budget woes and rising consumer prices. They’ve got it covered, right?

Class Warfare in Wisconsin: 10 Things You Should Know

* The following posting, written by Josh Healey, first appeared on Josh's blog on February 17. It now appears on several other sites, including Tikkun, GlobalGrind and Davey D's Hop Hop Corner

For most of the last decade, I lived in the crazy, cold, contradictory state that is Wisconsin. I wrote research papers in Madison, performed poems in Milwaukee, walked picket lines in Jefferson, organized student conferences in Eau Claire, led artistic workshops in Green Bay, spoke at my roommate’s wedding in Merrill, and went camping with my future wife at Black River Falls.

Love Letters from Wisconsin

Wisconsin’s public workers are showing us the way to stand up to the tyranny of 'balancing budgets’ on the backs of poor and working families. All week, the state capital has been overflowing with union members and their allies. Over 25,000 people took over the grounds on Wednesday.

President Obama's No-Drama SOTU

Tuesday night's State of the Union address was dubbed by pundits on MSNBC and CNN as 'the most centrist speech we've seen in a long time.' This may have as much to do with the absence of drama as it does with the content. Giving the President the benefit of the doubt, his party is weak right now, and, if he were to step up, and openly challenge the Republicans' backward-looking anti-investment agenda, the Democrats wouldn't have his back. His best hope is for the Republicans to over-reach --- something he can count on them to do, sooner or later.