Tag Archives: USA

Perceptions of Migration Clash With Reality, Report Finds – NYTimes.com

Perceptions of Migration Clash With Reality, Report Finds – NYTimes.com.

Perceptions of Migration Clash With Reality, Report Finds

PARIS — Perceptions of the impact of migration in some countries are so distorted that their citizens estimate that there are as many as three times the number of immigrants living there than is actually the case, a global migration body says in a report being released on Tuesday.

[…]

Read the full story here: The New York Times

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under society, World Affairs

Our Unbalanced Democracy – NYTimes.com

Our Unbalanced Democracy – NYTimes.com.

Our Unbalanced Democracy

New Haven

OUR nation isn’t facing just a debt crisis; it’s facing a democracy crisis. For weeks, the federal government has been hurtling toward two unsavory options: a crippling default brought on by Congressional gridlock, or — as key Democrats have advocated — a unilateral increase in the debt ceiling by an unchecked president. Even if the last-minute deal announced on Sunday night holds together, it’s become clear that the balance at the heart of the Constitution is under threat.

[…]

Read the complete story here: The New York Times

Leave a comment

Filed under Constitution, politics, system of government, USA

Congressional grades: Congress shouldn’t be graded on passing laws. – By Shankar Vedantam – Slate Magazine

Congressional grades: Congress shouldn’t be graded on passing laws. – By Shankar Vedantam – Slate Magazine.

Why Congress Deserves an “A”

Don’t blame Congress for not passing laws. It’s designed that way.

Stroll around Washington, D.C., this summer, and you will see hordes of tourists thronging the national Mall. Parents ask their kids, “What’s the role of Congress?” And the teenagers respond, “The purpose of Congress is to pass laws.”

Most people who hear that nowadays feel an urge to laugh. Sure, that’s the purpose of Congress, but that isn’t what Congress actually does. Congress in theory is decisive, but Congress in practice is dysfunctional. If Congress were a student and its handling of the debt-ceiling crisis were an exam, it would get an F, if not expulsion or a referral to the juvenile justice system.

But what if the civics-textbook definition of Congress is wrong? What if Congress is working precisely as designed?

[…]

Read the full story here: Slate Magazine

Leave a comment

Filed under notes and musings from a big country, politics, system of government, USA

How to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans – Magazine – The Atlantic

How to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans – Magazine – The Atlantic.

How to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans

An insider’s six-step plan to fix Congress

By Mickey Edwards

Angry and frustrated, American voters went to the polls in November 2010 to “take back” their country. Just as they had done in 2008. And 2006. And repeatedly for decades, whether it was Republicans or Democrats from whom they were taking the country back. No matter who was put in charge, things didn’t get better. They won’t this time, either; spending levels may go down, taxes may go up, budgets will change, but American government will go on the way it has, not as a collective enterprise but as a battle between warring tribes.

If we are truly a democracy—if voters get to size up candidates for a public office and choose the one they want—why don’t the elections seem to change anything? […]
Read tghe full story here: The Atlantic

Leave a comment

Filed under notes and musings from a big country, politics, system of government, USA

A way out of our dysfunctional politics – The Washington Post

A way out of our dysfunctional politics – The Washington Post.

Fareed Zakaria
Opinion Writer

A way out of our dysfunctional politics

In the standoff over the debt crisis, it’s easy to point the finger at the Tea Party. Even conservative commentators have argued that its uncompromising ideology is at the heart of the problem. But there have often been strong ideological movements in American politics, represented by politicians such as William Jennings Bryan, Barry Goldwater and George McGovern. Yet between elections, people still found ways to compromise and govern. What has steadily changed over the past three or four decades is not so much the ideological intensity (though it has grown) but the structure of politics, making it more beholden to narrow, specialized interests — including ideological ones — rather than broader national ones.

There was no golden age in Washington when people were more high-
minded than they are today. But 40 years ago, the rules and organizing framework of politics made it easier for the two parties to work together. Since then, a series of changes has led to the narrowcasting of American politics. […]

Read the full story here: The Washington Post

Leave a comment

Filed under news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, system of government, USA

Candidate Pledges Increase in Hope of Republican Victory – NYTimes.com

Candidate Pledges Increase in Hope of Republican Victory – NYTimes.com.

Election Cycle Emerges as the Year of the Pledge, but Some Candidates Resist

This is the year presidential candidates are being asked to take the pledge.

They are asked to state their opposition to abortion rights. They are pressed to pledge support for a constitutional amendment to balance the budget.

They have been asked to oppose pornography, women in combat and Sharia law — all part of a “marriage vow” pledge.

Candidate pledges, an incidental part of past presidential elections, have exploded this year as advocacy groups seek to hold a future Republican president accountable.

[…]

Read the full story here: The New York Times

Leave a comment

Filed under election pledges, elections, news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, system of government, USA

Republicans Are Signing Away the Right to Govern – NYTimes.com

Republicans Are Signing Away the Right to Govern – NYTimes.com.

Editorial

Signing Away the Right to Govern

It used to be that a sworn oath to preserve, protect and defend the
Constitution was the only promise required to become president. But that
no longer seems to be enough for a growing number of Republican
interest groups, who are demanding that presidential candidates sign pledges
shackling them to the corners of conservative ideology. Many candidates
are going along, and each pledge they sign undermines the basic
principle of democratic government built on compromise and negotiation.

[…]

Read the full story here: New York Times

Leave a comment

Filed under election pledges, elections, news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, system of government, USA

The Journal Becomes Fox-ified – NYTimes.com

The Journal Becomes Fox-ified – NYTimes.com.

Op-Ed Columnist

The Journal Becomes Fox-ified

It’s official. The Wall Street Journal has been Fox-ified.

It took Rupert Murdoch only three and a half years to get there, starting with the moment he acquired the paper from the dysfunctional Bancroft family in December 2007, a purchase that was completed after he vowed to protect The Journal’s editorial integrity and agreed to a (toothless) board that was supposed to make sure he kept that promise.

Fat chance of that. Within five months, Murdoch had fired the editor and installed his close friend Robert Thomson, fresh from a stint Fox-ifying The Times of London. The new publisher was Leslie Hinton, former boss of the division that published Murdoch’s British newspapers, including The News of the World. (He resigned on Friday.) Soon came the changes, swift and sure: shorter articles, less depth, an increased emphasis on politics and, weirdly, sometimes surprisingly unsophisticated coverage of business.

[…]

Read the full story here: The New York Times

Leave a comment

Filed under Ethics of Journalism, Fox News, Media, Media and Politics, Murdoch, news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, Politics and the Media, USA, Wall Street Journal

The Mexican-American Boom: Births Overtake Immigration – Pew Hispanic Center

The Mexican-American Boom: Births Overtake Immigration – Pew Hispanic Center.

Births have surpassed immigration as the main driver of the dynamic growth in the U.S. Hispanic population. This new trend is especially evident among the largest of all Hispanic groups-Mexican-Americans, according to a new analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center.

In the decade from 2000 to 2010, the Mexican-American population grew by 7.2 million as a result of births and 4.2 million as a result of new immigrant arrivals. This is a change from the previous two decades when the number of new immigrants either matched or exceeded the number of births.

[…]

Read the full story here: Pew Hispanic Center

1 Comment

Filed under Hispanics, immigration, minorities, news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, Think Tanks, USA

Minnesota government shutdown: Miller-Coors forced to recall beer

Minnesota government shutdown: Miller-Coors forced to recall beer.

Minnesota Shutdown Forces Beer Recall

No “silver bullet” for budget impasse as Miller-Coors pulls products.

Minnesota’s government shutdown has entered a sobering new phase.

Two weeks after the state’s political leaders missed a deadline to resolve their differences over the budget, the state’s Public Safety Department told local reporters that the beer conglomerate Miller-Coors would be forced to pull its wares from stores statewide. It seems the country’s second-largest beer conglomerate neglected to renew the paperwork required to distribute its 39 brands of cold ones within the state before the July 1 shutdown (a claim company reps dispute). Now it’s too late.

[…]

Read the full story here: Slate Magazine

1 Comment

Filed under news & comments, notes and musings from a big country, politics, USA