March 26, 2015

Kondracke Archive

Make Schools Like the Olympics | Pennsylvania Avenue

The Winter Olympics prove again (as if proof were needed) that competition makes athletes strive to go faster, jump higher and become more agile.

Despite Obama's Rhetoric, the State of the Union Is Not Strong | Kondracke

Delivering his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, President Barack Obama was vigorous, earnest, positive, non-confrontational, occasionally funny and determined to get things done.

It's the States, Stupid! | Pennsylvania Avenue

The New York Times’ front-page story on Jan. 12 on one-party domination of all but 13 state governments is an important piece of journalism that should cause serious rethinking and action.

Don't Blame Obama for GOP's Lack of Remedies for Working Poor

Even though the unemployment rate dropped 0.1 percent in August, the job growth number — 169,000 — was anemic. So many people have given up looking for work that the true unemployment rate is 17.7 percent. The economy is still 1.9 million jobs short of its peak before the 2008 recession. This has been the slowest job-market recovery since World War II.

Obama's Mind Block on Syria May Ignite a Wider Mideast Crisis

Syria’s deputy foreign minister gibed on Sunday that President Barack Obama was demonstrating “hesitation” and “confusion” in announcing he’d ask Congress for approval for military action against that country.

'Weak' Obama Needs Syria Intervention to Boost Standing in Middle East

If President Barack Obama wants to begin reversing his “irredeemably weak” stature in the Middle East, he has to respond forcefully — that, is militarily — to Syria’s use of chemical warfare against its own population.

Hillary TV Is No Threat to GOP in Run-Up to 2016

The Republican National Committee’s ouster of CNN and NBC as 2016 GOP debate hosts over their Hillary Rodham Clinton programs is decidedly premature. It’s also small-minded.

Shutdown Politics Never Work — and It Won't be Different on Obamacare

The idea that you’d shut down the federal government — or, perhaps, default on the national debt — to kill Obamacare is not just a “bad idea,” as President Barack Obama described it on Aug. 9. It’s utterly irresponsible, pure madness — and suicidal for the Republican Party to boot.

Neither Supply-Siders Nor Keynesians Have the Answer for This Economic Crisis

Give President Barack Obama credit for at least trying to diagnose and grapple with the economic crises of our era — slow growth, widening income inequality and diminished upward mobility.

GOP Faces 20 Years in Desert Without DLC-Like Moderation

In 1972, as left-liberals led the Democratic Party to a near-unbroken 20-year run of presidential-election disasters, the late, great New York Times columnist William Safire wrote that “nothing is more certain in politics than the crushing defeat of a faction that holds ideological purity to be of greater value than compromise.”

A Deal on Immigration Is Still Possible, if Both Sides Back Off

The chances passing a sensible immigration bill in this Congress appear to be next to zero. But, as with the endless search for Middle East peace, it’s a cause worth pursuing. And, conceivably, there’s a deal to be had.

Supreme Court Has Done Its Job — and No More

Like it or not — and lots of people on the right and left don’t like it — the Supreme Court bumped the country into the 21st century with its affirmative action, voting rights and gay marriage decisions.

Snowden Belongs in Jail; Congress Needs to Hear the Truth

What are people thinking?

Obama Must Take a Page from LBJ's Leadership Book

Guess who wrote this:

A Centrist Party With Clout? Maybe Startup Cash Would Help

Michael Bloomberg, Howard Schultz and Peter Ackerman — meet Charlie Wheelan.

Hillary's Foreign Policy Record Isn't Much to Crow About

Unless the Benghazi scandal consumes her, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is virtually a shoo-in for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination if she wants it. And she’s outpolling her GOP rivals.

Online Learning Ideas Get Needed Boost From State Educators

As I alluded to in the previous post on the Education Innovation Summit in Scottsdale, Ariz., a number of digital technology programs today give kids and teachers a leg up on learning. They can provide instant feedback on what pupils are learning, customize content to a student’s achievement level, teach English as a second language in novel ways and help kids keep up with assignments.

Digital Learning Offers U.S. a Path Out of Its 19th-Century Mold

In the 30th anniversary year of the landmark report on U.S. education failure, “A Nation at Risk,” I really think there’s hope — at long, long last — for a turnaround.

Full Steam Ahead on Tax Overhaul, Thanks to Camp-Baucus Duo

The best news coming out of Congress recently — other than bipartisan work on immigration — is bipartisan work on a tax policy overhaul.

Congress AWOL From Boston Bombing Case — Thankfully

The incredibly swift and effective handling of the Boston Marathon bombing case this week by federal, state and local officials should sustain (or restore) national confidence in those institutions — and embarrass Congress.