While you're stocking those supplies for the Frankenstorm, don't forget to pick up the Sunday New York Times so you can read that paper's editorial endorsement for President Obama. The editors start by explaining what's at stake.
The economy is slowly recovering from the 2008 meltdown, and the country could suffer another recession if the wrong policies take hold. The United States is embroiled in unstable regions that could easily explode into full-blown disaster. An ideological assault from the right has started to undermine the vital health reform law passed in 2010. Those forces are eroding women’s access to health care, and their right to control their lives. Nearly 50 years after passage of the Civil Rights Act, all Americans’ rights are cheapened by the right wing’s determination to deny marriage benefits to a selected group of us. Astonishingly, even the very right to vote is being challenged.Then deliver a point by point endorsement of both what the president has done well, and what we can expect from Mr. Obama in a second term. It's a good reminder of many events and accomplishments over the last four years, and a handy reference when addressing your Obama doubting friends.
In the poisonous atmosphere of this campaign, it may be easy to overlook Mr. Obama’s many important achievements, including carrying out the economic stimulus, saving the auto industry, improving fuel efficiency standards, and making two very fine Supreme Court appointments. ...Read it by candlelight. Share it with others in your storm shelter who think that the president hasn't accomplished much in his first term. Most of all, remember that the aftermath of this storm is not being handled by the crack Bush team and be thankful.
Mr. Obama prevented another Great Depression. The economy was cratering when he took office in January 2009. By that June it was growing, and it has been ever since ...
If re-elected, Mr. Obama would be in position to shape the “grand bargain” that could finally combine stimulus like the jobs bill with long-term deficit reduction that includes letting the high-end Bush-era tax cuts expire. ...
But even if we're don't have a president kicking back at the ranch preparing to give his heck-of-a-jobs to 'Brownie,' we're certainly not making much progress on the forces that may be driving this storm along with a series of weather disasters throughout the last few years. Naomi Klein digs into a kind of alternate approach to climate control that's gaining increasing support on the right – geoengineering. That is, instead of cleaning up the processes that are affecting the world's climate, we could add another process to counter the accumulation of greenhouse gases.
This summer, I had an experience... It was 5 a.m. and my husband and I were up with our 3-week-old son. Looking out at the ocean, we spotted two towering, black dorsal fins: orcas, or killer whales. Then two more. We had never seen an orca on the coast, and never heard of their coming so close to shore. In our sleep-deprived state, it felt like a miracle, as if the baby had wakened us to make sure we didn’t miss this rare visit.Despite international law against it, some would-be geoengineers aren't waiting to conduct experiments that can reshape the environment. George's experiment is only one of several plans in the works, and George is far from the biggest name involved.
The possibility that the sighting may have resulted from something less serendipitous did not occur to me until two weeks ago, when I read reports of a bizarre ocean experiment off the islands of Haida Gwaii, several hundred miles from where we spotted the orcas swimming.
There, an American entrepreneur named Russ George dumped 120 tons of iron dust off the hull of a rented fishing boat; the plan was to create an algae bloom that would sequester carbon and thereby combat climate change.
Bill Gates has funneled millions of dollars into geoengineering research. And he has invested in a company, Intellectual Ventures, that is developing at least two geoengineering tools: the “StratoShield,” a 19-mile-long hose suspended by helium balloons that would spew sun-blocking sulfur dioxide particles into the sky and a tool that can supposedly blunt the force of hurricanes. ...While Climate Silence reigns in politics, it seems we're now moving toward solutions that are anything but. Like a child shoving our peas under the mashed potatoes, we've decided that dealing with the real problem is just so darn hard. So we're just going to cover it up. Of course, we don't have any idea what the long term effect of these experiments with planet Earth might be, but hey, no worries.
The appeal is easy to understand. Geoengineering offers the tantalizing promise of a climate change fix that would allow us to continue our resource-exhausting way of life, indefinitely. And then there is the fear. Every week seems to bring more terrifying climate news, from reports of ice sheets melting ahead of schedule to oceans acidifying far faster than expected. At the same time, climate change has fallen so far off the political agenda that it wasn’t mentioned once during any of the three debates between the presidential candidates.
Instead, gather the kids around the lantern and let Frank Bruni delivers the scariest story of this Halloween season.
After "a couple of Cadillacs," a summer belly-flop abroad, a dismissive swipe at 47 percent of the population and a convention best remembered for Clint Eastwood’s chat with a chair, Mitt Romney is seemingly tied with President Obama. He has a real chance.Scared yet? Bruni blames the razor thin margin not on what's happening on Wall Street, or Main Street, but on that other street -- Pennsylvania Avenue.
Obama isn’t quite the candidate, or politician, he’s cracked up to be. The One is a fraction of his reputed self. ...Okay, calm those crying children (and adults). Bruni still thinks Obama will chalk up a win, it's just that he believes that the president hasn't done a good job with a winning hand.
The main cause for this contest’s closeness is arguably Obama — and the ways in which he has disappointed, confused and alienated some of the voters who warmed and even thrilled to him four years ago. During his first term, he at times misjudged and mishandled his Republican opposition. As a communicator, he repeatedly failed to sell his policies clearly and forcefully enough.
Down the soggy coast in Washington, Patrick Paxton branches out from his omsbudding role to pay tribute to another Democratic politician.
I had two encounters with George McGovern when I was young, close enough to get a clear impression of the man. He was one of the reasons that I became a journalist. It was popular then, in Richard Nixon’s years, as now, to paint liberals as soft, wimpy, malleable and muddle-headed. That didn’t describe McGovern.McGovern has garnered a good deal of post mortem praise this week. It should would have been nice if some of these voices had spoken up... say any time before this week.
McGovern was liberal, for sure, but he was as tough as tungsten. A B-24 Liberator bomber pilot who flew 35 missions over Europe in World War II, McGovern reminded me of my father’s generation of grizzled combat veterans — steely, confident, taking no guff. These were men touched deeply by the war but also made more humane by it.
While most are looking out for the next 24 hours, Dana Milbank scans the long-range forecast.
How to explain this budding “bromance,” as first lady Michelle Obama puts it, between her husband and Bill Clinton? ...Thank you, Senator McCain (I'm sure this whole thing is good for you, by the way). I mean who would be such a jerk to think that Presidents Clinton and Obama have reached some back room arrangement?
Sen. John McCain floated a theory last week about the bromance. The Arizona Republican, in a conference call for the Romney campaign Tuesday, told reporters that there are “some that think this may have a lot to do with 2016 and the president’s wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Of course, I would never suspicion such a thing, but there are some real jerks around who think that might be the case.”
I am one of those jerks. I don’t subscribe to the prevailing theory that Clinton’s efforts to boost Obama are about solidifying his own legacy.To Milbank's credit, he doesn't believe that President Obama has really offered any kind of promise when it comes to the current Secretary of State, but just that Bill Clinton is sure to notice that getting back into the White House will be easier if Hillary is part of a winning team.
Meanwhile, when warming up your freeze-dried meals, you can safely use the columns of:
Russ Douthat who blames President Obama for turning Sandra Fluke into a public figure and taking time to concern himself with women.
Thomas Friedman who declares that the most pro-life politician is Michael Bloomberg.
Maureen Dowd who has an article on the GOP insanity when it comes to women that might be interesting if you didn't have to muck through another week of personal anecdotes to find it.
And George Will who is writing about... God knows. Even if I had to live on a roof for two weeks while waiting for FEMA, I still wouldn't be miserable enough to read Will's latest "I throw all my 1980s columns in a blender and print whatever comes out" mishmash.