Holman rule

Holman rule: Purging federal employees

Republicans in Congress are binge-ing and purging–but their disorder isn’t of the eating variety. They are binge-ing on power and setting the stage–via passage of the Holman Rule–for political purging of federal employees. I’ve just called my U.S. Congressional Representative, Republican Ann Wagner. I called to register my protest against the Holman Rule, which was…

demagogue

How do you stop a demagogue? No easy answers

Now that the Electoral College has failed—not unexpectedly—in its wished-for mission to stop a demagogue from becoming President of the United States, we need to think more practically. Are there any techniques that have worked in other eras or in other democracies threatened by demagogues? Unfortunately, reading up on the world history of demagogues, I’m…

Welcome to American pollutocracy

Newly elected Presidents do not obtain formal power for over two months, but it feels like they gain control immediately. Their major appointments and legislative recommendations reveal looming ideological priorities far more than bombastic campaign rhetoric. For many of us, discouragement eroded hope when the Obama administration announced before the inauguration that private insurance companies…

Questions

Political quotes: Unanswerable questions

This quotation from a bona fide scientist offers a fitting reproach to the anti-science Republicans who want us to live in their don’t-question-me world. It’s the latest in our long-running series of quotes that remind us, over and over, that everything ends up being political, whether we like it or not. We’re always on the…

Republicans play politics for fun, not progress

Gridlock, contentiousness, do-nothing …. these are all good descriptors of what the Republican Party has recently done to American politics. To progressives, this is very frustrating because we see government as an instrument for positive societal change. For Republicans, it’s rather meaningless. It’s difficult these days to locate a Republican who really cares about improving…

Six dimensions of post-election solace

We live life within at least six dimensions: the spiritual, the political, the personal, the familial, the professional, and the communal. Whether you are celebrating or despairing after this extraordinary election, you might find perspective, even solace, by reflecting upon all six. When one collapses, it may be best to dwell within another for a…