The American Prospect

A monthly political journal of liberal though. Contains articles that generate debate, further ideas, and set agendas; and provides a forum for working through the controversies and hard choices facing all Americans. Includes regular topics and features.

Articles from Vol. 11, No. 24, November 20

A Load of Bull
When the stock market started tanking in September, there was no shortage of good reasons offered. Most analysts cited high oil prices, the slumping euro, weak corporate earnings, and fear that the Fed would leave money too tight or not tight enough,...
Antigovernment, Texas Style
Now in Russia, they got it mapped out so that everyone pulls for everyone else. That's the theory, anyway. But what I know about is Texas, and down here you're on your own. --Joel and Ethan Coen, Blood Simple (1984) Pressed as to why his state...
Cleaning House
Under Democratic control, both the House of Representatives and the Democratic agenda would move left. If Democrats win back the House of Representatives, their slim majority won't adequately reflect the magnitude of the change. The list of ranking...
Correspondence
THE PRICE ISN'T RIGHT TO THE EDITORS: Does, Merrill Goozner ["The Price Isn't Right," September 11, 2000] deliberately confuse drug prices and spending, or does he just not get it? Drug spending is rising from a very low base, primarily because...
Does the Center Hold?
A decade ago, if someone had told the president of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), A1 From, that Al Gore would be heading up the Democratic ticket in the year 2000, he would have thought the DLC millennium had truly arrived. Today, though,...
Gore's Tenuous Bond with Workers
As the election goes down to the wire, it's easy to forget how dramatically the dynamics changed in August. Before the Democratic convention, most polls showed George W. Bush with a double-digit lead over Al Gore. Media discourse was dominated by a...
Let's Make a Difference
Day It Forward is the kind of film I approach with dread. Hollywood strikes many discordant notes, but self-satisfied celebrations of communal uplift land with an especially abrasive clang. Frame a public injustice as a mystery and let a flawed crusader...
Lost in Translation
Last summer the George family traveled to the nation's capital from their northern California reservation with a clear agenda: to raise awareness of the Hupas' battle to protect their land and culture from environmental threats. "America has been...
Planet Bush, Planet Gore
In 1997 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) undertook a routine reassessment of its national air pollution standards. After reviewing new public-health studies, EPA Director Carol Browner proposed strengthening limits on two major pollutants--ozone,...
Return of the Corporate Freeloaders
Many of the country's biggest corporations are once again paying little or nothing in federal income taxes, according to a new study by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP). Corporations are supposed to pay 35 percent of their profits...
Saving Private Abraham
How Senator Abraham, loyal Republican soldier, got by with help from his friends. Last spring, Spencer Abraham of Michigan was widely considered to be the most vulnerable incumbent in the U.S. Senate-- "a guy" says one veteran politico, "who could...
Speaking of "Man-Boy Love"
Three years ago in Cambridge, Massachusetts, 10-year-old Jeffrey Curley was abducted, sexually assaulted, and murdered by two men, one of whom was allegedly a member of the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA), founded in 1978. Both of...
The Bidness of Voting
Colin Goldman is trying very hard to break the law. But it hasn't been easy. In the months leading up to the election, Goldman, a libertarian candidate for the California assembly, has been running an election sweepstakes. He promises a $1,000-cash...
The Dead Heat
The election of 2000 will go down as one of the closest and most boring in American history. The conventional Washington explanation: no big issues. Peace and prosperity lured Americans into a smug torpor. So the candidates' styles, smiles, sighs,...
The Nader Perplex
A small minority of Americans--maybe two million people, maybe as many as five million--will vote for Ralph Nader for president this year. Most have gotten into arguments about the decision or have had someone try to talk them out of "throwing away"...
The Return of States' Rights
Conservatives' distrust of national government is leading them toward a vigorous kind of judicial activism. What are the powers of the national government? When is the nation allowed to act? When must the states act instead? These are not trivial...
The Salient Majority
Even as American voters have entertained the prospect of electing a "compassionate conservative" as president, there is little evidence the public is in a conservative mood. In fact, an unusual poll conducted this summer suggests that Americans hold...
The Stakes
One of the many depressing things about the 2000 election has been the tactical blurring of principled differences. Al Gore is for patients' rights? So is George W. Bush. Gore has a plan for prescription drug coverage. Bush does, too. Gore would allocate...
THE TV CAMPAIGN: A Kabuki Theater of Dirtyclean
The morning after the first televised debate between Al Gore and George W. Bush, I awoke to the voice of an earnestly boyish reporter on National Public Radio proclaiming that at long last America has been allowed to hear its candidates "without the...
War, Peace, and the Election
The presidential debates this year were a failure by the standard we use to measure our public entertainments: their ratings were abysmally low. It was not really the candidates' fault. Boredom with elections is one of the luxuries of our time. Not...
Why Pay Down the Public Debt?
Max Sawicky debates Robert McIntyre. Your taxonomist and my friend, Robert McIntyre, has offered us a lesson on the merits of paying down public debt ["In Praise of Debt Reduction," September 11, 2000]. Everyone knows Bob s work on tax policy is...