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. 24, No. 1, January-February

Alt-Labor: Nonunion Workers' Groups Are Gathering Strength across the Country. but Will They Ever Make the Kind of Impact That Traditional Labor Once Did?
On a warm evening in July, the Chrysler Center Capital Grille in Midtown Manhattan had more than customers to contend with. Inside, diners feasted on a $35 prix fixe dinner as part of the city's Restaurant Week promotion. Outside, protesters handed...
Camelot's Begetter: Besides Being the Father of John, Bobby, and Teddy, Joe Kennedy Left Behind a Tattered Legacy
Even those smitten by the Camelot legend have never mustered much love for Joseph P. Kennedy. Upstart Boston Irish millionaire, early player in the movie industry, then the Securities and Exchange Commission's founding chair under Franklin D. Roosevelt,...
Conversation Change: A Cult Podcast Hit, Intelligence Squared U.S. Tames Raucous British-Style Debate for Americans
Stepping into the lobby of the Kaufman Cultural Center in New York City on a recent balmy fall evening was a bit like entering a cocktail-party scene from a Nora Ephron romantic comedy of the late 1990s. A crowd--mostly middle-aged and black-clad,...
Did Democracy Win in 2012? What We Lost 2012: No Matter the Outcome, Money and Voter Suppression Crippled the Election. This Is No Way to Run the World's Oldest Democracy
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Last November 7, a syndicated cartoon made the rounds in progressive circles. Drawn by Signe Wilkinson, it showed a battered, bruised, patched-up Uncle Sam defiantly flexing his biceps and flashing the dazed grin of a fighter...
Did Republicans Lose the Election?
Last November, Democrats seemed to be justified in believing that their party had won a victory of genuine significance. The ideological differences between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney were clear-cut, and Obama was re-elected. Despite the advantage...
Dropping the Facade: Bashar Al-Assad Won Western Credibility as Syria's Modernizer-A Fiction Useful to All Sides, until the Uprising Exposed It
In 1994, Bashar al-Assad was appointed chairman of the Syrian Computer Society. It was the only official title he would hold before landing the country's top job, president, in 2000, but the appointment seemed to speak volumes about the direction in...
Follow the Money
As the wealth of the richest Americans ballooned in recent years, so did the ways they could drop their millions on political campaigns. There are no contribution limits to super PACs, which can wage "issue campaigns" for or against candidates; two...
For God and Country: In Zero Dark Thirty and Homeland, September 11 Is a Wound That Never Heals
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty opens to blackness and the sound of a conversation that we immediately know is real. Trapped on a high floor of a tall building engulfed by fire, a young woman says, "I'm going to die," while...
How to Vote Down Voter ID: Minnesotans Defeat the GOP's Plan to Restrict the Franchise
In late October, two weeks before the election, amid the glut of attack ads, a TV commercial appeared in Minnesota that grabbed everyone's attention. It opens on former Governor Arne Carlson, a Republican, who is a familiar and beloved figure in the...
Looking Backward: The Past, Rescued from Right-Wing Mythmaking
The Tea Party's name was one of its organizers' most brilliant, choices. Furor at George W. Bush's bank bailouts and Barack Obama's electoral victory might have taken any number of forms less charged with history. It could have grown into a movement...
Making Voting Constitutional: Our Governing Document Creates No Right to Vote. It's Time It Did
Early last year, when Attorney General Eric Holder took a strong stand against voter-identification laws, he emphasized how much they violate core American ideals. "What we are talking here is a constitutional right," he said. "This is not a privilege....
New Voters, New Values: Women, Latinos, African Americans, and the Young Don't Believe What Older White Men Believe. Their Views Fueled Obama's Victory and May Portend a New Democratic Majority
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Barack Obama would have lost the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections had a new set of voters not joined the American electorate-voters who brought with them a range of values that differed sharply from those of more traditional...
Obama's Running Room-And Ours: With Republicans Divided, the President Could Open Up Space to Move Progressive Policies. First, the Progressive Community Needs to Move Him
President Barack Obama won a tactical victory on New Year's weekend by forcing Republicans to raise taxes on the top 1 percent, but he has far bigger challenges to address--and so do progressives. The economy is still at risk of several more years...
Obama's Second-Term BFD Agenda: The President Has a New Opportunity for Immigration Reform, Old Business to Finish on Health Care, and Fateful Decisions to Make about Energy and Climate
Just after Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law on March 23, 2010, Joe Biden came up to him and, thinking they were out of range of the microphone, said to the president, "This is a big fucking deal." If I understand the concept of...
Red to Purple to Blue: America's Electoral Map Has Changed to the Democrats' Advantage-And It's Going to Change a Whole Lot More
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] At this moment in American politics, we can count on a few things in presidential elections: The Northeast will vote for the Democrat. The Southeast will vote for the Republican. Both parties will fight for the Midwest and...
Rock the Vote, Block the Vote
In a push unprecedented in the last 50 years, Republican-dominated state legislatures attempted to make voting more difficult in 2012, through strict voter-ID laws and restrictions on registration drives, The aim was to give the GOP an advantage by...
Where the Wingers Won
Liberals had every reason to burst with optimism as the November election results began to set in. Not only did Democrats hold on to the White House, but they also won major Senate battles. In battleground states like Ohio, Florida, and Wisconsin,...
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