FDL Book Salon Welcomes Rick Perlstein, The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan

By: Sunday August 17, 2014 1:59 pm

It’s an honor to moderate today’s discussion of Rick Perlstein’s new book, The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan. For American history buffs and scholars alike, Rick’s work needs little introduction. He’s the acclaimed author of three major works on the rise of conservatism in the postwar United States (Before the Storm, Nixonland, and now The Invisible Bridge), whose journalism, criticism and writings on history have appeared in The Nation, Rolling Stone and countless other publications.

Not just do his books hit the best-seller lists and make the end-of-year best-book roundups, they have become part of the canon, required reading for aspiring American political historians—appearing on the syllabi for graduate seminars, a necessary part of the rite-of-passage hazing ritual for graduate students known as the comprehensive exam, and thus filtering down into the undergraduate lecture courses that introduce the college students of this country to twentieth-century American history.

 

Come Saturday Morning: Cliven Bundy’s Dead Elephant in The Room

By: Saturday April 26, 2014 6:45 am

See, it’s not just that the Republican Party and American conservatism made conmon cause with institutionalized bigotry — the John Birch Society, the White Citizens’ Councils (now united into the “Council of Conservative Citizens”), the “Sovereignty Commissions” of the various former Confederate states — for political gain. It’s that they did so to help out Big Business.

National Review’s Future at Risk Over Climate Change Smear

By: Friday January 31, 2014 6:39 am

Nem>National Review, one of the conservative movement’s most celebrated publications, may be brought down by a smear it published against climate scientist Michael Mann. Mann’s lawsuit against the publication has already survived two challenges for dismissal and could exact a lethal toll on a media property that may already be losing money.

The Three Great Premises of Idiot America Take Center Stage

By: Saturday September 28, 2013 11:30 am

These are good times for those who practice wingnuttery and those who observe them, as there is plenty of wingnuttery on display. Sadly, this exacts a cost, either in the idiotic policies and practices foisted upon society (see almost anything enacted at the urging of the NRA), or in the time and energy that must be wasted to beat back these idiocies (see Krugman, Paul “the Shrill One”). No, popcorn is not an option. It’s no surprise, then, that my thoughts have been turning to Charles Pierce.

Yours should too.

Missouri GOP Loses Nullification Fight; Turns Against Their Own

By: Saturday September 14, 2013 9:07 am

The Republican party holds a veto-proof majority of seats in both houses of the Missouri state legislature, but they discovered this past week that “veto-proof” means you have to keep your whole caucus together. After weeks of criss-crossing the state, Democratic Governor Jay Nixon caused enough sanity to break out among the MO GOP that he turned back the attempts to override vetoes on two major GOP initiatives: taxes and guns.

The anger aimed at “the Flimsy 15″ has been amazing to behold. “Worthless!” and “Primary them” and “strip them of their committee chairs” and “Not another dime to the MO GOP!” Meanwhile, the democratic attorney general and candidate to replace the term-limited Jay Nixon, Chris Koster, has to be smiling. He’s heard those cries before, and it’s what led him to bolt the GOP back in 2007. If the Flimsy 15 are tired of the GOP, Koster might remind them of the letter he wrote, back in the day, to help them write their own departure letters.

The Absurd Reality of Conservatism, the Second Amendment and Gun Law Reform

By: Saturday April 13, 2013 5:45 pm

This week, in Thursday’s “RedState” subscriber e-mail, Erick Erickson, the Conservative Christian pundit, told his followers that if Congress passes the bipartisan deal to expand background checks, hashed out by Sen. Joe Manchin and Sen. Pat Toomey, it will lead to the federal government taking the guns of everyone “…who believe in the physical resurrection of Christ…”

Late Night: Special Olympics

By: Thursday April 11, 2013 8:00 pm

Each time the stage mothers of the Republican Party push another child star out into the footlights, we find, yet again, that the children of Lake GOP are quite uniformly, below average.  Although this goes back to Reagan; the idea of casting affable meat puppets for the role of “President” to cynically sell the evergreen policies of the plutocracy to the unsuspecting rabble, the talent pool has gotten pretty laughably shallow.  And not for nothing.

Conservatives Upset by Other Conservatives Being Conservative on Marriage Equality

By: Wednesday March 27, 2013 4:31 pm

Russell Kirk once said conservatism was not a set of ideas as much as “a mood.” If so then conservatism is in a curious mood as gay marriage gains wider acceptance. There has always been a schism between fiscal conservatives and social conservatives but as homosexuality has become more normalized and less taboo, particularly to younger people, the conservative movement seems to be confused and having new and strange feelings towards progressive social positions. But when confronted with their hidden truth they lash out. A love that dare not speak its name?

Tim Huelskamp and the Tale of Two Maps

By: Saturday January 5, 2013 9:11 am

Tim Huelskamp (FarRightR-Brownbackistan01) has been in the news lately for standing up to John Boehner (NotQuiteSoFarRightR). Last month, Boehner kicked Huelskamp off the House Agriculture committee, leaving Kansas without a member of that committee for the first time in 150 years. Note, please, that Huelskamp prides himself on being a farmer first, and Huelskamp’s most favorite map (his vast congressional district) is packed with farms, so this hurts him not just in his ego, but in his ability to deliver for his constituents.

Given another map that’s making the rounds these days, that ought to make his constituents, very nervous, if not very angry.

The Right’s loss of the culture war is in extreme slow motion; will it toss its extremists out? Doubt it.

By: Friday January 4, 2013 4:03 pm

The right wing is not going down without a long painful fight, thanks to the movement’s professional bigots, womb-controllers, religious zealots.

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