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Posted at 7:07 PM ET, 01/28/2011


By Ezra Klein

Recap: Too young not to work, too old to get a job; why corporate tax reform will be hard in one graph; and did the Senate just lose the future?


1) Five things to understand about the riots in Egypt.

2) Aaron Carroll's best and worst days as a doctor.

3) Treasury prepares for a debt-ceiling showdown.

4) An appreciation of the Decembrists.

Recipe of the day: Roasted broccoli with smoked paprika and marcona almonds.

By Ezra Klein  | January 28, 2011; 7:07 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Will the Medicare cuts in health-care reform stick?
Next: Wonkbook: Egypt and the economy


eeee, I have the new Decemberists CD waiting for me at home. One more week until I get to crack it open.

Posted by: DDAWD | January 28, 2011 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Ezra, I was very happy to see you today note the great power of try-and-see as a reason for Democrats to support abolishing the filibuster:

“But if you really think you've got a great agenda and that the voters would agree, that would imply a fantastic upside to rules that allow you to make good on your campaign promises: Either the American people would get to judge you on all the great stuff you want to do, as opposed to all the great stuff you got stopped from doing, or they'd get to judge the other party on all the awful stuff they did, and which you could then reverse with a simple majority vote.” --

For a long time I was the lone voice, at least in my economics/politics media reading, which as you can tell is a lot. Then there was Jonathan Chait two weeks ago:

“The bad news is that this move [ending the filibuster] will allow a lot of right-wing legislation. The good news is that, eventually, it will allow liberal legislation that will gain public approval and stand the test of time better than right-wing legislation does.” –

And my first post was in 2009:

“The great good the Democrats would do with the filibuster eliminated – things like universal healthcare, or perhaps someday Medicare for all, free four years of college…once enacted, and people saw the truth of how good they were, as opposed to the Republican propaganda, would be permanent. The Republicans would never dare get rid of them, and if they did, it would be very temporary; next election, the Republicans would be decimated, and the programs would be restored easily…

By contrast, the things the Republicans would push through with 51 votes would usually be bad, or horrible, to the vast majority, and so once people actually experienced them, and saw firsthand how the lies about them were really false, like how they, in fact, only helped the rich, they would not last. The public would vote for change, and they would be repealed, AND the Republicans would be revealed.” --

If we can really make the majority of Democratic opinion leaders and people in power aware of this, then we can really increase the pressure for ending this scourge. I encourage you to really stress this crucial point and make it known.

Posted by: RichardHSerlin | January 28, 2011 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Us v. Them:

--*The great good the Democrats would do with the filibuster eliminated*--

--*[T]he things the Republicans would push through with 51 votes would usually be bad, or horrible*--

Now there's a reality based outlook.

Posted by: msoja | January 29, 2011 12:31 AM | Report abuse

Ezra, you ought to catch Black Watch while it's at the Harmon Theater for the next week or so. I saw it Thursday afternoon, quite gripping.

Posted by: gagkk | January 29, 2011 11:00 AM | Report abuse

One has to question the loyalty of Obama - WHOSE side is Obama on?

Is Obama on the American People's side 100% ???

OR is Obama willing to allow the Muslim Brotherhood take over Egypt - because Obama has his own personal views - SEPARATE FROM THE NATIONAL SECURITY INTERESTS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE.

Seriosly folks - we are in uncharted waters here. A crisis in a Muslim county, our President might be a SECRET MUSLIM - and we do not know where his loyalties are.


If Obama blows this crisis, he should RESIGN IMMEDIATELY.


Posted by: RainForestRising | January 29, 2011 1:45 PM | Report abuse


No One can trust Obama - he has lied so much and not kept his campaign promises. No one knows if he is a Muslim or not.

All we DO KNOW is Obama sided with the people who want to build a mosque at Ground Zero AND waited to announce that at the Ramadan dinner at the White House !?!

The Muslim Brotherhood could take over Egypt - and Obama's loyalty is on the line.

Is Obama on the American People's side 100% ??? OR is Obama willing to allow the Muslim Brotherhood take over Egypt - because Obama has his own personal views - SEPARATE FROM THE NATIONAL SECURITY INTERESTS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE.

No one can trust Obama.

THIS IS THE NIGHTMARE SCENARIO - the liberals (full of themselves) elect a Muslim to be President, and we are confronted with a crisis in the Middle East.

Obama then signals that he will accept a Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt - which proceeds to turn Egypt into a TERRORIST STATE.

Which other countries are next???


Obama is poised for his move now. He knows he has only 2 years left - so Obama has to DO ALL THE DAMAGE HE CAN AS SOON AS HE CAN.


Posted by: RainForestRising | January 29, 2011 2:42 PM | Report abuse

WSJ has an appalling article on how wealthy people got even more tax breaks than under Bush:

They can get everything set up so that they won't be affected by "restoration" of the estate tax.

One more brick in the wall of permanent inequality in the U.S.

Posted by: AliceOwl | January 29, 2011 2:53 PM | Report abuse

How do liberals feel about outgoing liberal governor Jim Doyle and outgoing liberal Democrats (all of which were voted out of office) trying to ram through bloated union contracts in last year's lame duck session?

1. Wisconsin voters overwhelmingly vote for Republican candidates for Governor and State legislature.

2. Wisconsin unions realize the gig is up after stalling negotiations since June 2009 []. Wisconsin outgoing governor signs union contracts [].

3. Wisconsin assembly Democrats bust a drunk driver [] out of jail to vote on union contracts. He was the deciding vote. []

4. Outgoing Senate Democratic President Russ Decker follows his conscience and ditches the contracts [], which fail on a 16-16 vote. Senate Democrats then dump him from his leadership position, but he still votes the same way.

Posted by: krazen1211 | January 29, 2011 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I clicked on the TNR post about the five things you need to understand about the revolt in Egypt, and found another article by Jonathan Chait "David Frum Goes Bulworth". It describes how Frum is calling out fellow Republicans for promoting an alternate reality with pseudo-facts about the economy - e.g. tax cuts that pay for themselves. What struck me was this statement at the end of the piece: "The whole piece is a dead-on attack on the central thrust of conservative thought over the last two years."

TWO YEARS? What planet has Chait been living on? Republicans have been pushing their free-market delusions since Reagan started pedaling supply-side economics with it's cost-free tax cut lunacy. Didn't work then, doesn't work now. It's not called the "Laffer" curve for nothing.

Posted by: BernieO | January 30, 2011 9:22 AM | Report abuse

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