Michael Barone

Photo

Stories from Michael Barone

Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: September 19, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Which of our two great political parties is the stronger? Maybe it makes more sense to ask which of the two is weaker.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: September 16, 2014 3:55 AM
 

Iraq, immigration, inversion. On all three of the issues referred to, President Obama finds himself forced by events to do something he dislikes -- and he's in trouble with much of his Democratic Party base for doing so.

TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: September 12, 2014 3:55 AM
 
"Twentieth-century technology," writes economic historian Joel Mokyr in the Manhattan Institute's excellent City Journal, "was primarily about 'large' things."

Large in physical size, that is. Mokyr's examples include the diesel engine and the gas turbine, shipping containers, communications satellites launched by giant rockets, oil-drilling platforms, massive power stations, giant steel mills and huge airplanes.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: September 2, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Some time ago I contrasted the reaction a conservative would get if he were in the same room with the two most consequential politicians of the 1990s, Bill Clinton and Rudy Giuliani.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: August 8, 2014 3:55 AM
 
The standard thing to say about the various Republican primaries this year is that the tea party movement has lost one race after another. That's a defensible conclusion but also an oversimplification.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: August 4, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Bipartisanship is dead. That's the conventional wisdom, and there's a lot of evidence to support it.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: July 22, 2014 3:55 AM
 
"Why do you think President Obama's job rating is falling, even though the economy is recovering?" the interviewer asked.

It's a fair question, even though the economy declined 2.9 percent in the first quarter, even though most jobs created in June were part-time, and even though labor force participation remains low.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: July 19, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Liberals just aren't very liberal these days. The word "liberal" comes from the Latin word meaning freedom, and in the 19th century, liberals in this country and abroad stood for free speech, free exercise of religion, free markets, free trade -- for minimal state interference in people's lives.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: July 15, 2014 3:55 AM
 
The flood of underage -- and nonunderage -- illegal immigrants from Central America coming across the border in Texas is, to paraphrase a former Obama administration official, a "man-caused disaster." The man who caused it, more than anyone else, is Barack Obama.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: July 12, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Skitter, scamper, scuttle. That seems to be the mode of the Obama administration of late.

Skitter away from your red line in Syria. Scamper off to a meeting you'd previously nixed with Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: July 4, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Seldom in American history has the Supreme Court unanimously rejected positions advocated by presidents' administrations.

But in this respect at least, President Obama has produced the fundamental transformation he promised in his 2008 campaign. Over the last three years, the court has rejected Obama administration positions repeatedly in unanimous 9-0 decisions.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: June 28, 2014 3:55 AM
 
I'm old enough to remember when American liberals cherished the freedom of speech guaranteed by the First Amendment. They celebrated especially the freedom accorded those with unpopular beliefs and protested attempts to squelch the expression of differing opinions.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: June 17, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Polls show that most Americans wanted the United States to withdraw from Iraq. Barack Obama did indeed withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq, not troubling to negotiate a readily negotiable status of forces agreement that would have left a contingent of American soldiers there.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: June 9, 2014 3:55 AM
 
President Obama evidently was caught by surprise by the scandal at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

So, apparently, was VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, who evidently took at face value the corrupt VA statistics -- and who, after a distinguished military career, resigned last week.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: June 3, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Last week I set out a 2016 nightmare scenario for Republicans -- not one that seems likely, but one that can be extrapolated from current polling.

In that spirit, let me set out a 2016 nightmare scenario for Democrats -- again, not likely but a plausible extrapolation.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: May 20, 2014 3:55 AM
 
LONDON -- British politics has a familiar look to Americans, with a center-right Conservative Party and a center-left Labour Party resembling America's Republicans and Democrats.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: May 13, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Demography is destiny, we are often told, and rightly -- up to a point. The American electorate is made up of multiple identifiable segments, defined in various ways, by race and ethnicity, by age cohort, by region and religiosity (or lack thereof), by economic status and interest.

Over time, some segments become larger and some smaller. Some prove to be politically crucial, given the political alignments of the time. Others become irrelevant as they lose cohesion and identity.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: May 9, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Results of Tuesday's primaries, particularly the victory of state House Speaker Thom Tillis in North Carolina's Republican Senate primary, are being hailed -- or decried -- as a victory for the Republican establishment over the tea party movement.

There's something to that. Tillis benefited from support from Karl Rove's American Crossroads and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and endorsements by Mitt Romney and Jeb Bush.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: May 6, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Second-term presidencies are an opportunity for bipartisan compromise. The institutional stars are in alignment to address long-range problems not amenable in other circumstances.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: May 2, 2014 3:55 AM
 
For a president who hasn't enjoyed many foreign policy successes lately, Barack Obama did pretty well on his just completed trip to Asia.

In Japan, he reiterated in no uncertain terms the American defense commitment, including on the Senkaku islands in the East China Sea, which China also claims and calls the Diaoyus. 
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: April 22, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Have the Republicans become the white man's party? Are the depth and bitterness of Republicans' opposition to Barack Obama and his administration the product of racism?

Those are questions you hear in the clash of political argument, and you will hear plenty of answers in the affirmative if you click onto MSNBC or salon.com with any regularity.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: April 18, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Last week, masked men in camouflage garb with no insignia, dressed and equipped like Russian special forces, started taking over police stations and other government buildings in the Donets basin in Eastern Ukraine. They appeared to be working in tandem with local militias in defying the Ukrainian government.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: April 15, 2014 3:55 AM
 
An economist serving on a second-term president's Council of Economic Advisers might expect to weigh in on fundamental issues, restructuring the tax system or making entitlement programs sustainable over the long term. Barack Obama once talked of addressing such issues, and Republican leaders such as House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp are doing so.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: April 4, 2014 3:55 AM
 
When Alexis de Tocqueville visited America in 1830, he was struck by how many Americans were participating in voluntary associations. It was quite a contrast with his native France, where power was centralized in Paris and people did not trust each other enough to join in voluntary groups.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: March 31, 2014 3:55 AM
 
"This is my last election," President Obama said in words caught on an open mic. "After my election, I have more flexibility."

He was speaking in Seoul, South Korea, in March 2012, almost exactly two years ago, to Dmitry Medvedev, then in his last year as Vladimir Putin's stand-in president of Russia.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: March 25, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Will Hillary Clinton be elected America's next president? The polls suggest she will.

Recent polls compiled by Real Clear Politics show her winning 67 percent of the vote in Democratic primaries, with no other candidate above 11 percent. General election polling shows Clinton with an average lead over various possible Republican nominees of 51 percent to 39 percent.
TAGS: News, Columns
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: March 20, 2014 3:55 AM
 

It is reminiscent of the quandary faced by Gen. Maurice Gamelin on the evening of May 15, 1940. Suddenly he realized that German panzer troops had broken through the supposedly impassable Ardennes.

French troops to the north were cut off and rendered useless, troops to the south were falling back in disarray on all sides and no reserves were available between the front and Paris. "Yes," he told the prime minister, "it means the destruction of the French Army."

TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: March 1, 2014 3:55 AM
 
What motivates people to demonstrate in central squares, day after day and week after week, against repressive regimes at the risk of life and limb? It's a question raised most recently by events in Ukraine and Venezuela. 
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: February 18, 2014 3:55 AM
 
The roots of American liberalism are not compassion, but snobbery. That's the thesis of Fred Siegel's revealing new book, "The Revolt Against the Masses: How Liberalism Has Undermined the Middle Class."
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story
Columns
By: Michael Barone | Posted: February 11, 2014 3:55 AM
 
Is Barack Obama trying to shift alliances in the Middle East away from traditional allies and toward Iran? Robert Kaplan, author and geopolitical analyst for the Stratford consulting firm, thinks so.
TAGS: News, Columns
 
Full Story