Opinions, Context & Ideas from the TPM Editors TPM Editor's Blog

Much Ado About Nothing

In the days since the US allowed the UN Security Council to vote on a resolution condemning Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the government of Benjamin Netanyahu has unleashed a fusillade of abuse aimed at the Obama White House, one likely unprecedented in the almost 70 year history of the US-Israel relationship, at least in terms of its public character. Adding to the uncanny nature of the dispute, Israel can claim that it is not attacking the United States but simply President Obama and his administration, since we are in the final liminal few weeks of the Obama administration, awaiting dramatic changes in under President Trump after January 20th. Minister of Culture Miri Regev spit out: "Obama is history. We have Trump." Indeed, Netanyahu's government has gone so far as to promise it will share "ironclad" evidence of Obama's perfidy with Trump after his inauguration. This of course builds on the efforts prior to the resolution in which Netanyahu enlisted Trump's assistance in a failed effort to block the vote.

Read More →

Start the New Year Right

We're on the final week of our 2016 Prime sign up drive. It's as critical as ever and we're closing in on our goal of 20,000 subscribers. If you've been thinking about it, take a moment now and join us. It's easy. Pretty cheap. And it's really important. Take a moment now and click here.

Why You're Fooling Yourself About 'Fake News'

"Fake News" is now the bright, shiny object of the post-2016 election America, referring to everything from Russian propaganda and for-profit, Macedonian bullshit farms to the more familiar "Fox News", willfully tendentious right-wing propaganda from Fox, Drudge, Limbaugh and more. The topic has ranged out from the world of politics to big think discussions in the worlds of journalism, the technology industry, the advertising industry and more. We know it's truly arrived as a conceptual artifact because the right is now adopting it as its own cudgel against what it's long called the "liberal media." But in the narrow frame of political activism, I think many of us are indulging in our own form of wishful thinking or self-delusion when it comes to "fake news".

Read More →

All Coming Together

There was some news of this already. But now it's coming together. The neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer is organizing an armed march against Jews in Whitefish, Montana.

Read More →


Dylan Matthews has an interesting, illuminating discussion of the "border adjustment" tax which is a major part of the House GOP's corporate tax reform plan, as I discussed here a few days ago. (Sounds like a total policy bore-fest; but actually it sounds like a pretty big deal.) Matthews's piece gets at, while not really resolving (because it may not be resolvable), the big mystery about the policy in my mind. It's one of two things. It may be a de facto tariff which will hit importers' profits heavily, as well as raise prices for lots of goods middle class families buy all the time, while also creating incentives for domestic manufacturing. Or it really may have no effect on the balance of trade one way or another and basically amount to a quasi-VAT tax which will shift taxes from corporations to consumers.

Read More →

Thoughts on The UN Resolution

Yesterday the Obama administration chose to abstain from a UN Security Council Resolution condemning the on-going growth of Israeli settlements past the so-called 'green line' as illegal and a threat to the possibility of a future two-state resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (It also condemned Palestinian violence, incitement and reaffirmed support for a 'two-state solution'.) This has been denounced as a betrayal by the Israeli government in the fiercest terms. Many right-wing American Jews have condemned the decision in no less vitriolic terms, not to mention virtually all Republicans. I should add though that even many American Jewish supporters of a genuine two-state solution have reacted with at least discomfort and in some cases anguish and anger at President Obama's decision.

Read More →