Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

As we've learned in recent years, quality journalism isn't free. It requires money and resources and commitment to get the job done. So with that in mind, I've spoken to the business professionals who run TPM and they've agreed to offer a bounty for bona fide, publishable and exclusive photos of the pilates class Bloomberg News mascot Mark Halperin will host for GOP donors tomorrow morning with Ann Romney.

We had originally planned on offering a bounty of $500 for eligible photos. But the thinking here was that that's somehow not legitimate or unseemly - especially since the possible recipients are likely to have net worths of hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars. So we've compromised on a $500 credit toward official TPM merchandise, which you can find here at the official TPM store. So for instance, you could buy 27 TPM mugs, 18 TPM t-shirts, etc. or various combinations.

We got a huge amount of reader response to my post yesterday about the impending demise of the University of Wisconsin. That's not terribly surprising. One of the things we've learned over the years from audience research is that about half our readers have advanced degrees and a disproportionately large number of them are in education, from K through college. As I said in that post, I'm more interested in the practical effect of what Walker is trying to do than a discussion of tenure in the abstract. Because what Walker is doing is basically like lighting your own house on fire. States can get into financial jams and need to cut spending, either because of budgetary mismanagement or rough economic times. But if you look closely at what Walker is doing there's no real budgetary imperative behind it. It's just a desire to destroy a great public institution for the sake of doing it, driven in part by right-wing ideology and in part by the palpable animus Walker himself holds to people who managed to get an education.

A big part of what is happening here is that, to people like Walker, Madison is an anchor of Wisconsin liberalism. But not just liberalism in the partisan political sense, also scarier things like empirical thinking and new ideas. And it's not just the humanities. What really comes out in this article is how much of the scythe is aimed at the sciences.

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The North Carolina House just put together the votes necessary to override Gov Pat McCrory's (R) veto of a 'religious freedom' bill. The Senate had already done the same. McCrory, as that little R signifies, is a Republican and one who opposes gay marriage. But he reasoned, really beyond any possible reasonable counter-argument, that "no public official who voluntarily swears to support and defend the Constitution and to discharge all duties of their office should be exempt from upholding that oath.”

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I don't expect much more to come of this Diane Rehm/Sanders brouhaha, mainly because Rehm has such profound buy-in and goodwill from media and political figures in Washington; because Sanders himself isn't making a big deal out of it; and because the people who usually bang the pans loudest about anti-Semitism themselves aren't fully invested because they don't share Sanders' politics (though they're certainly not ignoring it). But if you're asking me, Diane Rehm's explanation is a complete crock.

If you read Rehm's explanation from her show this morning, a reader on Facebook gave her a 'list' and suggested she ask Sanders about it. Her mistake was stating it as a fact and asking him to respond to that fact rather than asking it as a question. Now, even though she mishandled the question, she's glad she could help put the rumor to rest.

That's bullshit.

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As he readies to run for president and grabs whatever low hanging fruit on the conservative agenda tree he can find, Scott Walker is now planning to strip tenure from professors in the University of Wisconsin higher education system.

This will undoubtedly be portrayed and fought over as a matter of academic freedom. Tenure is among other things in place to protect scholars from the patronage and political demands of the moment and incentivize independent scholarship free of ideological, market or political pressures. That is 100% true. And by and large it is a good system - especially when understood in the larger context of academic life.

But let's be honest: there's basically zero way you win a fight in the political realm to defend lifetime job security for relatively high paid professors who do zero manual labor.

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Prime Minister Netanyahu meets with Art Garfunkel in Jerusalem.