Redeeming the Word ‘Socialist’, The Confederate Flag Fracas, and The GOP’s Tarnished Brand

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July 10, 2015

Top Stories

Can Bernie Sanders Redeem The Word ‘Socialist’?

The Gist: Sanders’ surprising success as an unapologetic socialist means that calling a politician the “s” word no longer stings.

Conservatives Cry Foul As Cruz’s Book Doesn’t Make NYT Bestseller List

The Gist: The Times’ decision not to place Cruz’s ‘A Time for Truth’ on its bestseller list left some conservatives convinced that the paper unfairly targeted the presidential candidate.

Trump: Iran Deal Is ‘Terrible,’ Because ‘Persians Are Great Negotiators’

The Gist: The presidential candidate castigated President Obama for taking too long to make a deal with Iran on its nuclear program, insisting we should impose more sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

From The Reporter’s Notebook

Reporter Tierney Sneed was on Capitol Hill yesterday as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi announced her resolution to remove any state flag containing the Confederate battle emblem from the Capitol.

Agree or Disagree?

Josh Marshall thinks House Republicans’ last-ditch effort to preserve the right to display the Confederate flag on federal lands shows how “insulated” they have become from national political winds.

Say What?!

“I haven’t given it much thought because it’s something in the South you kind of grow up being around, just seeing it at different venues or whatever. But I have never thought of it as a racist flag.”

– Georgia representative Lynn Westmoreland attempted to defend the failed Republican efforts to reverse limits on the Confederate flag at national parks.

BUZZING: Today in the Hive

From a TPM Prime member:“I’d argue that China’s maritime strategy operates on multiple fronts: as an attempt to replace the Daqing and Shengli oil fields; as an effort to stretch their borders out to the “first island chain” and “nine dash line” for defense-in-depth; and as a way to impose its own rules on the notoriously complex realm of maritime and international border law. Its blue-water navy and “coral aircraft carriers” are basically intended not to go to war, but to scare the hell out of the neighbors so they don’t get in Beijing’s way. Hence the first official Vietnamese delegation to visit Washington since the last helo left Saigon, and the Shiloh and Lassen dropping anchor in Subic Bay years after Manila asked us to leave. The military is still working through its “two basic transformations” and “three pillars of reform,” but that doesn’t mean things can’t escalate rapidly in Taiwan, Senkaku, or the Spratly Islands. Beijing’s response to the current market correction suggests that Papa Xi is, like Chinese leaders before him, terrified of a collapse of national rule, and a little adventurism abroad could become a cudgel to beat down internal opposition. The animal sentiments of domestic politics always overrule the cold calculations of international relations.”

Related: China is learning that stocks are beyond the Communist Party’s control.

Have something to add? Become a Prime member and join the discussion here.

What We’re Reading

Bill Cosby gave his famous speech condemning poor African Americans for not living up to the promise of the civil rights movement a decade ago — here it is, annotated. (Buzzfeed)

Agriculture may actually be one of the safest college majors. (Modern Farmer)

A historian says the Confederate flag was not actually the flag of the Confederacy. (Guernica Magazine)

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