Ramesh Ponnuru in Bloomberg View on Obama's second term Obama says the Republican House will listen if he wins in November. He is wrong. "[The] Republican Party will react by moving right, not left," Ponnuru writes. "It will become less likely to compromise with Obama, not more." And Obama won't get policy leverage with Congress because he's not even asking the public for it. The term will be "four more years that look a lot like the last two."
Paul Thomas Chamberlin in The New York Times on talking to terrorists Ever since the murders of 11 Israeli Olympic athletes at the 1972 Munich Games, the U.S. has taken a firm stance of not negotiating with terrorists. Chamberlin writes, "Most scholars of the Palestine Liberation Organization now agree that attacks like the one in Munich were designed by Yasir Arafat’s rivals to shift power away from moderates and into the hands of more radical factions." Some were being more pragmatic about a two-party system, but "the political need to stand up to 'terrorism' made a more nuanced approach to Palestinian nationalism difficult," Chamberlin writes."We should be careful not to let our fears of terrorists continue to blind us to opportunities when diplomatic openings present themselves."
Noam Scheiber in The New Republic on Obama's ambivalence to Wall Street Team Obama banned corporate contributions for the convention and that has fundraisers seeking loopholes like in-kind contributions. But the move alienated corporations and risked PR fiascoes. It highlights one of the contradictions between Obama's aspirations and reality: He wants to be noble about Wall Street but still needs its money. "[You’re] often better off picking a side and sticking with it, at least on an emotional issue like the banks."
Matt Miller in The Washington Post on Rubio and the upward mobility paradox Convention speakers like Marco Rubio touted the American dream and working your way up from nothing. But politicians—Republicans and Democrats alike—do not present enough policy to make that dream come true, instead offering tepid solutions that will do little to solve major problems. "For all the nostalgia and soaring aspirations, in other words, it turns out that this country isn’t serious about renewing upward mobility at all."
Frank Bruni in The New York Times on the VP hex "While the veep nod is only occasionally a springboard to the presidency," Bruni writes, "it’s almost always a trapdoor to mortification." One minute, you're respected. The next, you're a laughingstock, like in the case of Dan Quayle's "potatoe," or Joe Biden's formerly endearing clowning. "You endure almost as much scrutiny as the person on the top of the ticket, get only a dollop of the glory and, judging from recent years, aren’t likely to succeed him."
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