John Peeler: If Chávez’ elected predecessors had been serious about raising the living standards and life prospects of the poor majority, he would have been no more than a disgraced coup-plotter, a cashiered Lieutenant Colonel.
John Peeler: A generation ago, even conservatives would acknowledge the need for stimulus, not deficit-reduction, at a time like this. That consensus is gone. The Tea Party is getting its wish: a government that cannot act.
John Peeler: We urgently need, as a society, to figure out how to contain the president’s war powers without crippling the president’s ability to defend us. When we finally decide that the most urgent threat comes precisely from the president, will it be too late?
John Peeler: Since we glorify competition as good for both individuals and society at large, why not treat retirement as a job for which you apply? Then we could be sure that only the fittest, those most qualified, would get to retire.
John Peeler: hese proposals are so blatantly discriminatory that even courts that have been tolerant of redistricting manipulation will have to take notice.
John Peeler: Speaker Boehner’s debacle in failing to get his own caucus to support his “Plan B” is not only his failure, it shows the complete disarray of the congressional Republican Party.
John Peeler: Obama’s task—and that of his successors—will be to engage constructively with the changes the region will be undergoing, without repeating the errors of the imperialist past by seeking to dominate and control those changes.
John Peeler: The Chávez era in Venezuela and Latin America will be seen as opening the possibility of transcending liberal democracy in societies where the vast majority is poor. Its success will be up to his successors.
John Peeler: For those who cannot accept atheism but who want to escape the madness of monotheism, there is something to be said for a modern polytheism.
John Peeler: Our present plight is rooted in the loss of consensus about social justice, management of the economy, and most fundamentally, about who we are as a people.
John Peeler: In the midst of a massive recession, the conservative argument for balancing the budget by cutting government spending is manifestly perverse.
John Peeler: After all the anguish, all the hyperventilation, all the spin, we are pretty much back to where we’d thought we’d be.
John Peeler: At some point in the evening, I hope you’ll do as I intend to do: have a stiff drink and go to bed. And then get up in the wee hours to check the results.