Autiello: Will True Christianity Please Stand Up?

Nick Autiello, Contributor

The notion that homosexuality is a sin and un-Christian is one that is less than a hundred years old. It is wrong, and has no basis in scriptural or historical reality.

SASSO: The Coming New Year

James Sasso, Associate Editor

As the tumultuous 2011 comes down to its final day, this column could contain an obnoxious summary of the year’s extraordinary events. Rather than once again discussing the protests around the world, the death of Osama Bin Laden, Fukushima, America’s political ineptitude, Europe’s demise or the increasingly frightful weather patterns, here I attempt to predict what 2012 holds in store.

SASSO: Kicking the Can

James Sasso, Associate Editor

For one of the first times in his tenure as Speaker, John Boehner has made a statement with which every American, Republican or Democrat, should fully agree; the two-month Senate bipartisan extension of the payroll tax cut fails to fix the nation’s problems sufficiently. Providing a short-term band-aid to a long-term dilemma contradicts what a responsible government should accomplish, but fits the pattern of contemporary American politicking.

CIOCCI: A Foolish Consistency

Mitt Romney is guilty of serial hypocrisy, Newt Gingrich is guilty of being a public intellectual constantly scrutinized by the media and others, and Ron Paul never ceases to remind me about one of my favorite quotes from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Essays: “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.”

AKMAN: Jon Huntsman’s Meaningless Campaign

Josh Akman, Columnist

Jon Huntsman did not participate in the CNN Debate in Las Vegas on Tuesday night. Short of his family and small (and getting smaller) campaign staff, no one really noticed. In a bizarre and counterproductive effort to impress New Hampshire voters Huntsman skipped the debate to protest Nevada moving its caucus ahead of New Hampshire’s, which has always been the nation’s first primary. It’s bizarre because no one else skipped the debate. It’s counterproductive because right now, Jon Huntsman is polling 6% in New Hampshire.

SASSO: The 99% Rising

James Sasso

Associate Editor

For the past month a movement has grown out of Zuccoti Park in New York with the potential to grab at the very heart of America’s problems. “We are the 99%” is not simply a catchy phrase used by frustrated jobless Americans , but a commentary on the disgraceful economic inequality that has arisen in the United States since the 1970s.

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SASSO: The Avoidable and Pointless Crisis

James Sasso, Associate Editor

The passage of the Budget Control Act of 2011 demonstrates the futility and manufactured nature of the long-winded debt ceiling crisis. While it seems miraculous to some that the hyper polarized parties could come to an agreement, no one should be surprised of the end result. With bipartisan support in both Houses of Congress, this bill was the first major piece of legislation that passed without having to rely on purely party votes since the budget battle in March. Harry Reid called it a compromise bill…

Rather than giving any ground for a deal that would have actually begun to right the American ship, the hard-liner G.O.P. members decided that they could not be seen supporting tax increases with an important election on the horizon. For all of the Freshman Republican claims of not caring about reelection, they should actually say that they do not care about the stability of America. Instead, they only care about following their dogmatic, hardcore conservative ideology.

THERRIAULT: The 2011 Economic Outlook, What it Means to Congress

Patrick Therriault, Columnist

Republicans’ fate in future elections is now correlated positively with the U.S. economy, which is a much different position than the one that they had perhaps grown used to since the Democrats took back the House in 2007. Republicans will be motivated to take ownership of the current situation and begin to make policy that will drive the economy upwards, thereby providing tangible results to their constituents. Come 2011, we will begin to see results from Congress, if motivated by no other reason than each member’s selfish preparation for 2012. Well, maybe “the trains will run on time.” Happy New Year!

AKMAN: Congress Can’t Even Do the Easy Stuff

Josh Akman, Columnist

A recent Rasmussen poll reported that 70% of the country felt that America was on the wrong track. If Congress can’t do something that is supported by the President, the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and more than 60 Senators, it raises an important question: What the hell are the other 30% thinking?

PANDYA: Earmarking Our Way to Prosperity?

Om Pandya, Columnist

Focusing on the low-hanging fruit of earmarks ignores 99.9 percent of the problem. Politically it makes sense, but it is safe to say that a ban on earmarks will not reduce the deficit by even a penny.

LIFSON: Pick Pelosi

Matthew Lifson, Columnist

Half of the Blue Dog Coalition failed to win reelection in the miderms — but progressives were largely untouched, meaning the makeup of the Democratic caucus will be significantly more liberal than it has been in recent years. As the most prominent liberal in the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi is the leader Democrats need to deliver them from the political wilderness.

BAIN: Gridlock or Compromise

Sam Bain, Columnist

Earlier this January, Obama stated the difference between the 1994 midterms and the 2010 midterms was himself; clearly this was not the case. Will the President at least artificially embrace conservative policies in an attempt to keep the White House, or will he continue with this, “my way or the highway” notion that was responsible for his party’s defeat?

AKMAN: Where Democrats Should Go From Here

Josh Akman, Columnist

Democrats got crushed at the polls. Just a few days after the midterms, with the dust from the landslide still settling and leadership jockeying barely underway, there are some clear ideas for the Democrats

LIFSON: Obama’s Next Two Years

Matthew Lifson, Columnist

When Republicans storm Congress, we will learn whether Obama is a leader capable of growing his office or just a lucky figurehead temporarily enabled by overwhelming Democratic majorities.

RUSHFORD: She’s a Lady—But Is That All?

Stephanie Rushford, Columnist

Yesterday was Women’s Equality Day, a day Congress designated to commemorate the ratification of 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. However, as revolutionary as the ratification of the 19th amendment was, there are still many ideological battles for women to fight and win in 2010.

PETERSON & ROGERS: The Left’s Battle Cry Should Be a Dean Scream

Tim Peterson, Left-Independent
Conor Rogers, Center-Right

A smattering of pundits have argued that Democrats lack a salesman, someone to not simply counterbalance conservative criticism but to argue the progressive cause. Heading into November and beyond, the left needs its own Sarah Palin, its own Glenn Beck. They need Howard Dean.

HOLLINSHEAD: The Consequences of Congressional Term Limits

Kevin Hollinshead, Columnist

Proponents of term limits want to take the easy way out by essentially outsourcing their ability to oust incumbents (read: giving up power). Yet, every American eligible to vote has the opportunity to turn this system around. In the end, it’s on us.

RUSHFORD: No Taxes for Old (Wealthy) Men

Stephanie Rushford, Columnist

The deficit is a real concern for many fiscal conservatives of all political parties, but many Republicans, like Senator Kyl, are not making the tough choices to eradicate the national debt. If Congress wants to truly balance the budget, then they must forget about November and start making painful cuts to spending.

BILBO: Arizona, BP and a Golden Opportunity for the GOP

Tyler Bilbo, Columnist

Can the GOP accomplish the herculean task of reclaiming the House and the Senate? Thanks to Obama’s failure to intensify Democrats, it’s looking like they can.

LIFSON: Republicans Make the Center a Moving Target

Matthew Lifson, Columnist

If Democrats want moderate bills, they must make liberal arguments and then move to the center only though debate and negotiations. Otherwise, Republicans will just continue to choose new, more conservative positions and move the center with them.

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