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.

STROSTER: Agree to Disagree?

The Future of American Discourse Lianna Stroster, Columnist Ideology:  Liberal Democrat | Writing from: Washington, D.C. Not even a week into the new Congress, a horrific shooting occurred in Tucson, [...]

PANDYA: Lessons from the Tea Party

Om Pandya, Columnist

The Tea Party is actually an effective movement — able to put members of the movement into office and has, at least temporarily, changed the direction of political talk. And however extreme and radical it may be portrayed, this still does not change the fact that except for a single incident in Kentucky, almost every single Tea Party has gone off successfully without even as much as a littering citation.

REKAI: The Tea Party’s Unexpected Guest

Of all the Founding Fathers the Tea Party could have adopted one must wonder why they chose Thomas Jefferson. Beyond penning a quotable Declaration of Independence, he was actually the personification of everything the Tea Party finds contemptible. He was a member of the establishment; an East Coast intellectual elite. He was a Latin-reading, philosophy spouting, French-speaking, furniture collecting sissy. If he were alive today, he would have never been part of the Tea Party, and the Tea Party wouldn’t have wanted him.

AUTIELLO: Hegel, the Midterms, and Priorities

Nick Autiello, Columnist

If you pull anything from Hegel’s monstrously complex and usually contradictory theory, it’s that each moment in history is unique unto itself. The needs of the country — and of each individual state or district — are unique and experiencing their own history. But our country doesn’t need histrionics. It needs a shift in priorities.

MARIN: Change Is Needed

Voting in a Republican Congress on Tuesday is a gamble. With the economy in the tank, the Obama Administration needs both a wake-up call as well as political cover for decisions that would be unpopular with the liberal base on economic issues. The imperative for change makes voting Republican a well-placed bet. And should it not live up to its promise, a Republican Congress may be what President Obama needs for reelection.

AKMAN: Bipartisanship Is a Myth

Josh Akman, Columnist

The emergence of MSNBC and Fox News as partisan propaganda networks demonstrates that partisanship doesn’t have a chance. With the Tea Party rally and Jon Stewart’s counter-rally, we’re literally marching on Washington in the spirit of partisanship. It’s not going to get any better. So let’s stop pretending.

SIEFF: The Cry of Our Age

Adam Sieff, Independent

Though we should not elect the Tea Party, we must learn from their experience. We must become the leaders we need, form the parties we desire, and forge the world we crave. It is the calling of our generation, the history we will make together.

MARIN: How the Tea Party Will End

Paul Marin, Columnist

The victories that apparently seemed to confirm the Tea Party’s position as a reputable force on the American right are, ironically, planting the seeds of the movement’s own demise. What could have been a potent political tool for channeling anger during a tough economy will soon become an example of a movement overplaying its hand.

MARIN: Obama’s Dream – A Republican Congress?

Paul Marin, Columnist

The looming GOP takeover of Congress presents President Obama with the greatest political opportunity of his presidency yet. Forced cooperation with the Republicans could lead to higher approval ratings — and, ultimately, re-election for the increasingly unpopular president.

STROSTER: Patriotism in America

Lianna Stroster, Columnist

In politics, patriotism has become competitive. The term has been twisted during political debate to be a value only applicable to the Republican or Conservative Party. “It would be one thing if I was an anarchist,” Stroster writes, “but as a Democrat, should I seriously be deemed unpatriotic?”

BILBO: Is It Worth It?

In the wake of the rise of “debranded” Republicans, fiscally conservative former Republicans self-identifying as Independents, Tyler Bilbo challenges the stability of a Conservative Congress come November.

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.

BLAIR: Welcome to the Age of Women

Paul Blair, Guest Columnist

2010 is the year of women, not because we will be electing a couple more women into office, but because they truly are engaging in our political discussion like never before. As they hold signs in protest, contribute to political campaigns and perhaps successfully run for office, they are involved like never before.

LIFSON: Can Sharron Find a New Angle?

Matthew Lifson, Columnist

While a Reid comeback is still far from guaranteed and he still trails in the polls, Sharron Angle’s total lack of discipline and inability to tailor her campaign to a general election has made the race about both of them instead of just him. To defeat Reid, Angle needs to dial down the rhetoric, rehabilitate her image, and reintroduce herself as a viable and mainstream alternative to the Majority Leader.

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