More: Give the NYT's Paul Krugman points for having the balls to confront the policy implications of immigration (and its wage-depressing effect) that Rattner chose to ignore. ...
P.P.P.S.: I've argued we shouldn't worry about income inequality per se, but only as it affects the traditional American ideal of social equality--and the connection between the two is a lot looser than most contemporary liberals will acknowlege. Still, to achieve that ideal it has to be possible for those at the bottom of the labor market who "work and play by the rules," etc., to live a life of dignity and respect. If wages for the unskilled are too low, it makes that very difficult. More important, only an increase in wages at the bottom--like that achieved in the tight labor market at the end of Clinton's term in office--will enable the absorption of the non-working underclass (especially young black men) into the mainstream working society. The underclass, not a rising Gini Index, is the greatest threat to social equality both because those trapped in the underclass have a hard time being treated as equals and because the flight from the underclass, and the crime associated with it, leads to all sorts of neighborhood stratification, not to mention the degradation of common public spaces.) ... But I also think the sheer numerical income inequality that might be achieved if true "open borders" advocates had their way--e.g. inequality on the scale of Rio de Janeiro, for example--might be great enough in itself to threaten social equality. ...
If Haynes Johnson were a movie reviewer: The problem with Superman Returns is that Superman "asks no sacrifice from the American people"! ... 3:48 P.M.
Eduwonk seems to think the recent New York charter schools study may be a bit more significant than others think it is. Meanwhile, he doubts the pro-Dem Center for American Progress is "in the [teachers'] union busting business" with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Too bad! ... 11:56 A.M.
Eric Umansky gains access to the NYT's unreleased My Times feature ("Where the best minds in journalism help you edit the Web") and finds it very revealing. ... See how Frank Rich builds his cocoon! ... 11:31 A..M.
Monday, July 24, 2006
ABC: It's the Dems Race to Lose! The liberal summer interns who have taken over the writing of ABC's The Note need to get out of Lauriol Plaza!** Here's point #7 in their rundown of GOP midterm troubles:
7. IMMIGRATION: It is still hard to envision a plausible outcome that will help the Republicans in November. Do-no-harm seems their best bet, and even that looks tough.
Huh? Is it really hard to envision an immigration outcome that helps the GOPs in November? How about: Congress remains deadlocked and House members use their enforcement-oriented stand to rally their base? ... Or Congress passes a House-style enforcmenent bill with a comprehensive-reform-later Senate fig leaf--which satisfies voters that at least something has been done. ... Maybe the Note's seemingly warped conclusion is based on an ultra-sophisticated, insider's seat-by-seat analysis of where the Republican base might make a difference. If so, it's an analysis that eluded the Washington Post's Jonathan Weisman, who points to four such seats. The Post's subhed: "Will the Immigration Issue Save the Republicans?" Guess they can at least envision it. ...
**--P.S.:The Note is so off here that it raises an intriguing, second-tier question: Which Democratic consultant, pollster, or politician are they paying way too much attention to? In 2004 the leading candidate for Note Misleader was Kerry aide Jim Jordan. A good clue as to who's performing similar duties in 2006 might have been contained in today's embarrassingly sycophantic point #6: