David Coates

May 2, 2013

Gridlock in Washington: Conservative Heaven!

Commentary on recent developments in American politics, written for a British audience read more »
April 19, 2013

The Forgotten Jobs Crisis

Perhaps it is the sheer size of this country that makes important problems invisible – with each problem so localized and personal as not to count in public discourse. Or perhaps it is the sheer size of the problems themselves that enables them to hide in the open –with each so large and so ubiquitous […] read more »
April 9, 2013

Tomorrow’s Presidential Budget: Questions of Judgment?

The President is likely to have a bad week with his progressive base, if what we are told to expect in his budget tomorrow turns out to be true. We are told that his budget will trade “modest entitlement savings,” read more »
March 27, 2013

Budgets to the right of us, budgets to the left of us: budgets, budgets everywhere!

              It’s been quite a month for budgets – both here and, as it happens, in the U.K. too. In London in March, the coalition government provided another round in its continuing pursuit of economic growth through fiscal austerity[1] – an economic growth which continues to elude it – while here in the U.S. […] read more »
March 13, 2013

The Problem with Charm Offensives: If They Are Needed, They Have Already Failed

  Faced by insurmountable odds as the Carthaginians swept down the Italian peninsula during the Second Punic War, the Roman general Fabius Maximus simply retreated and retreated, wearing the opposition down by declining to engage with them at all. Watching the Republicans play the President right now, the scorched earth policy that the Romans used […] read more »
February 25, 2013

Going beyond the President’s Manufacturing Strategy

Amid the urgency of the sequestration crisis, many things of substance are likely to fade into the background of public debate – at exactly the moment when they should not. read more »
February 13, 2013

Cataloging Weaknesses in the State of the Union Address

  So, the State of the Union is strong, is it? Well, maybe it is for the people the President chose to speak about last night. But what about the ones he only mentioned in passing, or the ones that he omitted to mention at all?  What about the state of the union for those […] read more »
February 6, 2013

Waiting for the State of the Union Address

  SOTU addresses at the start of a second presidential term are relatively rare phenomena, and in recent times they have also been also relatively ephemeral ones. George W. Bush used his SOTU Address in 2005 to make a prolonged pitch for the partial privatization of Social Security.[1] That pitch went nowhere. read more »
January 21, 2013

Second Inauguration: Third Growth Model?

  Half-way points in two-term presidencies are inevitably moments to take stock and to consider redirections of policy.  Right now, the political blogosphere is properly full of that stocktaking and redesign. Lists abound on policies needed[1] and priorities to be pushed,[2] which is why there is no need to add to those lists in any […] read more »
January 5, 2013

A Progressive Second Term? (II) Possibilities

              Two previous recent postings[1] explored the parameters and the prerequisites for a progressive second presidential term for Barack Obama. Each of those postings triggered three broad responses from a largely skeptical audience. read more »

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