Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is a columnist for The American Prospect, and AlterNet's Washington editor. 

Recent Articles

The Bathroom Bogeyman Rules in the Home of the Brave

(Photo: AP/Pat Sullivan)
(Photo: AP/Pat Sullivan) A man holds a sign urging people to vote against the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance. The ordinance protected people from discirimination based on characteristics such as gender, sexual orientation, race, and religion, but was overturned by Houston voters on Tuesday. T here are moments in the home of the brave when it seems there is no greater fear than that of the public restroom. On Tuesday night in Texas, the bathroom bogeyman poured the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Houstonians down the drain. At issue was a nondiscrimination ordinance passed by the city council in May 2014 written to protect people from all manner of discrimination—in housing, employment, public access—on the basis of some 15 “characteristics,” including religion, race, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity. It was on that last one that anti-gay leaders pounced. “The voters clearly understand that this proposition was never about equality—that is already the law...

Who's Behind Friedrichs?

(Photo: Tim Sackton/Flickr)
(Photo: Tim Sackton/Flickr) A version of this article originally ran in the October 2015 edition of Clarion . A s the current term of the U.S. Supreme Court opens this autumn, looming on the docket is Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, a case designed to decimate public-sector unions. While it may not come to that—even the most knowledgeable Court-watchers are unsure how the justices will rule—the stakes are high. A decision is expected before the term ends in June. The case was, in effect, invited by Justice Samuel Alito, who penned the majority opinion in Harris v. Quinn , a 2014 case in which the court ruled against the union representing home-care workers in Illinois. In Harris , as Harold Meyerson wrote here , Alito devoted half of his opinion to considering the constitutionality of public-sector unions’ right to collect “fair share” fees from those who have opted out of union membership. These fees cover the worker’s share of the resources the union spent on...

Paul Ryan Doth Protest Too Much

(Photo: AP/Andrew Harnik)
(Photo: AP/Andrew Harnik) Representative Paul Ryan speaks at a news conference on October 20. I t’s said that one should never look a gift-horse in the mouth. But on Tuesday, Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, poised to take up the gavel of House speaker, deigned to inspect the teeth of his, claiming to find them not to his liking. Now in what is likely his last week as speaker of the House, John Boehner announced a budget deal that, should it pass, will save the United States from defaulting on its debt. Almost immediately, Ryan expressed his consternation. “I think the process stinks,” Ryan told reporters . He continued, according to this report by Politico ’s Jake Sherman: “This is not the way to do the people’s business,” Ryan said. “And under new management we are not going to do the people’s business this way. We are up against a deadline—that’s unfortunate. But going forward we can't do the people's business (this way). As a conference we should've been meeting months ago...

Why Hillary Makes Right-Wingers So Crazy

(Photo: Olivier Douliery/Sipa via AP Images)
(Photo: Olivier Douliery/Sipa via AP Images) Hillary Clinton testifies before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Thursday, October 22. W hen sizing up a politician’s potential for filling the role of commander-in-chief, there are a number of things the average voter might assess. For instance, you might want someone who can keep her cool under fire. On Thursday, appearing before the House Select Committee on Benghazi, Hillary Clinton proved that she had that stuff. Even if she offered the occasionally sharp rejoinder to questions from Republicans on the committee—a committee that the Republican House majority leader all but admitted was convened to harm her presidential bid—her demeanor remained remarkably consistent throughout. In assessing a prospective president, you might also want to consider a candidate’s stamina, seeing as he or she is angling for perhaps the most demanding job on earth. After at least nine hours of testimony in an 11-hour stretch, Clinton proved she’s...

Sorry, Paul Ryan is Far From 'Reasonable'

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik Representative Paul Ryan speaks at a news conference following a House Republican meeting, Tuesday, October 20, 2015, on Capitol Hill in Washington. A s House Republicans huddled Tuesday with Representative Paul Ryan, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid gave the Wisconsinite something of a thumbs-up. Reid made the calculation that in the GOP’s current chaotic contest for Speaker of the House, Ryan was the best that Democrats could hope for. “He appears to me to be reasonable,” Reid said to reporters. “I mean, look at some of the other people.” Indeed, some of the “other people”—such as Representative “Taliban Dan” Webster of Florida, an acolyte of the disgraced, misogynist religious leader Bill Gothard —are pretty horrifying. But if Ryan’s the most “reasonable” the Republicans have to offer, they really do have an extremism problem. Because Paul Ryan, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee and former vice presidential candidate, is no moderate. In fact, were...