Harold Meyerson

Harold Meyerson is the executive editor of The American ProspectHis email is hmeyerson@prospect.org.

Recent Articles

How the Bros Are Undermining Bernie

Sholten Singer/The Herald-Dispatch via AP
Sholten Singer/The Herald-Dispatch via AP Supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders listen as Sanders speaks during his "A Future to Believe in" rally on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena in downtown Huntington, West Virginia. O ver the past 48 hours, the Bernie Sanders campaign has all but eclipsed its own message. Like the antiwar movement of the 1960s—whence I came—a small group of its activists have themselves become the story, supplanting Sanders’s powerful critique of economic elites and the sway they hold over our politics. The issues that Bernie has so forcefully highlighted have been shunted to the background; the Bros have taken center stage. We’ve seen this all before. By the late 1960s, most Americans had turned against the Vietnam War, but the extremism of a small share of the antiwar activists, and their proclivity for violent confrontations, turned millions of Americans even more decidedly against the protestors—a backlash...

Europe Goes American, and That Ain’t Good

(Photo: Sipa USA via AP/Markus Heine)
(Photo: Sipa USA via AP/Markus Henie) Neo-Nazis and right-wing activists gather in front of the Hauptbahnhof railway station in Berlin on May 7, under the banner "We are for Berlin, We are for Germany," protesting German Chancellor Angela Merkel's refugee policy. A merican exceptionalism may be coming to an end, in the worst possible way—with the parties of the European center-left toppling before those of an insurgent nativist right; with the divisions of race and faith sundering those nations’ commitment to the solidaristic perspective of the left. Undermining American exceptionalism, after all, needn’t entail our becoming more like other industrial democracies, located chiefly in Europe. What’s going on, in fact, is that Europe is becoming more like us. To understand the relationship between the rise of the Euro-Right and America’s dwindling exceptionalism, we need to recall to what, exactly, our national exceptionalism refers. The term first appeared in a debate within the...

New Yorkers Against Wall Street

Monica Jorge/Sipa via AP Images
Monica Jorge/Sipa via AP Images Democratic presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, holds a rally in Hunters Point South Park in Long Island, New York on April 18, 2016. W all Street has clearly lost the battle for public opinion in 2016. Whether that means it will lose the battle for power in 2017 is, alas, another question. The exit poll in Tuesday’s New York presidential primary asked voters whether they thought Wall Street helped or hurt the economy. Not surprisingly, 63 percent of Democratic voters said it hurt while just 30 percent said it helped. Somewhat more surprisingly, 48 percent of Republicans said it hurt while just 43 percent said it helped. Considering that New York is one of just three states (along with Connecticut and New Jersey) where actual Wall Streeters live, this bipartisan rejection has to be one of the Street’s unkinder cuts. When the poll breaks down the responses of voters for the various presidential candidates, the Democratic numbers aren’t all that...

Republicans Against Legroom

AP Photo/Ted S. Warren
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren Alaska Airlines planes wait for takeoff, Monday, April 4, 2016, at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. T he amendment was defeated , but no one actually rose to speak against it. That was because the measure’s opponents couldn’t come up with a defense of their position that didn’t sound absurd. Last week, as it considered a bill that would re-authorize funding for the Federal Aviation Administration, the Senate defeated an amendment by Democrat Chuck Schumer, of New York, that would have blocked airlines from reducing the “size, width, padding, and pitch” of airline seats, the legroom between seats, and the width of the aisles. It would also have required the FAA to set minimum standards for the space airlines provide passengers to ensure their “safety, health, and comfort.” Schumer’s amendment went down on a 42-to-54 vote , with every Republican voting against it except Maine’s Susan Collins, and every Democratic voting for it except a DLC-ish trio consisting...

Fifteen Dollars, Fathers and Sons

(Photo: AP/McLendon)
(Photo: AP/McLendon) California Governor Jerry Brown waves to supporters in Los Angeles after his 1978 re-election. Behind him is his father, former Governor Pat Brown. W hen Jerry Brown and Andrew Cuomo—the Democratic governors of America’s two biggest and most important blue states—signed bills hiking their respective states’ minimum wage to $15 on Monday, the press noted that there seemed to be a bit of a race between the two to see who could sign the landmark legislation first. (Thanks to the time difference between New York and California, Cuomo put pen to paper a couple of hours before Brown.) What the press didn’t note, then or ever, were the odd similarities, both political and biographical, between the nation’s two most consequential Democratic governors. So, let’s note them: Jerry Brown and Andrew Cuomo both govern states previously governed by their fathers. Both of their fathers were iconic liberals. The sons, by contrast, have made a point of distancing themselves from...