Matthew Yglesias

Matthew Yglesias is a senior editor at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, a former Prospect staff writer, and the author of Heads in the Sand: How the Republicans Screw Up Foreign Policy and Foreign Policy Screws Up the Democrats.

Recent Articles

Iraq the Vote

The most important election in determining the future of U.S. policy in the Middle East may not be the one happening on November 2. Sometime in the 10 days after the victor takes the presidential oath of office on January 20, another election will take place in Iraq. This will determine the composition of a national assembly that will govern the country while writing a new, permanent constitution. A legitimate and stable outcome of that election is crucial to both Iraq and the United States. Unfortunately, it also seems increasingly unlikely.

Isn't It Ironic?

I used to be one of those people who got really annoyed at the widespread misuse of the word "ironic," as in the Alanis Morissette song -- or in this report from the Center for American Progress into the sorry state of American security that landed on my desk last Thursday morning. They write that "the Bush administration deserves an 'F' for its weak and contradictory efforts to control the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and materials. This is ironic in light of the administration's recognition that a terrorist armed with such a weapon poses the greatest threat to the American people."

Surrender Monkey in Chief

The president, as he revealed last week, doesn't think he can win the war on terrorism. That's a bit of an off-message remark for a man whose re-election campaign is predicated on the notion that only he can win the war on terrorism. Worse, the statement suggests the president has only a passing familiarity with the generally accepted meaning of the term "war on terrorism." Then again, we already knew he wasn't very bright.

Even stranger than this, however, is what the president said he thinks is possible: "I think you can create conditions so that those who use terror as a tool are less acceptable in parts of the world."

Rudy Can Fail

Tell me that Rudolph Giuliani did a good job on September 11 and you'll get no argument from me. Say he was, all things considered, a good mayor and, despite my disagreements with him on some matters, you'll get no argument from me. If we were in the middle of a presidential campaign focused on the topic of reducing urban crime, he'd be just the man I'd expect to see giving a prime-time address. If we were in the middle of a presidential campaign focused on the topic of rallying a confused and frightened population with inspiring rhetoric and personal leadership, again, he'd be a good choice.

But we're not in the middle of either of those campaigns.

The Steadfast Flip-Flopper

John Kerry is a flip-flopper. In 2001, for example, he voted for the No Child Left Behind Act, but now he says that federal education spending should be further increased. In 2002, he voted to give the president authority to threaten the use of force in order to get United Nations inspectors back in Iraq, but now he says that the president was wrong to invade Iraq when without a UN mandate when inspectors were already in the country. He's unprincipled, see?

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