Nate Silver, over at fivethirtyeight, objects to the conventional wisdom that Herman Cain, despite his place in the polls, has little chance of becoming the Republican presidential nominee. That wisdom, consistent in this case with our book, The Party Decides, is that that Cain may have some appeal with some elements of the party, but he is not broadly appealing among political leaders, and so the party leaders will find a way to nominate someone else.
In his most recent New York Times column, David Brooks falls into a common trap of political reporting, mixing concerns of policy and campaigning. Brooks writes:
Democrats can win elections in this climate if they defuse the Big Government/Small Government ideological debate. With his Third Way approach, Bill Clinton established that he was not a Big Government liberal. Once he crossed that threshold, he could get voters to think about his individual policies, which were actually quite popular.
We’re very pleased to welcome David Karol and Hans Noel as occasional contributors. They have appeared on this blog on and off (e.g., here or here), and I have cited their book on the presidential nominations process, The Party Decides, several times. They will be blogging about the election and anything else that catches their fancy. We’re glad to have them
Matt Yglesias and Tyler Cowen argue that Italy’s economic problems have a lot to do with the country’s reliance on small businesses.
Jared Bernstein cautions against the over-lionization of small businesses in the New York Times. I agree. The best evidence for skepticism continues, I think, to me the fact that if small firms were so fantastic Italy and Greece would be the economic superstars of the western world … you can have an economy like Italy’s with lots of barriers to competition so that poorly managed firms stay in business with low productivity
Below are some thoughts on Qaddafi’s death and his decision not to seek exile from Barbara Walter, a professor of international relations at the University of California at San Diego. Professor Walter is a renowned expert on internal wars and terrorism and has published several outstanding books and articles on these topics as well as issues of bargaining, cooperation, and reputation more generally. We are glad to share her views here.
One of the many puzzles surrounding Muammar Qaddafi was his refusal to go into exile. Once NATO intervened on behalf of the rebels and Tripoli fell, Qaddafi must have known that he would eventually lose the war and that this would mean death. Instead of leaving the country, he decided to stay.
Seema Mehta presents an amazing list of errors in recent speeches of congressmember and presidential candidate Michele Bachmann.
What’s scary here is not so much that there’s a U.S. congresswoman running around who can’t seem to distinguish between truth and fiction—-after all, my very own congressman is reportedly a criminal, and I can only assume that he’s been too busy with his criminal enterprises to have paid much attention to politics for the past few decades—-but rather the rules of how her campaign is covered.
George Washington University professor John Sides helped start The Monkey Cage in 2007 to bring an informed poli-sci eye to current events and publicize academic research in the field. At the Prospect, we bring you the best Monkey Cage content, which you can find in full at The Monkey Cage.