Adam Serwer

"Rigorous Curriculum Standards"

Part of the Obama administration's counter-radicalization strategy released yesterday obliquely references the controversy over anti-Muslim terrorism "experts" who have received generous federal grants for Islamophobic "training" of local law enforcement:

Stealth Jihad Whoops

Nick Sementelli flags the testimony of Peter Neumann, director of the International Center for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence at King's College in London, to Representative Sue Myrick's subcommittee hearing on domestic radicalization in the U.S. Myrick, as Sementelli points out, is a big believer in the stealth jihad conspiracy theory, so imagine her disappointment when Neumann said this:

Is Obama An Effective Politician?

Kevin Drum makes the case:

What's more, Obama also won passage during his first two years of a stimulus bill, a landmark healthcare bill that Democrats had been trying to pass for the better part of a century, a financial reform bill, and much needed reform of student loans. And more: a firm end to the Bush torture regime, the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a hate crimes bill, a successful rescue of the American car industry, and resuscitation of the NLRB. Oh, and he killed Osama bin Laden too.

No Country For Marriage-Equality Federalism

Not to be outdone by Rick Perry, Ben Smith reports that former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has signed the National Organization for Marriage's pledge to "defend marriage" by supporting a constitutional amendment to ban marriage equality (via Igor Volsky):

Media Malpractice Of The Day

The American Family Association's Bryan Fischer is infamous among liberals for his views on race and gay rights, and for being someone GOP presidential hopefuls go to to shore up their social conservative bonafides. The New York Times, reporting on Fischer, shows the limits of faux objectivity: 


The hidden history of ALEC and prison labor.

Yearning for the old George Will.

The abortion wars come to Maryland.

Why are American evangelicals so afraid of Arab democracy?

"Wigger Day"

Tanya Somanader looks at the "Wigger Day" lawsuit:

Civil Rights vs. Preemption In Immigration Cases

Nicholas Mendoza looks at why the Obama administration has relied on arguments that the federal government has the authority to set immigration policy instead of challenging immigration laws on racial profiling grounds:

White House Counterradicalization Strategy: Don't Demonize Muslims

The White House released its strategy for countering violent extremism today, and while the use of that particular phrase may provoke howls of "political correctness" from conservatives, the strategy identifies "al-Qa’ida and its affiliates and adherents represent the preeminent terrorist threat to our country." The strategy also emphasizes the importance of local actors in resisting and identifying extremism, and contains an implicit rebuke to Republicans singling out the Muslim community as being full of potential subversives:

Glenn Beck: New Spider-Man "Looks Just Like President Obama"

Glenn Beck loses his cookies over the idea of a blatino Spider-Man, whom he says "looks just like President Obama."

Feminism, Steve King, And Birthrate Panic

Marie Diamond flags Iowa Representative Steve King's panic over the possibility that increased access to contraception could lead to the end of America:

They’ve called it preventative medicine. Preventative medicine. Well if you applied that preventative medicine universally what you end up with is you’ve prevented a generation. Preventing babies from being born is not medicine. That’s not— that’s not constructive to our culture and our civilization. If we let our birth rate get down below replacement rate we’re a dying civilization.

Principles Of Unsurpassed Ugliness

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney is taking legal advice from Robert Bork, the failed conservative nominee to the Supreme Court who says things like this about the 1964 Civil Rights Act:

The principle of such legislation is that if I find your behavior ugly by my standards, moral or aesthetic, and if you prove stubborn about adopting my view of the situation, I am justified in having the state coerce you into more righteous paths. That is itself a principle of unsurpassed ugliness.

Trying Mubarak

The trial of former Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak began today. Mubarak is being tried in Egypt's regular court system, despite the existence of an alternate, military court system set up by his 1981 emergency law. Unlike the thousands of protesters who have since been tried in the military system, Mubarak will be getting a fair trial.


Newt Gingrich doesn't read Paul Krugman.

Not so many liberals.

The sorry story of Central Falls, Rhode Island.

The top five homophobic arguments in Boehner's DOMA briefs.


Ben Smith posts an e-mail from a "senior Democrat" who says liberals have long been fighting an uphill battle ideologically:

We didn't lose this fight, Barack Obama was in law school when this fight was lost.

The role of Democrats should not be to convince people that government is great, it should be to help people reach their potential -- and government is a tool to do that. There has been a strain of skepticism about the government in the American character since the founding, only the New Deal changed that significantly; but we have been returning to the norm ever since then.