Harold Meyerson

Harold Meyerson is editor-at-large of The American Prospect. His email is hmeyerson@prospect.org.

Recent Articles

A Modest Proposal for Mitch McConnell

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite
Mitch McConnell’s epic bamboozling failed to persuade a sufficient number of his Republican colleagues, so the Senate vote on his bill to repeal Obamacare, decimate Medicaid, and cut taxes on the rich has been put on hold. The final stake, however, has not yet been driven through its cankered heart. Both the House and Senate versions of the ACA repeal are almost without precedent in American history. By taking away health coverage from more than 20 million Americans, these bills tread new ground: The withdrawal of life-saving services from tens of millions of citizens is something that no previous Congress has ever seriously considered. The closest analogy I can come up with is the Fugitive Slave Act, passed in 1850, which required Northern states to help Southern ones seize free African Americans in the North so they could be returned to slavery down South. It’s possible, of course, that McConnell, Paul Ryan, and their GOP colleagues don’t believe the Congressional...

Place Matters

As in the 1930s, progressives need economic development strategies for the left-behind regions of the country.

AP Photo/David Goldman
This article appears in the Summer 2017 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . wwc_homepage_logo-3.jpg Donald Trump’s election may have stunned us all, but it shouldn’t have. There were plenty of signals that regions of the country on whose support Democrats had long counted were in economic collapse. And like most of us, the Democrats failed to see them. In May 2016, the Economic Innovation Group (EIG) released a study—“The New Map of Economic Growth and Recovery”—that made no discernible impact on progressive discourse or Democrats’ strategy. But, like the Angus Deaton and Anne Case studies on rising death rates within the white working class—which did enter progressive discourse but also had no impact on Democrats’ strategy—it sure as hell should have. The EIG’s study strikes me as the necessary corollary to the Deaton-Case documentation of the rise in “deaths of despair” within the...

Leader of the Unfree World

AP Photo/Evan Vucci
He’s cool with the Saudis, he’s down with Duterte, he’s effectively a Putin pal. With Western Europe, not so much. It may be a fool’s errand to try to discern an actual foreign policy from President Donald Trump’s tweets, pronouncements, phone calls to foreign leaders, and encounters with them on his recent jaunt through the Middle East and Europe. But after so many tweets and phone calls and pronouncements and encounters, we’re obligated to try. When we do, three distinct tendencies emerge. The first is an economic nationalism that ranges from reasonable and long overdue to just plain cockeyed. The one commendable part of Trump’s foreign policy is his elevation, if largely rhetorical, of the interests of American workers (to be sure, chiefly white male workers in manufacturing) over the economic interests of other nations (which are often really the interests of U.S. multinational corporations). Indeed, this is an area where a more activist...

Why Do Billionaires Care So Much About Charter Schools?

For the 1 percent, combating inequality is all about individual achievement, not systemic change.

AP Photo/Richard Vogel
This article originally appeared at The Los Angeles Times . Subscribe here . The billionaires, apparently, we shall always have with us—even when we decide how to run the state-funded schools where they rarely send their own kids. In the Los Angeles school board elections earlier this month, a number of billionaires, including Eli Broad , Netflix founder Reed Hastings, and two Walton family siblings, poured millions into the campaigns of two charter-school advocates. These billionaire-sponsored candidates defeated two badly outspent opponents who took a more cautionary stance on expanding charters, lest they decimate the school district’s budget. In total, pro-charter groups outspent teacher unions, $9.7 million to $5.2 million. (In the 2016 state legislative campaigns, the charterizers outspent the unions by a far larger margin, $20.5 million to $1.2 million.) Though a number of the billionaires who’ve involved themselves in the charter cause are conservatives and...

Tricky Dick and the Donald

AP Photo/Charles Tasnadi, File
You might think Donald Trump was studying the Watergate tapes to see how best to recreate Richard Nixon’s crimes. On the June 23, 1972, tape—the one that, when its transcript was released, caused every Republican on the House Judiciary Committee to announce they’d vote to impeach Nixon, and which led, two weeks later, to his resignation—Nixon discussed with his chief of staff, Bob Haldeman, how to get the CIA to call off the FBI, which was investigating who was behind the Watergate break-in. “The way to handle this now,” Haldeman told Nixon, “is for us to have [Deputy CIA Director Vernon] Walters call [FBI Director] Pat Gray and just say, ‘Stay the hell out of this, ah, business here, we don’t want you to go any further on it.” “All right, fine,” Nixon replied. The CIA leaders “should call the FBI in and say that we wish for the country, ‘Don’t go any further into this case, period!’...

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